Creating sensory experiences through sensory training!

30 June 2017

A fantastic array of sensory training materials!

I was really impressed this week when I saw our training room at CMG’s Head Office in Leatherhead lit up with an array of fantastically colourful sensory materials.  This was in preparation for a 2 day training course that our clinical team had organised for managers and support staff at CMG’s PMLD services.  The two day programme focussed on ‘Developing Your Sensory Lexiconary’ and ‘Sensory Engagement for Mental Well-being’ and was run by Joanna Grace, the founder of The Sensory Projects (some of our CMG managers may remember Joanna as she ran some sensory sessions at our Manager’s Conference a couple of years ago). 

Whilst we run many training programmes at CMG (many run by our own Learning and Development and Clinical teams) we couldn’t fail to notice this one as there was such an impressive display of sensory materials!

As we all know, any training session is only ever as useful in so far as how it is used and implemented once back in the service to continuously improve person centred care.  I’d therefore like to include some feedback of two CMG managers who attended:

“’Slow down and repeat’ is a phrase we’ll often remind ourselves of when planning sensory-based sessions at Deer Lodge; a day centre which runs activities for service users with PMLD in Brighton. We all know this is good practice when working within the field of PMLD, but perhaps we didn’t truly understand the reasons behind why we do this. Joanna’s sessions offered a fascinating insight into the unique ways in which people with PMLD understand, interpret and learn about the world around them.  She offered a powerful message: we must use our privileged position as carers/teachers/parents/friends to facilitate the development and mental well-being of people with PMLD and appreciate how the world can be experienced primarily through the senses alone.”

Elsa Buckley, Manager, Deer Lodge

“This sensory training was inspiring, interactive and informative. It has made us look at our tenants’ needs, presentation and personalities from a different perspective. For example we learnt that it may take up to 30 minutes for someone to engage in a sensory experience. Previously we may only have given them the chance to engage for 5 minutes before the experience was changed. We have gathered a vast range of simple yet very effective ways of creating sensory and communication experiences for all of the senses.

Kitty McAvoy, Manager, Chandon

I’d also like to take this opportunity to remind everyone about the forthcoming Supportive Therapies Day on Thursday 20th July, an excellent annual event for all CMG’s PMLD service users.  The event is run by Katie Reid, CMG’s Healthcare Facilitator and Erren Wheatland, CMG’s Clinical Trainer, and offers a brilliant range of activities for individuals to take part in including; sensory stories, massage, pet therapy, hydrotherapy, art classes, music therapy and drama sessions.  The day also ends with a sensory disco and CMG’s infamous ‘Pimp my Chair’ competition! 

Sensory learning at CMG
Sensory training session at CMG by Joanne Grace
Sensory learning at CMG
Sensory training at CMG by Joanne Grace
Sensory learning at CMG
Sensory training at CMG by Joanne Grace

 

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