—Application Examples in Nursery Schools—
preschool Stinsgårdens förskola
【From an interview with Principal Marie persson】
Shevling, located 30 minutes by train from Malmö City, is a small town with lush greenery.The Snoezelen philosophy has also been introduced at the Stinsgårdens förskola,Nursery school in this city.Nursery schools in Sweden used to be under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Social Welfare, but in 1998, they were merged with kindergartens and renamed “pre-schools,” and their jurisdiction was transferred to the Ministry of Education (Ministry of Education in Japan).This is due to the fact that women are entering the workforce and most mothers are now taking their children to daycare centers.
The school is what is known as an integrated daycare, with half of the children attending the school without disabilities and half with disabilities. There are separate buildings for the children to do their daily activities, but there is a “white room” in the corner of the facility that all the children can use, as an environment for relaxation.A “room” is not a single room, but a small corner with a curtain dividing it.
Just as the infant day care center in the Netherlands learned about snooze lane at a large snooze lane center and then set up the environment for their own facility, the person in charge of this school also learned about snooze lane at Safiren and then set up the environment for their own day care center.The facility utilizes this space for children with and without disabilities to relax when they are in an agitated state, but being a daycare center, there is a limit to how much the environment can be set up to meet each individual’s needs.
In this sense, it would be more appropriate to call it a “sensory room” as defined in Chapter 1.However, this space serves as a place for children to cool down when they get excited or stressed out because things are not going their way.Also, knowing that it is such a place, when a child cries and gets out of hand, someone will naturally bring him or her here.The space also acts as an opportunity to nurture small kindness in children who are not yet able to comfort others with words.
This is what the principal, Ms. Marie, has to say about this space.”Children today need this environment because every child is under stress. Children are brought here by their busy parents, and when they are picked up, they leave in a flurry. It’s hard for them to keep up with the speed.” Even in an area full of nature, children may find it hard to keep up with the speed of their parents, who are in a fast-paced environment,” continued Principal Marie.I really want mothers to use this place, but the mothers who come to pick up their children want to take them home as soon as possible, so few of them come in. It would be nice if they could spend a little time with their children…”
As a working mother myself, I understand well that mothers have another job to do after they get home: housework.There was no time to relax at the daycare center where I had picked up my child.The interview made me realize that the physical environment of the MSR and sensory room in snoozren is a tool to change the emotions and behaviors of the subject, and that the activity of snoozren is created only by working on the human environment of the caregivers.
From Our Activities
Snoezelen Room Experience for Parents and Children
Although the number of working mothers is increasing in Japan, there are still not enough systems and environments to support working mothers.
At Snoezelen Lab, based on the actual situation of its use in other countries and on the experiences of parents of children who have experienced Snoezelen, we will propose an environment in which Snoezelen can be effectively used not only for stimulating the five senses of infants and toddlers, but also as a time and space in which children can deepen communication with their caregivers, parents, peers, and community members. We will continue to make proposals.
- He gets nervous when he’s new to a place, but he seemed to get used to it quickly.
- He seemed to be more active than usual.
（1 year old boy）
- I thought it was a great idea, since some of the kids have tense bodies and stiff shoulders these days.
（2 year old girl）
- He is not good at new places and throws tantrums, but I was surprised to see him having so much fun playing!
(2 years and 3 months old boy)
- I myself was soothed and relaxed, and so was my child.
(1 year and 9 months old boy)
- I fell asleep because I felt so relaxed and comfortable, and so did the kids.
(1 year old girl)
《It’s getting a lot of attention in Japan, from nurseries and the like！！》
Inclusion” and “diversity” have become commonplace, and are also attracting attention in daycare centers where diverse children spend time.
Hopefully, the significance of snoezren will spread to spaces where diverse children spend time!