Do you prefer to see, hear or touch? That determines how you learn … The work of Dr. Raymond Lafontaine (Quebec neurologist) confirms what common sense has long inspired: teaching the same way to everyone is unnatural and anti-productive.
Human beings are divided into three types of “students”:
- The “visuals” capture the essence of a message with their eyes
- The “auditories” only need to hear to understand and learn
- The “kinesthetics“, for whom the information must go through motion to be integrated and accepted
Visuals give priority to what they see. They feel very uncomfortable when spoken to without eye contact, they dislikes disorder, are structured, and like discipline. They have a hard time assessing themselves and like to know the opinions of others. They focus on one thing at a time and do not start anything they cannot finish. They are punctual and tend to be stressed by time.
Auditories give priority to what they hear, and the tone of voice is crucial for them to accept a message. They do not always act spontaneously because they like to be warned in advance. They are rarely stressed, even less by time, which they tend to forget. Their ability to adapt and let go are better than the visuals. They often begin several things at the same time, and may seem chaotic. They find it hard to be disciplined and are not the tidiest. For them, an empty space is meant to be filled, while the visuals have a vital need for space that remains empty.
Kinesthetics meanwhile, need to feel their body go through the motion before recording a message. They can process through the two previous ways of learning, but can completely integrate information only if they can recreate it physically. They must do, experiment through action, to embrace a concept. Visualizing the concept is pointless, as well as hearing the explanations. Some people naturally blend two or three ways of learning, just as some are ambidextrous, without practicing!