How to Make the Most of Different Ways of Learning
As ever, the New Year provides a great opportunity for making positive changes and reassessing your life. There are always articles at this time of year about losing weight, finally writing that masterpiece novel or training for a marathon. But one rather more realistic resolution – one you could actually find yourself sticking to rather than giving up come mid-January – is to reconsider the learning methods you use. Identify the way(s) you absorb and retain information most effectively, then take full advantage of any method(s) that work for you.
For some people, facts linger in the mind longer when they listen to rather than read them. If that applies to you, consider reading material out loud and recording it on your phone. That way, you can listen while doing something else, whether that’s the school run or the drive/train journey to work (assuming you’re still commuting) or, better still, while enjoying a wintry walk.
After all, getting outdoors boosts your brain activity, and you’ll burn some calories and improve your sleep quality at the same time. Being anywhere outside in nature can do wonders for your mental well-being, not least in these unusual times. And it can be a genuine pleasure to breathe in fresh air – even in cold weather. You may find you learn well this way, or equally, you could use it as a secondary learning method to consolidate what you already know.The new year is a perfect time to reconsider the learning methods you use. Click To Tweet
If you are this type of learner, you like to see and observe things, including pictures, diagrams, written directions and so on. (Sometimes, this is also called ‘spatial’ learning.) So you’re probably a doodler! But, equally, this learning style could apply to you if you take copious notes and makes lists. You essentially understand information better when you see it on the page. So sit down at a well-lit desk, armed with a notebook and pencil, and get stuck in!
Reading and writing learners
These learners have some overlap with the ‘visual’ students described above. However, these types focus more specifically on the written word and do well with presentations, books and worksheets; indeed any kind of text-heavy resource. Again, they’re prodigious note-takers and absorb information effectively from text they read and by writing it out themselves.
These are the more active, hands-on learners who are doers and like to use all their senses when absorbing information, or even to act out events. They may need more frequent breaks, even short ones, than other types of learners. They may also take in details well when walking around, so, again, walking, running or cycling while listening to pre-recorded information can be effective.
All the above learning styles apply to classrooms but understanding them can be useful to adult learners as well. You may find that you don’t necessarily fall completely into a single category. As you enter this New Year, spend some time thinking about how you learn best and what type of learner you are so that you can make the most of your study time throughout 2022. You may surprise yourself with how much this improves your performance.
Finally, and most importantly, here’s wishing you a Happy New Year – and successful learning in 2022.