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Target Audience: Parents, Educators
Learning To Learn: The Visual Way
by Joanne Mikola
February 24, 2001

...Continued from Learning to Learn in Order to Teach

Incidence and Trivia
Recognition of Primary Learning Style

Teaching Strategies Directed at Primary Learning Style

By Grade 2 or 3 some students have become visual learners, as they process more and more information through reading and pictures.
  • Quiet, deliberate. Plans in advance. Organizes thoughts by writing them; lists problems
  • Always seems to ask somebody to repeat what s/he just said.
  • Sometimes found staring out the window when actually trying to pay attention to something else.
  • Often knows what they want to say, but just can't think of the words. 
  • Sometimes accused of talking with hands or calling something a thingamajig or a whatyacallit.
  • May have been in speech therapy some time previously (or currently).
  • Has trouble understanding a person who is talking unless able to watch the person's face while s/he is speaking.
  • Remembers faces, forgets names. 
  • Would rather receive directions in a demonstration format than in spoken form.
  • When watching TV or listening to the radio, someone is always asking to turn  down the volume.
  • Says "Huh?" or "Eh?" too much.
  • Would rather demonstrate how to do something than make a speech.
  • Cannot distinguish spoken words that sound similar (bell-bill, pin-pen, Mary-marry) 
  • Trouble remembering things unless written down e.g. telephone numbers.
  • Likes board games such as checkers better than listening games.
  • Sometimes makes mistakes when speaking (like saying "He got expended from school.").
  • Likes art work better than music.
  • Must go over most of the alphabet in order to remember whether, e.g.. M comes before R.
  • Usually answer questions with yes or no rather than with complete sentences.
  • Can do a lot of things that are hard to explain with words (like fixing machines or doing macramé).
  • Always doodling on the edges of your papers
  • Uses words such as see, look, and watch, etc. "I can't picture that"

  • Allow student to sit at the front of a classroom to better watch facial expressions, etc.
  • Use graphics to reinforce learning; films, slides, illustrations, diagrams and doodles. Use 'show' rather than just 'tell'.
  • Use a highlighter to color code and organize notes and possessions.
  • Provide written directions.
  • Use flow charts and diagrams for note taking.
  • Visualize spelling of words or facts to be memorized.
  • *Reading - 'Print oriented' people depend more on words or numbers in their images.
  • Visual learners are more shape- and form-oriented.
  • Provide handouts to illustrate ideas.
  • Provide a quiet place to study away from verbal/auditory disturbances.
  • Provide illustrated books.
  • Help learners visualize information as a picture to aid memorization.

This doesn't exactly fit your profile or that of a child or student you might have been thinking of? Go on to 
Learning to Learn the Auditory Way or
Learning to Learn the Kinesthetic/ Tactual Way and see if either more closely match the person.

If you know of a 'pure' Auditory learner and have tried other methods successfully to engage their learning and retention of information, please feel free to add your tips via email below.

References and Further Reading

Exploring Learning Styles and Instruction by Karen Hood

Submitted by:  © Joanne Mikola  I am a retired/expired Trauma O.R. Nurse who still thrives on blood, guts and crises. Give me a book, and I will relish every page. Give me a pen, and I can only stare hopelessly at the implications. Drop a note to Joanne

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