Whether it’s by working in a group or alone with a book, everyone has his or her preferred style for learning. A learning style is the method an individual best acquires knowledge. There are four major styles: auditory, visual, tactile, and kinesthetic. As educators, it is central to know how to teach to and recognize the different styles.
Auditory – Learn through Hearing
- Ask for more descriptions or explanations of a lesson
- Are easily distracted by noises
- Repeat information out loud to themselves
For auditory learners, include lessons with songs and music, provide thorough directions, explanations and repeat lecture points. Be ready to give more explanation on the topics you are teaching. When one person in the classroom is talking, everyone else must sit quietly and listen. Not only is this respectful, but it will make the class run smoothly.
Visual – Learn through Seeing
- Learn best through demonstrations, visual media
- Will ask for directions, instructions, words, ect. written on the board
- Think in pictures
Lessons with visual stimulation, such as posters, pictures, or videos are what help visual learners thrive. Use the board and encourage students to take notes for them to check at home.
Tactile – Learn though Feeling
- Prefer to touch and use their hands.
- Need to move when learning.
- Learn new information when they write it
- Enjoy drawing
Have your students take notes. When you are addressing something they need to know, make sure they write it down. Use activities that allow students to draw and be creative.
Kinesthetic – Learn through Doing
- Will often leave their seats
- Learn through moving and being active
- Have difficulty remaining still and reading for long periods.
Use activities that get students up and moving in your lessons; such as, if you are teaching new words, have students act out the word. Allow students to stand up and stretch.
We consider time spent in the classroom as sacrifice towards investment. Teachers are sacrificing their time and energy and students are investing in their future. If it is to go to waste, then it will all have been in vain. The time spent will have been time wasted. However, with thoughtful design every student will benefit.
A classroom is a complex organism. There are many moving parts. Creating lessons that account for different styles of learning is what makes teaching an art form.