Author Archive

Good News for Individuals Who Gesture!

April 30th, 2013 5 comments

Have you ever completed a task but later you were unable to articulate what you did in order to succeed? For example, after I have completed a complicated math problem, I am typically unable to explain in words how I arrived at my answer.  When this occurs, we are said to have implicit knowledge of the task rather than explicit knowledge of the task. In other words, the knowledge that is evident in our behavior but it is unavailable through speech.  When I am unable to explain or articulate something, I often find myself gesturing or using my hands. In fact, I think of myself as a frequent gesturer. Many learners, myself included, demonstrate spontaneous gestures when trying to describe a task or knowledge that they cannot quite articulate. These gestures that we use while speaking are a way of revealing our implicit knowledge. Because gesturing behavior helps us reveal knowledge we cannot articulate, could gesturing enhance our learning? New research on gesturing has shown that gesturing can give us insight to the information that we cannot express through speech. But what happens when we are forced to gesture? Can forced gesturing reveal our implicit knowledge or perhaps, prepare us for learning?

Read more…

Categories: Development, Education Tags: