Classically, our learning style is force upon through life like this:
- In grades Kindergarten to 3, new information is presented to us KINESTETICALLY.
- Grades 4 to 8, learning information are normally presented VISUALLY.
- Grades 9 to college and into the business learning environment, information are presented to us in AUDITORY by lecturers and presenters.
As an instructor/trainer/facilitator, we need to present information using all this 3 learning styles. This allowed learners, no matter what preferred the learners style is but the opportunities to become involved in different learning styles. Just because we prefer style, doesn’t mean that the other 2 do no good. Just because we prefer one style, doesn’t mean that the other 2 do not good. Quite the contrary, they help us to learn faster.
VISUAL (LEARN THROUGH SEEING)
Visual learning has 2 sub channels – LINGUISTIC and SPATIAL.
Visual Linguistic learners like to learn written languages, such as reading and writing task. They remember what have been written down, even if they do not need to read more than once.
Visual Spatial learners usually have difficulties with written language and do better with charts, demonstrations videos and other visual materials. They easily visualized faces and places by using their imagination and seldom get lost in new surroundings.
These learners can see their teacher’s body language and facial expression to fully understand the content of the lesson. They tend to prefer sitting at the front of the classroom to avoid obstructions. They may think in pictures and learn best way from visual display including: diagrams, illustrated textbooks, overhead transparencies, videos, flipcharts and handouts. During lectures or classroom discussion, visual learners often prefer details notes to absorb information.
TO INTEGRATE THIS STYLE INTO LEARNING ENVIRONMENT:
- Use maps, illustrations to get to the point across
- Include outlines, agendas, handouts for taking notes
- Include plenty of content in handouts to reread after the learning session
- Invite questions to help them to stay alert in an auditory environment
- Emphasis key point to cue when take notes
AUDITORY (LEARN THROUGH LISTENING)
They learn the best through verbal lectures, discussion, talking things through and listening to what other have to say. Learners usually talk to themselves a lot. They also move their lips and read out loud. They may have difficulties with reading and writing task. They often do better talking to colleagues or on tape-recorded and hearing what we said.
Auditory learners interpret the underlying meanings of speech through listening to one tone voice, pitch speed and other nuances. This people are aware of noises about them, and so are distracted by noise about them when they are learning.
TO INTEGRATE THIS STYLE INTO THE LEARNING ENVIRONMENT:
- Verbal lecturers/ discussion/briefings
- Make speeches and presentations
- Dictate to someone while they are writing down your thoughts
- Asking lots of questions after you have given a briefing
- Leave plenty of time of debrief the activities
- Include auditory activities such as brainstorming.
KINESTETHICS (LEARN THROUGH MOVING, DOING & TOUCHING)
Kinesthetic persons learn best through a hands-on approach, actively exploring the physical world around them. They may find hard to sit for long periods and may become distracted by their needs for activities and exploration.
When reading they like to scan material first, and then focus on the details (to get the big picture first) they typically use colour highlighter and then ask notes by drawing pictures and diagrams.
TO INTEGRATE THIS STYLE INTO THE LEARNING ENVIRONMENT:
- Use colored markers to emphasize key points on white board
- Try to use a lot of games to get the learning across
- Play music, when appropriate during activities
PRINCIPLES OF ADULT LEARNING
There are a number of principles that will help you to understand how adult learn. These principles are guide only; there may be others that you can think of.
Adults are likely to learn more quickly and effectively if they are actively participating in the learning process. Adult learn best by doing and reflecting.
Learning is more effective when participants can relate new materials to their existing knowledge and experience. Retention of the learning is more likely if the initial learning and vivid and if materials are used.
It is important to start with the big picture or entire job. Then break it down into component parts so that participant can see how each piece fits together. The component parts should be explained in detailed after the participant understand the overall job.
Learning occurs as a result of sensory experience and learning is generally more effective if we can use 2 or more sense. If a trainer simply talks about something, it can be quite difficult to learn. If an explanation is given along with a model, and participants can see and examine the model, and participants can see and examine the model, then learning is likely to be more effective.
Practice and Reinforcement
Appropriate opportunities to practice and apply new skills and knowledge enhance the learning process. Positive reinforcement helps to maintain or increase the skills and knowledge being practiced. Encouraging comments about work or progress are examples of reinforcement.
Things to be aware:
- Need to know the relevance of the learning before they undertake
- They want to make their own decision
- They learnt at things immediately relevant to them
- They have a wealth experience and knowledge to add and draw from
- Adult are task focused when it comes to learning
- The most potent motivation for adults is internal pressures
- They have their own learning style • Learn best through stimulated experience
- Learn well when given the opportunity to be made aware of their needs
- Adult learn the best by doing
- Holistic learning: Give them big picture the break it down and put it back together
- What’s in for me?
Things to be aware of:
- Short attention spans
- Easily distracted
- Needs reason to learn
- Safety First
- Need to have opportunities to practice skills before activity
- Needs prompts to remind them
- What’s for me?
BARRIES TO LEARNING
- Each individuals has different goals & motivation towards learning
- Learn at different rates
- Individuals differ in ways they perceived this things (Learning Style)
- Literacy Language • Cultural Background
- Physical Impairment
- Personalities Traits
- Individuals vary in the amount of assistant and practice they need