Thursday, November 15, 2007

On Learning Styles

Last night I discovered something while talking to my Brit friend who went to the same Finnish classes. She said that she had had trouble following our teacher's explanation. Our teacher's someone who loves languages. She loves giving explanations to us using linguistic terms.

This is something that she said to us last night: "Today we're learning about modal verbs which will be followed by the nominative form or the basic form of words. There's an equivalent of this in English. For example: They can read. He can ride a bicycle."

I have no problem following our teacher's explanation 'coz that's the way I've learnt the language, as well. Before the course, I had studied Finnish on my own using my grammar books and from online resources and I had tried to memorize all the linguistic terms that I had studied in order to create a "rough map" in my brain. I LOVE learning a language not by practicing it first, but by learning the grammar first. I want to know everything about the grammar as best as possible so that I know how to create the right kind of sentences using the right form of words.

On the contrary, my Brit friend has been learning Finnish by practicing these past 3.5 years. So she hasn't really learnt the correct usage of grammar, but she's probably able to survive better than me in the real world if we are put together with a bunch of Finnish who don't speak much English. She learns Finnish by doing instead of by learning the grammar first. She wants to learn the proper usage of Finnish grammar now, but since she'd never learnt about linguistic terms and how to dissect sentences, it's all muddled in her brain. It takes her time to absorb everything and to connect the "linguistic" dots in her mind, so whenever the teacher explains something very quickly during our classes and then she asks her to give an example or to do an exercise, she gets confused.

All of this makes me think about our learning style. Even my Brit friend herself said that her learning style was different from the teacher's. Thus sometimes what she wants to know isn't exactly in line with what the teacher gives her since they both have different learning styles. I guess the learning style kind of influences our teaching style, as well.

I remember one close friend of mine who has a unique learning style. She absorbs things differently from I do or from anyone else I know. Thus she also has a unique teaching style. She can take a teacher's explanation and turn it into her own, so if somebody else has missed the lesson and asks her about it, she'll explain it in her own special way. it's hard for me to give an example, but I'm sure you know what I mean, right? I bet you've probably met one person whose learning style is SO different from yours. Isn't it amazing how different our learning styles can be? ;-D It's fascinating for me!!! ;-D

P.S. I woke up early this morning 'coz I got HUNGRY (I "worked too hard" last night HUA HA HA HA HA HA HA). Couldn't go back to sleep, so I woke up and had some bun and warm milk. It was almost 8 am outside, yet it looked like 5 am in Indonesia. SO DARK!!! All the street lights were still on. Now it's almost 9 am and it's already rather light outside and it's SNOWING again he he he he he...WOOOHHHHOOOOOO!!!!

P.P.S. I'll probably collapse some time during the day, though ha ha ha ha...'coz I'm such a sleepyhead hi hi hi hi...*wink*


  1. Oh, you worked so hard last night? I thought you were waiting for each other to recover? ;-)

    There are many kinds of learning styles. This may be different from what you're talking about but the learning styles I am refering to are some people learn best visually, others absorb faster by listening (audio) and some by touching (kinesthetic).

  2. Blur Ting: HE HE HE HE...Well, we we avoided kissing each other's lips, though ha ha ha...

    Ah yeah, you're SO right about those learning styles. :-))) It didn't cross my mind when I wrote the post, though he he he...

  3. I understand what you mean about learning and teaching style.

    When I was a Supervisor before in my ex-job, most of the trainees preferred me to other Supervisors because they said they could understand better with my way of teaching. ;) Feel like I'm bragging here (LOL!!), but one of my ex-bosses did applause me in front of my ex-colleague, I was handed over a task to her, because he was impressed with how I trained her... ;D

  4. Choc Mint Girl: Hey, that was quite an honour and achievement, Crystal! Nah, it's not bragging. It's good to get a positive feedback from the trainees AND your ex-boss!!! THUMBS UP FOR YOU! ;-D

  5. I am really bad at languages but if I were to earn one I would go the route you are with grammar first. The foundation has to be strong always!

  6. Hi, Amber!

    Yeah, that's what I wanna do...learn the grammar first 'coz from my experience, it's tougher to undo the wrong sentence structures that are already embedded in your brain than to learn new ones with an "empty" brain he he he...