Product samples received from Oriental Trading Company to facilitate this post. All opinions are my own.
Does your kiddo have trouble sitting still for lessons or homework? It could be that she is a kinesthetic learner. Teaching your kinesthetic learning styled child can prove to be interesting, because the kinesthetic learner must DO things for them to have the best chance of learning. There are several things you can do to make it fun. You may recall my post on teaching and accommodating different learning styles,which gives a general overview of how to your child in the way they learn best. Some kiddos just need to MOVE while learning, so here are 5 ways to teach the kinesthetic learner.
5 Ways to Teach the Kinesthetic Learner
Working with manipulatives is one way you can teach your kinesthetic learner. Manipulatives are anything a child can work with hands-on. It’s important to get a little creative in this department. We use a ton of manipulatives for math and language arts.
For math lessons, consider using counters, Base Ten Counting Blocks, Number Math Dice, Money Dice, Math Symbol Dice, Fraction Tiles, a circlular Fraction Set, or Dice with Geometric Shapes.
We also love using Sight Word Dominoes and Word Family Dice, as well as sidewalk chalk for practicing letters and words.
As I mentioned, we use a ton of manipulatives for both language arts and math. We do this to try to keep things interesting and to keep each activity feeling fresh and new.
#2. Role Play
Depending on the age of your child, role playing is a perfect kinesthetic learning activity. If your child is younger, this can also be called make believe. Role playing is ideal for teaching lessons in history. Role playing teaches many lessons on its own, like competition and empathy. It might give your child a chance to experience “a walk in another person’s shoes.” Role playing can also encourage interaction, exchange of knowledge, and a mingling between individuals.
#3. Learning Websites
We use several learning websites, including Reading Eggs and Raz Kids, to enhance learning. Both sites require the student to use a mouse to complete activities on screen. This eye hand movement satisfies the desire to be active while learning.
#4. Field Trips
Nothing teaches a kinesthetic learner better than a field trip. The great thing about field trips is that they don’t need to be expensive, but they can still be memorable. Whether you go on a nature walk, to the museum, or to a local factory, field trips are an awesome way to teach your kinesthetic learner.
We came across this fawn on a recent nature walk, and it sparked MANY conversations about nature, wildlife, predators and prey, the life cycle, etc. You can even turn your nature walk into a nature scavenger hunt to maximize learning AND fun!
#5. Get Creative
I have to say that the most fun and important way you can teach your kinesthetic learner is through creativity. You might consider some of the following activities to help you along your way:
- Crafts- putting crafts together is genius for any kinesthetic learner.
- Using clay, water colors, paint brushes, play dough or anything of this nature is ideal for kinesthetic learners.
- Combine your nature walk findings and have fun painting with nature.
- Demonstration- having a child teach you, instead of you teaching them is one activity they’ll love.
- Having your child do two things at once while learning is also a good idea. For example: chewing gum, while doing a math lesson.
- Have your child take breaks often as kinesthetic learners have a tendency to get side tracked if not redirected and refocused.
There you have it, several things you can do to help your kinesthetic child in the learning department. Your own child may be a little different in their kinesthetic learning, so you’ll need to be a little creative each and every day. The great part of this style of learning is that they are normally quick to pick up concepts, when it’s taught in a manner that lets them touch, feel, and do.