Understanding Gardner's Multiple Intelligence in Children
By Andrew Loh
"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, 1993.
What type of intelligence do you expect from your child? How do you
like him or her to develop his or her intellect and talent? Is it
one of those number crunching abilities? Do you want your child to
develop a number of verbal and language skills? Do you wish your
child to be an extraordinary athlete? In the past, experts defined
intelligence as something that can deal effectively with the
environment that includes an inherent ability to reason and sole
most common problems that occur on a consistent basis. However,
there were doubts raised on how one can define and describe
intelligence and smartness in people, especially in growing
In 1983, Harvard scholar and psychologist, Howard Gardner proposed a
new and fresh theory on intelligence in people that contained much
more than just simple definitions of intelligence and smartness.
According to Howard Gardner, the words multiple intelligence are new
and fresh look at identifying, explaining and defining the word
¡°intelligence¡±. A growing child will have a range of abilities and
skills that relate to a particular area of activity and performance.
Howard Gardner suggested the following descriptions of the multiple
intelligence domains. Instead of having or owning just one type of
intelligence, it is claimed that children possess several different
Kinesthetic (Body Smart): Your child is body smart! He or she is
very versatile in acting, mimicking or even moving from one place to
the other. You child may like to make a number of things and enjoy
activities like sports, dancing and drama. Your child can learn
through the movements of their body structure and he or she may
possess very fine motor control of muscle and bones. Your child may
be a quick learner as well. Children with this intelligence tend to
learn things like swimming, field sports and gymnastics very
Logical (Number Smart): With this intelligence, your child will have
a keen sense of logic and number (arithmetic). You child can easily
solve simple problems, or she or he can decipher and decode simple
challenges, perform science experiments, participate in complicated
board games or even take part in complex problem solving scenarios.
Your child is also number smart. He or she may be very good at doing
mathematical subject and perform a variety of number activities.
Intrapersonal (Me Smart): With this intelligence, your kid may be
very adept at socializing with other people. Your child may be too
extrovert by showing a sense of friendliness to others. Your child
may like to lead people and support other in the group. He or she
may also be very good at communicating others. He or she will know
about strengths and weakness and understand the limit at which they
can perform a particular activity.
Visual/Spatial (Picture Smart): If your child has this intelligence,
he or she may be good at visualizing things and events. Your child
may like to draw and paint objects and figures. He or she may also
like to design and solve complex pattern related problems. People
with this intelligence tend to succeed in areas like visual memory,
engineering and construction. Map reading, solving complex maze like
problems and finding graphical solutions are the other areas where
your child may excel.
Linguistic (Word Smart): With this amazing intelligence, you child
could be excellent in written, spoken and composed words. Your child
may be an expert in reading, telling stories, talking, writing
stories and poems as well as hearing and reading. Your child is
always a word smart person.
Interpersonal (People Smart): This type of intelligence signifies
that your child could be very adept at working and socializing with
his or her peers. Your child may also be a leader who wants to lead
his or her friends and peers in the school. Children with this
strength are versatile in communicating their mind and opinions with
others. Your child can easily mix and gel with others.
Musical (Music Smart): Your child could excel in creating music and
evaluating different kinds if sounds. Your child may also like to sig, play, participate in musical events, play musical instruments
and compose songs and lyrics. Your child may be music smart with
Naturalistic (Nature Smart): This type of intelligence may make your
child like working with living things like animals, pets, plants and
other creatures. Your child may also like to be alone with the
natural objects and things. This intelligence signifies that your
child is nature smart and interested in world of plants, animals and
enjoys learning more about them.