Cambridge Assessment International Education

The seven types of learning styles

A healthy learning process is akin to building a brick wall — each brick counts. Its not just about what children learn, but also how they learn. A good process makes education enjoyable, and builds learning skills, which is the foundation for self-learning and education in the future.
Learning styles

Each child responds differently to processes of learning. Here are the major learning processes.

Spatial: through sight, visual

Aural: through hearing

Verbal: speech and writing

Physical: body and touch

Logical: thorough reasoning

Social: learning in groups

Solitary: learning alone

Each individual prefers one or more of these learning styles, and a combination of preferred learning and teaching styles is likely to prove effective. One child may do well with visual learning of subjects like geography; physical, hands-on learning for science; and group learning for lists/formulae to be memorized.

What process suits your child?

Allow your child to explore a topic, with the opportunity to use several of the learning styles. The options could be watching videos, discussing the topic, activity-based exploration and reading aloud. For example, if you pick a topic from one of your child’s favourite themes — like space or wildlife — and ask her to make a scrapbook on it. It will help you discover your child’s preferred learning styles. Of course, this means making a variety of opportunities available. You may have to help find a book or website with suggestions for hands-on activities, and provide access to videos/CDs/internet.

As you observe your child engaged in these activities, you will discover their preferred styles of learning. Encouraging your child to follow her preferred learning style(s) not only improves learning outcomes, but fosters love for learning.


Take a close look at the pedagogies currently used in your child’s learning process. Some schools use pedagogies which help to reach all students effectively. Your choice of learning process may be limiting your child’s learning at home.

Find out which processes help your child enjoy learning. As you provide opportunities to use different styles, learning should become more enjoyable, and less of a burden.


Many of the most difficult things are learnt without being taught. Learning to speak is a key skill that toddlers are adept at picking up. Children also self-learn physical skills like balance, playing without falling, and handling different types of play equipment safely.

Such learning is self-driven and born of curiosity. If you can make the effort to stimulate your child’s curiosity, you might nurture a genius in your home.

Sunil Noronha

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