This finding can lend a key insight to both teachers and learners: the power of gesturing can help teachers teach, learners learn and teachers assess how much the students have learned.
Teachers need to know that the gestures they make have an impact on how well learners process and retain information, researchers have found.
On the flip side of that, encouraging students to gesture also helps them absorb information. Studies on having learners gesture as they learn math concepts and vocabulary in a second language show that the learners learn the concepts better and retain the knowledge for a longer period of time than learners who do not gesture.
Students’ gestures also provide teachers with reliable information about where learners are in the learning process.
Gale Stam, Ph.D., professor of psychology at National Louis University, and Marion Tellier of Aix –Marseille Universite, France, who are among the leading pioneers of international research in this area, will explain their findings, and why being aware of gesture can greatly increase the effectiveness of teaching, at a talk Nov. 3 from 5:15 to 6 p.m. at NLU’s Chicago Campus, 122 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago, in the second floor atrium. RSVP today.