Friday, September 20, 2013

Enhancing the Tactile Intelligence of children

 Have you ever wondered why, from the age of 5 months or so, children reach out to TOUCH everything? I have wondered about it a lot. What is it that makes all children, irrespective of where they are, do certain things at a certain age, instinctively. They automatically know that chewing on something will help with the teething process and put everything in their mouth.

Sure, we keep stopping them from doing it, we child proof the house. But the question is, WHY do they do it?

And i think, the answer is, that at that age, children are instinctively trying to enhance their tactile intelligence - the ability to touch a thing and understand it.
How do we respond to this very natural, very important need to develop a kind of intelligence? By child proofing the house and running around with, "dont touch this, dont touch that. stay away from that."

What happens to our children when they are deprived of this very important learning? While doing research on this post, i read up a few studies on the link between tactile learning and intelligence. What i found was SHOCKING, to say the least. There is significant correlation between tactile learning and cognitive ability of a child.

Quote from FamilyEducation:
Most of the school population excels through kinesthetic means: touching, feeling, experiencing the material at hand. "Children enter kindergarten as kinesthetic and tactual learners, moving and touching everything as they learn. By second or third grade, some students have become visual learners. During the late elementary years some students, primarily females, become auditory learners. Yet, many adults, especially males, maintain kinesthetic and tactual strengths throughout their lives."(Teaching Secondary Students Through Their Individual Learning Styles, Rita Stafford and Kenneth J. Dunn; Allyn and Bacon, 1993)

Factor analytic results suggest tactile measures have a significant relationship with measures of cognitive ability.

For more, please see this:

Why was i doing this research? Because last night, i was making these tactile mazes again. And wondered how children will really benefit from these toys? So i googled to find out if there is any linkage between tactile learning tools and a child's intelligence?

The evidence was so overwhelming that i had to pause whatever i was doing and call a friend who is an educational advisor, and share this with her.

YOUR CHILDREN NEED TACTILE LEARNING. Please, please, provide it to them.

I am going to write a post on how you can do this at home - Enhance Tactile learning in your children.

You can also use Esha's new toys in that segment. But please remember, its not necessary to use Esha toys for tactile learning. These are just tools. Tactile learning is all around us. 

3D touch maze for 4-5 year olds. You cannot solve this maze easily by looking at it. Tracing your finger makes it much easier. Try it!

This tactile learning tool has 5 different textures you can teach a child with. The red crystals mark "corners" - very important lesson for 2 year olds. The pearl finish, the stones, the 3D color and the outline of a fish that can be felt by a child. In this maze, you have to reach all the raised elements of the puzzle using only the raised lines as your "highway" Try it!


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