There really isn’t much of question about the validity of so-called “learning styles” in the way they are usually discussed in education — they don’t exist.
However, I do get concerned that the often almost gleeful pummeling of them can be done without acknowledgment of the reality of our classrooms – many of our students do indeed require different teaching methodologies – a one size fits all mentality just doesn’t work. That doesn’t mean we have to buy-into the pseudo-science of “learning styles,” but it does mean that – in many ways – we need to differentiate (see The Best Resources On Differentiating Instruction) and personalize instruction (not necessarily by tech – see The Best Resources For Understanding “Personalized Learning”).
Let me restate, though, that, despite my belief in the necessity of differentiated instruction, the straitjacket categories often described as learning styles have little or no research evidence. If you doubt that, check out:
I thought readers might find it useful if I began sharing a handful of my most recent “pins” each week (I’m not sure if you can see them through an RSS Reader – you might have to click through to the original post):
I don’t think SEL advocates will find anything in it they don’t already know. However, being able to point to passages from this new report and the CCSSO document will be pure gold when developing lessons and having to justify to administrators what we’re doing in the classroom.
I believe that April Fool’s Day can often be “celebrated” in a way that can seem somewhat cruel. However, I think it’s important that English Language Learners be aware of it and also learn how to participate in a fun and respectful way.