Saturday, March 19, 2011

Learning Styles: Beginning the Process of Education

In schools today, many teachers face many obstacles which impede learning. Items such as unavailability of materials to home situations which teachers have no control over and the fact that learning is usually one of the last things on children's minds when they come to school. However, a vast majority of teachers who face behavior problems in the classroom overlook one of the most valuable facets of educational knowledge they learn in teacher education programs, Learning Styles. In the following article we will examine three different types of learning styles and how teachers can use these styles to better control and serve their classrooms.

The first style is auditory learning. Auditory learning occurs by children listening to information which is conveyed by teachers. Typically, a teacher may stand in front of the classroom or walk around the classroom, all the while speaking the information which they intend their students to learn. This style is good for those students who like to listen to an explanation of information and follow along with it as teacher explains a body of knowledge. Teachers can use this style to be most effective in establishing a classroom environment in which the teacher is the ruler. The teacher's authority is seldom challenged because the teacher leaves very little room for students to voice their thoughts on the information.

The second style is that of visual learning. Visual learning occurs by children learning through what they see. Usually, a teacher will draw diagrams on a board, use posters or other items such as an overhead projector to display information. While the teacher may speak about the information presented, the primary method of learning is by seeing the information which is to be learned. Teachers may use this type of learning to stimulate discussion between the teacher and students giving students something to refer to when initiating a discussion.

The final style is tactile/kinesthetic learning. This type of learning occurs when students take part in classroom activities. Teachers will construct directions and allow students to form groups or using preformed groups, will have students complete an activity. The main objective is to have students learn the desired information by doing an exercise which contains the information to be conveyed. Teachers can use this style as a means to control a very active group of students. With the structured activities, teachers can use this type of learning to give students a chance to expend some pent up energy while learning is still taking place.

While many teachers today grapple with the troubles of everyday school life, their students suffer. Teachers are faced with many factors which are beyond their control, the influences of home life and the streets. Yet, when faced with these challenges in the school setting, many teachers give up and let their classrooms become just as chaotic as the environments students are trying to escape. If teachers wish to understand their students and best capture their interest, it has to begin first by addressing the way children best receive the information teachers provide them. These learning styles are the way to get into a child's world. So I ask, "How do you learn best?"

Monday, March 7, 2011

Abandoning Bogus Academic Theories

We have many theories in science that we teach our college students, that we know to not be entirely correct. This is rather odd of academia in that science is about seeking answers and truths to those things around us we observe. If we teach bogus academic theory and do not rid our High School and College textbooks of these bogus academic theories we are doing a disservice to our future generations. Such methodology will lead to fewer discoveries and slow the forward progression of the species entirely.

Academia must come clean on the bogus theories and claims it purports. If something cannot be proved then it must not be taught as fact, no matter which brilliant genius of which past period claimed it. If we fail to understand this basic principle in science then no meaningful forward progression of the species can be achieved. Luckily today we have many who are challenging the experts and will not settle for; "because I told you so" or because; "it says so in your text book" and for those minds who challenge the status quo, I salute you.

We must review all the old textbooks to make sure what we are teaching is correct. For instance old history books; we know history is written by the winners, not the losers so the information is automatically perception based skewed. Physics books are also full of old garbage.