We may not always be aware of it, but every one of us learns in a different way. Although some learn best from reading textbooks, others may prefer to listen to their notes, or use flashcards. At INICIO we ensure that every child, no matter how they learn, can get the most out of their education with exercises designed to suit their unique personality. But how do you find out your child’s preferred learning style, and how do you use it to their advantage?
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Learning styles vary among individuals, in much the same way that personalities do. No two people are alike, so it makes sense that no two people learn in exactly the same way. Teachers know only too well about the different ways that people process information, and make an effort to match their teaching methods with students’ learning patterns whenever possible (although, with the best will in the world, they're never going to manage 30 different learning styles!)
Teaching and learning
How you learn is largely determined by the methods used to teach you or train you. For most people of course, that will be how they are taught in school, although we appreciate people are taught and learn in other situations too. Other factors in the way you learn include how you internalize experiences, how you recall facts and how you communicate. Over the years, researchers have identified at least seven learning styles: visual, aural, verbal, physical, logical, social and solitary. The key components of these styles are:
Visual: Learns best through pictures, images, and spatial representations
Aural: Learns best through sound and music
Verbal: Learns best through words, both in speech and writing
Physical or kinesthetic: Learns best by using the body, hands and sense of touch
Logical: Has mathematical leanings and learns best through use of logic, reasoning and systems
Social or interpersonal: Learns best in groups or working with a team
Solitary: Learns best working alone.
Current educational thinking has turned these seven styles into just three: auditory, visual and tactile. A student with an auditory learning style best processes new information by using his or her sense of hearing, such as through lectures, discussions or audio recordings. A visually inclined student flourishes by using written media - books, websites and information displayed on flip charts or whiteboards. The tactile student prefers a hands-on situation, such as labs and workshops, where actually doing something helps enhance their learning.
Do you know what type of learner you are? If you think back to where you have done well in school, university or in learning a new skill, you may be able to identify yourself as being an auditory, visual, or tactile learner.
Sometimes categorising a learning style isn't that clear-cut, but there are tests available to help pinpoint your dominant learning traits. In one such exercise, your learning style is revealed by answering questions about how you perform certain tasks. The task, such as reading, would be listed in the first column and a question given under each category in the next three columns. You are asked to circle the question that best describes your process for each task. Your learning style would be revealed by the category with the most questions circled. If you are a learner with a dual style or overlapping traits, this will become clear too.
Whatever the testing shows, knowing your learning style can help you select the right options for you to give you the best possible chance of success in your education.
If you would like to discuss your learning style with a private tutor at INICIO in Leicestershire, call us today on 01858 462648 to arrange an introductory visit to our unique learning environment.
There are many reasons for investing in private tuition. Here are 10 things you can expect to benefit from:
1. Much smaller student to teacher ratio
Because private tuition takes place in small groups or one-to-one, students are able to focus better and are taught in a way that specifically meets their own unique needs. Here at Inicio, students attend in groups of up to six children, but teaching is always one-to-one.
2. The right tutor
At school, you don't have a choice about your teachers, but we match the child and the tutor following our first meeting with the child. This means students have a mentor who teaches in the most effective manner for their learning styles.
3. Extra review
Often in school there is only a limited time to review a child's work and understanding. That may not always be enough. Having a private tutor gives students an extra chance to review the areas in which they may be struggling.
4. Homework help
With a tutor, students enjoy having a guide who can make the topics that they're covering for homework less stressful, less of a chore and more of an effective learning experience.
5. Test practice
For students who struggle with studying for tests, private tuition helps them to develop better study skills and ultimately to perform better in exams.
Because tutors develop a more personal relationship with their students, they are able to see and cultivate the potential within them. This is all too easy for teachers in school to miss, especially if a child is well-behaved or of average intelligence. This gives students increased confidence in their studies.
7. Saves parents and students time and effort
Parents with busy schedules don't always have time to help their children with school work. Having a private tutor takes the pressure off (although we would always encourage parents to spend time with their children wherever possible!).
8. Stronger drive to perform to their very best
Because private tuition means the instructor is really focused on the success of the student, students are far more likely to have an increased drive to perform to the very best of their ability.
9. Safe environment for open discussion
Sometimes students may not be as willing to ask questions in a large class, but working with a private tutor gives them more confidence and the freedom to speak out.
10. Students get taught by innovative methods
Because private tuition is one-to-one, tutors are willing to experiment with new teaching styles that work more effectively for the student.
If you feel you or your child could benefit from a private tutor in Leicester then why not visit our learning centre in the centre of Market Harborough to see for yourself and to talk with our friendly staff about the options available.