Hand Gestures Help You Learn

I don’t have any new posts of Otter’s schoolwork because the kids are sick. We are taking most of this week off with me just doing a little bit of reading out loud. I’ve been informed recently though that I have at least ONE regular reader of this blog now and so here I am to post something for Ashley lest she stops coming by for a visit (and the rest of ya too)! wink.

I recently read an interesting article in Scientific American about how using gestures can help you learn. There is a specific paragraph on the first page that talks about how students who were coached to make a gesture while solving a math problem actually learned how to solve it better.

Well, I was up for a scientific (sorta) challenge. I decided to use Otter as my guinea pig and see if this might possibly be true. O. K. so I didn’t do a very scientific experiment, but I did try the whole concept on the fly and guess what…it really did work.

Otter was having a very difficult time remembering what the prime meridian is. So what I did was create some gestures to go with the definition:

The prime meridian divides (hand chopping motion) the earth (hands into a ball shape) into 2 (hold up two fingers) halves called hemispheres. We then recited which hemispheres it divides the earth into.

I asked him this week what the definition was and he could recall it perfectly.

Try it and see if it works for you!

In other nerdy news, I somehow stumbled onto this cool site:

http://www.tiffanyard.com/index.htm

I LOVE the nerdy baby items! Check out this set of ABC’s! Gosh, it makes me want to have a baby just so I can go and buy the prime number counting chart! O. K., I’m exaggerating…but still! What a great idea. I love the whimsical art and the nerd aspect. Because HEY, it’s cool to be a nerd. Oh, wait, nerds don’t care about being cool. Well anyway, don’t the cute little books and posters fit the homeschooling mind set nicely?