Haptic learning types prefer to use their hands, movements, and sense of touch to learn about the world around them. They often like sports and movement games, as well as other physical activities like gardening or woodworking. They may enjoy dancing. Haptic learning types are sensitive to the physical world around them. They perceive material texture or grain of furniture and clothing, for example. They like to get their fingers dirty, build models, and put puzzles together.
Often, haptic learners use gestures and other body language when they communicate. Either people with haptic learning styles love the physical action of amusement park rides, or they avoid them altogether because they mess with their internal body sensibilities too much.
When haptic learning types learn a new topic or skill, they would prefer to jump right in and play with the pyhsic parts of it as soon as possible. They prefer to take a device apart and put it back together rather than read about it or look at diagrams of how it works.
The thought of sitting still and listening to a lecture is abhorrent to people with haptic learning styles. Children in particular quickly start to fidget under such circumstances and can’t sit still for long. They want to get up and move around. Parents and teachers sometimes see this as an indication of ADHD, but the child is just instinctively trying to learn the way he or she knows best.
Learning techniques for haptic learners
Use actions, movements, and hands-on work in learning when possible. When you visualize something, focus on the sensations you would expect in that scenario. For example, if you imagine making a turn in a sailboat, focus on the sensations: the pressure against your hand as you turn the rudder, and the decreasing tension in the ropes. Feel the wind coming from the other side, feel the dull thud as the sail is struck by wind in the other direction, and feel the boat picking up speed after the tack.
Use tangible objects whenever possible. Also, actually touch them as you learn how they work. Flashcards can also help you memorize information because you can touch them and move them around.
Keep in mind that writing and drawing are physical activities, so don’t neglect these techniques. Maybe use large sheets of paper and thick colored markers for your diagrams. This way you’ll experience more physical action while drawing.
Use breathing and relaxation techniques to help you focus when you are learning and performing. Focus your attention on staying calm, focused, relaxed and aware. If you want to gain more control over your physical state, try autogenic training. Some top athletes use it to improve their performance. Use role-playing, either alone or with others, to practice skills and behaviors. This can be especially helpful for social skills in the broadest sense. But you can also act out or simulate other learning content in this way.
If you have difficulty memorizing a subject matter, make a certain hand movement while studying and repeat it during the exam. Researchers have found that haptic learners remember what they have learned better this way.