It is not news that people process information differently. Therefore, it makes sense that teachers should vary methods of teaching. As a student teacher supervisor, I coach many novice teachers in lesson plans. One of the areas that we seem to discuss often is trying to design lessons to meet the needs of ALL learners. Check out the strategies lists below for each of the 8 learning styles.
Strategies for Learning Styles
Visual learners – Visual learners retain information more effectively when visual aides are used (pictures, images, colors) and understand better when data is presented in charts and graphs.
- Write key points in lesson presentation.
- Substitute words for colors and pictures.
- Encourage note taking.
- Use visual aids.
- Color or emphasize key points in text.
- Avoid large blocks of text.
- Color code and organize materials to help student organization.
- Use storytelling to help with visualization.
Aural learners – Aural learners respond to sound and music.
- Encourage classroom discussions.
- Allow audio books.
- Suggest listening to music as they review material.
- Suggest reading notes aloud.
- Encourage problem solving aloud.
- Allow classroom recordings.
- Encourage partner discussions.
- Use mnemonic devices when available.
Verbal learners – Verbal learners favor using words and linguistic skills in speech, reading, writing, listening, and speaking. They like word games, jokes, rhymes and are often strong public speakers.
- Use verbal teaching and writing activities.
- Use acronyms for mnemonic devices.
- Ask them to teach material to class.
- Role playing
- Ask them to rewrite their note cards.
- Use lists of key words.
- Use quizzes in lessons.
Social learners – Social learners process information by interacting with and relating to others. They enjoy working with others.
- Include group work.
- Engage in role-play.
- Allow discussion and sharing stories.
- Encourage sharing ideas and comparing with others.
- Ask opinions on topics.
Logical learners – Logical learners favor using logic and reasoning. They like to classify and categorize information and solve problems with numbers. Logical learners are especially good at analyzing cause and effect relationships.
- Provide the class with problem-solving tasks.
- Include critical thinking exercises.
- Provide statistics and facts.
- Present with evidence and ask them to make conclusions.
Physical and tactile learners – Physical learners process information effectively when they use their bodies and when are doing something.
- Use physical exercises and provide hands-on-experiences.
- Exercising when standing and walking are highly effective.
- Encourage drawing diagrams, graphs, and maps.
- Interaction with materials and/or solve puzzles.
Solitary learners -Solitary learners like to work and learn by themselves. They may come across as shy but are more likely to speak up when they are more comfortable.
- Ask questions to discover student thinking.
- Provide individual problem-solving exercises.
Naturalistic learners – Naturalist learners process information by working with and experiencing nature. They often use scientific logic for understanding.
- Use examples linking to daily life, people, or nature.
- Ask them to think about learning by finding patterns.
- Include experiments in your lessons.
By varying the methods of teaching you will keep the attention of your students for longer and make the learning experience more enjoyable. A win-win for everyone.
Learning occurs in day to day activities. So, look for and create learning opportunities throughout your day. Stay safe and be well.