Purpose The purpose of this paper is to describe whether and how groups of nursing home residents respond to the interactive device "the CRDL". The CRDL can translate touches between people into sounds. It recognises the type of touch and adjusts the produced sound accordingly.
Design/methodology/approach This was as an observational explorative study. Responses were coded and analysed using an existing theoretical framework.
Findings The CRDL creates an atmosphere of playfulness and curiosity. It lowers the threshold to touch, provides an incentive to touch and encourages experimentation with different types of touches on arms and hands. The sounds the CRDL produces sometimes trigger memories and provide themes to start and support conversation. Involving a (large) group of nursing home residents to interact with the CRDL is challenging.
Research limitations/implications In order to more fully understand the potential of the CRDL, its use should be studied in different group and individual sessions and the effects of tailored content, adjusted to individual preferences and/or stages of cognition should be explored. Finally, the effects of using the CRDL on the general wellbeing of nursing home residents should be studied.
Practical implications The CRDL can help caregivers to use touch to make contact with (groups of their) residents. A session should be guided by an experienced caregiver. Some familiarisation and practice with the CRDL are recommended and a quiet environment is advised.
Originality/value This paper demonstrates the potential of interactive objects, such as the CRDL, in the nursing home.
- Elderly care
- Nursing home