“Gesturing Gives Children New Ideas About Math”
Researchers manipulated the various gestures used by the 3rd and 4th graders during problem-solving exercises and evaluated the results. The work was conducted by Susan Goldin-Meadow and Zachary A. Mitchell of the University of Chicago, and Susan Wagner Cook of the University of Iowa.
The findings suggest that body movements are related not only to processing old ideas, but also in creating new ones, the authors assert. “We may be able to lay foundations for new knowledge simply by telling learners how to move their hands,” the study explains.
A version of this article appeared in the March 11, 2009 edition of Education Week