Active Learning Strategies for Hands-On Learners

Active Learning Strategies for Hands-On Learners

Hands-on learners prefer a more hands-on approach to studying rather than just reading textbooks and taking notes. That is why active learning strategies are used to enhance their learning experience.

Does your student or child learn best through physically doing tasks or participating in activities?

If yes, then you have a hands-on learner on your hands!

In this article, we will discuss some active learning strategies that can help you engage and support your hands-on student.

What is Active Learning?

Active learning is a teaching and learning method that allows students to participate and engage in the learning process rather than passively listening to lectures or reading information.

This method involves students in activities, such as group discussions, experiments, and hands-on projects, to enhance their understanding and retention of knowledge.

Active learning is especially beneficial for hands-on learners as it provides them with opportunities to interact with the subject matter and apply their knowledge in a practical setting.

If you’re an educator or parent with a hands-on learner, you need to incorporate active learning strategies into your teaching or parenting style to help your child succeed.

10 Active Learning Examples

Below, you’ll find a list of active learning strategies that can be implemented in both the classroom and at home to support hands-on learners:

1. Three-Step Interviews

Three-step interviews allow students to apply questioning and listening skills while working in small groups.

In this strategy, there will be 3 students – the interviewer, the interviewee, and the observer. The interviewer will ask the interviewee questions about a topic, and then the roles will rotate so that each student has a turn in each role.

Afterwards, the observer will provide feedback on how well the interviewer and interviewee did.

2. Role Play

Some students love to role-play, especially if it involves props and costumes.

Role play involves students acting out a scenario or situation related to the subject matter. It allows them to better understand and apply the concepts being taught.

It can be used in a variety of subjects, such as history, literature, and even science.

A great example of role play in literature would be having students act out a scene from the book they’re studying. This helps them understand the characters and plot better and brings the story to life for them.

3. Debates and Discussions

A good debate is like a mental sparring match. One side is armed with facts, evidence, and a strong argument, while the other side counters with their own.

Debates allow students to think critically about a topic and develop logical arguments to support their point of view.

Discussions also encourage students to share their opinions and thoughts on a subject while learning from others’ perspectives.

This is a great hands-on activity as learners actively speak and listen about the topic at hand.

4. Problem-Solving Activities

The rewarding feeling of solving a challenging problem is something that students can take pride in.

Problem-solving activities require learners to use their critical thinking skills and collaborate with others to find a solution.

Educators can design different levels of difficulty to cater to the varying abilities of students, making it an inclusive learning experience.

This strategy also complements inquiry-based learning, as students are encouraged to ask questions and find answers on their own.

5. Gamification

Technology is everywhere, so why not start welcoming it into our classrooms?

Gamification refers to the use of game design elements and principles in non-game contexts, such as education. For instance, one engaging method to integrate problem-solving activities into your learning experience is through online games such as Math Playground.

Most education games require students to be actively involved, either by clicking, dragging, or using their voice to play.

This active engagement leads to better retention of information and keeps students motivated throughout the lesson. In addition, games often have a competitive aspect that can further increase students’ excitement and drive to learn.

6. Experimental Learning

In science, we experiment with chemicals to see how they react. In maths, we solve equations to find unknown values.

Experimental learning is a hands-on activity that requires the student to experience something rather than just reading or hearing about it.

It allows students to observe, analyse, and draw conclusions based on their own observations. This type of learning is particularly beneficial for kinesthetic learners who learn best through movement and physical activities.

7. Interactive Quizzes

When students hear the word “quiz”, their minds often associate it with stress and pressure. However, interactive quizzes can change this negative perception and make them a fun learning tool.

Interactive quizzes involve elements such as visual aids, sound effects, and immediate feedback to keep students engaged and motivated.

They are also a great way for educators to assess students’ understanding of the subject matter in a low-stakes environment.

8. Reciprocal Questioning

In this hands-on activity, students swap roles with the educator.

They get to ask questions about a topic, suggest a reading section, or even lead a class discussion. An example of this approach can be applied in 5 easy steps:

  1. The student and the educator read the text.
  2. The educator closes their book and invites questions from the students. The educator is encouraged to ask for clarification on questions and allow the student to fully engage as the educator.
  3. The educator and student reverse roles where the student is now being asked questions. The tricky part for the student is that they cannot refer back to their books or resources to answer questions.
  4. The educator and the student further engage in conversation, sharing their thoughts, predictions and inferences on the topic.
  5. If the student shows comprehension and understanding of the content being discussed, the student continues to read independently, and the process starts again.

This type of learning promotes critical thinking, active listening, and collaboration skills. It also allows students to take ownership of their learning process and empowers them to become more independent learners.

9. Peer Teaching Activities

Peer teaching activities involve students teaching each other in small groups or pairs. This type of teaching in a tutor session would involve the student teaching the tutor.

This hands-on method encourages students to take an active role in their learning by explaining concepts, answering questions, and discussing topics with their peers or educators

It’s an effective way to reinforce learning, as teaching others requires a deep understanding of the subject matter.

10. The Muddiest Point Technique

During this activity, students need to write down the most complex or difficult point from the lesson.

Asking students to write down what they found to be the “muddiest” or most confusing point helps them to grade their understanding and identify areas that need further clarification.

It also allows teachers to assess students’ comprehension of the material and address any misconceptions or gaps in understanding.

Help Your Hands-On Student Today!

Tutor Doctor tailors and personalises our student’s learning experience according to their specific learning styles. By incorporating some of these active learning strategies during tutor sessions, we foster the positive impact that it has on student engagement and understanding.

If you feel that your child needs more hands-on activities, don’t hesitate to contact us at Tutor Doctor today!

Our tutoring services in South Africa offer your child a personalised approach to learning that includes various active learning techniques.

We believe that every child can succeed with the right support and resources, so let’s work together to help your hands-on learner reach their full potential.

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