The Utilization of the VARK Model and Its Impact on the Future Special Needs Educators

16th April 2020

Development of lesson plans is important to help the different categories of learners receive information on an individual basis. When teachers understand that these different learning styles can help in the development of the strategies of instruction, it becomes better for them in order to be able to deliver the instructions to their students. As we know that every student has a different learning style, they need to be recognized in both classroom management and educational concepts in general sense.

Technically, any educator’s teaching style refers to the preferred manner in which the student accepts, understands, comprehends and retains the course content. In the following lines, we will have a look at one of the most popular techniques that an educator can look to implement in order to ensure the proper delivery of the course content to the students with special needs, the VARK model, which he/she must inculcate while preparing for the future to become a professional in the sphere of special education in the future.

What is VARK model and its utilization?

VARK is an abbreviation for the four words put together to form a model, which constitutes of the different types of learning styles, i.e., Visual, Auditory, Read/Write and Kinesthetic. The learning styles of the young learners rest upon a number of key factors, including the learning environment and several other cognitive factors. As we know that every student has a different perspective towards learning, it can be a good idea for teachers to create strategies to help students incorporate different learning styles for easier delivery of the course content. VARK model focuses on the idea that students grab and prepare information in ways different from each other and have preferred learning modes that allow them to create a better atmosphere for learning. Allowing the young learners to access information in terms they are comfortable with is sure to increase their academic confidence.

In the following lines, we will have a look at how these different learning styles can be helpful for the future educators, who are currently pursuing the online special education courses as they prepare themselves for the future challenges as they look to educate the children with special needs in the near future.

1. Visual

Visual learners prefer to process information using various types of documents like charts, maps, graphs, diagrams, and more. To teach a visual learner, using images to explain concepts and ideas can be considered the best way. This kind of learning style, however, does not include the usage of photos or videos. It is best for the visual learners to learn through a number of visual aids in the place of words written or spoken.

Another way which can help the teachers differentiate their instruction for visual learners is through the usage of graphic organizers to teach a lesson. For example, a flow chart can also be helpful to explain a scientific process. It is essential for the educator to identify these young learners to understand how they fair with their teaching techniques and teach them accordingly, especially in the case of the young learners with special needs and should be inculcated by the learners of the online special education courses.

2. Auditory

This is a learning style that describes students who learn best when they listen to the information. Lectures, group discussions, and various other learning strategies that involve talking things through can be helpful for the auditory learners. Students who prefer auditory learning want to sort things out by speaking first, rather than making a point about their ideas and then speaking. To help the auditory learners, teachers can go with audio recordings of lessons on the class website, or start group activities that enable students to explain concepts to their classmates. The future educators should have a thorough understanding about this particular learning style so as to facilitate the students with special needs when they start their tenure in the sphere of education.

3. Reading/Writing Preference

Students who prefer a reading/writing as a mode of information need to be taught using words. They love to read and can do well when it comes to written assignments such as stories or book reports. This preference stressed on text-based input and output, i.e., reading and writing. An efficient way to help these students learn is by having them define diagrams or charts using written dialogues. Then, they can gather information from their notes later to keep it in mind in a better manner. This information can be used well in the future by the learners of the online special education courses and can be helpful in the development of the overall teaching-learning procedure.

4. Kinesthetic

The best way to teach kinesthetic learners is to use tactile experiences and carry out a physical activity to understand and process the new information. concrete personal experiences, examples, practice or simulation are the best suited methods for the students who prefer this mode of learning. The future educator, who has an idea of how to educate his/her students through kinesthetic means can use them in order to give these students a perfect example of an idea or process, or burden them with the task of recreating experiments to illustrate concepts when they start teaching.

The knowledge of properly addressing the individual learning needs of the students is an important part of creating meaningful experiences in the classroom for the educator in charge of their tuition, which in turn helps them to retain what they learn from any educator and the learners of the online special education courses should know how to utilize them proficiently. It provides the teachers the knowledge and tools to plan the delivery of the course content that helps to reach a wide range of learners. With the appropriate usage of the nuances of the VARK model, the educators can engage students and effectively differentiate learning for better outcomes, which makes it even more important to be understood and inculcated by the future educators, who are currently pursuing the online special education courses.


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