For as many as 65 percent of people in the world, vision is the primary sense by which they learn. This percentage is even higher for children! In fact, about 80% of learning in children happens visually. For this reason, the Kentucky State Board of Education requires all children to have an eye exam before starting kindergarten.
Many times when children struggle in school it is due to the fact that they can not see the board. In some cases, children who are visual learners may be struggling with the teaching style in the classroom. Much of education today is still lecture-based. This is great for people whose primary learning style is auditory, but for those who think in images, the concepts from a lecture may not stick in their brain. Visual learners best process new information by reading, looking at graphics and pictures, or watching a demonstration.
If the following characteristics are true of your child, he or she may be a visual learner:
- They grow impatient or zone out while listening to lectures.
- They struggle to follow oral directions, especially if the directions are given in multiple steps.
- They see the big picture. They are not detail-oriented.
- They tend to look around and copy what others are doing instead of following instructions.
- They may struggle with reading comprehension in subjects that do not interest them.
- They tend to be quiet and struggle to communicate their thoughts.
- They are very observant and can often find items lost by others.
- They tend to notice fashion and are color-coordinated.
- They have vivid imaginations.
- They are easily disgraced by visual stimuli.
If these things characterize your child, it is vitally important to bring them in for regular eye exams. All children need to be able to see well to reach their full learning potential, but this is especially true for children who are visual learners, because what will stick in their brains the most, is what they see.
Here are some ways that you can help your visual learner succeed in school:
- Take them for regular eye exams.
- Ask the teacher to sit them at the front of the classroom so they can pick up facial expressions and visual clues.
- When trying to memorize spelling words, have them write the word or draw it out. Another good idea is to make flashcards with all the letters of the alphabet and have them arrange the letters into words.
- Explain concepts with words that create pictures in their minds or use metaphors that pertain to something they have experienced.
- Encourage them to use highlighters and color-code their notes.
- Use flashcards. Encourage students to illustrate them.
- When teaching history, give a face to every name and show pictures of events.
- Have them write down important facts.
Whether your child is a visual learner or not, being able to see properly is key to a successful education and future. At VisionFirst, we are committed to helping your child see and look their best! School is almost back in session, but it’s not too late to schedule a back-to-school eye exam for your child. Now through September, we’re offering a special on lenses for children and teens. Request an appointment today to get your child ready for the school year ahead and looking toward a bright future!