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Multiple Intelligences


When Howard Gardner's book, Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligences burst on the scene in 1983, it seemed to answer many questions for experienced teachers. Gardner's claim that there are several different kinds of intelligence gave educators a way of beginning to understand those students who didn't "fit the mold." Suddenly, we started looking at how students' minds are different from one another, and at what students could do, instead of what they couldn't do.

With an understanding of Gardner's theory of Multiple Intelligences, educators can allow students to explore and learn in many ways, direct their own learning, and understand and appreciate their own strengths.

Learn More About Multiple Intelligences

Education World articles describing and explaining Multiple Intelligences include:

Bringing Out the Best in Kids
Author and teacher Dr. Thomas Armstrong helps teachers apply Multiple Intelligences in their teaching, so they can tap into students' traditional and non-traditional talents and styles of learning. Included: Ideas for teaching to different learning styles.

Multiple Intelligences: A Theory for Everyone
Howard Gardner's theory of Multiple Intelligences makes people think about "IQ," about being "smart." The idea is changing the way some teachers teach. Included: An introduction to Gardner's eighth intelligence.

Multiple Intelligences: It's Not How Smart You Are; It's How You're Smart
Howard Gardner's Multiple Intelligences theory asks educators to take a fresh look at their assumptions about children and learning. Teachers around the world are rethinking lessons and units -- and their entire approaches to teaching -- based on his research.

In addition, Education World has published several articles dealing with practical classroom applications of Multiple Intelligences. They include:

Magnet School Helps Students Develop, Appreciate Different Talents
A new elementary magnet school strives to educate a diverse student body, using the Multiple Intelligences theories of psychologist Howard Gardner. Included: Ways of applying Multiple Intelligences theories in classrooms.

Magnet School Draws Praise in First Year
A second look at a Multiple Intelligences elementary school as it winds up its first academic year. We found staff upbeat and eager to share stories about students being more engaged in learning. Included: A description of the program.

Lessons Learned from Howard Gardner and the TV Remote Control
Max Fischer shares his first days teaching in a middle school -- after years at the elementary level. Would he be able to reach the students whose body language screamed 'Go ahead, make me learn!'? Included: How Howard Gardner saved the day.

The "Art" of Comprehension
If it wasn't for Howard Gardner's Multiple-Intelligence theory, Max Fischer might never have seen how art can increase student comprehension of content reading material. Included: Ideas for using pictographs, storyboards, graphic organizers.

Creating a Naturalist-Friendly Environment in School
Students with naturalist intelligence can feel constrained by traditional classrooms and by spending so much time indoors. Teacher Gwen Lanning discusses ways to make school friendlier to students with a "naturalist intelligence."

Student Learning-Strengths Inventory
In this learning-intelligences lesson, students take an online inventory to determine their learning strengths and weaknesses, create graphs to show the results, discover areas where they might need to work harder, and learn to appreciate differences.