Monday, February 9, 2009

Four Learning Personalities

    These personalities give some insight and practical ideas for reaching your child. You can also make more sense of his behavior. The learning personalities are different from the modalities, because instead of dealing with how our brain likes to take in information, it deals more with suiting different personality types. 

1. Thinkers...

Organized, Meticulous, Scheduled, Skeptical, List maker, Perfectionist
Desires logic, order, precision and the facts
Respects authority of teacher and textbook
Prefers questions to be answered with scholarly authority, not opinion
Decisions are based on cold, hard facts.
Teaching a thinker... 
    Provide structure, clear expectations, daily schedule, and authoritative texts (this student is comfortable with text books). Assign due dates allowing adequate time for your student to perfect the assignment, and give planned tests so he has adequate time to prepare, rather than pop quizzes.   
A Thinker Teacher...  
    You are very structured and orderly with a clear schedule and daily routine.  You don't appreciate interruptions. You plan ahead, and prepare a lesson plan for each student each day, and may verge on being a perfectionist. 
    Just try not to overly-organize your student to the point of squelching his creativity or spontaneity. Try to be sensitive to when your child needs a bit of change and flexibility. You may need to stop what you're doing to give a hug, talk, or relax a little.

2. Feelers...

Appreciative, Concerned for others, a People Person
This person can't learn if they're distracted by a relationship problem (like with their teacher)
Decisions are based on personal considerations (how it affects people)
Teaching a feeler...  
    First establish the importance of what you're doing or learning about. Let the child express his feelings about it. Only then will he be ready to jump in. Use biographies to provoke interest in subjects like math and science. Stress the significance and outcome of an invention instead of its mechanical intricacy. A feeling-stimulating piece of literature is the best introduction to a subject. Feelers love to spend time together.  Whether you study, talk, cuddle up to read... they want to do it together.  
A Feeler Teacher...  
    Your main concern is your family's relationship with one another. You want to be sure everyone's getting along, has positive feelings about their schooling, and understand why they have the assignments you give them. You want to explain your plans in order to get everyone's feedback. You also want to be sure to give a good real-life people-perspective in your teaching.
    A feeler mom may be manipulated by her children when they complain, not wanting to do their least favorite subjects. Don't cave in. On the flip side, try not to take it personal if your thinker or sensor child is too engrossed in a school project to give you a hug.  

3. Sensors...

Practical, common-sense, efficient, take-charge, wants it done NOW
Focus on facts and procedures
Teaching a Sensor...  
    This person would rather do hands-on learning than complete a book-work, and putting thoughts on paper is a real challenge. When possible, rather than giving written testing, allow student to give a demonstration of what he's learned. Lapbooking may be a particularly nice fit for when you want the student to show what they've learned on paper. 
A Sensor Teacher...  
    You take the practical, no-nonsense, get it done approach. You prefer to teach using lots of hands-on activities, practical and real life application. 
    Just be sure, mom, to keep balance with books and discussion too. If your child is a thinker, he may rather read about the activity then perform it. If he's a feeler, he wants to do it together. The intuitor child will likely just ask lots of questions about what you're doing and why, and may try to improve on your plans.

4. Intuitors...

Imaginative, Concept-oriented, what-if people
Focus on meanings and possibilities 
Teaching an Intuitor... 
    This student may question why you're doing things how you are. They ponder over new possibilities, trying to come up with a new wonderful idea or solution. This student may look like he's lazily daydreaming when his mind is hard at work. They may sit and analyze for a while to understand what you just taught.   
An Intuitor Teacher...
    You are a spontaneous dreamer. You have your own ideas about teaching and probably prefer to write your own curriculum so it's a perfect fit for your children. You don't mind interruptions a bit. You love discussing things with your children and are probably an inspirational teacher. 
    Just be sure to follow through on your ideas and work to maintain some structure because your children need you to provide the routine. You may especially struggle with a thinker child. Your feeler child may feel ignored while you inattentively ponder over your next big scheme, while your sensor child just needs something to do in the mean time. Also be aware that your children can easily get you side tracked by asking off-topic questions.



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