Just like each person has unique fingerprints, each child has a unique learning style that is perfect for them. Their success in school depends greatly on finding the personal learning system that can help them learn, but more importantly, retain information. Whether they prefer visual learning, learning through song or repetition, helping your child discover their learning method will help greatly as they grow older and head into high school and college.
Here are the three most common approaches to learning that will help your child start off on the journey to academic success.
Singing to Learn – One of the simplest and most effective forms of learning is attaching information to a simple melody, like the ABC’s. Encourage your children, students of all ages, to learn through song. This process may be applied to math facts, biology, world history, or a foreign language. Our brains remember music so help your student sing her way to learning new information.
Learning through Repetition – Humans are creatures of habit. Think about your morning routine. How often do you change the order of dressing, brushing your teeth, drinking your coffee, preparing for your day? This is because your morning routine has become a habit. Repetition works the same way for student learning. Instead of insisting on one hour of math fact practice once a week, try five minutes daily. The repetition will create a habit and the habit will result in learning that sticks!
Segmented Learner – When faced with a significant amount of information to learn, your child’s minds will clear and hold onto the information more efficiently if they break the information into smaller parts or segments. Have your child start with a small chunk of information. Once the first chunk is learned, add the next piece. Don’t forget the repetition! Review the first chunk daily as you continue to add the rest of the information.
Here’s a simple experiment to try with your child so they can try different methods.
One day, ask your child to read a list of things to do and create a simple melody that can accompany the list. The next day, ask her what was on the list. Another day, read the list to him and have him repeat each item. Follow up in the same way. Finally, ask your child to read parts of the list aloud throughout the course of a day or two. Follow up in the same way. Keep track of how much your child remembers from these three methods and this will help guide your child to a learning style that fits them best.
Discovering how your child learns will be a trial and error process. When trying these different methods you may find that your child likes to incorporate elements from various styles; that’s ok. Remember, there is no right or wrong way to learn and study, but there is a right or wrong way for each child.