Why are some people amazing writers? Why was Michelangelo one of the most distinguished painters in history? Howard Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences attempts to explain the concept of intelligence and address the differences in their learning methods and abilities.
In the educational field, Gardner’s views have been widely criticized. Many educators see the theory as a matter of common sense. Teachers say it validates a well know fact, students learn in different ways.
Whether you agree or disagree with Gardner, it is interesting to consider which one of the eight recognized Multiple Intelligence categories describes you:
Verbal-linguistic – Verbal linguistic learners have highly developed auditory skills, enjoying reading and writing. They also like to play word games having superior memory skills, easily recalling details of names, dates, and places. Verbal-linguistics possess story-telling skills, learning best by saying and hearing words. Verbal-linguistic types include writers, teachers, and poets.
Musical-Rhythmic – Musical rhythmic types are sensitive to sounds in their environment, and recognize inflections and fluctuations in the human voice. They have an inherent love of music, listening when studying or reading. Learning through listening to melodies, they are skilled at pitch and rhythm, having a high degree of musical-rhythmic intelligence. Composers, singers, and conductors are examples of the Musical-rhythmic intelligence type.
Logical-Mathematical – This individual is a scientific thinker. They explore patterns and relationships; and experiment with questions that are beyond most people’s grasp. They must have everything in its place and ask many questions. These people work masterfully with numbers and solve problems with logical reasoning. The logical-mathematical type learns by abstract thought, using patterns and classifying information. Scientists and Mathematicians are in the logical-mathematical intelligence classification.
Visual-Spatial – These people are at home with with diagrams, maps and charts. They visualize images mentally. Creators and designers are visual-spatial and learn best by looking at pictures and watching procedures. Examples are painters, surgeons, sculptors, architects and engineers.
Bodily Kinesthetic – People who are highly coordinated, have good balance and are good with their hands. Bodily sensation is used to gather information. They learn best through hands-on activities. Some examples include mechanics, dancers, carpenters, gymnasts and swimmers.
Intrapersonal – Creative, reflective and independent best describe Intrapersonal Intelligence types. They are intensely aware of their own feelings including strengths and weaknesses. Independence, high motivation, determination and self-confidence describe this personality type. They are strongly opinionated on controversial subjects, learning best by independent study. Intrapersonal types are most comfortable in small groups and do not enjoy being in a crowd. Intrapersonal types include entrepreneurs, philosophers and psychologists.
Interpersonal – This is your people person. They love to talk and are often the life of the party, having many friends. Interpersonal types empathize with their peers and learn best in a group environment. They enjoy sharing experiences with others. Sales representatives, teachers, counselors and consultants are interpersonal intelligence types.
Naturalist – This is the new- found “eighth” intelligence. These learners are in nature lovers and enjoy the outdoors. They are skilled at sensing patterns and categorization. Naturalists love making plans and organizing living areas. They learn in a natural setting by studying natural phenomenon. A naturalist will discover how things work. Zoologists, botanists, geologists and biologists fall under this category.