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About Kinesthetic Learners

This article describe some of the particular traits of a child that learns best through doing.
Updated: December 1, 2022

About Kinesthetic Learners

We learn by "seeing it" (visually), "hearing it"(auditorily), or "moving and doing it"(kinesthetically), and most of us have one primary learning style through which we best learn and remember information. All of us can benefit from identifying and understanding our individual learning styles.

Actions Speak Louder than Words
Kinesthetic learners best learn by doing. These students may be avid note takers in class, but not review them later; they remember things that were seen, done, or discussed. "When given assignments, such as writing a book report or making a scene from a book, [kinesthetic learners] will make a scene. They can learn to read and follow directions through the use of recipes, etc." (Parent Newsletter, NDCU Extension Service, October 1997).

Kinesthetic learners move, bounce, and travel around classrooms and homes. They are rarely still, but in their movements are always learning. These individuals will point while giving directions, or only be able to get to a particular place by taking you there. Making small adjustments in the lives and routines of these individuals will facilitate them in increasing their success at home and at school.

Strategies for Kinesthetic Learners
  • Study important information by placing facts on index cards and reading the information aloud while pacing or walking around.
  • Try studying while lying on a bed or the floor, or listening to music.
  • In class, when it is necessary to be still, bounce your foot, twirl a pen, or squeeze a ball. Just be sure you are not distracting those around you.
  • Set a timer for 20-30 minutes. Work for this amount of time, then take a 5- or 10-minute break.
  • Use brightly colored paper under worksheets or study materials to help you focus.
  • Write vocabulary words on paper with glue. Sprinkle sand or glitter on top. When studying for tests, trace the words with your eyes closed.
  • Read novels, articles, and texts while pedaling on a stationary bike or climbing a Stairmaster.
Special Projects
  • Create a special exercise program and keep a log. Measure walking, jogging, or biking distances, record workout times, and document progress. Older students can calculate calories and fat burned.
  • Choose a favorite story and create a play or performance.
  • Assume the role of your favorite character or historical figure. Develop a skit to reflect important information.
  • Join a drama or acting club.
  • For elementary students, build a life-size number line by painting on concrete or wooden planks. Use this to solve simple math problems.
  • Get ready for fall by collecting manipulatives and containers. Save your bottle tops, corks, pennies, empty jars, yogurt containers, coffee cans, etc.

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