Either kindergarteners or college-going adults, students can be a handy bunch. However, once they put their mind to react in a certain way, they can be as stubborn as a mule which will not bode well in your favor as you’ll have to find ways to pry into their comfortable bubble. For which you can mark our words they’ll not like it one bit. However, as a teacher, it becomes your responsibility to go the extra mile to be able to understand your students and the ways through which their learning capabilities can be brought to a full circle. Visual learners, allow us to give you a few ideas that should be able to aid you in this quest.
Fleming’s VARK Model
Based on the 1992 study conducted by Neil D. Fleming and Coleen E. Mills, four learning styles came to be known through their research. They studied and observed thousands of hours of students set in various school environments in order to judge what suited them best in terms of learning habits. Fleming and Mills’ observations were then classified into 4 different categories. These categories came to form the VARK Model, which has been in use ever since. VARK stands for visual, auditory, reading/writing and kinesthetic learning styles.
The VARK model suggests that students learn best when you’re on the same wavelength as them, allowing them to be more forthcoming and sincere when they cannot understand or grasp a concept. So, for instance, if you’re opting for storytelling as a mode of teaching, auditory learners would pay exceptional attention to what you’re talking about because they’re able to learn better that way.
Visual Learning Theory
Visual Learning theory is a part of the aforementioned VARK model. It is based on the theory that the information being portrayed has a likely chance of conception if there’s a visual depiction to it. Therefore, visual learning can be defined as the art of learning new things using visual formats like pictures, graphs, flowcharts, videos and other similar modes. Such learners take in information more efficiently if taught using graphics which is why you ought to focus on not just storytelling for auditory learners but also incorporate the use of presentation slides to represent some of the facts.
According to research, nearly 65% of the general population happens to be visual learners, which stresses the need for visual communication and for people to pay attention to it more closely. Therefore, take greater care in transmitting the information.
Spotting the visual learners
If you’re teaching a class of 35 students or so, it’s understandable if you’re having a hard time gauging each student’s learning style. However, unless you get to the bottom of it, you’ll have an even harder time because your lectures could be all over the place. So as an attempt to get to know you better, you can start off by handing each of the students a small questionnaire that should help you pinpoint their preferred learning style.
Furthermore, here are a few tricks you may try to suss out the visual learners:
- Visual learners most of the time need a quiet room so that they can completely focus on tasks
- They often take time to process the information when it is verbally transmitted to them
- Their visual learning prowess overpowers their auditory senses
- Visual learners rely on graphs and statistics rather than facts
- They find it harder to explain the process of how they got a certain result
- They prefer making up scenarios based on the facts told to get a better understanding
Keep an eye out for cues
Given that you have many visual learners in your class, you have to prepare your lecture material accordingly. However, if the tips above didn’t help you, you can rely on verbal cues to spot the visual learners. For instance, they’re likely to be the ones to voice out their concerns by saying they require assignment help or “I can’t picture this”. Not only that, if you get to converse with a child casually and he’s one of the chatty ones, he’d likely boast about himself that he never forgets a face. This should also clue you in over the fact that he is a visual learner.
Such kids would also respond more actively to activities that involve coloring, reading and writing. So, for example, if you’re giving a lecture based on a story, you can likely find them doodling on the paper along with taking notes.
Knowing a kid is a visual learner will allow you to explain things by being on the same level as them when they’re conflicted over a topic. So, you’d know how to go about their learning style and adapt to it easily.
Visual Learning Aid Kit
Now, you must’ve probably heard that children can depend on more than one learning style, which is why you may be conflicted on how to go about your lesson plan so that it may be inclusive. So let us put you out of your misery. To focus on visual learners opting for the following strategies would be your best bet:
- Set apart one day from every week and show the kids an impactful movie or a thought-provoking video. Later on, you can ask them to voice their opinions regarding it and even quiz them to check what they remember.
- Visual learners love interactive games. Provide them with puzzles or color coding patterns to get their attention.
- When teaching them about world history or countries, you can use maps and diagrams for assistance.
- Introduce to them the concept of using flashcards and how helpful they can be learning.
- Ask them to draw up their everyday routine’s timetable as they see fit using the colors and shapes of their liking. This should also help spark their creative side.
These tidbits should give you a better insight into how to be able to understand your students and their learning needs. But, of course, if all else fails, you can always turn to UK Academic Writers to give you a helping hand
Also read about: How to Set up a Virtual Classroom