A kinesthetic learner is a child who learns by doing things by touching or manipulating objects. Kinesthetic learners do not learn by seeing or listening but rather prefer to be engaged in physical tangible learning exercises. There are indications that most kinesthetic learners are sensory people whose minds thrive better from the things they touch, smell, taste or experience with their bodies. This is why hands-on learning projects are the most effective way of teaching kinesthetic children. For example, while visual and auditory learners can easily grasp the concept of volcanic eruptions by watching videos and listening, a kinesthetic learner may instead grasp the concept by constructing the process out of clay and mixing substances to cause an eruption.
There are a few characteristics to distinguish kinesthetic learners from the other types of learners. Kinesthetic learners love doing practical work with tools, instruments and supplies. They are more skilled at solving puzzles and tend to remember the things they have done as opposed to those they have seen and heard. Moreover, kinesthetic learners love to construct things like crafts or DIY projects with their hands. They think more critically and clearly when they move around and engage with objects and their peers rather than just sitting in the same position and listening to explanations.
Kinesthetic learners can conveniently learn at a pace that is comfortable to them, without having to worry about falling behind their auditory and visual peers. This is why teachers need to use multiple different teaching methods to assess the strengths and weaknesses of each student, to make adjustments that give students room for improvement.
The advantages of kinesthetic learners over the other types of learners include the fact that they often grasp the big picture of the task as a result of their hands-on involvement in the project. Besides, kinesthetic learners tend to think out of the normal classroom assignments, thereby seeking real-world applications. Above all, kinesthetic learners can easily fix their mistakes since they often learn organically through trial and error.
Some of the best teaching strategies for kinesthetic learners include using charts and presentations, utilizing games and activities, going on field trips, bringing in subject experts, having class discussions and above all, letting the children teach their classmates during some lessons. Meanwhile, some of the best teaching tools and supplies for kinesthetic learners are matching games, molding clay, puzzles, index cards, puppets, countable objects as well as arts and craft supplies.
Many kinesthetic learners go on to have careers that are related to hands-on field activities such as athletics, carpentry, plumbing, dancing, acting, physical therapy and agriculture, etc.