Thursday, December 27, 2007

Learning Styles and Stereotypes

Your learning style dictates the way in which you understand and remember new concepts. The learning style will also determine the way
you communicate, work and socialise.

No wonder, then, that many people hope to generalise learning styles and classify them into familiar labels. Some of the questions you may have encountered in your learning styles journey may include:

· Are men more analytic than women?
· Are women better at communication?
· Are left-handers more artistic?
· What about tactile people and art skills?
· Do we become less holistic as we grow up?
· Is there a learning style more prevalent in either sex?

While the popular bestseller “Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus” offers many useful insights into how the two genders deal with stress (insights that correspond to certain elements of learning styles), there is no confirmed research that suggests either gender is more analytic in the learning style sense.

The only thing we can say with confidence is that a disproportionately many artists are left-handed and women indeed tend to prefer warmer temperatures (see Environment Elements in the Learning Style Pyramid)!

Why are generalisations so difficult when it comes to learning styles? One of the reasons is that with 49 elements to choose from, the number of possible learning style combinations is a whopping...

Furthermore, the jury is still out on what makes “a perfect manager” (is it a people’s person or somebody who can enforce deadlines?) - or a “natural artist” (it’s not enough to be tactile, you must also be visual and have a high persistence) - or “athletic talent”.

Besides, learning style analysis is not about labelling: it’s about the fascinating discovery of the way you operate.

To analyse your learning style, have a look at this free online demo.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

12 reasons to make this Christmas a Learning Styles Christmas

A learning style is the way in which an individual learns (in other words, understands and remembers) new concepts. Here is why that’s important:

1. Because they are fun.
2. Learning Styles help you understand your own or your children's learning needs and remove barriers to fulfilling the learning potential. Use this holiday break to ensure learning success in your household.
3. Understanding your Learning Style empowers you and leads to better self-esteem.
4. Knowing the Learning Styles of your family and friends helps you understand all their annoying little habits like chewing their nails or daydreaming.
5. Learning Styles are more than the way you learn. They also dictate the way you communicate. When you know your own learning style, as well as the learning style of those around you, it’ll be easier to prevent misunderstandings.
6. Learning Styles are responsible for the way your partner or spouse handles stress - find out how to deal with them “in style”.
7. Did you know that Learning Styles help you predict whether your guests will be on time for the Christmas dinner?
8. How you plan this season’s presents, menu and outfit - whether you plan it with lists or leave it to the last minute wave of spontaneity - is also thanks to your own unique Learning Style.
9. Your Cooking Style. If you run out of brandy for the eggnog or forget to follow the recipe for the turkey stuffing, simply blame your Learning Style.
10. Your Learning Style = Your Romance Style too. Remember it under the mistletoe.
11. Feeling like spending this season online? Take care - your Learning Style may make you more susceptible to Internet fraud.
12. Because this season is about caring and sharing, and giving a Learning Style Analysis from Prashnig Style Solutions will achieve both.

To find out your Learning Style, have a look at this free online demo.

Here’s wishing you a wonderful holiday!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Learning Styles, Working Styles and Stress

Stress is such an everyday part of our lives, we often fail to recognise it. For example, did you know that the following are classified as stressors (elements that can lead to stress)?

· Bright light or uncomfortable air temperature.
· Project deadlines.
· Lack of control over environmental conditions.
· Social circumstances, such as working in a team when you are a loner or being alone when you crave company.
· Responsibility for your future or for the wellbeing of others.

Our products, Learning Styles Analysis (LSA) and Working Style Analysis (WSA), recognise the significance of these elements. In the evaluation report of your own unique working or learning styles, you will find references to light, temperature, deadlines, environment, responsibility, and much more.

To find out your own style and help you identify the stressors in your life,
have a look at this free online demo of LSA or WSA.

Wikipedia defines stress as: “the condition that results when person-environment transactions lead the individual to perceive a discrepancy, whether real or not, between the demands of a situation and the resources of the person's biological, psychological or social systems”.

In other words, if the demands of your learning style or working style are continually not met, you will experience stress.

Your learning style dictates the way in which you understand and remember new concepts. Your working style is the optimal way for you to concentrate at work. Both determine the way in which you deal with a stressful situation.

Get your LSA or WSA today!

Fact: Stress is the body's reaction to a change.
Fact: Today’s fast-paced world provides us with an oxymoron: constant change.
Fact: Successful people don’t need stress to help them achieve their goals.
Fact: Long-term stress can be detrimental to your health.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Your Learning Style and Learning Facts

What is more important: knowing facts or knowing how to find facts? What competencies and knowledge do our children need to be successful in the 21st century?

New Zealand’s government believes it has the answer in the form of a new curriculum, which “represents a shift away from focusing on knowing facts and figures to knowing also how to use knowledge effectively and apply it outside the classroom."

As an idealistic idea, it’s not a bad one. Why cram your brain with dates and formulae, which you can look up in the textbook or on the Internet? Why memorise concepts you don’t necessarily understand or know how to apply in your decision-making? Intelligence and school success should not be measured with, or equated to, the ability to memorise. Do away with learning by rote and replace it with teaching our children to think, right?

On the other hand, as somebody pointed out to me:

The shift away from learning facts is a bit of a worry. You wouldn't want to be left hanging in the middle of something (like surgery) to wait while the doctor quickly nipped into an Internet chat room to check how to stop your bleeding.

Whether you believe that it’s facts or the global overview that is the most important, is - naturally - dictated by your own unique Learning Style. If you like detailed information, you are most likely an analytic thinker. If, however, you value an overview above all else and consider particulars much less important, you are probably a holistic thinker.

Are you an analytic or a global thinker?
To find out your own or your child’s learning style,
have a look at this
free online demo.

Traditionally, schools have been geared towards analytic teaching and learning. New Zealand is trying to move away from that in favour of a less factual education system. If that means accommodating students whose information processing is non-sequential, while at the same time retaining the stimulation for sequentially-thinking students, that can only be a good thing.

Meanwhile, in the latest New Zealand education news, a furious debate broke out over a Level 3 Geography exam question (this equates to Year 13 and University Entrance can be gained by successfully completing NCEA Level 3). Five photographs (of images such as a park to a city's central business district) were shown, and students had to explain how each image could be viewed from a feminist perspective.

Some people consider it a wonderful question that allows students to think outside the square, others see it as an opinion-based non-factual question with a built-in advantage towards girls.

Have your say here. Leave a comment.