Multisensory Teaching: Everything You Need to Know
This refers to the utilization of multiple senses to teach mastery of a particular topic or concept. For some students, this is the most effective teaching method, allowing for students to have a robust understanding of the text.
While they learn, students often depend on sight to look at pictures and text and read information. Several students also rely on their hearing to listen to what their teacher is saying. But multisensory teaching isn’t restricted to reading and listening. Instead, it tries to use more than one sense at a time or sometimes, even all the senses. However, every lesson won’t use all five senses, namely smell, taste, touch, sound, and sight. Yet, most multisensory lessons are designed to engage the kids with the material in more than one way.
For example, say a group of students is studying apples. By making each of them hold a halved apple, the teacher can give them the chance to see, smell, touch, and taste apples, rather than just listening to their teacher speak or reading about how they grow. The teacher may also ask students to count the seeds their piece of apple has. That’s multisensory teaching. This technique conveys information through things like movement and touch, called kinesthetic and tactile elements, as well as sight and hearing.
Teachers could also use other multisensory techniques like modeling materials (clay or sculpting stuff), textured objects, sand trays, and finger paints that involve the sense of touch and are called tactile methods. Kinesthetic methods are another effective strategy involving body movements like clapping, jumping rope, bean bag tossing, dancing, flashcard races, and rhythmic recall.
Multisensory teaching techniques encourage students to use some or all their senses to:
· Connect information to ideas they’re already familiar with and understand
· Collect information about a task
· Identify the logic involved in problem-solving
· Learn problem-solving tasks
· Understand connections between concepts
· Tap into non-verbal reasoning skills
· Store information that can be recalled later on
Since the human brain has evolved to learn and grow in a multisensory setting, all brain functions are interconnected. This is why people remember things the best when they engage multiple senses. And that’s why multisensory teaching techniques are more effective than their traditional counterparts. The more senses students use simultaneously to learn new things, the more pathways and connections they will have to remember and retrieve this information.