Thursday, November 15, 2007

How to Teach the Visual Learner

Visual learners learn better by seeing information. I am a visual learner so that is the way I am most comfortable teaching. I have had to be very careful that this did not style did not dominate my teaching because then I did not reach my auditory and tactile-kinesthetic learners. Here are some techniques that have worked with visual learners in my classroom.
• Use Graphic Organizers: Inspiration software helps you make these graphic organizers and I think there is a free demo download at their site. I have also drawn my own. They can be used for some of the following:
– Main idea and details
– Compare and contrast
– Sequential order
– Plot
– Cause and Effect
– Drawing Conclusions
• Writing key points or words: have the students write down what the key points or words are in what they are reading or what you are saying. This helps them actually see visually what is important. It also teaches them how to write notes when you are not always with them.
• Response mode can be done by having instructor write down the response: students can answer questions and an instructor can write down what the student says. The student would then read back what the instructor has written. This reinforces the information plus improves reading skills. It connects reading and writing to a real life situation.
• Instructor use of post-it notes: key words or information could be written on post it notes and given to the student. Students could categorize this information in a way that would help them remember it.
• Highlighters of different colors: use different color highlighters to mark key words or points. For example, use blue to highlight places, red for people, green for dates, and yellow for important ideas.
• Illustrate ideas or stories: have students illustrate scenes from what they have read to help them remember the story, make a comic book version of stories, make posters for a movie version of the story including what famous people would play the characters.
• Multimedia – computers (make PowerPoint presentations about the topic, create digital scrapbook pages, create new book covers for a book), cameras (take photos that would symbolize events in the story)
• Illustrated books: read comic book versions of the classics (these were very effective in my low level classes. They especially loved reading the Scarlet Letter).
• Schedules – have a written agenda for the day or the week for this learner to refer to whenever needed. I wrote my plan for the day on the board each morning and explained to the students that sometimes it may change if there are unforeseen things that happen like a fire drill or a visitor for example. This helped me stay on task as well as the students since they knew what was expected of them in advance.
These are just some suggestions that might help. If you have any other suggestions, please let me know because I love to add more to my list!

1 comment:

Mary Beth said...

Fabulous Points!!!! I think there is one more - Video - I have personally witnessed and used this with extreme success!!!
please visit my site for more research to support the use of video - along with researching video modeling as an effective tool