Stepping Stones Learning Solutions | Tomatis
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The Tomatis® Method

The Tomatis® Program is an auditory stimulation program designed to re-awaken the ear’s natural ability to listen and ultimately stimulate the brain’s desire to communicate. The training is provided through an Electronic Ear delivering electronically modified music and language.

 

What are the conditions that can benefit from Tomatis®?
Tens of thousands of people annually around the world have used The Tomatis® Method. Here are some needs and a sampling of those with whom Tomatis® has helped.

Who can Benefit?
Tomatis Program helps children and adults realize their potential in learning environments, social situations, and workplaces. It facilitates language acquisition, helps to overcome learning challenges, relieves emotional backlogs, improves voice and communication skill, and enhances well-being and self-esteem.

Tomatis® helps children with:

  • Delayed speech and language
  • Auditory processing challenges
  • Attention deficit and hyperactive behavior
  • Sensory integration difficulties
  • Obsessive compulsive behavior
  • Oppositional defiance behavior
  • Learning disorders: Dyslexia, Apraxia, Asperger, Autism, etc.
  • Delayed reading and writing

 

In order to:

  • Increase capacity for processing and absorbing information
  • Better organize and understand directions
  • Improve focus and concentration when doing tasks
  • Reduce hours spent on homework
  • Increase attention span and improve speech
  • Improve relationship with friends and family
  • Unlock motivation and stimulate curiosity
  • Increase self-confidence and self-esteem

Tomatis® helps adults with:

  • Auditory and sensory processing issues
  • Dyslexia and comprehension issues
  • Stress and related issues
  • Memory challenge
  • Overwork, fatigue, and low energy
  • Autism
  • Organization and direction
  • Ear issues, tinnitus, vertigo
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Loss of confidence

 

In order to:

  • Improve memory, word recall, and name recognition
  • Calm constant mental chatters
  • Bring richness to their language
  • Jump start imagination and nourish new ideas
  • Strengthen self-motivation
  • Ease tension & stress and establish a positive view of life
  • Reduce worries, anxiety, and/or depression
  • Improve self-confidence and self-esteem

How Long does it Take?

Tomatis Program is undertaken in cycles. The length of Tomatis Program depends on the nature and severity of the condition and the response of the participant to the program. Each cycle has a total of 26 hours of listening over 13 days with 2 hours a day. (This will vary depending on the student’s age).  It is recommended that students complete 3 rounds in total with a 4 to 8 week break in between each Tomatis session.

How Does It Work?

Pre-Assessment:

  • In some cases, a pre-listening test is conducted to determine auditory skills and conditions
  • Entails a detailed personal history of the participant
  • An individualized program is designed to meet need

 

Cycle I:

  • Passive listening of 2 hours a day for 10 to 13 days (less for younger students)
  • Parents record observations

 

Break I:

  • A break of 4 to 8 weeks
  • Another listening test might be performed to track progress and to provide a basis for adjusting the program if necessary

 

Cycle II:

  • Passive listening of 2 hours a day for 10 to 13 days (less for younger students)
  • A counseling session to summarize what has been achieved and to explore reactions, thoughts, and feelings

 

Break II:

  • A break of 4 to 12 weeks before Cycle III if necessary

 

Post-Assessment:

  • A post-listening test and evaluation is conducted to assess the changes the participant may have experienced

Theory

The Tomatis Method® is named after its inventor, Dr. Alfred A. Tomatis, psychologist, physician & ENT specialist, who spent over fifty years redefining the ear’s extraordinary significance to human development. Dr. Tomatis believed that most of the problems related to listening originate from early experiences and that from conception forward we shut out those frequencies that correspond to disturbing/traumatic occurrences, e.g., difficulties during pregnancy/birth, parental and/or social prohibitions, fear, anxiety. The Tomatis Method® was developed through extensive clinical research that focused on the vast array of psychological and social factors that bear on listening, including the family system and emotional background.

 

In the course of his research Dr. Tomatis substantiated that the faculty of listening is closely related to the capacity for learning and the ability to communicate. Listening, which serves auditory comprehension, as viewing serves visual comprehension, is defined as using the ear consciously to process information for the purpose of learning and communication. The desire to listen is the “royal road” for language development and communication, and provides the basis for human growth.

 

It is important to remember that the faculties of hearing and listening are not the same. The listening function of the ear is an active process while the hearing function is a more passive process. It is therefore misleading to assimilate auditory comprehension with the simple perception of sounds. In fact, the ear assumes three principal functions:

 

The Energizing Function
: Ear stimulation is important to energize the brain and the body through a function called cortical energizing. With the use of high frequency harmonics, stimulation of the reticular formation (a vast neural network) controls the overall activation level in the brain.

 

The Vestibule Function
: The human ear plays an important role in posture and balance control and influences a large part of the muscular system of the body. As a result of consistent messaging to the vestibule in the left and right ears, the messages being sent to the brain are harmonized making movement responses (including the eye movements) more fluid and organized. The vestibule is also
involved in rhythm of both music and language.

 

The Auditory Function
: The human ear perceives sound, filters it, and converts it into the neural activity that permits our brain to process and attach meaning to the sound we hear.

 

Hearing disturbances can cause problems with discrimination, spatialization, auditory lateralization, and the ability to isolate an auditory message from the surrounding noise. The disturbances often require greater effort to understand a message. This can result in message errors, increasing levels of tiredness, irritability, and withdrawal. As a result, attention, memory, communication, and social skill can suffer.

Tomatis Effect & Laws

In order to optimize the functional listening capacities and/or to remedy certain dysfunctions of the ear, Dr. Tomatis developed a listening training device called the ‘Electronic Ear’ to rehabilitate the ear for improved listening. This device exercises the muscles of the middle ear like a workout through bone and air conduction. Dr. Tomatis was awarded for creating the Tomatis Effect and Laws:

 

  • The voice contains only what the ear hears.
  • If one gives the imperfect ear the chance of hearing correctly, the voice instantly and unconsciously improves.
  • It’s possible to durably transform phonation through auditory stimulation over a certain period of time (the law of duration). The Electronic Ear provides such simulation.

Areas of Application

The Tomatis Method® facilitates the normal physical, sensory, and physiological development of a person and stimulates, with integration, several cranial nerve pathways in the brain. It helps enhance the listening process and auditory processing for seniors, adults, teenagers, or children who have problems related to communication, socialization, psychological (relationships, anxiety, depression, stress), overwork, exhaustion, and/or lack of self-confidence, memory, concentration, motivation, energy, creativity, etc.

Language & Learning Difficulties

Tomatis centres around the world use the Tomatis Method® to help thousands of children who suffer from learning difficulties such as:

  • Dyslexia
  • Auditory processing
  • ADD/ADHD
  • Dyspraxia
  • Speech delay, etc.

 

Tomatis centres also provide facilities for children who are intellectually and physically disabled (Downs Syndrome, Autism, Asperger’s Syndrome, global developmental delay, etc.) Foreign Languages – Learn a Language in Half the Time

With the help of the Electronic Ear and specific filters to study a language, the Tomatis Sound Training Program opens the auditory diaphragm by exercising the neuro-muscular system of the ear. This ear training allows a student to adapt to the specific linguistic components of a foreign language such as:

  • Rhythm
  • Timbre
  • Accent
  • Fluency

 

The Tomatis Method® offers adults and children the chance to enhance their ability to learn foreign languages such as English, Chinese (Mandarin), French, Spanish, German, Russian, and Dutch more effectively.

Personal & Behavioral Development

The Tomatis Method® works on exercising the ears, but also has an impact on an emotional level. Emotional blockages may develop in people who face a reorganization of their routines, increased responsibilities, loss of familiar references, or increased pressure that can prevent people from listening. One can become stuck emotionally at a young age, namely the age at which they suffered the original trauma, preventing normal emotional growth and good listening. In cases involving stress-related disorders and depression, the muscles in the middle ear are worked out and strengthened under the Tomatis Method® to remove inhibition mechanisms of listening and enable the precise and harmonious integration of acoustic information to the inner ear and then to the brain.

 

Additional Information about the Tomatis Method

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