Sunday, February 20, 2011

Ask me again...What Kind of Learner Am I?

Donna Stone
What I’ve Learned……………….

As I reread my discussion entry from the first week aptly named What Kind of Learner am I?  I began to see the learner I have become.  One of my first blog entries had the saying, “You Don’t Know, What You Don’t Know.,” and I am proof of that.  So, what have I’ve learned…let me count the ways!
Firstly, I have learned that I am physically (or would that be mentally) incapable of writing anything between 300-600 words.  I alluded to my grocery shopping habits in one of my post, as it takes me an hour and half to shop because I talk to myself the entire time; walking, filling my cart, and processing aloud as I travel through the isles.  Maybe, some of that time could be shaved off if I were capable of writing a short grocery list, but I fear that I am no more able to do that than to wrap up this entry in the allotted 300-600 words.   So bear with me for just another week.
In my first assignment I wrote that without a question I was a tactile learner.  So sure of myself that when a classmate wrote in response to my discussion piece that I may change my mind as I learned more about the learning theories and styles, I was actually insulted.
Now I have a better understand of the definition of learning style and see it as a way a learner focuses on, processes, and internalizes information.  A person’s learning style affects how he/she will then, retain, retrieve, and use learned information. So now let me rephrase my answer to the question, “What Kind of Learner Are You?” Well just because I prefer to write, read, and write again I am not truly or should I say only a tactile learner. Tactile learners learn best through their sense of touch, such as using their hands and fingers. They learn best by writing, drawing, taking notes, using hands-on manipulatives, and involving their emotions and feelings while learning ("Keys learning," 1997).   I am missing some key characteristics of a tactile learner I am not a hands-on learner, I don’t need to touch to learn. I am not adventurous or have difficulty sitting my long periods of time.  I daydream about sitting for long periods of time, and it is not my learning style but my hectic life that prevents that from happening.    My writing and reading come from a more cerebral place.  Howard Gardner viewed intelligence as 'the capacity to solve problems or to fashion products that are valued in one or more cultural setting' (Gardner & Hatch, 1989 as cited by: Smith, 2002). Two of Howard Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences seem to better reflect how I connect with, internalize, and use information:
Linguistic intelligence is the capacity to use language, your native language, and perhaps other languages, to express what's on your mind and to understand other people. Poets really specialize in linguistic intelligence, but any kind of writer, orator, speaker, lawyer, or a person for whom language is an important stock in trade highlights linguistic intelligence.
Intrapersonal intelligence refers to having an understanding of yourself, of knowing who you are, what you can do, what you want to do, how you react to things, which things to avoid, and which things to gravitate toward. We are drawn to people who have a good understanding of themselves because those people tend not to screw up. They tend to know what they can do. They tend to know what they can't do. And they tend to know where to go if they need help (Checkly, 1997).
SO may wonder if I find myself to be a person with a propensity towards intrapersonal intelligence because I start off each morning with a quiet period of reflection or if it is because the author referred to people with this type of intelligence as tending not to screw up.  Now, really what could I say to that?

A person's intelligence, traditionally speaking, is contained in his or her general intellect - in other words, how each and every one of us comprehend, examine, and respond to outside stimuli, whether it be to solve a math problem correctly or to anticipate an opponent's next move in a game of tennis. Our intelligence, therefore, is our singular, collective ability to act and react in an ever-changing world (Carvin, 2004).  My ability to act and react to a learning situation has grown leaps and bounds during this course.  Where in the first discussion essay I mention YouTube as a means for gathering information in my attempt (maybe not so successfully) at humor, I can now say through this course and our ability to gather, connect to, and internalize information in ways that met our personal learning style, that YouTube and many other facets of research truly enhanced my learning experience.  Through this course I watched a plethora of videos, read a near billion words (possible exaggeration, but I am not sure) in text, and wrote nearly as many. My blog and our discussion group entries gave me an outlet for my learning through the written word.  The ability to write what I learned helped me to internalize and retain so much information.   The freedom to explore helped me to connect in depth with each learning theory we researched.  In this way technology enhanced my learning experience, but did nothing for my inability to say what needs to be said in a short and concise manner.  I am stopping now at just shy of 1,000 words.

Keys learning. (1997). Retrieved from
Carvin, Andy. (2004, January 22). Exploring technology and school reform. Retrieved from
Smith, MK. (2002). Howard Gardner and multiple. The encyclopedia of informal education,. Retrieved February 20, 2011, from
Checkly, K. (1997). The First Seven. . . and the Eighth: A Conversation. Association for supervision and curriculum development. Retrieved February 20, 2011, from