Back to School Success with Learning Styles & Ayurveda
Summer break has come to an end for most schools in our area. This can be a time of excitement for many, and it can also be a time of added pressures or stress surrounding a change in routine and expectations to perform well in schoolwork.
Here are some simple tools to help the school age children in your life feel successful and supported in their learning journey.
Help your child learn what their learning style is. There are three main learning styles:
Auditory – students who are auditory learners may have an easier time remembering what they read if they read it out loud or hear a parent read it out loud. Encourage your student to try reading something out loud if they are struggling to understand when they read it silently. It can also be helpful to allow auditory learners to talk their way through a homework session, saying something out loud can help them process information and work their way through a problem. Auditory learners may not look at the teacher while they are speaking.
Visual – students who are visual learners do best if they can see a handout or chart to help them incorporate new concepts. Sitting through an hour lecture without a visual reference means they may not hold on to some of the information that may be key concepts. Drawing little pictures as part of note taking can be effective in helping them retain information. Visual learners are usually looking at the teacher while they are speaking as even facial expressions help them process information.
Kinesthetic – students who are kinesthetic (tactile) learners need to be actively engaged in learning. It may be helpful to have kinesthetic learners pass a ball from hand to hand while reading or make shapes in clay that represent what they are learning. Some may find it helpful to walk around the room as they study for a test. Kinesthetic learners may frequently switch their gaze to different objects while listening to a teacher.
Incorporating Ayurvedic concepts in learning can be quite simple. First, it is helpful to know which one of the three Ayurvedic Doshas (natural born tendency) your child is.
Is your child driven, competitive, a self-motivator who gets their homework done without prompting? Your child is most likely Pitta type. The key here is to make sure they aren’t too hard on themselves and take time to incorporate some fun and silliness into the day.
Is your child creative, flexible, and outgoing but may have difficulty staying on task? This child is most likely Vata type. It will be helpful to allow them to have some free time or creative activity after school before sitting down for homework. Routine is key for Vata type children.
Is your child quiet, patient, and steady? Your child is most likely a Kapha type. These children do well with steady gentle motivation and praise. It is a good idea to break up homework sessions for this child into sections to allow them to move between subjects without feeling “stuck.”
Taking the time to pay attention to your child’s preferred learning style can help them feel like they can be successful and supported in their school career. It can make homework time less stressful and encourage children to develop skills that they can carry with them for years of amazing learning.
~Tonia Mayerle, Ayurveda Health Counselor