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See, Hear, Do?

Find out what learning style your child responds to best.


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Most people have a preferred way to learn. Some learn best by listening, some have to observe every step, while others have to do it to learn it. The fact is, people need all three modalities to truly commit information to memory: visual, auditory, and kinesthetic. While most are typically stronger in one area than another, the trick is figuring out the preferred modality and capitalizing on strengths. Have your child complete this informal inventory. The answers may surprise both of you. 

Learning Styles Self-Assessment

To memorize information, such as the spelling of a difficult word or locker combination, you:

1. Practice over and over again.

2. Recite the word or numbers out loud.

3. Visualize the word or numbers in your head.

When you want to learn song lyrics, you:

1. Dance and play air guitar to the beat.

2. Sing along to the radio.

3. Download the lyrics and read them.

While you study, you like to:

1. Walk around and review your notes.

2. Discuss the material with someone.

3. Read your notes or textbook independently.

When preparing to go somewhere new, you prefer to:

1. Walk, drive, or bike the route ahead of time.

2. Listen to someone tell you how to get there.

3. Look at a map.

When you get a new gadget that needs to be assembled, you:

1. Just start putting it together.

2. Ask someone to read you the directions.

3. Read all the steps before you begin.

If you have to work on a project with others, you would rather:

1. Help to build and construct a model.

2. Participate in group discussions and brainstorm ideas.

3. Draw graphs or scribe group notes.

You tend to like classes that include:

1. Hands-on experiments.

2. Lots of lectures. 

3. Reading assignments.

When studying a play in English class, you prefer to: 

1. Act it out.

2. Listen to the play read by others.

3. Read the play silently to yourself.

When you are able to choose a project and present it to your class, you'd rather:

1. Create a working replica.

2. Give a presentation.

3. Create a poster.

When you are distracted, you most often find yourself:

1. Fidgeting or playing with your pencil.

2. Listening to or participating in conversations.

3. Doodling on your notebook paper.

When you work at solving a challenging problem, do you:

1. Make a model of the problem or walk through all the steps in your mind?

2. Call a few friends or talk to an expert for advice?

3. Create a list of the steps you need to take and check them off as they're done?

Once your child has completed this exercise, add up the number of 1s, 2s, and 3s. Tally the answers, and voilà, you have a snapshot of how your teen learns best. If he answered mostly "1s," he’s primarily a kinesthetic learner. If he answered mostly "2s," he’s an auditory learner. And if he answered mostly "3s," he’s largely a visual learner. Now it's time to put that information to good use.

What does my answer mean? ->

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