Linda Garofallou, MS, IMH-E®-III Clinical
Qigong Sensory Treatment for Children's Special Developmental Needs

Tactile & Sensory Foundations of Child Development - Workshop

      This workshop examines the fundamental and critical importance of healthy, nurturing human touch to the physical, mental/emotional and social/behavioral development and well-being of infants and children.   Focus is on the impact of early tactile and sensory experience on the achievement of self-regulatory milestones in the first year.   We will see how child development and relatedness can best be understood through the prism of sensory experience, one in which the skin and touch serve as the bridge between the child’s inner and outer worlds.          The inclusion of the physiological, embryologic, cultural and historical roots of touch will help widen the perspective through which we understand this fundamentally non-verbal yet uniquely relational experience.  An in-depth view of the medical research data is presented along with current literature on the psycho-physiological aspects of touch and its application to maternal contact and infant massage.  The goal is to present touch in its many cultural and physiological dimensions and to connect those elements to the experience of focused tactile and sensory early intervention as a means to promote bonding, attachment and healthy child development.

 Workshop Topics of Discussion:

    • Neuroscience of Interpersonal Touch
    • Genetic Basis for Touch Effects
    • Embryological Foundations of Touch
    • Physiologic, Emotional, Social & Behavioral Effects of Touch
    • Ethnopediatrics & Cross-cultural Studies
    • Cultural & Historical Foundations of Touch
    • Debunking the Theory of Spoiling
    • Medical research results
Presentations given at:
Center for Autism & Early Childhood Mental Health, Montclair State University   (2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013)
Canadian Self-Regulation Initiative - Summer Symposium  (Jul 2016)
YCS Institute for Infant and Preschool Mental Health-Didactic Seminar Series for Doctoral Psychology Interns, Externs & Multi-Disciplinary Staff   (Apr 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004)
St. Barnabas Health Care System-Pediatric Critical Care Unit Nurses Training-Children's Hospital of NJ at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center (Oct 2012, Mar 2012, Apr 2008, Oct 2007, Apr 2007, Oct  2006)
Pediatric Conference for Residents, Interns & Medical Students--Children's Hospital of NJ at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center (Sep 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2005)
YCS Nurse Family Partnership Staff Training (Jul 2012)
Voice for Children of South Dakota—Infant Mental Health Mentorship Program  (Jan 2010)
NICU Developmental Conference— Children’s Hospital of NJ at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center  (Sept 2006)
Seton Hall University—Occupational Therapy Program, So. Orange, NJ  (Dec 2009, Nov 2008, Oct 2007, Nov 2006)
New York Zero-To-Three Network Annual Conference:  "The Mind-Body Connection in the Infant's World: From Development to Intervention." (May  2009)
New York Zero-To-Three Network “Clinical Roundtable Series” (Apr 2008)
NJ Association of Infant Mental Health (2016, 2008)
NJ Occupational Therapy Pediatric Special Interest Group (Apr 2008)
Child Study Group—Montclair, NJ  (Apr 2010)
FAMILY Connections Agency—Annual Community Conference  (Nov 2007)
Coalition of Infant Toddler Educators—Annual Conference, (Mar 2007, Mar 2006, Mar 2005)
YCS Infant Family Home Program (May 2006, Apr & Nov 2005, Mar & May, Oct 2004, May & Oct 2003, Oct & Jul 2002)
YCS Southern Region Clinical Rounds, Camden, NJ   (Oct  2005)
Newark Renaissance House Substance Abuse Clinic  (Staff training, 2009, 2007, 2005, 2004)
Sunbridge College/LOGOS Foundation,   (Waldorf educators and parents, Jun 2005)
Children’s Aid & Family Services  (Oct 2004) 
CARRI Program Staff Training, Univ Behavioral Health Care, Univ of Medicine & Dentistry of New JerseyPiscataway, NJ   (Feb 2004)
YCS Institute for Training in Infant & Preschool Mental Health—Continuing Education Department  (Spring & Fall 2003, Spring & Fall 2002)