Howard Gardner’s Theory of Multiple Intelligences
“An intelligence is the ability to solve problems, or to create products, that are valued within one or more cultural settings.” -- Howard Gardner FRAMES OF MIND (1983)
(“word smart” or “book smart”)
This intelligence involves the knowing which comes through language; through reading, writing, and speaking. It involves understanding the order and meaning of words in both speech and writing and how to properly use the language. It involves understanding the sociocultural nuances of a language, including idioms, plays on words, and linguistically-based humor. If this is a strong intelligence for you, you have highly developed skills for reading, speaking, and writing and you tend to think in words. You probably like various kinds of literature, playing word games, making up poetry and stories, engaging in involved discussions with other people, debating, formal speaking, creative writing, and telling jokes. You are likely precise in expressing yourself and irritated when others are not! You love learning new words, you do well with written assignments, and your comprehension of anything you read is high.
(“math smart” or “logic smart”)
This intelligence uses numbers, math, and logic to find and understand the various patterns that occur in our lives: thought patterns, number patterns, visual patterns, color patters, and so on. It begins with concrete patterns in the real world but gets increasingly abstract as we try to understand relationships of the patterns we have seen. If you happen to be a logical-mathematically inclined person you tend to think more conceptually and abstractly and are often able to see patterns and relationships that others miss. You probably like to conduct experiments, to solve puzzles and other problems, to ask cosmic questions, and analyze circumstances and people’s behavior. You most likely enjoy working with numbers and mathematical formulas and operations, and you love the challenge of a complex problem to solve. You are probably systematic and organized, and you likely always have a logical rationale or argument for what you are doing or thinking at any given time.
(“art smart” or “picture smart”)
We often say “A picture is worth a thousand words!” or “Seeing is believing!” This intelligence represents the knowing that occurs through the shapes, images, patterns, designs, and textures we see with our external eyes, but also includes all of the images we are able to conjure inside our heads. If you are strong in this intelligence you tend to think in images and pictures. You are likely very aware of object, shapes, colors, textures, and patterns in the environment around you. You probably like to draw, paint, and make interesting designs and patterns, and work with clay,
colored markers, construction paper, and fabric. Many who are strong in visual-spatial intelligence love to work jigsaw puzzles, read maps and find their way around new places. You probably have definite opinions about colors that go together well, textures that are appropriate and pleasing, and how a room should be decorated. And, you are likely excellent at performing tasks that require “seeing with the mind’s eyes,” such as visualizing, pretending, imagining, and forming mental images.
Intrapersonal Intelligence (“self smart” or “introspection smart”) “self smart” or “introspection smart”). At the heart of this intelligence are our human selfreflective abilities by which we can step outside of ourselves and think about our own lives. This is the introspective intelligence. It involves our uniquely human propensity to want to know the meaning, purpose, and significance of things. It involves our awareness of the inner world of the self, emotions, values, beliefs, and our various quests for genuine spirituality. If this intelligence is one of your strong points you...
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