Every child has their own personal learning style and preferences. This is what makes each of us unique, and each learning style is an asset in some way, shape, or form.
As your child has gotten older you have likely noticed some things about the way they learn. Perhaps they prefer to hear things and process through speaking. Maybe they memorize everything they read. Whatever way your child learns best, their unique learning style should be celebrated, and they should be encouraged to use this to their advantage.
Unfortunately, all too often children are put into a classroom where they are expected to learn in a way that does not mesh well with their own learning style. This often leads to a discouraged, inattentive, disruptive, or uninterested student. Children may be labeled as “slow” or “naughty”, when in reality they simply have a different way of seeing the world.
The best way to overcome this obstacle is to make sure your child is in a learning environment that caters to their needs. Small classes and one-on-one learning tend to be the best ways to accomplish this. In these settings teachers are more able to adapt to a student’s way of thinking and create lesson plans around the individual rather than the group as a whole.
Below are a few of the different learning styles and ways one-on-one lessons and smaller class sizes might be beneficial to them.
Auditory — Students who learn best by listening and discussing are referred to as auditory learners. These students benefit from lectures and discussions. Small class sizes lend themselves well to in-depth discussions and students are less likely to become distracted or disruptive during lectures. These things are invaluable to someone with an auditory learning style.
Visual — Visual learners must see in order to remember well. These students actually tend to do well in a traditional school environment. However, one-on-one lessons may feel less frustrating to them. This is because visual learners are catered to in the traditional classroom and may feel impatient towards students with different learning styles who may not pick up on material as quickly as they do.
Tactile or Kinesthetic — People who learn by doing may be labeled as tactile or kinesthetic learners. These students should be involved in plenty of hands-on activities and should be allowed to move around in the classroom. Obviously, this learning style does not mesh well at all with the traditional classroom. Smaller class sizes and one-on-one lessons allow teachers to incorporate many more hands-on activities without the chaos that would likely ensue with a large class.
Global — The students who tend to look at the bigger picture before studying details likely have a global learning style. These students enjoy working on group projects, must be personally connected to their work in order to learn from it, and enjoy taking many short breaks throughout the day. These students benefit from small class sizes where they can be allowed to take breaks often and can be heavily involved in group projects. They also do well with private instruction because the lessons can be tailored to interest them specifically.
Analytic — Analytic learners ask a lot of questions. They like to receive information in a structured manner and prefer to learn in a step-by-step process. They tend to see details rather than the bigger picture, and are most comfortable in a structured learning environment. These students do best in one-on-one lessons where they are free to ask about details and spend as much time as needed on things many other students may find uninteresting or unimportant.
If you are looking for a school to suit your child’s unique learning style, please contact us at Tenney School. We offer individualized instruction in most subjects as well as a few opportunities for students to work in small classes. We are certain we have exactly what your student needs to succeed.