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How to Teach Everyone

How to Teach Everyone

By James A Cruickshank

 

Published by James A. Cruickshank at Shakespir

Copyright 2017 James A. Cruickshank

Contents

Overview: the need for multiple methods of instruction

Chapter 1: The four different types of learners

Chapter 2: Teach for Creative learners

Chapter 3: Teach for Rational learners

Chapter 4: Teach for Practical learners

Chapter 5: Teach for Active learners

Chapter 6: Teach for the different ways of learning

An author’s tale of learning: from humble beginnings to distinguished student

Overview: the need for multiple methods of instruction

We are all unique and different. We all learn in different ways or styles. A person’s style of learning is as unique as their signature. As such, there is a real need to embrace multiple methods of instruction in order to reach the many diverse learners that exist. Without embracing multiple methods of instruction, there is a real risk that some learners will be missed and will not understand the topic of instruction or subject matter.

This book sets out the different learning styles that exist and explains how to teach inclusively.

Chapter 1: The four different types of learners

You can broadly classify every learner into one or more of the following four groups:

*
p<>{color:#000;}. Creative learners

*
p<>{color:#000;}. Rational learners

*
p<>{color:#000;}. Practical learners

*
p<>{color:#000;}. Active learners

Chapter 2: Teach for Creative learners

You’ll need to cater for creative learners in your teaching – that is for those that make use of their life experiences as a basis for gaining new knowledge. These types of learners will often ponder why they need to know something and they will have good observation skills together with good reflection skills. You can cater for these learners through group interaction, roleplay exercises and story-telling.

Chapter 3: Teach for Rational learners

You’ll need to cater for rational learners in your teaching – that is for those that are rational (logical) and sequential in their thinking. These types of learners will often ask what they need to know. They’ll like to be spoon-fed information and instructions They’ll also like being lectured to and have a preference for commands, demonstrations, gaming, self-study and targeted class discussion.

Chapter 4: Teach for Practical learners

You’ll need to cater for practical learners in your teaching – that is those that experiment to see if what they have learned really works in the real world. These types of learners will often ask how things work. Such learners will have an enquiring mind and be good at problem-solving, self-study, logical problems, computer-generated games, projects, tests and games that demand physical skill.

Chapter 5: Teach for Active learners

You’ll need to cater for active, go-ahead and self-motivated learners in your teaching – that is for those that wish to create their own bespoke applications that showcase what they have learned. These types of learners will often ask what can something become. They’ll like moral dilemmas, student-led activities, brainstorming, case studies and open-ended discussion.

Chapter 6: Teach for the different ways of learning

Every learner will learn in a different way. In general, there are 7 different ways of learning. Each learner will likely use a combination of learning approaches. So, as an instructor, you should aim to use a range of ways in which to present lecture material.

You get visual learners who prefer to learn with pictures. So, do draw diagrams to illustrate lecture notes.

You get musical learners – those who prefer to use sound and music to learn. That said, these types of learners are probably more likely to be found at learning institutions that specifically cater for those with musical talent. Although, listening to Mozart might calm the mind and help some people learn concepts. So, don’t be put off if you see students listening to music!

You get verbal learners – these are the types of people who prefer using words in speech and in writing. These are the learners that will excel in essays, reports and dissertations. You’ll be able to spot these learners a mile off. That said, to level the playing field for everyone, do use oral presentations as well as written assignments for assessment purposes.

You get physical (or kinaesthetic) learners – these are the learners that prefer a hands-on approach. Physical learners will likely excel in practical activities like creating websites, databases and even taking photos. So, do make use of fieldwork for coursework assignments.

You get logical learners – those that prefer using logic, reasoning and systems. These individuals will likely be good at making a reasoned case for their work. Creative learners will excel here as they can make a reasoned case for doing something innovative.

You also get social learners. These are the individuals that prefer to learn in groups or with other people. Social learners will excel in group work activities, so do include group work as part of coursework assignments and give these individuals a chance to shine through.

Lastly, you get solitary learners – those that prefer to work alone and use self-study. These individuals will likely shine in exercises that encourage self-study like coursework assignments where you don’t want collaboration.

An author’s tale of learning:

from humble beginnings to distinguished student

As a learner at school, I had my good subjects and my not so good subjects. I was strong in science-based subjects like general science and computing. I gained top marks for knowledge and understanding in general science. This is mainly because there was pre-printed material which could be learnt parrot fashion. As a young learner, I liked spoon-fed information. I could read and read the spoon-fed information until it made sense. In hindsight, I was a rational individual – I liked to know what the experts, or rather teachers, thought.

While my knowledge and understanding of science was top notch, my problem solving and practical skills just didn’t quite match up. So, in a nutshell, I wasn’t so keen on experimenting to see if what I had learnt worked in the real world.

Science may have been my strongest subject, but I was equally strong in Computing and English. I could read, write, argue, debate and compute to high standards. In Computing in particular, while my knowledge, understanding and practical skills were credit worthy, my problem solving ability once again just didn’t quite match up.

At school, I spoke better French than English! Or at least my French speaking grade was better than my English one. This is largely due to the fact I suffer from Asperger’s Syndrome, a form of autism. I just didn’t like standing up in front of a room full of people and telling them my personal business. I did much better when the teacher handed out topics and made us debate them. After all, I wasn’t debating my personal business.

In Geography, my skills of enquiry were noteworthy and in Mathematics my investigating skills were to the same standard.

One thing is for certain – I’m not a Rembrant or a Leonardo da Vinci! In Art and Design, my design and expressive activities could have been much better. Contrastingly, I fared much better in the critical element of Art and Design, but then I had a strong grasp of the English language.

Likewise, in Graphic Communication, my drawing abilities are literally non-existent – I failed that element. It’s the only thing I’ve ever failed! I did do much better in the knowledge, interpretation, illustration and presentation elements.

When I left school, I went on to the local College to study Computing. I liked the practical, hands-on element of it all, so I guess I’m a bit of a hands-on (or kinaesthetic) learner. But once again, I also liked the programmed instruction, so I guess my main styles of learning are both rational and hands-on (or kinaesthetic).

Certainly, the hands-on nature of College allowed me to successfully pass every module and thus enter stage three of a four-year degree course at University.

At University, it was my rational thinking skills that gave me the most success. I passed 10 out of 11 exams with top marks. I really liked the well-written lecture notes and the spoon-fed information. I could learn the notes parrot fashion just like in my school days studying science. I did so well at University I passed the ordinary degree stage of my course – the first year of my course for me at least – ‘with Distinction’.


How to Teach Everyone

We are all unique and different. We all learn in different ways or styles. A person’s style of learning is as unique as their signature. As such, there is a real need to embrace multiple methods of instruction in order to reach the many diverse learners that exist. Without embracing multiple methods of instruction, there is a real risk that some learners will be missed and will not understand the topic of instruction or subject matter. This book sets out the different learning styles that exist and explains how to teach inclusively.

  • Author: James A Cruickshank
  • Published: 2017-01-15 13:20:09
  • Words: 1396
How to Teach Everyone How to Teach Everyone