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The Use of Learning Styles in Teaching Social Studies in 7th and 8th Grade: A Case Study

Description: This qualitative case study examined the extent to which learning styles were used by teachers in four seventh and eighth grade social studies classrooms in a large suburban north Texas junior high school. The conclusions were as follows: 1) The environment on the junior high level did not afford the flexibility found in the elementary classroom. The changing of students, teachers, and the multi-purpose use of rooms did not afford flexibility of light, temperature, sound, and design preference. 2) The physical and the psychological categories had elements within each category that overlapped. A right brain activity closely aligned to a tactile/kinesthetic activity. A parallel between physical-mobility and psychological-global was noted, as well as a pattern between the global and the tactile/kinesthetic projects. 3) The split lunch period created problems for the global, kinesthetic, impulsive students. The academic environment was interrupted for a thirty minute period; students had to re-acclimate to a more analytic environment after lunch. 4) Each teacher alternated between primary style and secondary and tertiary styles. This mediation ability enabled each teacher to use all styles in lessons the researcher observed. 5) Abstract random and concrete random teachers did more group and team teaching than concrete sequential and abstract sequential teachers. Further, dominant sequential ordering in a teacher limited random activities. Whereas, dominant random ordering in a teacher limited sequential ordering activities. Both groups of teachers experienced teacher burnout when forced out of their primary style. 6) It was easier for those teachers whose primary and secondary ordering were opposite (CS/CR or AS/AR), as opposed to those whose primary and secondary ordering were the same (CS/AS or CR/AR), to align to a different environment. 7) These results suggest that teachers should not be required to stay in any one style. The flexibility of being able to alternate between ...
Date: August 1990
Creator: Woodring, Betty Gregory
Partner: UNT Libraries