Wednesday 28th June 2017

How I Learn Best. #LifeThisWeek 21/52. 2017.71.

How I Learn Best. #LifeThisWeek 21/52. 2017.71.

I am revisiting this post today here with Sammie  for her weekend linky The Ultimate Rabbit Hole on 17.6.2017.

There are some people who like to learn in particular ways and I have always found that fascinating. When I was teaching University students doing their Masters of Teaching I would ask them if they knew their preferred learning style. Some would not until I asked questions such as: “do you want to see everything written to absorb your learning?” (V)

“do you like to talk something through?” (A)

“are you someone who likes to move about, play with the pen and chew it as you are learning?” (K)

Now I understand these are very basic examples of: Visual, Auditory and Kinaesthetic learning styles. Recently there has been some debunking of the theory but as an experienced teacher and parent I still maintain it is important we know our learning styles and therefore get to know the styles of our  family members, class members, colleagues and so on. But why?

C O M M U N I C A T I O N      and   C O N N E C T I O N   with our fellow humans!

Often we use some of each of the 3 learning styles but there is usually a preference for one. My quiz results (from the link below) confirmed what has always been the case for me: I am V.K.A. Visual is waaaay ahead with a score here of 17, Kinaesthetric scored 10 and Auditory was….1. So, I need to see, read, note and often write as a learn. That way I am using my visual style, and adding in the writing I am using the need to move. I have so many notes that are illegible but by writing I have been using two styles to remember and learn. I am also a picture person. I see scenes, words and stories all the time in my head. Visual.

What I learned a long time ago is “not everyone learns or even thinks like I do” this was a shock but actually it showed my ignorance and I have never made that mistake since. I was in a meeting with my office secretary and staff and we were planning and I asked about imagining some scenario that would help our planning move forward. My secretary looked at me blankly and with some gentle probing I was astounded when she told me she had no idea about visualising anything and she was, apparently, a  kinaesthetic and auditory learner.

I never assumed anyone’s learning style from that day! I also know that I am visually oriented first by my love of photography, reading, creating art and so on. I don’t mind music but I cannot listen when I want to concentrate. My husband is more auditory and kinaesthetic with visual last. He always has music on when studying.

This is a link to a quiz from Swinburne University which you (or anyone) can take but it needs to be printed out first. There is also an explanation about the meanings of the learning styles.

VAK Learning Styles Explanation

The VAK learning styles model suggests that most people can be divided into one of three preferred styles of learning. These three styles are as follows, (and there is no right or wrong learning style):

  •  Someone with a Visual learning style has a preference for seen or observed things, including pictures, diagrams, demonstrations, displays, handouts, films, flip-chart, etc. These people will use phrases such as ‘show me’, ‘let’s have a look at that’ and will be best able to perform a new task after reading the instructions or watching someone else do it first. These are the people who will work from lists and written directions and instructions.
  •  Someone with an Auditory learning style has a preference for the transfer of information through listening: to the spoken word, of self or others, of sounds and noises. These people will use phrases such as ‘tell me’, ‘let’s talk it over’ and will be best able to perform a new task after listening to instructions from an expert. These are the people who are happy being given spoken instructions over the telephone, and can remember all the words to songs that they hear!
  •  Someone with a Kinaesthetic learning style has a preference for physical experience – touching, feeling, holding, doing, practical hands-on experiences. These people will use phrases such as ‘let me try’, ‘how do you feel?’ and will be best able to perform a new task by going ahead and trying it out, learning as they go. These are the people who like to experiment, hands-on, and never look at the instructions first!People commonly have a main preferred learning style, but this will be part of a blend of all three. Some people have a very strong preference; other people have a more even mixture of two or less commonly, three styles.When you know your preferred learning style(s) you understand the type of learning that best suits you. This enables you to choose the types of learning that work best for you.There is no right or wrong learning style. The point is that there are types of learning that are right for your own preferred learning style.Please note that this is not a scientifically validated testing instrument – it is a free assessment tool designed to give a broad indication of preferred learning style(s).More information about learning styles, personality, and personal development is at www.businessballs.com.With acknowledgements to Victoria Chislett for developing this assessment.  Swinburne University.

I chose this prompt today because it is relevant for us all.

It is good to know what your preferred learning style is for any given situation, even cooking!
And if you are a parent it is important to realise that your learning style may not be your children’s and then that can maximise understanding and minimise conflict!
So, do you know ‘how you learn best?’
I hope this has been a helpful post!
Denyse.

Thank you for being part of Life This Week.

Joining with Alicia here for Open Slather and Kell here for Mummy Mondays.

Here are the rules for the link-up “Life This Week” is a link up that runs every Monday and remains live for until Thursday at 5 p.m.during that week. * You can link up something old or new, just come on in. * Please add just ONE post each week! * Feel free to go with the prompt for the week to add your ‘take’ on the prompt. Or not. * Please do stay to comment on my post as I always reply and it’s a bloggy thing to do! * Check out what others are up to by leaving a comment because we all love our comments, right! * Add a link back to this blog in your post somewhere. I don’t have a ‘button’ so a link in text is fine! *Posts deemed by me, the owner of the blog and the link-up, to be unsuitable for my audience will be deleted without notice. * THANK you for linking up today! Do come back next week. Next week’s prompt is “Hobbies”.

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Comments

  1. Watching my son go through his dyslexia journey has taught me a lot about different learning styles. What I found my fascinating is that not all can be labelled. I’m so happy that most of his teachers are happy to explore many. His school is one of the first in Australia to have a huge Independent Learning Time component (at least it’s the first in the ACT I think). Which means every Wednesday the students learn on their own in study pod style situations. For the most part the ILT activities that need to be completed each week in those sessions are presented in many different learning styles where the student can learn which way they’d like to absorb the information. My son gets to choose if he wants to learn it via reading, video etc. There’s still a long way to go … but it’s been interesting and it’s a great start!

    • That is so good to read Leanne. I do think ACT has the more flexible approaches in some areas due to the size of the territory. I am just glad to know things are improving not only for your son but others too.

  2. I’m visual all the way. To the point where sometimes at work, I have to draw diagrams of the way things work etc, to cement them in my head. I like to see things on paper to really get concept. Which can be a bit of a hindrance to be honest, especially when I’m in lots of meetings over the phone.

    • Oh yes, me too! And when viewing a map (before iPhones and google search) I would turn it in all the ways I would need to go to give me the turns as left, right or going ahead. Lots of illustrations here for me. But, when you try to explain something to someone who is not visual (as I found out way back) then it’s quite a challenge. But we got there!

      • Oh my gosh yes. This reminds me of my early trips to Europe where I’d just have a map. And I’d be turning it all which ways to work out where I should be.

        • Not just me then! I notice my husband never had to do that. I am poor in spatial
          ‘anything’ but I can remember directions via left. right etc…

  3. I found this quite an interesting prompt. to start nutting out how I learn…interesting how much learning you do without intention, and how much sticks…

    • Thanks for letting me know this prompt was interesting Lydia. I liken our preferences to being left or right handed (or a bit of both as I am at times). It’s ‘automatic’ rather than learned and we have built within us that natural preference. Of course we can train ourselves to learn in mixed mode but there will be a preference.

  4. I was thinking of visual as being a ‘thinking in pictures’ sort of thing, but I’m definitely a visual learner after reading this. No way in the world could I learn anything in ‘auditory’ style. “In one ear and out the other” as the saying goes… Now I know where my boys get that from! LOL

    • There you go! We waste so much time with non-auditory preference people by talking to them (at them as well!). Writing it down – like a list on the fridge – and then referring to it might help with family communication. It’s in writing, they have to view it then ask questions if they have any!

  5. I learn best by doing Denyse. I can read and read and read but it doesn’t sink in. I need visual and hands on. I do find it interesting that people all learn in different ways.

    • It is really good to know that you have a preferred style because if you might be in a formal situation such as a lecture with power point (visual) and talking (auditory) then you would need to make lots of notes, diagrams and so on the help cement your learning. Glad you know yours! You can have a look at your grandson next visit and see what he may be doing in preference. I suspect ‘doing’ for under 5s is the main one!!

  6. I learn the same way you do Denyse – I’m a great note taker too. My daughter teaches High School English and what the classroom learning style is like these days – it would drive me crazy! But I guess we’re all different and it’s nice that other learning styles are recognized these days.

    • Ah yes, the classrooms of today are indeed different. It was interesting to me teaching Uni to adults where they all did their learning in different ways. A laptop or a tablet of some kind was involved. I saw few pieces of paper!

  7. I am very much a visual learner. I find things sink in best if I see it done. Also I find that if I write it down it seems to process better and stay in the memory bank.

    Thanks for linking up with All Mum Said for #MummyMondays

  8. I am a big advocate of learning styles, particularly as a teacher. I love making sure I incorporate all learning styles to support my students. Now, as a new mum, I sometimes forget that these styles will become an inherent part of my son’s personality and life, so thank you for this reminder to watch my son, see how he learns best, and include that at home too (he’s only 10 months old so I have some time to see this develop!)

    • I’ll tell you a secret, I don’t think I took this knowledge into account when I was caring for our under-school age grandkids either. It is interesting to know as I look at my teen grandkids what styles they are and there is a predominance of visual and auditory. Their grandfather and mum seem to have auditory learning more that me that is for sure! Music plays a big past in their lives. Have fun watching your son!

  9. I’m a mix of a visual and kinesthetic learner, although mostly kinesthetic – I need to do a thing to truly learn it. As a corporate trainer I found it fun to design my activities in a way that would meet all learners’ needs.

    • That is really interesting Dorothy. Good on you for doing that to meet the learners’ needs. I don’t think that many people do and they should. I ‘hate’ death by powerpoint myself and even when I had to present that way, the lecturer (and I) made enough activities to cover all of the learning styles which also included getting up and doing some activities relevant to the learning that way.

  10. I’m definitely a visual learner and like you I find auditory influences can be distracting. Interesting because as a teenager I used to study with music playing – I wonder if I might have done better without or maybe a younger brain can better handle distraction.

    • I think I also used music when I was a teen supposedly studying too!! It’s only taken now to ‘old age’ to realise I get too distracted. I cant have the TV on if I am trying to read. My hub watches Netflix with headphones for his hearing loss anyway so we happily sit together with me reading or scrolling on FB and him watching his shows! Thank you for linking up for #lifethisweek 21/52 and next week’s prompt is Hobbies.

  11. I’m a kinasthetic learner, myself. As someone who trains others as part of my job, this stuff is so important to be aware of for yourself.

    • Glad you know and glad you ensure others you are training have the knowledge. It was very enlightening to me way back when I did too.

  12. inthegoodbooksblog ( Michelle) says:

    Great prompt this week Denyse! I think that I am a visual learner, and I notice that it helps me a lot when I write things down if I want to learn something quicker.

    • I think being the reader you are would make you a visual learner but it is interesting that you use notes too. I write lots when I am listening to my CDs on buddhism and more at the moment. It all helps!

  13. Really not sure how I learn!!! I think I learn best when it is something I am
    Interested in rather than something I have no interest in!

    • That’s really interesting too. I wonder if reading this and maybe taking the quiz on the link you might find whether you have one more dominant area than another.

  14. I think I need to see everything written down to learn it! I’m definitely not good at remembering things that have just been said to me, lol!

    • From what you wrote, I am guessing you are a more visual learner! I too am not that great with listening well and remembering unless it’s something I am really interested in!!

  15. Interesting I have written about learning this week. I think I need all three, I need to talk about it, do it and listen. The more ways I can learn something the quicker it becomes.

    • Thank you Julie, that is a great way to look at it too and I have just commented on your blog as well. Thanks for visiting here for the first time. Denyse

  16. I’m visual too! I have done this quiz before to do with a learning course I did. I need to keep these learning styles in mind as I am moving into teaching kids basic gymnastics, that I may have to physically demonstrate what to do. I think I need to become a little more fit!

  17. This is so good. Many lay-people don’t know that learning styles exist — especially parents. More frustrating for parents is when they don’t know why their children don’t understand right away. It takes time to learn something and yes there are different ways of learning. Great share.

    • Thanks for the reminder that parents who may learn a certain way (predominantly) can get frustrated with their children whose learning style may be different. I think there might be some frustrations expressed in some households if they do not ‘get this’ too.

  18. Never have I been more fully aware of the different learning strategies than when I was teaching. I’m a visual learner through and through so planning lessons for visual and kinaesthetic learners taught me something too!

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