Friday, April 8, 2016

Visual Learners

When you have a visual learner, they need to see to understand and assimilate information.  They feel more confident processing new information visually.  My husband is a visual learner.  He likes charts and pictures.  I'm a visual learner too, but I like to read to figure things out.  We both like to make lists so we can see what we have to do and how to organize the process, and he is forever doodling notes on things, especially when he's on the phone.  My oldest son is showing strong signs of being a predominately visual learner as well.

Here are some of the ways that I appeal to his learning style:

Choose Books Wisely
Books with detailed illustrations, colorful overlays, charts and other visual stimuli are more appealing to my son.  His attention is constantly drawn to sidebar text, thought bubbles or other graphics, and he finds those facts more interesting than just straight reading.

Math Manipulatives
Using hands-on elements allows him to see the math, to watch numbers change, and visualize the next step of the process.

When used wisely, flashcards aren't just about drill, drill, drill.  We do a lot of games like nerf targets, races, timed challenges, etc.

Teaching Aids
Teaching props, manipulatives, color coded lessons, charts, graphs, and other visual aids make things more interesting.

Especially useful for science, my kids love when I do demonstrations for them, so they can see (whatever we're learning about) in action.  Even more than that--they love when we get to do experiments and activities that allow them to see the way something works or to test their predictions.  I think ALL kids like hands-on activities though, and sometimes combining these learning methods is even more beneficial.

Videos and Movies
Not just video-based lessons (like our beloved Math-U-See) but documentaries and short video clips for science and social studies are an interesting and fun way to enhance traditional lessons.  My six year old is an auditory learner, so videos work well for introducing a topic or wrapping up a unit.

Computer/Tablet based Lessons
There are a lot of computer based and online programs, as well as apps for the Kindle or iPad that have pictures, animation, videos, drag-and-drop elements, or other features that appeal to the visual learner.

Put Their Hands to Work
Encourage them to process the information by outlining, labeling their own charts and diagrams, coloring/drawing a related picture, mapping a route, etc.  Having it for a reference later is always useful.  Building things with their hands--LEGO models, or an art project, will work for visual-kinesthetic learners too.

What type of learners do you have in your home?  How do you meet their needs?

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1 comment:

  1. All of my children are visual learners! We do most of the things you listed above. Hands on learning definitely takes precedence around our home.