Date of Award

December 2016

Degree Type





Donald Carr

Second Advisor

Lucinda Havenhard


Aging Communities, Assisted living, Engagement, Multi-sensory, Physical and Cognitive Development

Subject Categories

Visual Studies


Traditional care models typically have a pre- schedule list of activities for elders to engage in, for the purpose of leisure, enjoyments and fun. However, there are questions remaining about the long term benefits of activities and how many residents participate. “RenewedMe” is a service design project with the goal of “Enhancing engagement in individuals with cognitive or physical decline through multi-sensory activities. This project was inspired by the Montessori method principles of education that foster development, engagement and relationships through developmentally appropriate activities. My approach was to create an “environment” that fosters/sustains individualism, builds confidence and sensorial input and output. An array of activities was used to encourage engagement among residents of nursing homes and also between caregivers and friends. By playfully stimulating cognitive and emotional skills, these activities challenged individuals with cognitive decline. This research draws upon a mixture of primary and secondary sources including research, books and primary field research.

Engagement in meaningful social activities is related to quality of life for individuals in assistive care environments. “RenewedMe” aims not to discredit the works of recreational coordinators in assistive care environments. Rather, its objective is to assist in generating better systems to develop more inclusive, interactive and individualized activities that are cognitively beneficial.


Open Access