Thursday, April 24, 2008

Is your learning style afraid of success?

Are you afraid of success? What a silly question. Everybody wants to succeed - or do they?

Most of us fail a lot more often than we succeed, so we are used to failure. It may be disappointing, it may even hurt, but it’s something we’ve got to know over the years.

Success, on the other hand, plucks us right out of our comfort zone. If one of our dreams materialises, we venture into the unknown. If we get that promotion we crave, we will get a new office and have to learn a new set of skills. If we buy a bigger house, we’ll have to move to a new neighbourhood. If we become successful, we may lose a few friends along the way. Change, change, change.

(Does your learning style have a preference for change or for routine? Click here to find out.)

Failure feels familiar. Success sounds scary.

And that’s not only on a psychological level. The latest research reveals that - on a physic level - we also crave what we know. Our brain gets addicted to the chemicals produced by the known, so if we are used to trying and failing, our brain will get hooked on the cocktail of failure.

This is especially true of people whose learning style needs stability and a low level of variety in order to function best. If such a person is thrown into the changes associated with even the happiest change (success, realisation of dreams), they will experience nervousness, stress and discomfort.

Part of the solution is to understand the problem. If you realise that fear is just part of the journey towards success for you, you will be able to deal with it better.

To analyse your learning style in the work environment, particularly your attitude to changes, have a look at this free online demo.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Public Speaking in Style

Does the thought of speaking in public make your heart sink into your stomach? If so, you're not alone. Many people are petrified of presenting their ideas in front of an audience, no matter what their learning style.

To discover your learning style, click here.

Fortunately, many public speaking techniques are available for you:
· use props,
· make eye contact with the audience,
· speak slowly,
· articulate well,
· move about with purpose (not nervously),
· use your hands to emphasise your point,
· breathe with the diaphragm,
· focus on someone in the back of the room (the audience won’t know),
· pretend you're a professional on TV to feel extra confident,
· write the way you talk, in other words, write your speech to be heard, not as text to be read with the eyes: use shorter, less formal sentences,
· have a great opening and closing.

However, it also pays to keep your own learning style in mind when making a presentation:
· If you are tactile, include props that you can touch during your speech.
· If you are kinesthetic, act out what you’re saying and gesticulate.
· If you need mobility, walk or move your body without distracting the audience.
· If you need intake, have a glass of water ready and take small sips between the major points of your presentation.
· If you are visual, by all means include lots of visual material to act as a prompt and a confidence booster to you, but bear in mind that not everybody in your audience is visual and therefore may not benefit from your visuals much, so plan the content of your presentation to be as multi-sensory as possible – it will truly reach your audience.
· If you like learning in a group, the local Toastmasters club may be for you.

To discover your learning style, click here.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Classroom Management - Make Your Classroom Perfect

Imagine if you could turn your classroom into a place of order, fun and learning....

Sounds too good to be true? How about achieving it all in just 4 easy steps?

Step 1: Light
· Did you know that some students’ brains thrive in bright light, while others get over-stimulated, hyperactive and stressed? Create “dim” areas in your classroom to calm down those students who find bright light too distracting. Using naturally darker corners, block light with filing cabinets or bookshelves, make a “cave” under one of the tables, or allow pupils to wear sunglasses indoors.
· Did you know that some brains switch off and go to sleep in darker rooms? Create an area full of light close to the window or another source of light, using desk lamps if necessary during the darker seasons.

Step 2: Noise
· Most children love making a noise, but some of them really need a background hum in order to concentrate. It could be as simple as a noisy computer fan, or quiet classical music, or the drone of voices reading out loud. Let the children investigate which areas of the classroom are noisier than others and brainstorm how to increase the hum without increasing the decibels.
· There will always be children in your class who need silence in order to concentrate best. Let them sit in the quiet areas, possibly with earplugs or silent earphones. (Resist the temptation to use the earplugs yourself!)

To find out more about how your students learn, please have a look here.

Step 3: Work structure
· There are those who like to work alone and get all the credit, and those who learn better with their friends around. While it’s important in life to be able to work independently as well as know how to belong to a team, if you cater to your students’ preferences half of the time, you will end up with happy children who understand the material.
· Some students like to work within a framework, others prefer a free hand. Humour them and they’ll behave... they will also achieve better results.

Step 4: Motivation
· Offering a reward (a good grade, a field trip, a sticker) or a consequence of non-complying works for most children...
· ... however, some individuals are not externally motivated and get annoyed by the carrot-stick approach.

Analyse your students today, create a free group profile and find out how to transform the classroom - here is that link again.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Know your working style - know yourself

If you’ve watched or read “The Secret”, you will remember that one of the insights it imparts is the importance of loving yourself and treating yourself as number one from time to time. There is nothing selfish about paying attention to your own wellbeing. Feeling good about yourself enables you to give love to others.

Getting to know your working style will help you achieve the following:
· success at work
· harmony at home
· personal health

Getting to know your working style will make you appreciate yourself on a new level.

Getting to know your working style will change your life.

Says one of the Creative Learning clients: “I've been studying myself for decades and I still want to learn more.”

You are a fascinating individual. Find out how fascinating by clicking here.

*** Know yourself *** Love yourself ***
***Fill the well so that you can give to others***