Another one of Gardner's eight distinct "intelligences" is the kinesthetic learner. The kinesthetic learners are individuals who learn best by moving, touching and doing. They are usually not attentive to visual or auditory instruction, but are eager to attack problems physically and with great activity. Manipulatives, role-play, stimulations, physical exercise, games; competitive sports and action-packed stories are enjoyed. These learners will remember best what they have physically done . Manipulatives appeal to the kinesthetic learners because they are able to actually touch the objects. For this type of learner manipulatives are important in the teaching and understanding of mathematics.
Manipulatives help relieve boredom in students, they offer a change from the textbook (abstract) method of learning allowing students to explore and use their imagination. Manipulatives provide a picture of a math concept that appeals to visual/spatial learners. Visualization is the natural way one begins to think. Before words, images emerge. Manipulatives can also be placed within cooperative groups, which is appealing to the interpersonal learners.
It is beneficial for educators to be aware of the different types of learners. It is necessary that lessons be presented in a variety of ways to reach the different types of learners. If a student is always being taught in a style that does not ever comply with his or her learning style, this will cause the student great anxiety toward a subject and not optimize the learning process. It is, therefore, important that math classes be taught in different ways. The use of manipulatives enables the teacher to more easily reach all of the various learners. The use of games such as Math Bingo where the teacher asks a variety of review-type questions such as duration of time, measurement, squared numbers, and the calculation of money to name just a few is one way in which a teacher can reach students through alternative methods. Teachers can incorporate a Quizmo-type card game where student are each given a card containing an answer and a question and they are to listen for the question that fits their answer. Students then ask the question listed on their card (some students may even enjoy creating their own Quizmo-type game to share with the class). Activities that involve the measuring of actual containers or items are also very useful. Various activities using pattern block is extremely useful in reinforcing fractions, patterns, symmetry, and geometric shapes. Art projects that incorporate graphing or creating designs using geometric shapes will also help connect some students. The use of computer technology, both the Internet and commercial software is also beneficial for many students.
"Almost every mathematics idea, except simple arithmetic facts, consists of three components: linguistic, conceptual and skill/procedural" . The conceptual component deals with the center of mathematical concept. According to Sharma students needs a model to conceptualize the mathematical idea.