Guided Response:  Review at least two of your classmates’ posts and extend their learning by asking them to clarify their understanding, share an example or experience. Share an insight or something you learned from reading your classmates’ posts or from the text that helps to clarify your thinking. 

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CLASSMATE 1: Danielle Kaiser


Sensory Contributions to Learning

Understanding that sensory input contributes to learning can help teachers see the need to include multi-sensory modalities into lesson design and delivery.  Our senses are intertwined with our brain and memories, therefore they influence the way we learn.  They also play a large role in memory retrieval.  The brain activates multiple sensory areas when information is presented for a particular object (Willis & Mitchell, 2014).  This shows that the brain stores sensory information throughout the brain.  This also means that the brain uses our senses for learning.  To enhance brain storage teachers should be using a variety of sensory modalities to ensure students are able to register more sensory information related to the learning.  The retained sensory information will be connected throughout the brain.  The brain uses dendrites to connect all the different sensory memories pertaining to a particular topic (Willis & Mitchell, 2014).   Once this is understood when we look at students with developmental delays we can see how using multisensory modalities can help them.  If I am teaching a student with emotional delays I may focus on different ways to hold that particular student’s attention.  Students with emotional delays may need more information or hands on experiences to create meaning for what they are learning.  According to LeDoux (1994), emotions drive attention, create meaning, and have their own learning pathways (Jensen, 2005).   An example would be if we were learning about plants I would talk about plant life cycles and watch a short video showing the life cycle of a plant.  Then I would have student’s plant 2 seeds one in soil in a cup and another on a wet paper towel in a plastic bag.  The plants in cups would be placed in the window sill and the bags tapped to the window.  The students would water the plants as needed to learn how to nurture them.  They will be able to see all the steps as the plants in the bags grow.  This would involves many of the senses to aid in sensory learning and students would be involved in the process.


Jensen, E. (2005). Teaching with the brain in mind. Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.

Willis, J., & Mitchell, G. (2014). The neuroscience of learning: Principles and applications for educators. San Diego, CA: Bridgepoint Education.



CLASSMATE 2 : Elsie Goycoolea


Many learning strategies make use of our senses to promote knowledge acquisition. For instance, many online classes include audio-visual material alongside required readings in an attempt to provide a more comprehensive learning experience. Willis and Mitchell (2014) state, “the ultimate area of storage and retrieval of memories is strongly influenced by the senses through which the information in the network is acquired”. Through the processing of sensory information, different neural networks are activated contributing to the creation of long-term memory. Individuals with cognitive, emotional, motor skills, visual and speech developmental delays might have difficulties in activating these neural networks and thus affect learning.

People with autism spectrum disorder appear to have motor skills developmental delays that can be observed in coordination, balance and posture deficits. Dawson and Waitling (2000) examined the effect of using sensory integration to balance out the level of hyper-responsiveness in individuals with autism. It was mentioned how in some studies utilizing auditory integration therapy allowed children to increase their social interaction, correct their movement and vocalize better.

There are some people who learn best through visual inputs, other people are auditory learners and some others may prefer to engage in movement. From all sensory inputs, the RAS has to filter and select the amount of information that will be processed by the brain. It is important that teaching strategies adopt a combination of teaching styles as to meet the learning and selective differences in different students.

Other studies have examined how individuals with articulation impairments may see their improvement hindered if there is sensory integration dysfunction. Tung et al. (2013) state, “Sensory integration means that an individual transmits information with regard to contact between the body and the surrounding environment via one or more sensory systems to the brain for integration, and then the brain tells the motor system to respond”. They observed how the ability to process sensory information correctly improved articulation and speech in the subjects.



Dawson, G., & Watling, R. (2000). Interventions to facilitate auditory, visual, and motor integration in autism: A review of the evidence. Journal of autism and developmental disorders, 30(5), 415-421.

Tung, L. C., Lin, C. K., Hsieh, C. L., Chen, C. C., Huang, C. T., & Wang, C. H. (2013). Sensory integration dysfunction affects efficacy of speech therapy on children with functional articulation disorders. Neuropsychiatric disease and treatment, 9, 87.

Willis, J., & Mitchell, G. (2014). The neuroscience of learning: Principles and applications for educators. San Diego, CA: Bridgepoint Education.



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