Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Kinesthetic Learning - It's All Hands On!



Kinesthetic learning (otherwise known as tactile learning) is when individuals are learning more through physical activity than by watching a demonstration or listening to a lecture. Most young children are kinesthetic learners and need to discover education on their own, while having a guide lead them in the correct direction. 

In order for a kinesthetic learner to best retain information, it is important that hands-on experience that allows for trial and error is used in his/her education instead of an environment that promotes planning out an action before initiating an action. 

In young children that have a kinesthetic learning style, most things are processed through a variety of sensory stimuli. These children also tend to be more proficient in activities that involve fine-motor and gross-motor skills. These activities include sports, dance, crafts, cooking, building/fixing things, make believe, and drama. 

In a classroom setting, having different mediums for active learning is important for maximum retention. During free time, children should be encouraged to use toys that utilize critical thinking to accomplish a task.
Activity play cubes, wire and bead toys, magnet toys, and maze toys are a great way to get these children using their hands and minds to problem solve on their own. During educational times, utilizing different teaching tools becomes crucial. 

Using a classroom rug to get the children out of their seats and moving around the room is a great way for children to learn about different topics. Since they are moving around the rug, they are more likely to stay focused on the topic because there is less pressure to focus on one concept for a long period of time. 

Classroom rugs keep the children fully engaged in the class discussion and allows for fellow students to aid in the learning of their classmates.
By using these methods, students are welcomed to a new way of learning that is active and fun, allowing teachers to gain more positive learning from a highly active age group. 

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