Becoming a better tutor Part 3: Tailoring your lessons for visual and auditory learners
We’ve discussed marketing yourself and getting more students, and we’ve also discussed the importance of planning each of your lessons. Next we should talk about refining your lesson experience to seriously get those glowing reviews and gain even more students through word of mouth.
This is often where most tutors stop. They aren’t improving their skills as educators and rely heavily on their marks they received at High School or University to draw in more students. Here, we are looking to shatter this glass ceiling and give you the tools to become an excellent educator.
The first step to becoming a kickass tutor is tailoring your lessons for each student. As I’ve previously mentioned, everyone learns a bit differently and as a tutor, you need to know how each of your students learn. This is fundamental to creating a useful and efficient lesson plan.
To start with, we’ll begin outlining the four types of learners. There are of course many more permutations of these characteristics but, predominately, most people fall into one of these four types of learning patterns.
Visual Learners tend to be impatient when reading large amounts of text or listening to someone lecture them about a specific topic. They tend to use words and phrases that evoke visual images, and learn by seeing and visualizing topics within their mind.
If your student is a visual learner, you should be implementing demonstrations, videos, and pictures within your lessons. This is best seen in a subject like science. If your student is a visual learner, try and find an accompanying picture that explains the concept, or a video that shows the process in action. This can seriously bolster your student’s understanding of the topic, which means a positive review for you!
Auditory learners tend to learn best by listening to someone explain the topic, and verbalizing the topic in their own words. They tend to think in a very linear matter, with each concept building on top of each other. Because of this, it is very important to ensure that you don’t get derailed when explaining a topic to an auditory learner. Visual learners can refer back to the video and picture later, but auditory learners tend to be fragile in their learning as it is hard to remember exactly what the tutor has said.
Your teaching strategy for auditory learners should be planned and delivered as more of a conversation. You explain a topic to the student, they ask you questions, you elaborate and so on. Although this might sound absurd to a tutor who is more read-writing based, it will help your student so much if they are an auditory learner.
Next article, we’ll discuss read-write learners and kinaesthetic learners and how to customise your lessons to these sorts of learners.