Tray Play


Sensory experiences for adults with cognitive challenges

About Tray Play

Tray Play is an open-ended activity designed for Activity Professionals and Carepartners working in long-term care who are dedicated to increasing the well-being of their residents and clients.

Tray Play is…

  • a hands-on table top activity showcased on a large white tray, using enticing materials for creative expression
  • a creative way to engage residents in stimulating activity
  • an activity that meets many needs of adults with varying cognitive or physical challenges.

Tray Play has wide appeal, and each tray design is unique, as the arrangement of materials depends on the player’s experience and imagination.  There are no expectations, rules, or directions to follow.  Everyone comes to the table with the abilities that they do have–and that is what is celebrated.  It’s just a chance to connect, awaken the senses, self-express, and rejuvenate.

Tray Play is more than an activity, it’s an experience!

Our Philosophy

It's more of a journey, rather than a destination.

There is something very satisfying about one’s tray design when it comes to completion.  The player and facilitator sit back in admiration and soak in all the charm.  There is a sense of accomplishment and pride.  And this is wonderful to witness.  But, really, Tray Play is more process-oriented rather than product driven.

Tray Play is ultimately about sharing the present moment together and receiving a break from repetitive thoughts, worries, and concerns.  It can be a time to laugh, share thoughts, and be lively.  But it can also be a time of stillness, reflection, exploration.  There are no expectations, except for having respect for each other and honoring whatever surfaces without judgment.  It is a time to connect with others, ourselves, and the world around us.

In Action

The Tray Play Method

Tray Play is not rocket science!  However…there is a METHOD behind successful implementation. And it’s this method that allows for the highest quality experience possible, ultimately providing the most fun for all!  Understanding all the nuances, ins and outs, and ways of communication with your players, will make your Tray Play experience engaging, productive, and invigorating.

Check out our FREE ONLINE COURSE here  to learn how to bring fun hands-on sensory experiences to your residents/ participants/ clients.

Not sure The Tray Play Method is for you?  Learn more here

Meet the Team

Nicole Root

Nicole’s passion is creating unique combinations of materials that work well together to help Activity Professionals and Caregivers and the adults they care for, feel inspired, empowered, and rejuvenated. She realizes that it can be challenging to offer fresh, engaging, purposeful, stimulating, person-centered activities on a regular basis, especially when a wide variety of cognitive abilities need to be addressed.

Mark Root

Mark makes all of Nicole’s wishes come true by offering technical and “behind the scenes” support.

Maddie Root

Maddie, a developing artist, shares her talents by assisting with photography and video footage. She also helps with kit assembly.

Chloe Root

Chloe, an innovator at heart, is instrumental in kit assembly.

It would be our pleasure to connect with you!

Charlottesville, VA
Phone Number
(434) 227-0258
Keep up with highlighted Tray Play combinations and current happenings.