Study Techniques for Kinesthetic Learners
In his groundbreaking model of learning, Neil Fleming identified three main learning styles – visual, auditory and kinesthetic. Fleming found that visual learners prefer information to be presented in graphs and tables. Auditory learners absorb material best when it is presented through lecturers and discussions. Kinesthetic learners tend to be high energy people who enjoy movement and tactile experiences when learning.
Traditional schooling can be difficult for kinesthetic learners as they are required to sit quietly for extended periods. These students may get into trouble for tapping their fingers and shuffling their feet in class because they find it hard to be still.
There is a growing awareness among teachers of the needs of all learners, and they are adapting their lessons to meet these needs. At home, there are also many things kinesthetic learners can do to make study sessions more enjoyable.
Take Notes While Reading
Most people find it difficult to retain knowledge just through reading textbooks and course material, and this is even more true for tactile learners. The hand movement involved in taking notes will help you concentrate and retain information. Once you’ve taken notes from your course material, summarise these notes again until you have a few key points to trigger your memory.
Invest in a Whiteboard
To incorporate more movement into note taking, invest in a whiteboard. Writing on a whiteboard involves your whole body and this is ideal for kinesthetic learners. You can use the whiteboard to brainstorm ideas for assignments, write an essay draft or create a storyboard. When you’ve finished, take a photo of your notes or draft essay to refer to later.
Record Yourself Reading Notes
Another variation on note taking is to record yourself reading your notes. This allows you to revise while doing something active. Making your own videos is another fun way to study. You can use movements and props to explain concepts and share your videos with friends.
Take Regular Active Breaks
It’s important to take regular breaks when studying to maintain concentration. For many students this involves watching TV or scrolling through social media. Kinesthetic learners benefit greatly by doing something active during their break, such as walking or shooting hoops. Not only will this help you burn off excess energy, it will solidify what you’ve just studied.
Get a Standing Desk
Standing while working is healthier than sitting because it engages the muscles and has been found to lower blood pressure and boost productivity. A standing desk is a great way for kinesthetic learners to study because the whole body is engaged, and this helps with focus and retention of learning.
Have Fun with Games
There are many easy ways to combine studying with movement by playing games. You can practice shooting hoops with friends while quizzing each other or draw cards with questions that require you to act out the answer. Parents with younger students can play simple maths and grammar games that incorporate exercise and fun.
Join a Study Group
Studying with others is more stimulating and enjoyable for some students, and kinesthetic learners in particular benefit from the interaction and variety. While it can be more fun to study with other people, it’s important to stick to the topic and avoid distractions.
These techniques can help kinesthetic learners study more effectively.