Howard Gardnerís Multiple Intelligences
The work of Howard Gardner has had a tremendous impact on the field of
gifted education. He is best known for his theory of multiple intelligences
(MI) which he published in his 1983 book, Frames of Mind. MI attacks the
commonly held notion that there exists one human intelligence
that can be assessed by standard instruments. Rather, according to Gardner, the intellect is
made up of several autonomous faculties that work individually or in concert
Frames of Mind described seven distinct intelligences, which may be
summarized as follows:
- Verbal/Linguistic intelligence
includes the ability to use words and language to express and appreciate
complex meanings. It may be developed through reading, writing, and
- Logical/Mathematical intelligence
involves number, computing and reasoning skills. It may be developed
through problem solving activities, puzzles, and logic games.
- Visual/Spatial intelligence
involves visual perception, the ability to create mental images, and to
think in three-dimensional terms. It may be developed by solving mazes,
and learning activities with pictures, charts, and graphs.
- Bodily/Kinesthetic intelligence
involves using motor skills and physical coordination and dexterity. It
may be developed though sports, dancing, participating in role-plays, and
other physical activities.
- Musical intelligence
involves understanding music through composing, playing, or conducting
music. It may be developed through listening to a variety of music, and
singing, dancing or playing various instruments.
- Interpersonal intelligence
involves communication skills, and may be developed through cooperative
learning, discussions, and role-playing activities.
- Intrapersonal intelligence
involves understanding oneís emotions, thoughts, and feelings, and the
ability to express them. It may be developed through reflection, reading,
and independent projects.
(Recently, Gardner announced two other intelligencesónaturalist and
existentialist, but only the seven original intelligences above have been used
in the curriculum restructuring and lesson development process for Project