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Kinesthetic learning

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July 17, 2016

Kinesthetic learning

Students ,generally have one or two cocurricular activity periods in a day with six to seven teaching periods and Sit in the same class room .The teachinglearning process though interactive may be monotonous and might stop the brain to assimilate the learning with in 2 or 3 hours every day. children spend 6to 7 hours in school every day.

Students generally have one or two co-curricular activity periods in a day with six to seven teaching periods and sit in the same class room. The teaching-learning process though interactive may be monotonous and might stop the brain from assimilating the learning with in 2 or 3 hours every day. Children spend 6 to 7 hours in school every day. Scientific research has proved that brain development and learning is enhanced through movement. Physical movements influence thinking, learning and memorising the concepts. The attention span for an adult is 15 to 20 minutes. What about children? Naturally it is lesser than adults. Kinesthetic learning is a way of explaining various concepts of a subject by involving the students in simple pre-planned activities to have a clear understanding and activate learning as part of the lesson.

The aim of kinesthetic learning is-

1. To energise the environment in the classroom.
2. To get students’ attention.
3. To activate learning.
4. To energise the students.
5. To have long term retention of concepts.
6. To develop students’ interest in the subject.

Can we teach various concepts through movements of students? Yes definitely, whatever may be the subject. Kinesthetic learning activates the body and brain simultaneously so that learning and retention of concepts takes place easily. Kinesthetic learning does not mean group tasks where students sit in groups to complete the given work or performing experiments in laboratory or students solving sums on board or drawing on board, etc. which we often do.

It involves teaching a concept by involving the students in a planned activity by the teacher in the class room so as to enhance curiosity and observation; and learning is at the highest level. Sometimes all the students of the class room get involved, but at times only a few can be involved depending on the requirement. But each and every student who is not involved in the activity pays utmost attention with curiosity to find the process of the activity and the learning behind it.

The following points are to be kept in mind by the teacher before she undertakes any activity:

1. Planning and preparation time.
2. Relevant activity.
3. Available time.
4. Involvement of students.
5. Class room space.
6. Simple and clear activities.

Here are a few examples of classroom activities in science subject which can help in active learning in students.

  1. To explain the ‘Types of Chemical Reactions’. For example –
    a) Combination Reaction – wherein two or more reactants combine to form a single product (A+B –> AB) Student A sitting on one bench and student B sitting on other bench can be asked to sit together on one bench.
    B) Decomposition Reaction – one reactant breaks into two or more products. Students P & Q sitting on a bench can be asked to move and sit separately on two benches (PQ–>P+Q).
    c) Displacement Reaction – a reactive metal (X) displaces a low reactive metal (Y) from its salt solution (X+YZ–>XZ+Y). One student X can ask other student Y sitting with Z to move to other bench and X sits with Z.
    d) Double Displacement Reaction – two different salt solutions react with each other and exchange ions to form two new salt solutions (AB+CD–>AD+CB). Two pairs of students sitting on separate benches can be asked to exchange their friends’ positions.
  2. Students can be asked to use ruler or scale to measure the length and breadth of windows or doors of the class room, desk they use, floor tiles, etc. whichever they would like to and find the area or perimeter of the object.
    The activity can be performed individually or in groups and the values obtained can be converted to other units too.
  3. After explaining the structure of plant and animal cells by drawing a diagram on the board, all the students of the class can be involved to form different cell organelles like central nucleus, vacuoles, cell membrane etc (next it can be followed by lab activity by observing cells under a microscope).
  4. Force – it can be as simple as asking a student to close the door, this action involves pushing the door and another student to open the door, which is pulling the door. The push or pull on a body is nothing but ‘force’.
  5. The different steps involved in cell division (mitosis) like Prophase, Metaphase, Anaphase and Telophase can be picturised by arranging the students and movement of students to the corners to depict movement of chromatids to the corners of cell membrane (surrounded by students as cell membrane).
  6. A student can be asked to start from a point in the class room and walk in one direction (say east) a few steps and next change the direction (say towards north) and walk a few steps. Measure the distance the student has walked practically using a metre scale or a ruler. It is exciting for the students to find the values and understanding the concept with directions very clearly. This activity can be performed similarly by drawing a circular path in the class room or outside the class room to find the distance.
  7. Objects like books or pens or ball or any other can be put at some distance and a few students can be asked to bring one by one so that others will record the time taken by each one of them for the same distance. This activity can be useful to find distance, time and speed. Calculate these values in other units too.
  8. The three different processes of transmission of heat – Conduction, Convection and Radiation can be explained easily by arranging the students in a line in the class room with one ball or any object. To explain the process of conduction, the ball in the hands of first child is passed from one to the other till the last student, next if the first child moves from the line and gives the ball to the last child it explains convection process of fluids and finally to explain the Radiation process where there is no need of medium, first child is asked to throw ball o the last child to catch. These activities can be playful and give a clear understanding of the concepts to the children.

So depending on the topic of the lesson, teachers can plan various relevant and simple activities for better understanding and learning of the children and instill interest in the subject.

Surekha Nayani, M.Sc (Chemistry),B. Ed has fifteen years of teaching experience in CBSE schools and has been teaching Physics and Chemistry to secondary school students. Presently, she is working as Head of the Department of Science and also as CBSE Co-ordinator in Delhi Public School, Nacharam, Hyderabad. As HOD she trains teachers in teachinglearning processes like developing and presentation of content, preparation of worksheets and question papers, designing CCE etc. and also conducts workshops on various aspects of teaching science. She has written articles on teaching science by focusing on creative methodologies which arouse interest in the subject. She strongly believes that every teacher should emphasise proper planning, preparation and effective presentation of subject matter, every day and in every class with commitment which influences and empowers student learning.

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