This mini-dissertation emerged as a result of my enrolment as a Master of Education student in the Educator Professional Development course at the University of Pretoria. The pedagogy of the programme enlightened me on the innovative and the most influential learning style theories internationally, consequently justifying the criteria for my professional development as a high school English educator. Developing effective strategies of facilitating learning and creating powerful learning environments are a continual challenge on the part of all education practitioners. This challenge defined the aim of my research, which is to implement effectively an innovative idea that encompasses a holistic learning model that promotes learning style flexibility, as we all have our specific preference in terms of how we learn.
The design of action research allowed for metalearning and it confirmed that my professional instruction and learning style complemented only a few learners in the class. I report empirically on the varied learning opportunities presented and the findings highlight that optimal learning can only be achieved if the diverse learning styles of the learners are accommodated and expanded. Moreover, learners have been armed with insight into their limitations and the way they learn best. As a result, they now have the foresight to maximise their learning by utilising varied learning styles in order to function as well-rounded learners, equipped with the skills for lifelong learning. This innovative model of holistic learning is corroborated by the metaphoric theory of Ned Herrmann who advocates that the brain comprises four quadrants, each with specialised functions linked to learning styles (Herrmann, 1996).
My goal as an education practitioner was aimed at finding ways to improve the learning strategies of my learners. I deemed it necessary to challenge myself as well as other facilitators of learning to review systematically methods of facilitating and assessing instruction and learning outcomes to enhance the performance of learners. These key learning strategies can be achieved by adapting this transferable and generic holistic learning model to learning environments.