What's Your Learning Style?

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1 What's Your Learning Style? Learning Objectives for this Activity: To define learning styles To explain the differences between auditory, visual and kinesthetic learners To identify your learning style To analyze what study strategies complement your learning style There are many types of learning styles, but for the purposes of this discussion, we are going to focus on the main three: visual, auditory, and kinesthetic. What is a learning style? To learn, we depend on our senses to process the information around us. Most people tend to use one of their senses more than the others. Today's lesson will help you determine which of these learning styles you rely on the most. Click on the link below or copy and paste it into the address bar to watch a video that describes the three common learning styles (visual, auditory, and kinesthetic) in a straight- forward manner. YouTube Video: Learning Styles: Visual Learners Visual learners learn through seeing. They need to see the teacher's body language and facial expression to fully understand the content of a lesson. They tend to prefer sitting at the front of the classroom to avoid visual obstructions (i.e. people's heads). They may think in pictures and learn best from visual displays including: diagrams, illustrated text books, overhead transparencies, videos, flipcharts and hand- outs. During a lecture or classroom discussion, visual learners often prefer to take detailed notes to absorb the information. Learning Styles: Auditory Learners

2 Auditory learners learn through seeing. They learn best through verbal lectures, discussions, talking things through and listening to what others have to say. Auditory learners interpret the underlying meanings of speech through listening to tone of voice, pitch, speed and other nuances. Written information may have little meaning until it is heard. These learners often benefit from reading text aloud and using a tape recorder. Learning Styles: Kinesthetic Learners Kinesthetic learners learn through, moving, doing and touching. Tactile/Kinesthetic persons learn best through a hands- on approach, actively exploring the physical world around them. They may find it hard to sit still for long periods and may become distracted by their need for activity and exploration.

3 Understanding and Identifying Auditory, Visual and Kinesthetic Learning Styles Auditory Visual Kinesthetic Identify sounds related to an experience Have a sharp, clear picture of an experience Develop a strong feeling towards an experience I hear you clearly, I want you to listen... This sounds good How do you hear this situation going? What do you hear that is stopping you? Sounds heavy. Do you make pictures in your head Do you have visual images in your head as you are talking and listening to me? Can you see what I am saying? How do you see the situation? What do you see stopping you? This looks good. Do you see what I am showing you? Do you feel what you are saying? Are you in touch with what I am saying? How do you feel about this situation? I'm getting a handle on this material. Let's move together. Does what I am putting you in touch with feel right? Adapted from:

4 Learning Style Inventories Two different Learning Style inventories are given here, one a paper version and the other an online version. You can access the online version by clicking on the link below or by copying and pasting the link into the address bar. style/index.html

5 Learning Styles Inventory: VAK Directions: Read each statement and select the choice that best describes you by circling the letter V, A, or K. If more than one choice strongly applies, then circle more than one answer or choose the one answer you would try first. 1. If I have to learn how to do something, I learn best when I: (V) Watch someone show me how. (A) Hear someone tell me how. (K) Try to do it myself. 2. When I read, I often find that I: (V) Visualize what I m reading in my mind. (A) Read out loud or hear the words inside my head. (K) Move around and try to feel the content. 3. When I am asked to give directions, I: (V) See the actual place in my mind as I say them or prefer to draw them. (A) Have no difficulty in giving them verbally. (K) Have to point or move my body as I give them. 4. If I am unsure about how to spell a word, I first: (V) Write it in order to decide if the spelling looks right. (A) Spell it out loud to see if it sounds right. (K) Write it in order to determine if it feels right. 5. When I write, I: (V) Am concerned about how neat and well spaced my letters and words appear. (A) Often say the letters and words to myself as I form them. (K) Push hard on my pen or pencil and can feel the flow of certain words or letters as I form them. 6. If I had to remember a list of items, I would remember best if I: (V) Wrote them down. (A) Said them over and over to myself. (K) Moved around and used my fingers to name each item.

6 7. I prefer teachers who: (V) Use the board or overhead projector while they lecture. (A) Talk with a lot of expression. (K) Use hands-on activities. 8. When trying to concentrate, I have a difficult time when: (V) There is a lot of clutter or movement in the room. (A) There is a lot of noise in the room. (K) I have to sit still for any length of time. 9. When solving a problem, I: (V) Write or draw diagrams in order to see it. (A) Talk myself the steps to solve the problem. (K) Use my entire body or move objects to help me think. 10. When given written instructions on how to build something, I: (V) Read them silently and try to visualize how the parts will fit together. (A) Read them out loud and talk to myself as I put the parts together. (K) Try to put the parts together first and read later. 11. To keep myself busy while waiting, I: (V) Look around, stare, or read. (A) Talk or listen to others. (K) Walk around, touch things with my hands, or move/shake my feet as I sit. 12. If I had to verbally describe something to another person, I would: (V) Be brief because I do not like to talk for a long time. (A) Go into great detail because I enjoy talking. (K) Gesture and move around while talking. 13. If someone were verbally describing something to me, I would: (V) Try to visualize what she was saying. (A) Enjoy listening but would want to interrupt and talk myself. (K) Become bored if her description got too long and detailed.

7 14. When trying to recall names, I remember: (V) Faces but forget names. (A) Names but forget faces. (K) The situation in which I met the person better than the person s name or face. Scoring Instructions: Add the number of responses for each letter and enter the total below. The area with the highest number of responses is probably your primary mode of learning. Most people learn through a mix of learning styles and, when they have a difficult learning assignment, they usually do better if they combine several types of strategies. Visual Auditory Kinesthetic V = A = K =

8 When everyone has finished, discuss the results: How many students primary learning style is visual? Auditory? Kinesthetic and tactile? Did any students have a tie between two learning styles? Was there anything that you were surprised by? Brainstorm examples of how each type learns for example, visual learners like charts and pictures, auditory learners like to hear directions, kinesthetic learners like to put something together without directions What types of educational settings might be best suited for someone with a particular learning style (online learning vs. small classes vs. lecture style, etc.)? Ask students how they think knowing their learning style will help them succeed in school. Ask students if knowing their learning style would help them beyond school Hand out copies of Learning Styles Study Strategies and discuss.

9 Learning Styles Study Strategies Visual Auditory Kinesthetic Seeing things on board Hearing lectures Holding objects (eraser/rabbit s foot, etc ) Watching TV & videos Using cassettes/ipods Walking/pacing while studying Drawing pictures in notes Reading or thinking aloud Screaming notes outside Reading drawings/graphs/maps Recording yourself Writing notes Doodling Singing to yourself Typing notes Reading silently Talking into a mirror Underlining while reading Outlining notes Studying in a quiet place Writing notes in book while reading Using flash cards Reading to somebody Eating while studying Seeing pictures in head Quizzing verbally Sitting in a rocking chair Writing repetitively Discussing Typing notes over vs. recopying over Using post- it notes Using colored highlighters, pencils, or pens Working on assignments with friend/group Asking questions Dancing or singing memory work Giving your opinion Reading to an auditory person Listening to news Acting it out in a play/movie Looking at people when they talk Doing assignments over the phone Writing with chalk on sidewalk/chalkboard Using Cornell note taking Talking- walking while studying Having big workspace Making note cards (white and/or colored) Using different voices (plays/stories) Folding papers for columns From Integrating Career Awareness in the ABE/ESOL Classroom

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