Learning styles

Neurologist Judy Willis, MD, shares advice for parents on how to determine your child's learning style and what their best strength for learning is
Determining Your Child's Learning Style
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Learning styles

We hear a lot about learning styles and individual intelligences. Let me put it simply in an invaluable way. Think about your child's learning strength, and I'll give you an example to figure out which one your child is and based on what you figure out your child is, what their best strength for learning is, you can apply that to things your child needs to learn. So here's the example, when you go to the zoo with your child, do they like to go from cage to cage in order so as not to miss anything and have you read the things that are on the cage or do they see one animal in a cage and then see something across the way and run over there because they want to know about that animal and then jump back to something else? Do they like to go and see in the order that they chose. And then when they come home, do they do something sequential with it? Do they draw picture and try to remember which one came after? Or do they do different things? Are they moving the animals around? Are they drawing some pictures and adding their own creatures? And both of those are very legitimate, repetitive learning styles we can use as parents. The child who likes to go in order to not miss anything, is more likely to respond to information that they hear and to learn things in sequences, on charts, with graphs, with graphic organizers. The child who likes to move around and see what ever animal grabbed their attention, is more likely to respond when information is given visually and when they get to do things with it by movement, moving objects or moving themselves.

Neurologist Judy Willis, MD, shares advice for parents on how to determine your child's learning style and what their best strength for learning is


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Judy Willis, MD, MEd


After graduating Phi Beta Kappa as the first woman graduate from Williams College, Judy Willis attended UCLA School of Medicine where she was awarded her medical degree. She remained at UCLA and completed a medical residency and neurology residency, including chief residency. She practiced neurology for 15 years before returning to university to obtain her teaching credential and master's of education from the University of California, Santa Barbara. She then taught in elementary and middle school for 10 years.

Dr. Judy Willis is an authority on brain research and its applications regarding learning. With the unique background as a parent, neurologist, classroom teacher, and neuro-educator she writes extensively for parenting magazines and professional educational journals. Dr. Willis has written six books for parents and educators about applying brain research to parenting and teaching.

Dr. Willis is on the adjunct faculty of the Graduate School of Education, University of California and gives presentations to parents and educators nationally and internationally about how to help children learn joyfully and successfully. She is on the Board of Directors of the Hawn Foundation, dedicated to helping children improve academic performance and acquire vital social and emotional skills. In 2011, she was honored by Edutopia, as a “Big Thinker on Education”.

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