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How it has effected my life and identifying your child’s learning style

My husband and I have very different learning styles.  My husband doesn’t enjoy or glean much from written material, but easily absorbs information from books on tape.  Depending on the type of work he is doing, he is able to work with background noise or music.  He is also fully immersed in doing everything electronically, such as scheduling meetings and keeping up his contact list.  I, on the other hand, read books every chance I get.  If I am concentrating on meeting a deadline or finishing a project, it is very detrimental to me (and my project) if I am disturbed.  I also need to physically write down to-do lists and appointments with a good old-fashioned pen and paper, and can most often remember what I wrote by calling up the visual of it in my mind.  As our two young boys grow, it will be interesting to see which learning styles or combinations of styles will be their strengths.

Understanding your child’s learning style can be integral to help you understand your child better, as well as help teach them skills they can use for success in school and future work.   On the website www.schoolfamily.com, Emily Graham wrote an article entitled “What Is Your Child’s Learning Style?”that explores three basic learning styles: auditory, kinesthetic, and visual.  In this article, the author suggests that you pay attention to the things your child does while studying.  For example, if they constantly squirm and fidget while doing math homework, they may be doing it because that’s what they need to do to make the learning work for them.

Although educators have been aware for quite some time that learning is not one-dimensional, nor the same for every child, knowledge about learning styles and how to adapt lessons in the classroom are still evolving.  In the article, “Children’s Learning Styles” by Pam Wynne Fellers, the author spoke with teacher June Griswold for suggestions regarding your child’s learning styles.  Ms. Griswold “believes that identifying learning styles and adapting lessons can motivate students and eliminate unfair labeling.”  Ms. Griswold groups learning styles into four major categories: spatial visual, kinetic/movement, language-oriented, and logical/analytical.  She provides a description and motivating tips for each category, and also notes that children can use a mixture of these categories, or show dominance in one particular category.   Ms. Griswold also recommends two books for additional reference: “Awakening Your Child’s Natural Genius” and “In Their Own Way,” both by Thomas Armstrong.

Once you’ve identified your child’s primary learning style, let your child’s teacher(s) know what kinds of approaches help him or her learn the best.  It is also good to keep in mind that these learning styles are not concrete.  Your child’s preferred learning style may change as they age, or depending on what task they are doing.  Additionally, helping your child to learn using multiple learning styles results in a more well-balanced student.

Do you want to know more about identifying your child’s learning style, and get additional tips to work with their particular style?  The Kidtelligent Assessment can help!  Find out more about the Kidtelligent assessment at www.kidtelligent.com, and make sure to follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/Kidtelligent.

Sarah is a guest mom writer for Kidtelligent. If you are interested in submitting an article to be shared on the Kidtelligent Blog and Facebook please email us at info@kidtelligent.com