Monday, January 27, 2014

Using Whole Body Movement to Help with Knowledge Retention

At the University of Arizona there is the Embodied Games for Learning Lab.  The lab is creating games for K-12 classrooms that include movement with learning.  The researchers have found that students retain information better when they use their whole body to learn the information.

One of the lead researchers, Mina Johnson-Glenberg, states that
"Our controlled studies are showing that whenever students use gestures to learn, they actually are remembering information longer...Often, our immediate post-tests show results with no significant differences associated with learning from embodied games. However, we do see significant differences when students return for follow-up testing a week later. At that point, we are finding that those students who learned with gestures are retaining the information longer."
The students are retaining information longer when students use gestures to learn.

The researchers hypothesize that using motor memory provides an extra memory trace that helps students recall the information later.  They are working on creating motion capture games using the Microsoft Kinect.

  Check out this video:

Students use movement to increase learning from ASU Video Production on Vimeo.

Reference:  Crawford, Judy. Young students jog, jump and dance to retain what they learn. Retrieved from the Medical Express on the web on 1/25/2014 at

Get Up and Learn! How to integrate movement with learning

Summary: This is an electronic book of 48 pages with over 35 activities that incorporate movement and learning.   

Find out more at

1 comment:

Joyce (SLP) said...

Movement and language are connected neurologically, so we use movement to aid storage and retrieval of information with almost all our clients. Very effective technique, particularly if the movements include gestures that reflect the meaning of the information to be remembered. Great for kids with motor planning issues that also present with sensory/auditory/language processing.

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