Multiple intelligence theory

DEFINITION

A set of theories about how people learn in a variety of ways. Howard Gardner (American, 1943-), a professor at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, developed and introduced the theory of multiple intelligences in his 1983 book Frames of Mind. Gardner proposes that there is not a single "intelligence" but rather that there are eight (some call these "learning styles"): Visual / Spatial Intelligence Musical Intelligence Verbal Intelligence Logical / Mathematical Intelligence Interpersonal Intelligence Intrapersonal Intelligence Bodily / Kinesthetic Intelligence Nature / Science Intelligence Those who recognize the importance of multiple intelligences believe that because students tend to be stronger in one or more of these cognitive skills, and weaker in others, educators need to provide opportunities for students to learn in each of the intelligences. Art educational activities should be developing "Visual / Spatial Intelligence." Some students of visual art may approach it most effectively through experiences involving the use of the intelligences in which they are stronger. Since many students have highly developed their verbal intelligence abilities, ArtLex can provide an excellent means for the growth of their visual / spatial intelligence.Since the middle 1980s, Howard Gardner has been heavily involved in school reform efforts in the United States. He has also been highly involved with Project Zero, a research group in human cognition that maintains a special focus on the arts. More recently, his research is focusing on the GoodWork Project. "GoodWork" is work that is both excellent in quality and also exhibits a sense of responsibility with respect to implications and applications. Researchers are examining how individuals who wish to carry out good work succeed in doing so during a time when conditions are changing very quickly, market forces are very powerful, and our sense of time and space is being radically altered by technologies such as the Web.Related link: Howard Gardner's Harvard U home page. Also see achievement, advocacy, attention, Bloom's Taxonomy, communication, dance, effort, genius, interdisciplinary, knowledge, mathematics and art, music, science and art, Stages of Artistic Development, and theater.

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