Posts Tagged ‘Howard Gardner’

One of the most important goals of education is to enable
students to construct the knowledge they receive at school and at
home. By construction , we refer to the understanding,
communication and application of the acquired knowledge.

In order to meet these goals, children should be given a variety
of options to demonstrate their learning in ways that best suit them.
Some students might be great artists, while others may be excellent
linguists. Some might view a piece of information mathematically,
while others might perceive it artistically— in the perspective of
their own experiences.

Human intelligence has been classified into the following nine types :

1. Logistic/Mathematical Intelligence : Ability to quantify, calculate,
analyze and interpet, use sequential reasoning skills, symbolic
thought and inductive and deductive thinking patterns.

2. Linguistic Intelligence : Ability to think in words, use language
to express and appreciate complex meanings.

3. Naturalist Intelligence : Sensitivity to the features of the natural
world, ability to apply knowledge of the forms of the nature in
day to day life.

4. Musical Intelligence : Ability to identify rhythm, tone and other
musical elements and to connect music to knowledge and

5. Existential Intelligence : Capacity to tackle deeper questions
about existence, purpose of life, humanity etc.

6. Interpersonal Intelligence : Effectively use verbal and non-verbal
communication to interact while being mindful of moods and
feelings of others.

7. Bodily/Kinesthetic Intelligence: Capacity to use a variety of
physical skills, manipulate objects, demonstrate good sense of
timing and mind-body-unison.

8. Intra-personal Intelligence: Ability to understand one’s self,
strengths, weaknesses, thoughts and feelings.

9. Spatial/Visual Intelligence: Involves exceptional graphic and
artistic skills, active imagination, mental imagery and ability to
think in three dimensions.

These nine types of intelligence were defined by the legendary
neuropsychologist Howard Gardner are now the basis for guiding
educational practice.

Considering the unique way each individual thinks, processes
and applies information, it is not a surprise that we all differ in the
way we perceive, think and perform. No one— whether a kid or
a grown up— should be expected to do things like others.

Cross-curricular connections have to be emphasized. Language
should thus focus on kinesthetic and musical expression as well
besides the obvious linguistic methods. Similarly, Mathematics should
also focus on expression of Visual and Intrapersonal Intelligence
apart from Logical and Mathematical ability.

Relying on every child’s strengths and giving them means of
using those strengths to perform well in today’s competitive world
is the least we can do. In fact, every child born in this world
deserves a right to be given an opportunity to express himself in
his own way and that is the best way for his harmonious growth.

—Nivedita Shori

(A technology teacher in Canada, she tries to ensure that education and
assessment is suited to the diverse needs of all students.)

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