Lessons and materials

Sensory Areas Journeys: By Boat

This multi-sensory activity uses tactile, auditory, and visual elements, as well as literacy and numeracy, to help children with visual impairments to integrate skills across all areas of the curriculum.

Here I share another sensory curriculum session plan full of ideas to support the theme of Journeys: By Boat. These ideas incorporate tactile, visual, and auditory activities, as well as suggestions for reinforcing literacy and numeracy skills.


  • Feel range of toy boats, feel cloth used for sails. 
  • Make imaginary boat with broom sticks for oars. 
  • Pretend to row the boat – sing “Row row row the boat.” 
  • Simulate the rocking motion of a boat. 
  • Play with boats on water tank, include use of battery-operated boat if possible, listen to the splish, splosh of the water. 
  • Play racing the boats across the water. 
  • Fan to create wind on face, if on a boat. 
  • Dress up in sailing wear, cagoule, wellington boots, peaked cap, souwester, stripy t-shirts, binoculars. 
  • Weather on boat – rainy, sunny, windy – simulate with fan, bellows, air pump on voile, streamers, balloons for wind. Hairdryer for warm air. Torch light shining on sunny yellow, fluorescent fabric. 
  • Simulate rain – watering can on tin tray, simulate wind with fan. 
  • Simulate thunder by banging drums or clapping cymbals. 

sail boat with yellow sails


(some of these ideas would also be used in the tactile section also) 
  • Use Wellington boots to make blue/green textured paint footprints to represent the sea. 
  • Make large boat shape to add to the sea, children to add bright coloured/textured sails to the boat. 


  • Listen to a ferry siren, horn


Row, row, row the boat. 
The big ship sailed on the Ali, Ali O


  • Larger, smaller, thin, wider, (shapes of boats) 
  • Feel shape of sail – triangles, feel corners, feel straight edges. 
  • Count boats on water.
  • Line boats up by size biggest to smallest. 
boat collage
There are more shared ideas at www.positiveeye.co.uk