Howard Gardener’s Multiple Intelligences in the Classroom
Howard Gardener is a psychologist and a professor of neuroscience at Harvard University who also designed the nine theories of Multiple Intelligence (MI). In 1983, he introduced the first seven theories of multiple intelligences in his book Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligences; then, he introduced his last two theories in his 1999 publication of Intelligence Reframed. According to Parkay & Stanford, “Howard Gardener believes that human beings possess at least eight separate forms of intelligence” (2003, p.300-301). Thus, Gardner’s theories began to question the conventional beliefs about how students are educated in the classroom. This paper will examine the teacher’s role in incorporating these theories into the classroom, the definitions of MI including classroom activities, and benefits of using this theory. Gardner’s theory of Multiple Intelligence includes the following intelligences: linguistic, logical-mathematical, spatial, musical, bodily-kinesthetic, interpersonal, intrapersonal, naturalists, and existentialist. Only two of the intelligences are commonly recognized in most classrooms: linguistic, and logical-mathematical. There are five intelligences that are frequently overlooked by educators: spatial, musical, bodily-kinesthetic, interpersonal, and intrapersonal. The last two are generally not considered in the classroom: naturalists, and existentialist, but naturalist can be applied with the use of science context. According to King, the theory of MI has “…motivated educators to develop programs that instruct students in multiple domains” (2010, p. 250).
A teacher’s role in incorporating Gardner’s theories of MI in to the classroom is to “…capitalize on the strongest intelligences of individual children” (Kail, 2012, p. 250). First and foremost, the teacher needs to be an adequate role model for all of his/her students. Teachers should provide the appropriate course materials and lecture by using different formats. Students should be provided a rubric when create projects; these projects should be based on their own interests. Teachers should allow their students to incorporate their own interests into the course, by using current events or written essays. Provide the students with an opportunity to work on projects and/or presentations in a collaborative and independent setting. Finally, teachers should allow students the opportunities to physically interact with course content and materials such as incorporating map quests, hands-on labs, and virtual field trips into course lectures.
Verbal-Linguistic intelligence is the ability to use language effectively (Ormrod, 2012, p. 161). Students that favor this intelligence enjoy reading, written projects and journals, participating in debates and drama classes, and have strong grammar skills. Learning centers should include activities such as: crossword puzzles with vocabulary words, play games...