Write down your children's special talents—the top 5 things your kids say they are best at. Remind them why this list is important: They will be able to be their best when they are using their natural talents to their fullest. You can always tell them what you notice they are great at.

You can also ask them:

  • What do you think you're naturally good at?
  • What do you really enjoy doing?
  • What are your favorite subjects?
  • Has anyone ever ask, "Wow, how do you do that?" What was that talent?
  • What are your particular talents and interests?
  • What do you have a gift for?
  • What do people compliment you on?

Best Learning Environment

 

Ask them questions like:

  • Where do you do your best work? At the kitchen table? In your room? On your bed with the door closed?
  • Do you work better alone or with others?
  • Do you like quiet? Or do you listen to background music?
  • Do you concentrate better alone in your room? Or with the family, sitting around the table?
  • Do you concentrate better sitting still or moving around?

My husband is a very visual learner and I am a very auditory learner. When I was in college and I was having a hard time understanding a textbook, I would read to myself out loud. I didn't know why I did that. I just knew it helped. And when my husband and I were first married, I would have these grand ideas and I would excitedly try to verbally explain them to him, but he couldn't "see" them. So I learned to put my ideas down on paper in bullet points so that he could understand what I was talking about. Do you get the idea? Learning styles tend to be pretty obvious and they really aren't that big of a deal -- except when it comes to the kinesthetic learner.

We live in a mostly visual and auditory world, so you will have to think outside the box to support your kinesthetic learners. Teach them to trust themselves and to pay attention to how they learn best. Do they learn better if they are pacing the room? Do they have lots of opportunities to get their energy out? If you are not a hands-on learner, then you might automatically think that your children will learn well through workbooks or movies, but what they really need are hands-on projects and kits. Teachers in a classroom can't really have each child working on separate kits. It's too time-consuming and messy. But homeschoolers can. When I asked our Homeschool.com Product Testers what three changes they would make to their homeschooling, many said that they would add more projects and more field-trips. These are great for all types of learner.

*This article published October 7, 2009. This content is original to Homeschool.com's free weekly e-zine. Subscribe to their newsletter here.