Have you ever found it difficult to learn something new? Maybe the way it was being taught wasn’t your preferred learning style. Everyone has a learning style or a preferred way of learning. The 3 main styles of learning are Visual Learners, Auditory Learners, and Kinaesthetic Learners.
Visual Learners Learn through seeing. They need to see body language & facial expressions to fully understand the content. They tend to prefer sitting at the front of the room to avoid visual obstructions. They may think in pictures and learn best from visual displays including: diagrams, illustrated text books, videos, flipcharts and handouts. During a discussion, visual learners often prefer to take detailed notes to absorb the information. Colour-coding notes and possessions help to organise their thoughts. Visual learners prefer written directions over spoken directions, and they visualise the spelling of words or facts to be memorised.
Auditory Learners Learn through listening. They learn best through discussions, talking things through, and listening to what others have to say. Auditory learners interpret the underlying meanings of speech through listening to tone, pitch, speed and other nuances. Written information may have very little meaning until it is heard. These learners often benefit from reading text aloud and using a tape recorder. Written exams and directions should be delivered verbally for auditory learners, as they may have difficulty following written directions. Kinaesthetic Learners Learn through moving, doing and touching. They need a hands-on approach, and actively explore the physical world around them.
Kinaesthetic learners can find it difficult to sit still for long periods and may become distracted by their need for activity and exploration. They can usually assemble parts without reading directions, and computers seem to reinforce their learning through the sense of touch. Making models, role plays, lab work or anything that involves physical touching will facilitate their learning.
Ask yourself the following questions and circle (V), (A), or (K) to help work out your own preferred learning style.
1). When given written instructions on how to build something, I:
(V) Read them silently and try to visualise how the parts will fit together (A) Read them out aloud and talk to myself as I put the parts together
(K) Try to put the parts together first and read later
2). To keep occupied while waiting, I:
(V) Look around, stare, or read
(A) Talk or listen to others
(K) Walk around, touch things with my hands, or move/swing my feet as I sit
3). If I had to verbally describe something to another person, I would:
(V) Be brief because I do not like to talk at length
(A) Go into great detail because I like to talk
(K) Gesture and move around as I talk
4). If someone were verbally describing something to me. I would:
(V) Try to visualise what they were saying
(A) Enjoy listening but want to interrupt and talk myself
(K) Become bored if the description went on too long
5). When trying to recall names, I remember:
(V) Faces, but forget names
(A) Names, but forget faces
(K) The situation that I met the person, not their face or name