Key Strategies to Address Multiple Intelligences in The Classroom

You can’t possibly provide quality education in today’s academia without recognizing the different kinds of intelligence your pupils possess. Though some individual’s learning thrives in one learning environment, many others struggle to cope under pressure.

According to a psychological theory proposed by Howard Gardner, there are eight types of intelligence. Moreover, everyone has varying levels of each kind of intelligence, which may fluctuate with time.

If you wish to advance your student’s learning in the classroom, you should start addressing multiple intelligences. You can do so by restructuring classroom layouts, customizing your lessons, and providing assignments catering to multiple intelligences.

The following article will discuss the eight intelligence modalities and critical strategies/activities to address them.

Theory of Multiple Intelligence by Howard Gardner

In 1983, a Harvard University professor named Howard Gardner introduced the theory of multiple intelligences. He went beyond the limits of an average I.Q. Test to put forth the idea of eight types of intelligence.

This theory challenges the conventional educational standards that assume that all students have similar learning capabilities. And that uniform testing measures are sufficient in judging these capabilities.

Instead, it emphasizes the need to teach in a way that enables and supports more than the traditional forms of intelligence, e.g., logical-mathematics intelligence. For that reason, it’s crucial to teach using strategies that account for the various multiple intelligences. A masters in social work online can help you give every child an equal opportunity to learn in a fostering environment that supports their unique intelligence.

The eight multiple intelligences are:

  1. Linguistic intelligence 
  2. Logical-mathematical intelligence 
  3. Spatial intelligence 
  4. Musical intelligence 
  5. Bodily-kinaesthetic intelligence
  6. Naturalistic intelligence 
  7. Interpersonal intelligence 
  8. Intrapersonal intelligence 

All eight forms of intelligence are interlinked and depend on the other. For instance, a guitar player could possess vital spatial and musical intelligence but lack logical-mathematical intelligence. 

Linguistic Intelligence

It refers to an individual’s ability to understand words while writing, reading, and speaking. Other than enhancing your proficiency in your native language, this type of intelligence can also make learning foreign languages relatively easier.

A few linguistic intelligence class activities comprise:

  • Incorporating new words in children’s vocabulary
  • Group or individual creative writing
  • Writing assignments like essays and stories

Logical Mathematics Intelligence

This intelligence concerns pupil’s ability to solve complex problems using critical thinking, logic, and analysis. Logical-mathematical intelligence can also equip individuals to recognize patterns, enabling them to answer complex questions quickly.

You can include the following logical intelligence strategies in your class:

  • Introducing scientific approaches to theories
  • Employing logic to engage in fruitful debates
  • Focusing on problem-solving math concepts 

Spatial/Visuospatial Intelligence

It refers to one’s abilities to visualize and analyze one’s surroundings. People possessing good spatial skills are increasingly aware of their environments. Do you ever marvel at how good photoshop professionals are at photo manipulation and editing? Well, people ranking high on this kind of intelligence can do the same to their surroundings using their creative brains.

The following class activities can help support the visual learners in your classroom:

  • Completing interesting puzzles
  • Artistic tasks like pottery, painting, and drawing
  • Utilizing graphical models and infographics to explain concepts

Musical Intelligence

If the name didn’t make it evident, this intelligence refers to one’s musical abilities. Besides providing an edge in activities like singing, these skills also help one understand musical theory, composition, and performance.

Some activities that can enhance your student’s musical intelligence include:

  • Learning about rhythmic senses
  • Practicing pitch
  • Playing musical instruments and singing
  • Understanding musical notes

Bodily-kinesthetic Intelligence

It concerns an individual’s bodily motions, movement, and control. Often, kids who rank highly in this intelligence have great expertise in athletic activities, but not theoretical studies like reading.

Some activities include:

  • Outdoor games like soccer and dodgeball
  • Performing skits and historical role-playing 
  • Choreographing dance routines

Interpersonal Intelligence

As the name suggests, interpersonal intelligence revolves around an individual’s ability to have meaningful interactions with others. Introverts are just as likely to rank highly on this type of intelligence as extroverts or ambiverts. Kids with good interpersonal skills are proficient in initiating and sustaining friendships.

You can focus on the following interpersonal intelligence classroom strategies:

  • Fostering healthy and positive peer relationships 
  • Practicing empathy to develop a sense of peer support
  • Honing communication and leadership skills

Intrapersonal Intelligence

We can describe this type of intelligence as recognizing and analyzing one’s beliefs, morals, actions, and emotions. Intrapersonal and interpersonal intelligence overlap in some areas.

However, this intelligence is related more to self-awareness, understanding oneself, and having an accurate idea about others’ perception of you.

Some intrapersonal intelligence class activities include:

  • Practising introspection and self-reflection
  • Using a journal to write down thoughts and feelings
  • Engaging in mindfulness activities such as guided meditation

Naturalistic Intelligence

Naturalistic intelligence concerns how individuals appreciate and respond to nature; some may be more sensitive than others. Individuals having a high natural intelligence tend to have a fondness and interest for animals and plants.

Some naturalistic intelligence class activities include:

  • Outdoor activities like camping and scavenger hunts
  • Learning about the different kinds of flora and fauna
  • Adopting class pets and nurturing other animals

To Conclude

It’s unfair to place all children’s academic strengths in the narrow and conventionally accepted types of intelligence.

This article sheds light on the Multiple Intelligence theory and some key strategies to address it inside your classroom. These include using the scientific method, group readings, dance choreography, nurturing animals, and playing outdoor games like a relay, among several others.

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