Of All the Learning Styles, Which is Best for My Child?

in Learning

The theory of multiple intelligences

In 1983 Howard Gardner, an educational researcher and developmental psychologist brought to the world a revolutionary new study called, "Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligences," in which he theorized that most students do not learn in the same exact way. The study further showed that many students learned best by using visual aids while others learned better by handling objects; moving manipulatives to help them learn math. Gardner suggested that all students would fare better in school if each child's learning style was targeted by both parents and teachers.

The different learning styles

The theory of different learning types and multiple intelligences has over the last 30 years gained vast acceptance with the nation's teachers and they have successfully brought them into both the lesson plans and classrooms. Below you will find a brief overview of the three kinds of learning types and ways children can incorporate them into the classroom.

  • Auditory learners - When a student can learn better if the information is presented to them out loud, they are called auditory learners. These students also learn better when the lesson is recorded for them so they can review it, such as learning math facts by learning a silly song. Students who learning style is auditory are great at recognizing rhymes and hearing language patterns.
  • Kinetic learners - The word "Kinetic" means to move. Students who learn best with a hands-on approach are classified as kinetic learners; handling things lets them learn better. For instance, if they are learning the alphabet, they learn better when they can handle letters that are cardboard cutouts, or shaped out of clay.
  • Visual learners - The visual learning style is the one that is closer to the traditional teaching methods. Visual learners are able to learn from taking notes and reviewing them, deciphering graphs and diagrams and reading text. They also love to visualize like in daydreaming, drawing, and reading maps. Other different learning styles have been suggested over the past years such as interpersonal learners, naturalistic learners, logical learners and musical learners.

What is your child's learning style?

Finding out what your child's learning style is will be the key in helping them learn more efficiently. One way to find out his or her learning style is by watching them. If you notice your child with his or her nose always in a book or if they write a lot, chances are high that they are a visual learner. If you notice your child going swimming, dancing or active in outdoor sports, chances are good they are kinetic learners. Teachers are invaluable resources because they are able to observe your child in many different learning situations, meaning they probably have a better idea of what your child's learning style is.

If you have internet access, you will find many online resources to use. One is offered by Scholastic Books, which is designed especially for younger children. The test will divide learners into ones who learn by "looking," ones who learn by "listening," and ones who learn by "doing." Then you simply answer the questions regarding the activities your child enjoys and in what ways they respond to different situations. There is also a test offered by the University of South Dakota, which asks a series of questions.

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Linda Johnson has 2 articles online

Private Elementary School Jacksonville, Hendricks Day School focuses on teaching your child how to think. Contact us for a tour of our elementary school in Jacksonville: 904-720-0398.

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Of All the Learning Styles, Which is Best for My Child?

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This article was published on 2014/02/27