Standardized tests are right around the corner and tests are happening every week in school, so it seems a good time to share some study tips that make learning more effective for our visual kids. Better study = better learning = better test scores.
Why do visual kids need their own study tips? Because visual students and kids with ADD don’t usually test well and may even struggle with test anxiety. Our visual kids miss details, struggle to memorize information and prefer pictures over words, all because they’re thinking with the right side of the brain. This is hard for visual kids because tests measure more of our left brain skills. But there are always going to be tests at school and we need to help our visual kids conquer their test fears and improve academic outcomes. We can do this by playing to their strengths and making their learning and study more visual.
Here are 10 ways to help your visual child study:
- Make learning visual. – When classroom material is presented visually, your visual student is already on their way to more successful studying. These learners remember pictures – not words.
- Write notes – The physical act of writing actually helps visual kids remember. Write very simple words or notes over and over again to help with remembering.
- Add Images – Along with writing words, have them add simple images to help trigger memory. This is great for vocabulary practice. Again, visual kids remember pictures – not words.
- Use color – Add color whenever you can. Encourage them to take notes in color. Write key words in color. Write on colored notecards. Use a highlighter to help ‘see’ key information.
- Make vocabulary colorful –To practice vocabulary words, write each word on a flashcard. Add an image. Use colored markers, or colored notecards. For longer words, take the learning even further by using a different color for each syllable.
- Make math tangible – Let kids see, touch and do when it comes to math. Use colorful tiles or chips so your child can practice working through math problems with manipulatives. It will help them ‘see’ and understand core concepts.
- Act it out – Some kids learn best by doing. When possible get away from the words and act out the information. This can be great way for kids to study history or telling a story. Acting out the concepts can add clarity and improve memory.
- Draw it out – Help your child learn to use graphic organizers. These are visual outlines and notes of what they’ve learned in class. Use these at home to help kids organize information and make memorizing easier.
- Record and listen – Some kids remember best when listening. Make a recording of the information they need to learn. Keep it simple. Let them listen to it over and over again, until they feel ready. Listening to books and stories this way can improve reading comprehension.
- Take art or music classes – Studies show that students who participate in the arts perform better on tests. The arts help them develop observation, patterning, differentiation and a host of other learning skills.
These study techniques are not just for test taking, they’re great ways for visual kids to learn every day. Once you and your visual student learn to use these techniques, you’ll be able to adapt them to any subject matter and every age level.