Creative activities at Silver Spring Studio include sensory activities. Sensory activity is any exercise that activates one or multiple of the five senses: hearing, smell, taste, touch, and vision. Since sensory activities work best when linked to a person’s interests, we have a huge list of classes you can pick from at Silver Spring Studio. The benefits of sensory activity go beyond day programming.
Sensory activity is inclusive because there is no right or wrong way to engage. Sensory stimulation can bring joy to the lives of people with developmental disabilities, reduce anxiety, and increase positive social communication. Adults with developmental disabilities will acquire a way to express themselves without words. Some of the objects in sensory activities can help them to ask questions, respond to verbal cues, and remain calm in a stressful situation. That will encourage them to communicate and engage with those around them.
Imagine you had a trip to Asia last year, and a good scent from the restaurant on the street brought back your memory of your trip. That’s one example of sensory memory. It’s not just the visual clue that could carry your memory because your experience is stored in your brain with other sensory clues. When people with developmental disabilities go through sensory activities, they will remember that experience with sensory objects. Sensory objects can evoke positive feelings and help to relax and improve mood, self-esteem, and well-being. An item as small as jewelry made in a class might bring back happy memories of when they created it. Touching the texture of the surface and feeling the weight in their hands are simple actions but can also strengthen cognitive abilities.
‘Studies have shown that on average most people touch around 300 different surfaces every half an hour. In contrast, someone with a profound cognitive impairment, such as Alzheimer’s Disease, will touch only three surfaces.’ Through learning creations at Silver Spring Studio, people will naturally touch a lot of different surfaces and feel different textures, including wood, clay, paper, and soil. This will encourage them to be open to a variety of sensory stimulation.
Reduced Fear, Increased Trust
Usually, people with developmental disabilities struggle to understand the world around them. They would feel frightened in certain situations, making interacting with others difficult, including care workers. Sensory activities provide positive stimuli that increase their awareness of their surroundings. As a result, members will feel easier to open up to their care workers, strengthening their relationship and level of trust. One of the main benefits of sensory activities is reducing clients' fears by improving relationships with their caregivers.