Last updated on Jun 21st, 2021 at 12:11 pm
Over the past couple of months, parents have been faced with a grave task – remote learning and helping our children navigate this territory
Supervising and helping out with homework is one thing, but ensuring our children are learning new concepts everyday is something else. Parenting in a pandemic is no easy feat, which is why knowing how best your child learns is important to help you out right now.
Scientists explain that the way information enters our brain is through our senses – we see, we touch, we hear, we smell and we taste. This is how we take in and process new information and are able to store it into our memories. Learning styles focus on how best we take in information from our senses and making sure we optimize our learning and memory.
While there are several theories which explain various learning styles, we are going to focus on the main three: Visual, Auditory and Kinesthetic
Children with a visual learning style need to SEE information in order to learn it
The more visual information is, the more they will be able to understand and remember it. A child with this learning style will learn best by:
• Copying something they see written down
• Writing and re-writing notes
• Using mind maps
• Highlighting key points with coloured pens/highlighters
• Using flashcards
• Watching videos or looking at pictures
• Using graphs, charts and posters to understand information
As a parent, you can help your child by making sure they have the material and resources they need, as well as encouraging them to research things online which will visually enhance their learning. Ask them to “present” their work to you in a visual format (e.g. a short Powerpoint presentation or creating a poster).
Auditory learners tend to learn best by HEARING information they need to learn
This means that they need to have new information explained to them by another person. This child needs to make sure that they:
• Pay attention in class
• Record learning material so they can play it back
• Ask questions
• Study in a quiet environment
While they are at home, help your child maximise their learning by allowing them to listen to audio books or podcasts, testing them out loud or asking them to explain things to you which they have learnt. It may also help for them to have a “study buddy” who they can discuss their work with. Interestingly, auditory learners can also process information very well while listening to music!
Children with a kinesthetic learning style need to TOUCH or EXPERIENCE something in order to remember it
While this is challenging in traditional academic contexts, it is possible to help your child use this way of learning by:
• Using models or demonstrations
• Creating simulations
• Hands-on experiments
As they study from home, allow your child to move around as they learn – they may get bored by sitting in one place. Get them to get physical, try out experiments and present things to you which they have made.
While it possible that children can utilise all learning styles, their dominant one will guide you in how you encourage them to learn and stay engaged and involved in the process.