As the primary teacher for my kids, I am always looking to understand their learning styles and cater our schooling to help them learn the best. In fact, this is one of the reasons that we homeschool, so we can maximize the learning by ensuring we are teaching them in the manner they need to best learn the materials and excel.
The Personality Assessment
Therefore, when I heard about Kidzmet, I jumped at the chance to check them out. I mean, why not? Who doesn’t want to understand their kids better? So, I headed over the Kidzmet website and took their FREE ONLINE PERSONALITY TEST to see what Avarie’s personality type is according to Kidzmet. I have to say the results were not surprising. The test found her as an EXTRAVERTED INTUITIVE PERCEIVER (ENP). So, what does that mean?
Extraverted kids are charged by being around other kids. (Not a shock to learn about my social butterfly.)
Intuitive kids like to go with their gut feelings. (Yes, that’s her.)
Perceivers love the journey. They thrive on pressure and deadlines and love to explore. (Also not a surprising definition for my little explorer, Archeologist wanna-be.)
So, since I wasn’t all that surprised by the results, you would think that I would have had this teaching thing under control but, alas, I do not. I’m still struggling to understand. I was teaching to my likes and preferences, not hers. This is where many teachers and parents have trouble – as an Extraverted Sensing Perceiver, my daughter is a lot like me but differs in a few key categories that makes teaching for me a challenge at times.
The online profile is a FREE assessment and can be done for every child in your family. The test is short (about 20 minutes) and can easily be completed by reading children themselves. You can complete for your little ones. There is even a shorter, picture-based version if you prefer. Once you complete the assessment, you can even send a snapshot to other teachers, tutors, and coaches to help them understand your child learn styles as well. They give you a few learning keys to help you get started. Here is what the snapshot said about my daughter:
Hands-on learning is key to study success for a kinesthetic learner like Avarie. The following are our top 3 techniques to help Avarie “file” knowledge better:
- Work through in-class assignments (e.g. math problems) on a sliding glass door or mirrored closet door.
- Allow Avarie to take movement breaks or stretch every 15 minutes or so while completing homework.
- If you have access to a stationary bike, encourage Avarie to read homework assignments while riding it or pace during brainstorming.
After you have completed your free assessment you can peruse the Kidzmet site for additional nuggets of information that can help you or you can purchase an individualize PlayBook for your child or order some of their products regarding your child’s personality type. You can also watch a great video explaining the benefits of Kidzmet to Parents:
I was given the Extraverted Initiative’s Playbook for Learning to get started. (I hope to get the individualized playbook for my kids next because I think it would be a valuable tool for me and for her, as she gets older.) Nevertheless, the book is awesome. It defines the personality type, discussed getting things organized for your child in a manner that caters to their nature learning type, and discusses note taking and filing systems, homework and test preparation, group learning, and enrichment activities that fit the personality type. Additionally motivation and underachievement are discussed as well as handling successes and failures in the best way for your child’s personality type — something we definitely benefited from.
I thought it interesting that group learning is beneficial to my child but the study partners that suit her best are not always her friends or those to which she gravitates. I knew she loved the group environment but I thought Kidzmet’s temperament wheel was interesting – it pinpoints the best personality types that will work with my daughter. (Now to get her friends to take the personality test!)
The book contains a great checklist that gives you a list of questions to ask about a program before you enroll your child to see if the program will be a good fit for your child. I love that! I plan to use it for our next camp or class we take.
Motivating Avarie is something I have struggled with all year. I was excited to see there was an entire chapter on motivation. With several suggestions to motivate Avarie, I look forward to trying them as situations arise. We have done some of these things but reading them helped me remember what things have worked and what has not. For instance, the Playbook suggested that we focus on future goals and how what we are doing is a stepping stone toward a bigger goals. I have found this seems to make sense to her. Additionally, finding the “newness” in a topic is important and I have seen that this is a good thing for Avarie. I need to help her find new ways to explore mundane or “unfun” topics in the future. I know this is essential and the book emphasized the importance of this.
One of the things that the personality test told me is that Avarie loves to combine learning with fun. I know this, who doesn’t really?. But I need to make an effort to do this when possible. Not that everything in school needs to be fun, sometimes you just need to do it, but maybe if I make more of an effort to have some fun extras in our day she’ll be able to focus and accomplish things the rest of the time.
I was also given a copy of 101 Learning Activities to Stretch and Strengthen Your Child’s Multiple Intelligences. This book is full of activity ideas for every intelligence type. During your personality assessment, your child’s snapshot will include intelligences that your child seems to be most interested in and responsive to. These categories include body, music, nature, number, people, picture, self, and word. For Avarie, the test predicts that her top three intelligences are body, word and music. The summary suggests that we choose activities that use one or blend 2 or 3 of these to help her refocus and learn better.
The book gives activities that work these intelligences best. For instance, in body it suggests typing, sewing, and Simon Says type games. For word intelligence, they suggest journal jars and story starters, to name a few. One of my favorites was for music. The book suggests making a personal soundtrack for a purpose or task. We have already instituted this idea and it has motivated her to get through the task. The book is full of ideas and though some seem very basic you are sure to find something that would be appropriate for your little learner.
The CD ROM
Lastly the set came with a CD ROM full of additional printables to help every learning type with organizing, working through things, and time management. There are printables that help child prioritize tasks, break down projects into smaller tasks, and diagrams to synthesize what a child just learned. There is a lot on the CD and something for everyone therefore it is likely to be helpful at some point. I’m looking forward to trying some out.
If you haven’t tried the assessment, be sure to check it out. Consider their playbook to help you personalize your afterschool or homeschool time with your kids. I am planning to purchase the A Parent’s Playbook for Learning next. Be sure to check out the PTPA Seal of Approval that Kidzmet won and then head over to the website and take the assessment for each of your kids. You may find that one tip that will help it all click for your child and that is something every parents loves to see!