Five Sense Organs and its functions

The five sense organs in human beings are nose, eyes, skin, tongue and ears help to protect our body. The sense organs in humans have receptors that help pass information through sensory neurons to the right place with the help of our nervous system.

Each of the sense organs has different receptors.

  1. General receptors are present all through the body as they are present in visceral organs and skin. Visceral means joints and muscles.
  2. Special receptors contain chemoreceptor which is present in nose, mouth and photoreceptors or light receptors present in our eyes and mechanoreceptors found in our ears.


Olfactory cells are present on the top of nasal cavity. Also olfactory cells have attachments like hair called as cilia that reside in nasal cavity. While breathing anything that you inhale with air enters the nasal cavity like dust, nitrogen, oxygen, hydrogen, chemicals, pollen etc., you cannot smell dust, pollen or air but can smell the chemicals. Your brain is capable of knowing the process of smelling.


The taste and smell senses work hand in hand. If you are unable to smell something, you cannot taste it too. Taste buds present on our tongue have chemoreceptor that work same as chemoreceptor present in our nasal cavity. The chemoreceptor present in our nose can detect any type of smell, whereas the four different taste buds present on our tongue detect different taste like salty, bitter, sour and sweet.


The ear not only helps us to hear but also play an important role in maintaining balance or equilibrium. To maintain balance ear should be able to detect movement. To hear, the ear should be able to respond to stimulation produced by sound waves.

When the sound wave reaches the eardrum, our eardrum then moves small stapes, the malleus and incus , which also moves.


When you observe an eye, the colored part is Iris. The iris controls pupil’s size and is pigmented, which dilates in order to pass more light into the eye or contract to pass less light in our eye. The cornea covers pupil and iris. The retina has photoreceptors that detect light. Detectors that detect light are of two types

Rods help us detect motion. The rods work very hard in low light

Cones help detect color and fine detail. They work hard and best when the light is bright. Color blindness usually occurs when the person lacks cone.


The skin has general receptors. These receptors help us detecting pain, pressure, touch and temperature. All these four receptors are evenly interspersed all throughout the skin. When activate skin receptors help in generating an impulse, which passes to your spinal cord and from there to your brain. All our organs are made of tissues and have receptors, it’s just not only the skin that has receptors.

All five sense organs are important for our body to function properly and we should take very good care of these sensory organs.

Use of Sensory Organs by Brain to explore new things!

To learn about world and different things, it is important to explore the surroundings and to collect information through the senses. Irrespective of whether we are also talking about child or about adult, or developmentally delayed and gifted people, and also regardless of skill and concept we are consider, brain should start the search for detail information by using senses.

If we don’t identify something for been encountered in past or we encountered but didn’t understand, we will completely rely on the sensory organs to collect information. Both adults and children who are gifted with something novel will start their investigation by touching, looking, listening, tasting and sensing to it. It is after we gained detail information about physical properties that we are exploring and which can move on for investigating at the highly sophisticated level.

Since sensory exploration is mainly a key foundation of entire learning, people who have visual impairments or hearing impairments and those who are having inadequate integration of sensory processing the abilities are at great disadvantage which are hence at high level of risk for experiencing the learning disabilities and delayed development.

Development Stages

All concepts and skills follow the similar sequence for developmental stages: obtaining information related to physical properties of specific thing through exploring with sensory organs, identifying how such properties will change when the action is taken such as cause & effect relationships with an ability to manipulate the information figuratively in mind without that thing.

Concept Development:

Children having atypical development progress through concept development stages and in order as children with specific development. Because of problems of sensory processing that atypical population usually experiences, they often are unable to progress through such stages and may also get stuck in these stage for years, possibly indefinitely, if these are unable to get access to experience and the information they need to progress to next and higher level.

  • The initial two stages of concept development and skill are mainly the sensory stages. In first stage learner use only the sense to explore something. The first Stage is marked by the behaviours such as watching without looking or touching from something which is getting manipulated by hands.
  • Second Stage is marked well by the exploration behaviors which show the perfect coordination of two or additional senses: the object can get manipulated at same time that is being observed or it may be said at same time it is getting manipulated with fingers.

The sensory stages also illustrate the progress from being “simple to complicate” and from being “single to more than a few” this would mark the whole stages regarding cognitive development. In the field of language development, for instance, infants also vocalize and create individual sounds, squeals and grunts before they create any more complex constructions such as combining consonants as well as vowels which is even known as canonical babbling. In similar way, children initially explore the properties of individual physical things prior that they can coordinate the senses perfectly well to explore different dimensions of the object.