Monthly Archives: January 2015

Howard Gardner Multiple Intelligence Theory

smart-187696_640The Howard Gardner multiple intelligence theory is a theory developed by a Harvard professor of the same name that identifies eight distinct intelligences.

Backed by recent cognitive research, the Howard Gardner multiple intelligence theory documents how students learn, perform, understand, and remember in different ways due to having different kinds of minds.

The Howard Gardner multiple intelligence theory perpetuates that we are all able to get to know the world through the following multiple intelligences:

  • Language
  • Logical-mathematical analysis
  • Spatial representation
  • Musical thinking
  • The body’s ability to solve problems or make things
  • Understanding of other individuals
  • An understanding of ourselves
  • Understanding of nature

While the Howard Gardner multiple intelligence theory states that we all possess those eight multiple intelligences, each individual is stronger in certain areas than others. This article on Far & Away elaborates on this a bit further.

According to the Howard Gardner multiple intelligence theory:

“Where individuals differ is in the strength of these intelligences – the so-called profile of intelligences -and in the ways in which such intelligences are invoked and combined to carry out different tasks, solve diverse problems, and progress in various domains.”

The differences between multiple intelligences from person to person is a challenge for an educational system that operates under the assumption that everyone can learn the same things in the same ways.

The educational system leans toward linguistic modes of instruction and assessment, as well as logical-quantitative modes. But as you can see in the list below, those are not always the most ideal ways for a student to learn.

The Howard Gardner Multiple Intelligence Theory – Learning Styles

Visual-Spatial: These learners think in terms of physical space — very aware of their environments. They like to draw, do jigsaw puzzles, read maps, daydream. Can be taught through drawings, verbal and physical imagery.

Bodily-kinesthetic: These learners use the body effectively — keen sense of body awareness. They like movement, making things, touching. Can be be taught through physical activity, hands-on learning, acting out, role playing.

Musical: These learners have a sensitivity to rhythm and sound. They love music, but are very sensitive to sounds in their environments. Likely to study better with music in the background. Can be taught by turning lessons into lyrics, speaking rhythmically, tapping out time.

Interpersonal: These learners achieve understanding through interacting with others. They have many friends, empathy for others, and street smarts. Can be taught through group activities, seminars, dialogues.

Intrapersonal: These learners have a keen understanding of their own interests and goals. Tend to shy away from others, more in tune with their inner feelings. They possess wisdom, intuition and motivation. Can be taught through independent study and introspection.

Linguistic: These learners have highly developed auditory skills and often think in words. They like reading, playing word games, making up poetry or stories. Can be taught by encouraging them to say and see words, read books together.

Logical: These learners think conceptually, abstractly and are able to see and explore patterns and relationships. They like to experiment, solve puzzles, ask cosmic questions. Can be taught through logic games, investigations, mysteries.

Naturalistic: These learners relate most to one’s natural environment. They can be nature lovers who like being in the wild, pet lovers who relate well to animals, or even chefs who can create unique combinations of flavors.

The games on this site are designed to cater to students’ strengths and help them learn in a way that suits their individual learning styles. Each game is built around one or more of Howard Gardner’s multiple intelligences.

If you have any questions about the Howard Gardner multiple intelligence theory, please leave a comment below.