A Tale of Four Learners Essay by Bernice McCarthy

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Harvey Mudd College
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A Tale of Four Learners is an essay by Bernice McCarthy that describes four unique ways of learning. The essay starts with type 1 learner, who is very imaginative and in tune with her feelings. There is also the type 2 learner, who is analytical and thrives in thinking and reflecting. The type 3 student is the one who needs to work hands-on and uses common senses. Then, we have McCarthy who projects herself in this story as the Type 4 learner. Type 4 learners are described as dynamic students who like to create their own reality without structure. This essay shows us the four types of students. Apparently, it would be unwise to stick to either way of life as situations in life might demand flexibility such that one in able to adapt to a particular situation. To succeed in life, we must learn how to adapt to different learning styles when needed. I am Type 1 learner. CITATION McC96 \p 517-522 \l 1033 (McCarthy 517-522).

In this essay, Linda, the Type 1 learner showed a deep interest in writing poetry. Her poems were incredible reads. For the Type 1 learner, its easy to perform this way. Type 1 learners enjoy being a team player or working in groups. Further, these students prefer to visualize and use their feelings before making decisions. For Type 1 reason and logic are secondary, and impulse and emotions can be key determinants in the learning process. Notably, these learners possess remarkable attributes, but they also experience difficulties that are unique to them. They encounter obstacles with long conversations and lectures. These barriers are as a result of their inability to concentrate for a long time since their concentration span is minimal. As such, even in beneficial lectures that may be long, they may not benefit as much. In fact, they have a hard time listening, so that makes it a double tragedy. Further, remaining in one position over an extended period of time is not interesting for them such that they are prone to many kinds of distractions and at times reducing the amount of learning that occurs during an instruction. They cant face being criticized, and they have a hard time retaining large quantities of information. CITATION McC96 \p 517 \l 1033 (McCarthy 517).

Marcus, the Type 2 learner, who loved school and getting good. Type 2 learners demonstrate high capacity thinking and excellent organizational skills. They excel in structured settings. Factual explanations and learning through lectures is what the Type 2 student prefers. Type 2 learners need structure, without it, they struggle. Spontaneity is something they find hard since it disorients them. Their high analytical skills work well even in long lectures as they can store amounts of information. They experience difficulties with group work, noisy environments, and freelance assignments. When given group assignments, they experience a challenge with spontaneous learners who prefer last-minute rush. Moreover, itis difficult for them to talk about their feelings and even when there is need to express themselves mostly they suppress them CITATION McC96 \p 518 \l 1033 (McCarthy 518).

In school, Jimmy had a knack for common sense. However he struggled with reading. The Type 3 learners are at best when theyre productive and can move around. These students usually dont experience problems with deadlines. Theyre not too technical with step-by-step procedures, but when something needs to work, they make it work. When Type 3 learners are being tested on things that are not physical, they show difficulties. It becomes hard for them during class instructions that explain concepts that are very abstract since for them it is something they cannot relate to. It becomes challenging to seat in classes that demand too much attention yet in their analysis there does not seem like to have a practical application.Their preferred learning styles are hands-on problem solving and competition. They thrive in arts and lessons that allow them to use their hands more together with their minds to figure out how best to bring out the hands-on project. Type 3 learners are objective thinkers.CITATION McC96 \p 519 \l 1033 (McCarthy 519).

Leah, the Type 4 learner, was very adventurous with her studies. She felt the school was dull and uninspiring. Type 4 Learners demonstrates creating and acting. They look for unique avenues to learning. Type 4 learners experience difficulties with ordinary routines and time management. Their learning preferences are self-discovery and creative ways to solve problems. When making decisions, they think perception first. CITATION McC96 \p 522 \y \l 1033 (McCarthy 522).

I am a Type 1 Learner. I love to create reality through imagination and express my opinions, and feelings with others. Some years back I wanted to join the dodge challenger. With the income I was earning, I knew couldnt afford it. My credit was jacked too. So, using imagination and affirmations, I soon started to visualize and feel myself riding in the Dodge Challenger. That gave me confidence and more push to do something about it. So, I planned a strategy on how I would get into the Challenger. In the Air Force, one makes rank by testing. I knew that was my shot. I started studying hard consistently. And when the time finally came, I passed my test. A few months later my income increased, and the plan that I had visualized came to pass. I find it fascinating how my imagination can lead me to acquire things I need or want. As a Type 1 Learner, its very easy to listen and report accordingly. There have been many times where friends would contact me to talk about their problems. And on all occasions, it was always something I said that helped them enough to get back on their feet. My discretions are through feelings and visual thinking.

My favorite kind of assignment is anything even if I have just a little knowledge. It is important to realize that everything that we know in life was taught to us and learning took place. How do you know the grass is green, or the sky is blue? I feel learning is the root of life. Thats why anytime I get an opportunity I like to explore. Surf the internet about things that I dont know about or some I just hear. The worst type of assignments are assignments that the class has already discussed and learned. However, its nothing wrong that, just my preference. For in-class activities, I prefer lectures. Im good with listening particularly if I am asking questions and taking notes. I feel that lectures are very easy to grasp because usually the professor thoroughly explains his/her topic. The in-class activities that I dont like are Powerpoint notes. Through my experience when powerpoint notes are used in teaching lectures, it seems like there is too much reading coming from the screen. I have learned that, if you are going to use power point, dont distract your listeners with too much reading on the slides.

To be a better learner, I must assume formlessness. To be formless means not be one-sided. Know how to be fully aware of all learning styles. I think the best way for me to learn this, is to purposely put myself in settings to where I must adapt to what is wanted or needed. Another way is to read biographies about people lives and look at how they did and how they thought. Some time back, I viewed a show on the life of Michael Jordan. He talked about how he was never good at anything. He describes himself as subpar. So, one day he got invited to play a game of basketball, and he fell in love with the game. Jordan didnt start off as good as one may think. He was never good enough to make the junior high school team. He was criticized a lot. It was one day he made his mind up and said that he was going to be the greatest player ever. He went on to make his high school team, then college. He practiced so hard he made it to the NBA and there he showed stardom. I took such lessons from his life and have applied them since then in my way of thinking. And whatever I want to be great in, I must make my mind up. Overall, there are numerous ways to be a better learner. I think the keys to this is dedication and patience.


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