Learning is part of living. Learning is acquiring new information and knowledge starting with a very early age in our human development. There are three Learning Styles: Visual Learning, Auditory Learning and Tactile/Kinesthetic Learning. Each learning style describes their group of learners and helps them understand better their easier method of accumulating information.We all distinguish information and process it in different ways. The differences of comprehending the information will also identify our learning style. Some of us grasp and perceive by touching, feeling or sensing. Some others learn by seeing and some others by listening. There are different ways of learning and by knowing the three ways of taking in information, it helps me understand others, as well as giving me the knowledge of how to teach better or make myself understood.
“It is no question that everyone learns differently. Did you know that your personality could reflect the way you learn? Knowing your personality and natural tendencies in mannerisms and the absorbing of information can impact your success in life. Learning styles are referred to as the characteristic ways in which a person gathers, identify and process information. If the way the material is presented corresponds to your natural learning style then learning the material becomes easier and more enjoyable.” Irina Alecu (p.1096)
By definition of the word “visual”, we understand illustration, diagram, image, and chart. Visual learners understand and remember better the things that they have seen or read, instead of being told or read to.
Some tips for visual learners are: Drawing and getting the picture of what he is being told or thought is very important for a visual learner to comprehend faster. Collecting photographs helps them remember better about their experience on a trip. When a visual learner reads a book, if the book has images and a visually enchanting language, he will have a better way of remembering it. He will close his eyes and have the information that he retained in different pictures.
Teaching a visual learner is all about giving them the picture of your story, using colorful language and creating visual interest. Visual learners understand better when seeing sketches, images or videos. A best way of teaching a visual learner is when making them understand the “big picture” of the piece of information that they need to memorize.
“How much a student can learn is also determined by the compatibility of the student’s learning styles and the teacher’s teaching styles. It is important for teachers to know their learners’ preferred learning styles because this knowledge will help teachers to plan their lessons to match or adapt their teaching and to provide the most appropriate and meaningful activities or tasks to suit a particular learner group at different stages.” Zhou.(p.73)
Auditory Learning is a learning style in which the learner memorizes and understands better by listening. There are two types of auditory learners: the auditory listeners and the verbal processors. The auditory listeners get distracted easily by noises like sirens, bells and screams, but they understand everything just by listening. Auditory listeners enjoy reading books and creating the book’s story in their mind. They may have difficulties with instructions that are written, but they memorize faster when they are told or read the assignment out loud. The verbal processors like to say what they have on their mind and sometimes they can get misunderstood in a polite society where people don’t speak as much or they only speak when they are supposed to.
Tips for auditory learners. Auditory listeners will memorize faster the information by listening to recordings or tapes. Taking notes of what he’s been listening to is a very good tip and step to remembering the information. Reading from a paper or book, helps them memorize better than reading from a screen or computer. Verbal processors talk to themselves a lot and they memorize better when reading aloud or recording themselves. The best tip for a verbal processor is listening to others talk first and taking notes of what it needs to be asked at the appropriate time. Verbal processors learn better with other verbal processors, because they can talk to one another, ask questions and have more comments without disturbing as much.
The best way of teaching an auditory learner is by reading the story to them, by using words to trigger memories and by using intonations that will attract their attention.
Understanding the auditory listeners is giving them all the attention when they start communicating. Auditory listeners do not talk much and when they do, they need to be listened to. The best way to communicate with auditory listeners is in person.
Understanding the auditory processors is by letting them talk, supporting, not interrupting and encouraging others to communicate with them as well.
“The concept of the learning style points the fact that the students are different; it consequently helps us to be more receptive, more sensitive to the difference from their behavior.” Irina Alecu (page 1099)
The Tactile/Kinesthetic Learners will not listen to a lecture or watch a demonstration. They understand better by touching, holding and moving around. Kinesthetic learners use their body in order to express a though and they have understanding through doing and touching things, as opposed to having thought, listened or watched first before initiating action.
Tips to teach a kinesthetic learner. Kinesthetic learners need to move a lot, as they are very energetic and they get bored easily. When they study, they need to move while they hold the book in their hands, highlight the text that they need to memorize, use their hands busy and write in big letters the keywords or questions that they want to think over.
It is common for tactile/kinesthetic learners to focus on two or more things at once, therefore listening to music while they are studying or working is a good tip to get them concentrate better.
Ways to teach a tactile learner. Tactile/ kinesthetic learners do not appreciate complicate instructions or details. It is very important to be patient with a kinesthetic learner in order to teach them appropriately. In order to get a kinesthetic learner’s attention while reading to them, the teacher needs to use a lot of body movements and gestures. Giving them a physical object that they can see and the freedom of assembling it is a great start of understanding them. Even if they do not have the idea of how to start a project, they will figure things out as they keep working with it.
Conclusion – Finding out everything about your learning method is a very motivating and encouraging step towards reaching your goals. Finding the time, passion and motivation is the key towards a successful and better future.
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