Have you ever tried to teach your kid a new skill, only to have them completely zone out the first time you try? This happens with adults who are learning new skills, too!
This is not an uncommon scenario because it’s especially hard for young learners to focus on what you are trying to show them.
They can’t keep up with the information, and they don’t find anything interesting. At this point, it may seem like all is lost. The good news is that there are ways of making learning engaging for both kids and adults that really work.
Different people learn in different ways. Some of us are more visual learners, while others are more auditory, kinesthetic, or tactile learners.
For example, if you’re learning a new dance move and you want to demonstrate, using a demonstration video would be ideal for someone who learns visually, but for another learner, it might be better to just have a teacher show you step by step.
Kinesthetic learners are people who learn best by doing, so get your learner to practice. Making hands-on projects is a great way to do this, but you can also encourage them to do it on their own. Some kids may even want to run around the room or participate in physical games.
For most learners, doing something different from the norm will help learning sink in, and for kinesthetic learners, this is a very helpful technique. Trying games like Kahoot in the classroom will help to make learning fun and play on the need for novelty in the classroom.
Telling stories can be a great way to get auditory learners interested in your topic. The key is using the right type of story and telling it the right way.
When you’re telling a story, make sure you keep the participant’s eye contact and involve the group. You can also use this technique when you are reading to children or even to adults—it’s already been used for centuries!
Auditory learners will also find playing music, chanting, or singing more interesting than reading alone. Doing exercises that involve music will also engage them.
Visual learners will find simulations a great way to learn.
Teaching by simulation is a good choice when you’re trying to teach kids new skills, but it’s also useful for adults who are getting a new job or trying to learn a new language (there are lots of online games that you can use in these situations).
The use of free software allows the user to design their own simulations and programs; this is definitely an interesting way of making your learners more engaged.
If you want to be creative and add variety, why not try guided visual learning? This can be done using things like YouTube videos to demo topics.
Solitary learning is most effective when it is used at home or in the workplace. This means that you need to keep resources accessible.
If you want to encourage solitary learning at home, then give your kids things like books, toys, and music to help them learn on their own. This can be very effective for those whose interest is focused on a single topic area.