Kinesthetic Learning Style

› Kinesthetic

Do you have students with a kinesthetic learning style? Learning styles activities for these types of students are characterized by touching or manipulating objects.

The majority of students have a visual learning style or use kinesthetic learning strategies as their preferred method of learning. Interactive learning styles are also called haptic, which is Greek for "doing and moving."

Characteristics of kinesthetic learning include the need to involve their entire body in the learning experience. These will be your "hands-on" learners - they learn best by doing.

children playing in the sun kinesthetic learning style


Students who prefer a hands-on method of learning need to be physically and emotionally involved in their lessons.

They essentially have to process information through body movement.



The kinesthetic modality is even helpful with reading, as children can learn to use their hands with main idea activities.

Use the observation and instructional techniques in the charts below to help you identify and effectively teach your students who are kinesthetic learners (and keep in mind that it often takes them longer to process new information).


Observing Kinesthetic Learners

Students might have a predominately "hands-on" learning style if you see them:

Doodling and tracing pictures or words often.
Tapping or shaking their legs during work time.
Finding reasons to move around the classroom (or out of it!).
Talking with their hands.
Chewing on pencils, paper or gum a lot.
Standing up to work.
Being highly successful with tasks that involve manipulation.

Kinesthetic Learning Strategies

Research shows that tactile/kinesthetic learners need instructional strategies that involve moving, doing and touching. Try different techniques to reach these kids' learning styles.

Play board games or interactive games that involve whole body movement.
Make models or dioramas to show understanding of a topic.
Provide colored transparencies as an overlay during reading of a text (color grounding)..
Encourage note taking through use of cloze sentences on a provided outline.
Allow short, frequent breaks during work time.
Plan time for student movement, both during class time and independent study time.
Use skits and role-playing to assist making meaning of lessons.


For a comprehensive overview of the ways we use learning styles in school, go here.




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