Turn your child into a maths magician?

Does Your Child Never Sit Still? How To Help Our Kinaesthetic Learners!
Children who learn kinaesthetically find it hard to keep still; they are the 'fidget midgets', the 'ants in the pants' kids! As parents how can we encourage the best from our children when they can't stay in one place for more than 5 minutes?
Kinaesthetic learners are the kid's that can't keep still, they explore the world through movement and touch, little whirlwinds that compute the information through their fingertips, energy and exploration of the world around them.

I call these children the 'movers and the groovers', wonderful children that are often mislabelled and called 'hyperactive', they do not fit well into the box of traditional learning, which often causes anxiety and angst in both the parents and the child.

All children are kinaesthetic to some point when they are young, this can be tough for parents at the end of a long day when it comes to homework - but there are things that can be done or understood to make it a whole lot easier.

How can you recognise a kinaesthetic learner?

  • have great eye/hand coordination, tend to be good at sport
  • enjoys active practical participation, like drama, experiments
  • can remember how to do something after they have done it physically-often only once! This becomes locked into their 'motor memory'
  • tends to want to fiddle with small objects
  • short attention span
  • often touches people while they are talking and moves their hands around a lot

    What can I do as a parent do to help improve learning at home?

  • RELAX! You have an intelligent, wonderful child that needs your support and understanding- once you understand how they learn then you can help other understand too!
  • have short frequent breaks, for example after 5-10 minutes of study, send them to the kitchen to grab a cup of water. StayOnTrack have designed our funsheets with this in mind-they are only ten minutes practice a night, OR as they consist of only two activities, do one, have a short 1 minute break (I used to send my class to touch 4 walls and then sit back down) between each activity.
  • memorise facts while moving: walking, skipping, jumping
  • have appropriate music playing in the background-funnily enough for these learners it often helps
  • number lines: use pegs or paper clips to move along the number line to solve problems. (StayOnTrack has printable number lines on their resource page)
  • roleplay problems
  • flashcards
  • textured surfaces to trace numbers and letters, for example, sandpaper, carpet, even a little dish of sand
  • something to fiddle with: blocks, cubes
  • drawing materials: to doodle or make diagrams
  • puzzles
  • A personal favourite of mine: putting elastic around the bottom of the legs of the chair so that moving legs have something to fiddle with that doesn’t make too much noise

    As parents we need to get creative, try something and if it doesn’t work then try something else!

    The more we understand how our children learn, then the more our children will feel appreciated and want to learn.

    After all Albert Einstein said it best when he said :

    “Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”
  • StayOnTrack Limited 2014