Learning styles aren’t just for kids.

I just found this post over at the about.com ADD blog. It gives a good summary of some basics about learning styles from Rory Stern. Here’s my gut reaction/rant: why is this information framed as being about kids?

I know kids are the ones in school. But we all have learning styles and it gives a lot of leverage to understand them. Making it just about kids must push some button for me- I do know that a lot of clients learn a lot (as do I) when they think about what worked when they were students. So rather than go off about that- let me just recommend that anyone think about the way they learn. The post in question talks about auditory, visual, and kinesthetic learning styles. Do you learn by hearing, by seeing, or by doing/feeling physically?

But let me ask it a different way:
Which classes worked for you? Which didn’t?
What aspects of those classes’ material/teaching style worked or didn’t?
When you studied, how did you study best?

And at that point I want you to drop the notion of having one style. The post does say these aren’t the only learning styles… so let me broaden it for you. To be fair, this isn’t just learning style, but also learning environment, but I think that’s equally important.

For example, I read theory best while listening to loud music.
I listen best while doodling.

I learn well kinesthetically, like learning a dance step by doing it, but only in conjunction with reading about it or hearing it described several times. Showing me does nothing.

And not learning- but more a concentration style – I cook best while listening to good radio programs (NPR et al)

Now consider this: if you understand that YOU learn best in certain ways, you’ll understand this in your kid, too.