Learning Styles

If you spend any time reading homeschool blogs or posts it won’t be long before you run across the topic of learning styles. If you’re new to homeschooling you may not have given this much thought before because most parents aren’t aware of the teaching methods used in their kids’ schools. My daughter had amazing public school teachers in elementary (pre-homeschool days) who used many different ways of teaching but, honestly, I didn’t pay much attention from day-to-day.

Now you are in charge of your child’s education and learning styles may be something to consider when you envision what your homeschool will look like. If you do a quick Google search on learning styles, you will find that there isn’t just one acceptable list of learning styles and you will also run across studies saying learning style isn’t all that important. I personally don’t cater to only one style because I think using all of our senses is important when learning. My daughters are visual learners but we also listen to audiobooks and do hands-on experiments because they would be very bored if all they did was read textbooks all day even though that is my own preferred method of learning.

Here is a general list of learning types to use as a reference. However, I am not going to focus on the definitions of these or how to determine what your child’s preferred learning style is because you can find dozens, if not hundreds, of articles and blogs on the subject. Instead, I am going to focus on how you can use these styles in your homeschool.

Here is a generally accepted list of learning styles:

  • Auditory – learning by hearing
  • Visual (spatial) – learning by seeing and observing
  • Verbal (linguistic) – learning using words, both reading and writing
  • Kinesthetic (physical) – learning by doing and touching
  • Logical (math) – learning through logic and reasoning
  • Social – learning through group interaction
  • Solitary – learning by working alone

Of course, all of us can learn using any of these styles but many of us have a preferred method or two. For me, I much prefer reading a textbook on my own where I can go at my own pace and take notes as I go. My brain works faster than most people speak so I don’t want to listen to a teacher who may speak too slowly because then I become distracted. My two daughters would rather watch a video or have a live instructor going over the assignment and showing examples. They definitely do not want to sit down with a book and learn something on their own. And all three of us love days where we do experiments or go outside and learn in nature.

What do these learning styles look like in real life? Here are some examples of how you can incorporate them into your homeschool:


  • Incorporate music and instruments
  • YouTube videos
  • Streaming services like Netflix or Amazon Prime
  • Flash cards and speaking answers
  • Read out loud
  • Give instructions orally instead of in writing
  • Record spelling words and listen to the recording
  • Read test questions out loud
  • Group study
  • Repeat information with eyes closed
  • Allow oral test taking/discuss information orally
  • Record lessons and listen to them


  • Use a whiteboard or chalkboard
  • Draw pictures to explain concepts or for notes
  • Use flashcards or notecards with information
  • Color code information
  • Use bright colors
  • Draw and paint
  • Surround with books especially picture books
  • Use highlighters for notes
  • Use YouTube videos
  • Use streaming services


  • Pick a subject and conduct a debate
  • Write
  • Read out loud
  • Incorporate word games, puns and rhymes
  • Public speaking
  • Have student teach
  • Give quizzes
  • Provide list of words for vocabulary or spelling
  • Have student discuss and present information
  • Role-playing

Kinesthetic (tactile)

  • Sports
  • Hiking
  • Drawing/Art
  • Science experiments
  • Move while reading or studying
  • Trace words with finger for spelling
  • Use a computer
  • Act out stories
  • Get involved in a drama class or community theater
  • Work with quiet music in background
  • Play games
  • Eat while studying
  • Teach with real life objects
  • Sing and dance
  • Be animated when teaching
  • Field trips


  • Computer programming
  • Real-life math problem solving
  • Play strategy games
  • Use visual material
  • Hands-on projects
  • Online classes
  • Highlighting and color-coding information
  • Create timelines for history
  • Use maps, charts and graphs
  • Create outlines for writing assignments
  • Use puzzles and logic games
  • Problem-based learning/problem solving
  • Structured, goal oriented activities


  • Join a co-op or homeschool play group
  • Enroll in a drama class or the community theater
  • Group learning/study
  • Role playing
  • Student discuss and present information
  • Group projects and experiments
  • Field trips
  • Find online communities
  • Live classes (in person or online)
  • Involve outside resources for learning (i.e. interview a firefighter, etc.)
  • Let student teach siblings


  • Go to the library to study or read
  • Keep a journal
  • Set goals
  • Create a quiet, separate personal space for learning
  • Nature hikes
  • Art museums
  • Surround student with books
  • Use checklists and to do lists
  • Allow solo projects/experiments
  • Ask questions to stay engaged with student
  • Explain the ‘why’ of what is being learned
  • Online, self-paced classes