Becoming a Better Tutor Part 6: Identifying what type of learner your student is!
We’ve talked about all the different ways you can optimise your teaching methods by adapting your lesson plan to your student’s learning style.
It’s incredibly important to do this. It gives you a competitive advantage over any tutor who doesn’t alter their lesson plans, and can keep your students coming back for more. As we’ve mentioned in Part 2, word of mouth is one of the strongest drivers of students that a tutor can have. Once you’ve cracked a few students and they become loyal customers, the rest is simple. Their peers and family friends will ask how they increased their marks and began to learn so much more, and they will attribute it to you.
So today, we’re examining the final piece of the learning-style puzzle and by far the most important technique from this section, which is identifying what kind of learner your student is. There’s a fair bit of time pressure resting on this identification. You want to nail this on your first lesson, and begin implementing it immediately.
Bring this list of key-traits to your first lesson:
|Visual Learners||Auditory Learners||Read-Write Learners||Kinesthetic Learners|
Exhibit impatience and have a tendency to interrupt.
Use words and phrases that evoke visual images.
Learns by seeing and visualizing.
|Slow speakers and natural listeners.
They think in a linear manner.
Prefer to have things explained rather than to read.
Learns by conversing and listening.
|Prefer information to be displayed in writing, such as a list of ideas.
Emphasize text-based input and output.
Enjoy reading and writing in all forms.
|Uses all their senses to engage in learning.
They learn by doing and solving real-life problems.
They like hands-on approaches to things and learn by trial and error.
For younger students, they might not be able to directly understand how they learn best. This is where the trait list comes in, and you can match each trait you identify with the list. Also, a lot of trial and error can work well for younger students. Give them an example of each type of learning medium, and let them demonstrate to you which one actually suits their learning type.
For older high-school students and adults, many of them have an idea of how they best learn. Explain the four types, and walk them through it. They’ll have an understanding of whether they like listening and conversing, reading and writing, and so on.
This is a basic guide to identification, and in our other parts we will go further into identifying learning traits. Next article we will discuss the factors that seriously affect learning, and how you can overcome them with a few simple steps.