This post was written by Soph-Ea Moeln, a UTS student and member of the Student Learning Advisory Committee (SLAC).

The concept of kinesthetic learning encompasses a variety of styles, including visual/spatial, auditory/verbal, and kinesthetic modalities of doing, moving and acting. In this post, I’ll explore some of the different ways that kinesthetic learning can happen.

Dyslexics: the big picture thinkers

Being disoriented is a gift – a natural ability. Similar to what happens in a movie, dyslexics can use their exceptional and lively multi-sensory thinking to solve problems, create, develop, engineer, and flee when they are lost. But it’s also because of this same skill that handling 2-dimensional words and symbols becomes laborious.

1. Visual technique

Students that like to take in information all at once, rather than in small chunks, are said to be visual-spatial learners. These students benefit greatly from the use of vivid mental images during studying. Ideas are linked (like nodes in a network) because the person is thinking mostly in visuals rather than words. It takes this person more time because of the extra effort required to translate his or her regular brain processes into the linear, sequential style of thinking. An example of this is learning from YouTube videos.

2. Audio methods

Particular people who possess visual-spatial learning preferences can also have exceptional abilities in auditory sequential processing. These individuals possess unrestricted access to both systems, enabling them to employ sequential, trial-and-error problem solving techniques, for example, by using a voice recorder.

3. Pictures

Individuals who exhibit characteristics such as dyslexia, auditory processing difficulties, and attention-related disorders like ADD/ADHD may possess a cognitive style known as picture thinking. The phenomenon of picture thinking has an evolutionary nature, wherein the mental process expands by including additional notions. Subliminal stimuli possess an inherent quality of being imperceptible to conscious awareness, rendering them beyond the threshold of conscious perception. Moreover, the processing speed of such stimuli is notably rapid, potentially surpassing verbal conceptualisation by a magnitude of thousands. One crucial point to bear in mind is that individuals with dyslexia possess a cognitive style characterised by visual thinking.

4. Creative colours

Individuals with dyslexia tend to exhibit enhanced learning outcomes when
educational tasks are presented in a visually organised manner, with various colours to differentiate headers, subheadings, and contrasting elements in their notes. The instructor can assist by emphasising or accentuating the crucial components of the instructions. It’s also helpful to simplify instructions where possible.

5. Mind map

Mind mapping can be an excellent approach for assisting individuals with dyslexia due to its correlation with visual learning. Mind maps can be used to explain lengthy written compositions, generate concepts, or commence a project.

6. Tools and equipment

Individuals with dyslexia benefit most from diverse learning aids, including:

  • Speech-to-text computers.
  • Audio readers and software.
  • Photo viewing on a smartphone.
  • Audio book listening.
  • Notes using a voice recorder.
  • Colour lenses for spectacles.

The aforementioned are merely a selection of learning aid instruments – there are many more that can be used.

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