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Suggestions based on the work of David Katz for a 'touch-based pedagogy'

DBI World Conference 2019
Communications stream: Concurrent session 8D
Presenter: A/Prof Kirsten Costain
Topic: Suggestions based on the work of David Katz for a 'touch-based pedagogy'

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Suggestions based on the work of David Katz for a 'touch-based pedagogy'

  1. 1. Suggestions based on the work of David Katz for a ‘touch-based pedagogy’ Kirsten Costain, National unit for combined visual and hearing loss and deafblindness, Statped, Oslo, Norway Deafblind International World Conference, August 2019
  2. 2. Background: “The world of touch”, Katz (1925/2016) David Katz: Psychologist and central figure in study of the psychology of perception: Touch: The perceiver creates the sensory experience actively Microstructure (surface fine structure) over macrostructure (form or shape) Pressure and vibration Bipolarity of touch: the subjective   objective poles
  3. 3. The intelligent hand: a unitary sense organ The hand, like the eye, is a unified sense organ: It is the hand and not the minute nerve receptors that is the organ of touch The content of tactile experience is generated actively by the perceiver, most prominently through the hand The hand as the organ of touch must be “educated”, just like the other sense organs (***we would include the skin as the sense organ in this context of cdb and sensory “education”).
  4. 4. The “bipolarity”of touch: objective and subjective poles of touch experience
  5. 5. Hyper-sensitivity of the touch organ in cdb and the subjective pole Hyper-sensitivity in touch experience and touch aversion in many individuals with cdb Pedagogical implications: - Difficulty exploring the world and difficulty with tactile language development (both impressive and expressive language). - Dependence in perceptual terms of “object permanence” on moving and sustained touch
  6. 6. Pedagogical tactics: overcoming “overwhelming” subjectivity in touch experience and strengthening the objective pole: 1. Use of music and sound vibration to motivate touching and exploration of the objective world: Music produces vibrations felt more globally and may thus be easier for the touch-averse person with cdb to tolerate. Being touched by sound on and in the body can be more subtle than being touched by another’s hand – it can embrace the whole nervous system in a way that “holds” the person without restraining or putting direct pressure on the body
  7. 7. 2. Using intense physical activities that force a focus on the objective pole: Example: climbing a climbing wall or a mountainside
  8. 8. 3. Talking about sensations felt in tactile experience: Using language and communication to distinguish between the subjective and objective poles of touch experience. Distinguishing between what is happening IN me and what is happening OUTSIDE of me.
  9. 9. 4. Muting the touch experience to reduce the dominance of the subjective pole by - scaffolding (by the partner) - or by using a covering object (piece of cloth with an acceptable texture wrapped around an object, for example)
  10. 10. 5. Using vibration as a distal sense to reveal the physical properties of the world For example, the notion of height
  11. 11. Discussion (2 and 2) What do you think about the notion of a dual, simultaneous experience of the subjective   objective poles in touch? What do you think about the notion of an “overwhelming subjectivity” of touch experience for some persons with cdb?
  12. 12. Group discussion: Feedback from from the discussions 2 and 2.  Are these concepts understandable? Can you see ways in which they might inform your practice?  What do you think of the pedagogical strategies in light of the notion of “overwhelming subjectivity” in touch and cdb?