How do you learn?

The capacity to LEARN is a gift;

The ability to LEARN is a skill;

The willingness to LEARN is a choice.

Brian Herbert Picture by Marcus Spiske

Hello, My Friends,

Life has returned to normal in our household. The cats come in out of the rain and the cold to take the warmest seat in the house. I am loving my new kitchen, concocting wonderful meals with ease and style. Being winter, the candelabra spreads its dappled light over the dining room creating a wonderful intimate ambiance, just right for dinner for two.

This week I’ve been pondering about learning styles, not everyone learns in the same manner. Research shows there are many ways to break down the way we learn. For today I’m going with seven ways.

I want to start with this paraphrase of Dr. Thomas Armstrong’s quote. ” If your child (You) sticks out one iota from the norm- in other words if your child (or you) shows your true individual nature, there is the danger that you will be discriminated against or stuck with a label and treated like a category instead of a real human being.”

These labels implied that you were disabled or handicapped in some way. How often have we been labelled as “not having a musical bone in her body” Or “He’ll never be any good at …… he just doesn’t have it in him.” I believe these labels give a false reading of who you are and what you can achieve.

Recognizing your style of learning will assist you in understanding some of the blocks you may have to learning, growing and improving your life, the way you know you can and want to. Also it may help you to understand why you love to do some activities and shy away from others.

The seven learning styles and what they may mean to you.

1/ Verbal. -(Linguistic) Verbal people love words, they enjoy words in speaking and in writing. They are avid readers, and enjoy word puzzles. People with this learning style thrive as broadcasters, copy writers, authors, teachers, actors, public speakers, journalists and lawyers. Verbal children often learn to read and talk early and excel in the educational realm.

2/ Physical -(Kinesthetic) Physical people use their bodies, hands and touch to learn. These are the “Hands-on-learners” they love doing things with their hands and body. People with this learning style are doers, they are tactile, they experience the world through their senses, they like to manipulate things manually. They use their body with precision. Kinesthetic people are professional athletes, dancers, craftsmen, they create sculptures, love DIY, are mechanics and have superb fine motor skills.

3/ Logical – (Mathematical) Logical people recognize patterns, make decisions from a place of logic and reason. They love puzzles and riddles, who dun-it mysteries, and thrive in an ordered environment. Mathematics, strategies and problem solving are their strengths. People with this learning style thrive as accountants, statisticians, computer programmers, scientists and engineers.

4/ Social -(Interpersonal) Social people are great communicators, often appearing to have “The-gift-of-the-gab” they learn best in group settings. They are compassionate and empathetic, they can organise and communicate clearly to people what needs to be done. Social people thrive on people contact and make great doctors, nurses, psychologists, teachers, leaders, politicians and social workers.

5/ Aural-(Auditory-Musical) Aural people learn through sound and music. They excel at listening and hearing. The aural learner prefers learning through podcasts, auditory lectures and singing. They interpret musical forms and ideas, they sing little jingles to memorize important information. Aural people understand and respond emotionally to music, they are suited to being composers, music teachers, instrument makers, conductors and directors of music. They sing and play in choirs, bands, and orchestras. Aural people are the ones tapping their feet or fingers to the beat of the music and are not aware they are doing it.

6/ Solitary -(Intrapersonal) Solitary people learn and work best alone, independently. Generally they like to be on their own, in quiet surroundings. These people usually have great imagination, self management, and time management skills. They like to journal and are tune with their emotions. Solitary people do well as planners, small business owners, social workers, counselors and psychologists. Also due to their ability to tune into their emotions they thrive as authors and artists.

7/ Visual -(Spatial) Spatial people learn with pictures, colours and images, also by watching and observing. They understand graphs and charts, make lists and bullet points for everything. They create with colour, perceiving, representing and interpreting the world around them. Visual people are best suited as interior designers, artists, illustrators, photographers, computer graphic designers, inventors and architects. They are extremely creative transforming visual ideas into imaginative and expressive creations.

As you read over these learning styles you may recognise yourself in a few. Were you the child who was always humming and tapping their fingers on the table to an imaginary beat? or were you the child who was fidgeting and always being told to sit still, when your body wanted to be moving. Maybe you were the child who took themselves off into a quiet corner somewhere away from the crowds and thought you were different to everyone else.

Were you the quiet child, who was compared to your social sibling, or were you the hands on kid who got compared to the “book worm” scholastic kid who loved reading and writing. Were you the child who loved to talk, and where told to “shut up” “you like the sound of your own voice”.

Can you see where you fit into the learning styles? You were never broken, you have always learned the way you were supposed to.

Have you always had a hankering to do or be something that you’re not doing or being right now and thought that your wanting it wasn’t for you because it doesn’t fit with the expectations of others. What would happen if you dreamed a little about what it is you really want, no apologies or excuses? Is it possible to dabble a little and see if you really would like it? Maybe your career up to this point has been a struggle and now you can see that your true skills are in another avenue.

I challenge you this week to think about your learning styles and incorporate them into your everyday, to let yourself be a little more who you were made to be. To take the pressure off yourself, stop trying to be like someone else, and become more like yourself.

Remember: We are what we believe to be true.

Who do you believe you are? And, Who do you believe you are not? These are your choices.

What is your style?

Until next time, explore what makes you work the way you do, to become your best authentic self.

Linda Codlin

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