At this time of year it seems odd to think about teaching and learning. There’s no school, it’s prime vacation time, and people are looking at ways to kick back and disengage their brains. But knowing and understanding your learning style, whether you’re an adult or a child, can help you to make the most of your holidays and leisure time, not to mention making learning easier and more fun.
Studies have shown that learners can be grouped into three broad categories: visual, auditory, and kinesthetic. So, if you’re a visual learner like me, you enjoy reading, looking at charts, maps and diagrams, and other visual media like photographs and paintings. If you prefer audiobooks, music, podcasts and live theatre you’re probably an auditory learner. The kinesthetic learners among us are those who prefer to actively take part in whatever is going on – hands-on demonstrations, interactive displays, and computer programs. They’re likely the person who tries new ways of doing things to see what happens. Not sure which category best fits your style? Try this easy exercise: imagine that you’re going on a long plane ride and you want to learn more about your destination before you arrive. You can only bring one item to do your research. What do you choose: a book to read, a book to listen to, or an interactive computer program? Whatever item you choose is a good indicator of your learning style.
Connecting with your learning style can not only help you learn better, it can enhance the quality of your leisure time. Take me for example, a visual learner. For my upcoming holidays, my list of things to do contains activities like taking in the travelling exhibit Anne Frank: A History for Today at the Millennium library, and planning my next trip using travel guides I’ve downloaded from Overdrive.
If you’re a fan of all things audio then take a listen to the audio books on Hoopla, or try the Naxos Jazz and Naxos Music Library on our databases. Or you can check out the Tales at Night: Library Happy Hour at the Good Will Social Club where library staff will read aloud hot and sultry stories for your listening pleasure.
Like to learn by doing? Join a cookbook or knitting club at a branch and share in the joys, sorrows, triumphs and tragedies that accompany these activities. Need to update your resume? Come to the Preparing a Resume program and learn how to showcase your skills. Want to learn how to do almost anything? Check out lyndaLibrary, where you can find more learning opportunities than you’ve ever dreamed of.
Visual, audio, or kinesthetic, we’re all learning all the time. But knowing how you learn most effectively can save you a lot of time, effort and frustration. So, knowing what you know now, how are you going to learn next?