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Parent Education Program: Articles

Learning Styles Implications - Tips for Parents

By Kerry Elfström, B.Ed., M.A.

Learning Styles Implications - Tips for Parents

Since personal learning style is a subconscious habit that is activated automatically, it can be extremely helpful for any child engaging in learning activities to know their own learning style. More importantly, individuals usually have not established a strong learning style preference while they are in their childhood years.

Therefore, understanding what learning style is and experimenting with lots of different styles may help children make a conscious choice or preference and arm them with strategies to use later in life when they engage in learning activities that are not being delivered in their preferred style.

In addition, since it is everyone's responsibility to engage fully when they have made a conscious decision to engage in a learning activity (as opposed to learning subconsciously by accident). In fact, knowing your learning style and engaging yourself accordingly may make it possible to learn at a faster rate since there are fewer interferences and less confusion.

Furthermore, if, while engaged in learning, the information is not being distributed in a style that matches your own, "stretching" yourself to embrace other learning styles, may not only help you to be successful but you may also be able to learn more comprehensively.

Take a moment to identify the implications of knowing your own learning style and that of other people. Here are some things to consider as a parent that may provide some insight into how you can help your child:

Learning Styles Implications - Tips for Parents
  • first and foremost, help your child take responsibility for his or her own learning and do whatever it takes to be successful
  • encourage your child to bring to school or any place of learning, materials that support his or her learning style and use them (writing implements, colored markers, toys or other small hand held objects)
  • if your child reports that information isn't being delivered in a style that makes sense, give your child permission to ask for it to be presented in another way
  • if your child isn't "getting it", encourage your child to stretch himself or herself and try engaging in another style - give permission to engage in other ways
  • even if your child is "getting it", encourage your child to try engaging in other styles to provide himself or herself with a more enjoyable, meaningful and varied learning experience.

Here are some things that parents can advocate for with educators on behalf of their children. Ask the educator to:

Learning Styles Implications - Tips for Parents
  • take responsibility and make every effort to engage everyone in their learning style (engage learners fully and more comprehensively)
  • avoid delivering learning experiences according to a single style (his or her own) and wonder why learners are not "getting it"
  • make an effort to understand all learning styles, how they operate in the brain and structure every learning activity so that it appeals to every style
  • announce or encourage students to participate in whatever ways they feel works for them to fully engage in the learning activity
  • provide or encourage students to bring a variety of things to support all learning styles (writing implements, colored markers, toys or other small hand held objects) since they won't likely have the chance to discover the learning styles of all their students
  • offer lots of sensory stimulation in group activities by inviting everyone to engage in ways they feel works for them to promote an ideal learning environment.

Click here to view a free videos series describing learning styles.