Learning methods are constantly improving as a result of new research and technology, so anyone looking to learn can always expect something new and different.
We need to break the stereotype that learning is boring. Learning can be enjoyable; it does not have to be limited to reading, writing, and sitting in a classroom or at a desk. Exploration and experimentation are essential components of learning. Spoon feeding is no longer an effective teaching method for both children and adults as there are different types of learners because there are various learning methods.
As the famous saying goes, “Tell me, and I forget. Teach me, and I remember. Involve me, and I learn.” Benjamin Franklin stated. If we understand this quote, it will change the way everyone teaches. Participation teaches everyone something. Learning is more than just knowing the information; it is also about understanding and applying it. For example, children are taught that 2 + 2 = 4, but do they know how to apply it in their daily lives without actual examples?
Different learning methods were developed or discovered because each child is unique in their own way. So, each learning method is appropriate for a child based on their understanding. Just keep this in mind when teaching them something new. It is preferable to present them with real-life examples or toys and allow them to draw their own conclusions. There are several methods for teaching children so that they learn, do not forget, and can grow up with these skills.
So let us learn more about the various learning methods, but first, we must understand the three types of learners.
3 Types of Learners
As previously stated, each child is unique, and understanding which learning style works for your child will help you determine which learning method works for them. In addition, there are many different types of learners, but we will only cover the three most common.
You might have guessed from the name that these kids learn by listening; they use their auditory senses or, in other words, their ears. These students learn best when they are spoken to. For example, a great way to teach them is to use songs. Whatever you want them to know, simply sing it to them.
For example, if we want to teach them to count, there are numerous counting songs available on YouTube, ranging from ‘5 little ducks’ to counting by 10s and 100s and many more. This skill can be obtained through a variety of channels. You can even make your own by saying things that rhyme with each other, so they can remember the songs and use that skill later.
Another example is telling them stories about something you want them to learn, such as a moral. “The Boy Who Cried Wolf” is a great story to teach children about honesty. You teach them the moral of honesty through a story, so the next time they feel like lying, they will remember the story and will most likely not lie.
The name of the learning style implies that these learners learn by seeing things with their own eyes. These kids learn best when you show them pictures of objects, words, people, and so on; of course, this depends on what you want them to learn.
Let’s say you want to teach them about countries and cities; you could show them pictures of flags and what each country is famous for. For example, you could show them the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France, or the Leaning Tower of Pisa in Tuscany, Italy. Let’s say the topic is the Seven Wonders of the World. You’d show them pictures of the wonders, then the flags of each country, and finally the written word, and they’d have learned and retained the information you want them to.
The name of this type of learner may be confusing to some but bear with us as we explain. These students learn through movement, using their bodies and fine motor or gross motor skills. You can teach them skills by dancing, drawing, or building something.
To learn, they must do something with their hands. So how are we going to do that? If you’re teaching a toddler about their body parts, you can sing the song “Head, Shoulder, Knees, and Toes” and have them stand up and point to the body part as you sing.
You can also make your own activity or game if you allow them to move. For example, allowing children to pretend they are flowers, with their heads as the flower, arms as the leaves, bodies as the stem, and legs as the roots, is an excellent way to teach them about different flower parts. Start calling out different parts of the flower and have them point to it as quickly as possible while playing this game.
How Can You Meet the Needs of All Three Types of Learners?
This a question you may find yourself asking. To answer your question, you simply need to understand that one child can have more than one type of learning method, usually one more than the other. Is it challenging to incorporate all three types at the same time? Yes, it might be at first, but it won’t be difficult once you get the hang of it.
2 Learning Methods
After learning about the various types of learners, we will learn more about the different learning methods. These methods are extremely beneficial to anyone who spends time with children and wishes to teach them something new.
Structured Learning Method
A structured learning method is a type of education or training system that includes a specific path, goals, and a formal management structure. That makes your child understand their atmosphere, which promotes an understanding of schedules.
Modern times call for modern teaching methods. Are you familiar with the Montessori teaching method? This method is based on hands-on activities and critivity with the teacher serving only as a guide, and it is, most importantly, self-guided.
What happens in a Montessori environment? To help you understand more, we will walk you through a Montessori lesson with us.
The skill we want a child to learn from this lesson is transferring from one place to another. It all begins with the child sitting next to the teacher (remember this could be a parent, grandparent, teacher, babysitter and so on)
Step 1: The teacher names all of the items in front of them, which targets the audio learners, and then the teacher gives instructions for the child to watch before it is their turn.
Step 2: The child will now pay attention to what the teacher is doing; this is intended for visual learners. The teacher will begin by picking up the spoon, silently transferring items from one bowl to the other, and then returning them.
Step 3: The child may practise as many times as they wish until they master the skill; they don’t need to do so all at once. This is aimed at kinesthetic learners.
This is an example of a lesson for all three types of learners; however, it can be applied to any topic. Remember to speak first (auditory), then do the activity silently (visual), and finally, have the child practise (kinesthetic).
Why is this learning method one of the most effective methods of teaching? Because if you do all three things at once, some children will be unable to keep up, which will result in them not learning, and some children may become frustrated and begin acting out, which no one wants.
Play-Based Learning Method
What does the term “play-based learning method” mean, and why is it important? To simply put it, children learn through play. Children explore, take risks, use their imaginations, and solve problems while playing. As a result, they are learning valuable skills to help their social, physical, and cognitive development.
Are you familiar with Reggio Emilia’s teaching method? This is more of a philosophy than a curriculum; this learning method is play-based and allows for many hands-on activities. Teachers are co-learners, and the children direct the lesson. In the classroom, there would be more open-ended materials. The children are given more opportunities to be creative and to use their imaginations.
So, what exactly is a Reggio Emilia learning method? Let us look at this together:
- A teacher will begin reading a story while we all sit in a circle, addressing both the audio and visual learners. The audio will listen to the story and visually see the illustrations.
- The teacher may add a few movements before allowing the children to continue in whatever movement they want.
- Some may choose to sing, act as an animal, or create their own version of the story.
- It is entirely up to them.
This is aimed at kinesthetic learners.
This is a different approach than the Montessori learning method, but both are excellent for teaching children. You can combine the two; you are not required to use only one learning method at all times. Both have the same goal: for each child to learn at their own pace, without pressure.
What is Your Learning Method?
Can you tell which learning methods suit you now that you’ve learned about the various learning methods and learner styles? Or which method will be most effective for your child? Because after learning about both learning and learner styles, studying or learning will no longer be a burden you are trying to avoid with your child.
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