The myth of learning styles

Well, actually there are learning styles who are older than the theory by Gardner, but they are, as you can read here again and again, a myth…


Before becoming a writer, I spent a year-and-a-half training as a science teacher and then working at a secondary school in Croydon. During my short stint in education, the biggest buzzword was “differentiation.” We were told that any given class contains pupils with a range of abilities, and that different children have different learning styles.

This second idea was drilled into us over and over again. Some children are visual learners, who acquire and process information best through images; others are auditory learners, who learn best by listening; and yet others are kinaesthetic learners, who learn best by doing physical activities. To be effective teachers, we had to try to establish each child’s preferred learning style, so that we could tailor our teaching style and materials accordingly.

The idea of learning styles is based on the theory of multiple of intelligences, developed in the early 1980s by psychologist Howard Gardner

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