Multiple intelligences

Do you ever wonder why your child doesn’t understand something when you teach it to them the first time, yet when someone else teaches them, they get it? Perhaps you aren’t teaching it to them in the way that they learn best. In 1983, an American developmental psychologist, Howard Gardner, wrote a book called Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligences. He proposed eight categories (later developed into nine) of intelligence. The intelligences are split into three categories: Analytical, Introspective, and Interactive. The Analytical intelligences are: Logical (Mathematical) Intelligence, Musical (Rhythmic) Intelligence, and Naturalist Intelligence. The Introspective intelligences are: Intrapersonal Intelligence, Existentialist Intelligence, and Visual (Spatial) Intelligence. The Interactive Intelligences are: Verbal (Linguistic), Kinesthetic (Bodily), and Interpersonal.


Everyone has all the intelligences, but some areas are stronger than others. Think about which category you would place your child in. What are your strong areas of intelligence? It is possible to strengthen your intelligence in an area by deliberately practicing thinking in that scope. If you are interested in taking a survey to find your suggested intelligence strengths you can do so online at:

Many of your children have taken a similar survey in their classrooms this year. I have taken this survey as part of my Differentiated Instruction graduate course at Stetson University. Many of our teachers here at St. Barnabas are taking a Gifted Certification course this year and have also become leaders on the multiple intelligence theory. As we learn our own strengths and our student’s strengths, we can be sure to reach all of our students in the way they best receive information. Remember, these multiple intelligences are meant to empower, not to label people. Here at St. Barnabas we strive to connect with each one of our students and are thankful for Gardner’s theory to help us do so.

Julie Kaidor
4th Grade Teacher

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