Thursday, September 28, 2006

Introducing the LSA Junior MINI - what’s new in Learning Style Analysis

We’re very excited at Creative Learning this week, as we’ve just launched our latest product: the LSA Junior MINI.

Aimed at the 5-10 year old market, the LSA Junior MINI delivers the same comprehensive report as the LSA Junior, and it also offers the 3 report versions: one for the student, one for the parent, one for the teacher.

So, what’s different? For the LSA Junior MINI, we’ve reduced the number of questions to make it easier for the younger students to complete the questionnaire in one sitting. We’ve also introduced the option to reply “I don’t know”, thus giving the child more freedom to explore their learning styles.

We’ve also introduced a few new sections in the Parent version of the LSA report:
· Is my child gifted?
· Is my child underachieving at school?
· How safe is my child on the Internet?

The LSA Junior MINI... so minute it will only take a few minutes to complete.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Learning Styles and the latest Education Crisis

I saw an alarming piece of news the other day: the New Zealand statistics indicate that in 2005 almost 30 percent of students left high school with no qualifications. When this figure is compared with “only” 19 percent in 2004, the trend is worrying.

While several factors may be to blame, starting with the old favourite the TV and ending with the way the NCEA has been implemented, pointing fingers is not as important as finding the cure.

Think about it. The falling standards of schooling shouldn’t be happening in the world of the Internet and nanotechnology. We can do surgery on babies before they are born, we can fit a whole encyclopaedia of knowledge on a single CD, but we fail to educate our children.

Assessing the students’ Learning Styles ( can help them learn better by showing them their own optimal highway to leaning success. What’s more, knowing their Learning Style can help them feel better about school and themselves, and thus to be more disciplined and less prone to violent behaviour.

All that for the price of a single take-away meal. Now that’s food for thought.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Learning Styles and Empowering Your Children

As parents, we get used to being in charge all the time. We are usually the ones who set the rules, decide what time bedtime is and what goes into the lunchbox. We know best how to tie a shoelace and what Tommy next door would like for his next birthday. If we do our job too well, however, we run the risk of becoming too prescriptive.

So, next time you find yourself doing too much around the children - stop and think: is there any way I can empower my child to tackle this task?

1. Conflict:
Let’s say your child took a toy off their friend. Instead of telling them to apologise or sending them to time-out (or whatever it is you usually do), ask them the following questions:
“How do you think the other child felt?”
“What can we do to make them feel better?”

2. Problem solving:
Let’s say we only have 3 boxes of Smarties and there are 4 children. Ask your child: “What can we do about it?” If they respond: “One of the children can go without,” ask a leading question like: “Is there a way we can all share the Smarties in a fair way?”

3. Chores:
Grandma is coming over for morning tea, and the sofa is full of toys. Ask the child where they think she will sit and what they can do to make sure she feels welcome in your home.

In particular, children who have a preference for non-conforming or for no external guidance (if you’re unsure, please check their Learning Style on, will welcome this empowering style of parenting.

In contrast, if your children look up to you to tell them exactly what to do, this is a good way to let them develop the skill of thinking for themselves. The idea is not to change their wonderful unique Learning Style: it is simply to teach them a life skill in a gentle non-threatening environment.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Cooking with your children = quality time

Continuing the theme of learning styles in the kitchen, here are five reasons to let your children into the kitchen and do some baking (even if you are the type of person who prefers to get things done yourself):

1. You get kudos for being a great mother who spends quality time with her children.

2. You get kudos for being a great mother who spends quality time with her children while furthering their education: teaching the children to measure cake ingredients is a fundamental stepping stone towards basic maths skills.

3. It’s fun.

4. You get a cake at the end of the process - cheaper and yummier than the store-bought stuff.

5. Cooking together is a great way to assess your child’s Learning Style.

Of course, the most reliable way to discover your child’s Learning Style is to do the online assessment on But observing your child first and then doing the assessment gives you the satisfaction of being right when your instinctive evaluation matches ours.

So, does your daughter prefer mixing the ingredients with a spoon or is she begging to knead the dough? If she wants to touch the cake all the time, she’s probably tactile.

Does your son place tasting the raw mixture above all other activities of measuring and stirring? He may have a sweet tooth, but he may also need mouth stimulation when concentrating on a difficult task.

Does your child want to know what type of cake you’re making? If so, his or her information processing style is probably global (holistic).

Is your child happy to follow instructions, or do they prefer to do their own thing? (If the latter, your child may be one or more of the following: non-conforming, not needing external guidance, holistic, change-oriented.)

And if the child offers to help you clean up afterwards, they may well be analytic.

For toddlers, I would suggest using a shop-bought cake mix (just add water and eggs, and stir) and teaching the child how to crack an egg, how to measure the water, how to mix effectively.

For older children, go all the way with flour, butter and baking powder. Remember to explain what each ingredient is for (sugar for sweetness, baking powder to make the cake grow in the oven, egg for holding the ingredients together, salt to bring out the sweetness, orange peel for aroma). Talking and explaining is a great way of making the children feel included.

Bon Appétit!