The Different Styles of Learning
- Visual Learners: Visual learning is a learning and teaching style using visual representations. Such as pictures, maps, images, and colors. Using a graphic symbol as a teaching/learning technique helps visual learners because it is a technique that works best with how they learn. We know that certain methods of learning help people in various ways. Specifically, visual learners retain information best when it is presented visually to them. This means that they will retain the most information when the material is presented by using maps, gestures, videos, posters, diagrams, graphs, and symbols. When a visual leaner is taking notes, it may be best for them to colour code, underline important terms and include picture notes.
- Auditory Learners: Auditory learners use hearing to learn things best. They remember information best when they hear it or say it themselves. Learning techniques that work the best for them are group discussions, lectures and conversing about the topic. Repetition the content that is being discussed is the best way for an auditory learner to retain the information that is being processed. In order to learned like this, these learners may record their notes on a tape and listen to it repeatedly, have a group discussion about it, and read or explain the notes/assignments to peers.
- Reading/Writing Learners: Learners that fall in this category of teaching/learning comprehend information best by reading it and writing it down. People that understand content best this way tend to do things like make lists, take notes, re-read their notes, read the textbook and re-write the information they find in the textbook. Personally, I think this is one of the more boring learning techniques, but I also feel like it always works. You can’t really fail by writing and reading information to absorb it.
- Kinesthetic Learners: Kinesthetic learners are hands-on learners. This means they comprehend information best when they are working with their hands to do something. For example, this type of learner will understand making a clock best when they actually help make it, rather than just watching someone build it.
The implications that the theories have for me as a learner
- Math and Science: I learn best in math and science classes by watching the instructor do a question and talking the class through it. I also find that writing it down and typing it into my calculator as the teacher does it helps me too. And to further my understanding, I will try a couple practice questions. If all of that somehow doesn’t work, then I will resort to getting a classmate explain it to me, by showing me what they did and discussing the question. Then, if I am still struggling, I will do the question with the teacher and work through it with him/her. I would say this is a combination of auditory, writing and kinesthetic learning.
- ELA and History: For both ELA and History, I find that I retain the most information when I write it down, join in class discussions, and get told interesting/funny stories that have to do with the content. Otherwise, I usually find the content boring and I get distracted. I also learn the best in these classes from doing assignments, especially assignments that I am interested in and passionate about. I do not learn well from history videos, because I find it really boring and super hard to focus on. I would say, for these classes I use auditory and writing learning styles.
- PAA: I’m not good at PAA, so I never really liked doing it. But I can relate this more to stuff I actually enjoyed doing that is kind of like PAA. Some tasks that I do at home that I think are related to PAA are cutting grass, running skid steer, using electric drills, and so on (and even building Ikea furniture). I find that for these kind of tasks, I learn best by getting taught one on one on how to do it. This would include talking about how to use it, asking questions about it, and watching a short demonstration by the instructor and then doing it on my own. I would classify this as auditory and kinesthetic learning styles.
My Preferred Learning Style, and How I Know
I think that I do not have one preferred learning style, I find that I learn best when information is presented in more ways then one, because that way, I don’t get bored of the content. I usually understand content the best when I write it down over and over again, and do practice questions. Furthermore, things that also help me retain information are things such as images that I can remember and funny or interesting stories. That being said, I do not retain much information when someone lectures me about it for an hour. I need to be involved in a group discussion. For classes such as science, where you are required to see how something works, I find that I learn best if I can help with a demonstration to see how to diagram operates. So, overall I think that I am a combination of all the learning styles, but I excel best in the writing learners. I believe I am strong in my math courses, because I find it easy to achieve a good grade if I just work on practice questions. Which I guess is kind of hands on for that subject too.