sight and sound together is overwhelming.
Just as with sight impairments, you must
accommodate students with hearing impairments. Your speech patterns and volume are critical
classroom learning factors.
The sense of touch, while important in itself, becomes a major learning factor when combined
with other senses. Children do not associate the word hot with anything in particular until
they associate the word with their sense of touch. Through experience, we become sensitive to
temperature, pressure, and the overall feel of things.
For instance, an experienced engineer
doesnt need a temperature gauge to determine if a bearing is running hot, just as an experienced
damage control investigator doesnt need one to decide that the temperature of a watertight
door is above normal.
The senses of taste and smell may not seem important in Navy training. In many cases they
Consider if you will, though, the importance of taste to the training of cooks and
bakers. The sense of smell, which is closely associated with taste, is very strong and primitive
It is part of our human warning system.
For example, electricians immediately
recognize the smell of burning insulation. Others become sensitive to the smell of various gases.
Therefore, the sense of smell is a valuable learning tool in certain narrow applications.
Although it is not normally identified as one of the senses, the phenomenon of kinesthesia is
an extension of sensory learning. Think of it as a sensory perception residing in ones muscles,
joints, and tendons that gives people a special awareness of their spatial relationship with their
Kinesthesia is actually a blend of all senses with psychomotor and perceptual
skills. It manifests itself in peoples ability to balance or move with coordination.
Remember, students develop their skills through practice.
You cannot realistically expect
students in a welding class to have the coordination to weld the back side of a pipe in the
overhead while using a mirror without some practice to develop that skill.
Retention, with respect to sensory learning, is open to many interpretations and opinions.
It has been estimated that people retain only 10 percent of what they read, 20 percent of what
they hear, and 30 percent of what they see. When those senses are combined, however, retention
takes a dramatic leap forward. Those same estimates tell us that when someone hears and sees,
retention jumps to 50 percent.
That makes a great argument for incorporating appropriate
audiovisual media into your teaching. By asking proper questions to augment sight and sound
to stimulate thinking, you can push student retention close to the 70 percent level. Requiring
students to use all of their senses in skill training along with procedural steps and principles can
increase their retention to as much as 90 percent. That implies a fair degree of mastery learning.
COMMON CHARACTERISTICS OF STUDENTS
Even though each individual is different in some way from every other individual, the
majority of your students share certain common characteristics. Your knowledge and
understanding of these characteristics can help you make more intelligent judgments and
decisions about training, especially in the counseling and tutoring areas.
One characteristic students share is their belief in their maturity. Your students want to be
treated as adults. Appeal to that desire for maturity by holding them accountable for their