University of Edinburgh

Sensory Play and Learning

Presented on Friday, 11 March 2011

Sensory work: from passive to active use of the senses

Judy Denziloe

Seeker or Avoider?

Sensory seeker: Not enough sensation (hyposensitive) - need more

Sensory defensive: Too much sensation (hypersensitive) - need less

Children are rarely completely hypo- or hyper-; may be different responses in different senses; may vary and fluctuate depending on mood, health, tiredness, setting, demands being placed on them.

Passive or Active?

Many children (particularly with ASD) need to learn to use their senses actively rather than passively.

Passive Active
Seeing Looking
Hearing Listening
Being touched by fabrics etc Feeling and exploring
Breathing in smells Sniffing to get the smell
Tasting Actively savouring and discriminating between tastes