The Calming Room
The Calming Room is a system that customizes the built environment to support the diverse sensory needs of individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). It was designed in response to a case study of “The Quiet Room” in the Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Behavioral Science at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, which is an alternative to the typical waiting room for patients with sensory differences. In ASD, these differences are characterized by hypo- and/or hypersensitivity in the following domains: visual, auditory, tactile, oral, olfactory, proprioceptive (movement), and vestibular (balance). This project demonstrates how a person with ASD and/or their caregiver could work with a healthcare professional to create their own Calming Room. The aim of this project is illustrate the concept of a dynamic room and to encourage the neurotypical viewer to better understand the sensory needs in ASD and their behavioral implications.
Written thesis available here
Advised by David Comberg (PennDesign) and Dr. Margaret Souders (Penn School of Nursing)
Architectural renderings by Jonah Schatz
existing quiet room
This mockup demonstrates an app in which individuals with ASD and/or their guardians would consult with a healthcare professional to create their personal Calming Room.
Possible room realizations based on the sensory profiles of patients at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
Animations created by Jonah Schatz
Project installation at the Penn Visual Studies Senior Thesis Exhibition, featuring animated renderings and sensory comfort objects. On display May 1–12, 2017 | Photos by Kaleb Germinaro