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Multiple intelligence


Harold Gardner (1983) of Harvard University has identified several kinds of intelligence people possess. Particularly, this finding poses significant implications in classroom instructions. More often than not, children and even adults (who are grown up children) are labeled negatively if and when they manifest either a very fast, slow or no understanding at the entire subject matter. Identifying children’s various strengths among these intelligences will direct the teachers toward more successful teaching strategies, curriculum, and assessment planning that can accommodate different students more effectively based on their orientation to learning. It is the objective of this paper to enumerate and describe each of the nine intelligences according to Gardner (2000) and the teaching strategies that a savvy instructor must utilize in teaching Social Studies to 4th graders at St. Joseph School in Pomona. This study investigates the effectiveness of multi learning centers leading to the mastery of scope and sequence of the aforementioned branch of learning. Research findings based on the writings of Schurr (undated), McKenzie (2000) and Dickinson (1998) provide a variety of alternatives and ideas in reaching out to students of multiple intelligences (MI) to enhance their performance and learning. Additional information on possible careers that these children can pursue is highlighted in this work (Schurr, undated). Although Gardner (2000) has identified nine intelligences thus far, he hypothesizes that there could be more yet to be recognized. Subsequent studies will determine just that. Currently, the following known intelligences among students pave the path for teachers to implement teaching stratagem in their classrooms. To enumerate, they are: Verbal/Linguistic Intelligence. Children exhibiting this type of intelligence are excellent in both oral and written expressions and often are outstanding readers and listeners. Traditional instruction is the best method for them in a traditional classroom. Such include reading of interesting books, playing word board or card games, listening to recordings, using various kinds of computer technology, journal writing, making speeches, storytelling and participating in conversation and discussion. Allowing children, who use a second language in communication, to converse in their native tongue add more to their interest in learning and involvement (Dickinson, 1998). Possible careers for this group of learners include novelists, comedians and journalists. Visual/Spatial Intelligence. This type of intelligence are found in children who learn best visually and organizing materials spatially. They understand when they see what teachers talk about in class. Students belonging to this group of intelligence perceive the environment in a visual manner. They are able to create and manipulate mental images. The orientation of their body is in space. Positively, they respond to charts, graphs, maps, tables, illustrations, art, puzzles, costumes, pictures, sight and anything that captivates the fancy of their eyes. This intelligence may be developed through experiences in the graphic and plastic arts, sharpening observation skills, solving mazes and other spatial tasks, and exercises in imagery and active imagination (Dickinson, 1998). Architects, mechanical engineers, mapmakers and the like occupations will most likely be for this type of intelligence. Logical/Mathematical Intelligence. Students who display an aptitude for numbers, logic or inductive reasoning and problem solving belong to this intelligence. Just like verbal/linguistic intelligence, this group does well in a typical traditional classroom where instruction is logically sequenced and students are asked to conform (McKenzie, 2000). Their learning can be enhanced by number and computing skills, recognizing patterns and relationships, timeliness and order, the ability to solve a variety of problems through logic, developing outlines, creating codes, and calculating (Dickinson, 1998; Schurr, undated.) Activities suggested for this sort of learners include classifying and sequencing, playing number and logic games, and solving various kinds of puzzles. Professionals of this category of intelligence are accountants, lawyers, and computer programmers. Bodily/Kinesthetic Intelligence. Label for this manner of intelligence include "overly active" in traditional classroom where they are often the subjects of discipline (McKenzie 2000). Bodily or kinesthetic learners indulge in physical self, control of one’s mind and learning by doing (Schurr, undated). They involve in physical coordination and deftness, using fine and gross motor skills, and expressing oneself or learning through physical activities (Dickinson, 1998). Such activities are games and other active sports, movement, hands-on tasks, constructing, role-playing or make-believe, dancing, and using manipulative like blocks and other construction materials. Needless to say, athletes, inventors and mechanics fall under this grouping of intelligence (Schurr, undated). Musical/Rhythmic Intelligence. These are the children who learn most through recognition and use of rhythmic or tonal patterns, sensitivity to sounds of instruments and musical expression. Traditional education hardly caters to this intelligence. Singing, dance performing, writing compositions, playing musical instruments, performing coral readings, conducting music, listening to a variety of recordings, and engaging in rhythmic games and activities promote learning and performance for this group of students. Their careers can be musicians, advertising designers, and composers. Intrapersonal Intelligence. Intelligences of this nature thrive in understanding the inner world of emotions, thoughts, and intuition. They grow in their ability to control and work with them consciously. Children are in touch with their own feelings, values and ideas. Albeit they have the tendency to be reserved, in reality, they are quite intuitive about what they learn and how it affects their personal lives. Strategies to promote learning constitute learning centers, participating in learning tasks independently, using higher-order reasoning, reading enlightening books, journal-writing, imaginative activities and games, and discovering quiet places for reflection. Careers for this intelligences lead to psychiatry, counseling, and entrepreneurs. Interpersonal Intelligence. This is the intelligence of people skills, communication skills, and collaborative skills. The students learn how to communicate with and understand other people and how to work collaboratively. All these can be achieved through working with mentors and tutors, participating in interactive projects, using cooperative learning and games, team projects and discussions, multicultural books and materials, dramatic activities and role-playing. Teachers, politicians and religious leaders fall under this category of intelligences. Naturalist Intelligence. Learners of this intelligence are nature lovers. They enjoy outdoors, field trips and sciences dealing with biology, zoology, botany, physics and chemistry. Moreover, these students love to pick up on subtle differences in meanings. Again, this group plays victim to a traditional classroom. Their needs in education can be aided by conducting guided tours in farms, plantations, dairies, laboratories, conducting experiments with hands-on exercises and first-hand samples of subject matter contents like plants, animals, and other observable and tangible scientific phenomena. As the term suggests, people of this intelligence can become scientists, astronauts, and farm owners and operators. Existentialist Intelligence. This is the most recent and least popular discovery of multiple intelligences. Children who learn in the milieu of humankind and their position in the hierarchy of existence fall in this category. The questions they raise include "Why are we here?" and "What is our role in the world?" (McKenzie, 2000) Strategies in this style of learning most probably include guided reading of philosophical books with question and answer portions, citing or sharing of stories as examples of real life situations, watching movies teaching about humanity and purpose for living, human evolution and achievement and the like topics. The career that this type of intelligence might enjoy is teaching ethics and philosophy, priesthood, and court judges. Integrating this knowledge into the teaching strategies anticipates providing for learning, understanding and retention of materials of study. This research paper aspires to measure the effectiveness of implementing MI centers along with other suggested plan of attack in classroom instructions. The various learning centers will be named after the MI namely: visual/spatial learning center; verbal/linguistic learning center; mathematical/logical learning center; bodily/kinesthetic learning center; musical/rhythmic learning center; intrapersonal learning center; interpersonal learning center; naturalist learning center; and existentialist learning center. Although it is premature to conclude that these measures are all successful in achieving desired knowledge in academic areas, the traditional method of instruction faces major revision in its approach. It is time for educators to teach each child according to his or her unique intelligence and individuality relative to the mundane world in which he or she lives.


McKenzie, W. (2000). It’s not how smart you are – it’s how you are smart! "I Think...Therefore.. M.I.!" 1-2. Retrieved June 2, 2000 from the World Wide Web: Dickinson, D. (1998). Learning through many kinds of intelligence. New Horizons for Learning Electronic Journal,1-2. Retrieved June 2, 2000 from the World Wide Web: Multiple Intelligences (undated) Topics from Middle School Matters. [Brochure]. (No place cited.):Schurr. Word Count: 1326

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