Learning Styles

The preschoolers in my Mission Friends class all learn in different ways. I can see their learning styles by the activities they gravitate towards in our class. Ellie goes straight to the Art area because she likes to make a picture she can see. She is a visual learner. Kasey can answer the questions after listening to the mission story at Group Time. He is an auditory learner. Kinsley can usually be found moving about in the Homeliving area taking play food from the oven to the table. She is a kinesthetic learner. Just as we learn in different ways as adults, preschoolers also learn in different ways. They all have a learning style that they prefer. They will also learn from the other styles, but there is usually one of the learning styles they favor over the others.

When you choose activities from Mission Friends Leader, think about these three ways preschoolers learn. Choose activities for each learning style. Here is a quick overview of what to look for in planning for each learning style.

Visual learners need to see things: Use pictures, matching games, and puzzles. Cut pictures into puzzles. Provide a variety of art materials. Play the "What’s Missing" game in which several items are displayed, you take one item away while preschoolers close their eyes, and then they guess which item is missing. Make charts or other visual organizers such as making a Venn diagram with hula hoops on the floor.

Auditory learners need to hear things: Make up words to a tune, or use Sing to the Tune to sing words to familiar tunes. Clap rhythms. Have preschoolers make a sound when they hear a certain word in the mission story. Play a game in which a Bible thought is repeated aloud. Play musical instruments. Record voices or sounds. Listen to music of other cultures.

Kinesthetic learners need to move things: Build with blocks of different types and sizes. Provide dramatic play props. Play with clay or play dough. Sing movement songs. Play an active game, such as rolling a ball for each preschooler to say the Bible thought. Toss a beanbag or foam ball. Provide nature items to pick up and investigate. Provide materials such as pom-poms to sort in a muffin tin. Act out the mission story.

Provide a balance of activities for these three main learning styles, and your preschoolers will be well on their way to learn about missions. Think of the preschoolers in your Mission Friends class. Do you see their learning style preferences?

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