How to Tap Into Learning Styles for Home and Classroom Pt. 3

Proverbs 3:5-6

5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; 6 in all your ways submit to him, and he will direct your paths.

Now that you have had the chance to take the test and perhaps have your students take it; I want to give you some helpful suggestions that your students can do independently after you have taught your lesson. It is difficult to change a teaching style because you teach the way you learn, however, you can give your students options and as you learn from these different styles you will be able to tweak your lessons to help with all the learning styles. So, I am not here to tell you how to teach your lessons; I want to give you the tips and tools that are in your classroom to help your students complete and understand the lessons.

Since these Learning Styles focus on the senses, I am going to concentrate my discussion there. We will focus on environment in another post.

Visual learners want to “see” the lesson. Use your white board for words, numbers, and pictures; if you have a computer that projects to a screen or a smart board, even better. Find ways to give your students a visual of the lesson being taught. This is one of the most common ways of teaching in the elementary school. In middle schools and even more in high schools, lecture is the main focus of a lesson. By adding a few key words, phrases, or diagrams to the white board allows visual learners to focus in on the lesson because they have a connection that is being made in their mind.

Visual learners may have several colored highlighters or pens out. They underline, highlight and doodle on their pages. Let them! They may choose to have manipulatives out as they are working but may not touch them. For the visual learning it is about seeing, picturing and imagining.

                                                               

Kinesthetic/Physical learners not only need to move, they need to work with “things.” Have manipulatives available, such as counters, number-lines, whiteboards, markers etc. Kinesthetic learners need sensory motivation, they are very tactile; some things are texture issues and some are stimuli. Allow Kinesthetics to get up and move after a lesson. Sometimes just getting up for a tissue or allowing them to work standing up will help calm the fidgetiness that they are feeling. Give students an opportunity to stretch, some will some wont, that’s ok. The ones that don’t, may want to get out the supplies for the lesson work and that is movement enough. Also, deep breathing can help calm and refocus their minds back to learning.

Auditory/Aural learners need to talk everything out; want peer and group work and can thrive when given the proper instructions/objectives for the group goals. They also tend to talk to themselves so that they hear their own thinking. However, if they need to focus on work, sound is incredibly distracting because they will tune into the noise instead of the work in front of them. Think about offering headphones to Auditory learners who need to tune out ambient noise around the room. They enjoy sounds and even learn to music, but it can also be a distraction when not used for a learning purpose.  Allow them to come up with mnemonics if they can, or if you know some, use them in the lesson to help them make a connection (HOMES – names of the Great Lakes – Heron, Ontario, Michigan, Erie, Superior).  Auditory learners are very good with word play because they enjoy sounds and playing with sounds.

These are the first three of seven. I will add the next four in another post. Until then, try a few of these tips with your students and let me know how it goes. Did you find other ways to implement strategies for these learning styles? Please share in the comments.

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Kristopher
    Oct 04, 2012 @ 16:46:33

    Great advice! Its easy to teach in a way that makes you comfortable but you need to reach out to others and teach them in a way that awakens spirit and inspiration to learn. By employing a multitude of these areas you can reach the majority of your class and for some really hit home some of the important details. Keep up the lessons, I really enjoy reading them.

    Reply

    • ambrosiasattic
      Oct 05, 2012 @ 09:33:00

      Kristopher, thank you for your comment. I agree with your statement about awakening the spirit and inspiring them to learn. Learning styles is one element in the educational process and the goal of an educator should be to reach every student by inspiring their learning. And to inspire with the enthusiasm of being a life-long learner themselves.Thanks for the encouragement!

      Reply

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