Understanding Your Child’s Learning Style ~
Written by Jamie C. Martin of Simple Homeschool and Introverted Moms
Like many things when it comes to homeschooling, discovering and researching learning styles can be either helpful OR overwhelming.
As a new homeschool year approaches, I wanted to create a resource that would simplify the understanding of learning styles, and I recently finished it: It’s my new What’s Your Child’s Learning Style Quiz – scroll down to learn more (or click here to jump straight to it) and get your results in less than one minute!
Prefer to listen instead?
But before we get to that, let me simplify the learning styles conversation and address the elephant in the room when it comes to this topic:
The Misunderstanding re: Learning Styles
Do I need to teach every subject according to my child’s learning preferences?
No! That’s a big misunderstanding. If you have four children, it is ludicrous to think that you can or should present each lesson or concept in four different ways. That would be crazy-making.
But learning styles are GOLDEN in three situations:
- choosing homeschool materials that your child will use individually,
- getting unstuck when your child hits a learning roadblock, and
- connecting with this child/deepening your relationship.
If you can let learning preferences guide you in those three areas, it will make a big difference! It’s also not true that someone only has ONE learning style. Most people have two top preferences, but we learn to use all four to some degree as we go.
Now we’ve covered that common misunderstanding, let me give you a quick overview of the four learning styles as they apply to homeschooling.
The descriptions below as well as the quiz I’ve designed are based on the VARK model of learning styles, which suggests that there are four main types of learners: visual (V), auditory (A), reading/writing (R), and kinesthetic (K). Here’s an overview of each type’s preferences:
Understanding Your Child’s Learning Style
Visual Learners may prefer:
- colorful books with pictures.
- to draw things to help them learn.
- using charts, maps, or graphs.
- things that make good use of color and shape, like food, decorations, and festivals.
- when you as their parent use gestures and picturesque language as you teach.
- to create pictures, videos, posters, or slideshows as part of their learning.
- to use different fonts and colors, UPPER and lowercase letters, underlining, and highlighting in written content they create.
Auditory Learners may prefer:
- learning through listening, including podcasts and audiobooks.
- learning through speaking, debates, or “deep” discussions.
- speaking, humming, or singing to themselves.
- reading passages aloud for greater understanding.
- memorizing facts using songs.
- joining a discussion group, whether online or in person.
- repeating new information back to you, a sibling, or someone else to help it “stick” in their minds.
Reading/Writing Learners may prefer:
- to learn through more traditional means (like reading books, using workbooks, textbooks, etc).
- taking notes to help them learn and remember information.
- order and structure in the material presented to them.
- correcting your mistakes or challenging rules because of their wording.
- keeping a journal.
- working in a calm environment where they can concentrate.
- learning to use spell-check or editing software to find and correct language errors.
Kinesthetic Learners may prefer:
- learning through a hands-on approach, including experiments, crafts, games, and/or recipes.
- learning through autobiographies and documentaries.
- doing things with others and taking action to finish a task.
- being part of a team, where they feel valued for their experience.
- learning through interactive games and apps.
- moving around and/or using multiple senses as they learn.
- going on field trips.
How can I discover my child’s learning style?
Introducing…my new quiz:
It only takes one minute to complete it, and you’ll discover your child’s learning styles straight away – and yes, notice that I said STYLES…plural! The quiz results will show you a percentage breakdown of how your child scored for each of the four learning styles.
I hope it’s a huge help, and I believe that understanding your children’s learning style will be a helpful addition to your homeschool success! Feel free to reply/comment below to let me know what you results you receive.
And I would LOVE if you’d share the quiz page on social media (just look for the buttons on the bottom of the page) so others can find it as well!