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Adapting Instructional Strategies

I think it is vital to integrate learning styles and how the brain functions into the course. I have done this for many years. Application (Knowles) is extremely important to the adult learning - tactile learning is best for application.

Hi Donna,
Right you about the need to see application in the learning process. This is where working memory comes from. The students gain cognitive information and then see how it can be applied. Once this connection is made then they have a base from which they can retrieve this information, thus working memory kicks in.

I also think it is vital to integrate different learning styles into courses. There are so many different people in the classroom with different learning preferences/abilities that it's impossible to teach the same exact way and have everyone be on the same level.

I think problems arise a lot of the time when the instructor has only one way of explaining things and one way of teaching. Some people might understand it, but others might be completely lost and be too afraid to ask questions and, as a result, fail or not FULLY get anything out of the class/course. I think it can be a waste of time to the student and the instructor.

Can anyone offer some examples of classroom strategies for applying cognitive information about literature? (Other than greeting cards and song lyrics, poetry seems to have little relevance in students' lives.) A strategy I have used when studying poetry, for instance, is as follows. After defining the term "sonnet" (re: number of lines, rhyme scheme, meter) I ask students to look at a particular poem and identify these elements. Is this exercise a good example of application?

Hi Sandra,
Good strategy for teaching foundations of literature. The poem method really helps students to grasp the basics. Another way to off this content is to have them write poems or due short stories about certain topics. I have found that students really get into this form of writing which can then be used to illustrate other examples of quality literature.

You mentioned song lyrics. When we are studying figures of speech (metaphor, alliteraion, hyperbole) in my lit class, I will often give this assignment. I have them find examples of each type of speech in song lyrics. Since almost everyone likes music, they seem to find this to be a fun assignment where they can also share a bit about themselves through the artists they choose to cite.

Get students involved by using examples that they can identify and relate to; for example pick a student ask their approximate weight and then suggest that the class do conversion of his/her weight to kilograms.

They are more likely to have memory recall because of personalization, application, and relevance.

it just goes to show you thaat our mother was wrong, i guess we do look with our hands. the hands on works best for me and for the majority of students.

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