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Multiple Intelligences & Learning Styles: Teaching Tips

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  • 0:03 Multiple Intelligences
  • 0:32 Learning Styles
  • 2:05 Teaching Multiple…
  • 3:51 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Derek Hughes
Your classroom is likely to be filled with students who learn in very different ways. This lesson will introduce the concept of multiple intelligences and learning styles and offer tips for teaching students in this way.

Multiple Intelligences

The concept of multiple intelligences was first defined by developmental psychologist Howard Gardner. Gardner felt that students learned in many different ways and that traditional intelligence testing was too limited in its definition of intelligence. In education, multiple intelligences refer to the different modes of learning, or learning styles, that students learn best through.

This lesson discusses these different learning styles and offers tips for incorporating them into your classroom.

Learning Styles

In any given classroom, students are going to have preferred learning styles. Once you recognize and understand them, you can design lessons and activities that incorporate various intelligences. Different learning styles fall into 7 broad modalities.

These modalities are:

  • Visual-spatial: A visual-spatial learner thinks in terms of the space around them. This learner processes information better when it is presented to them in imagery instead of through text.

  • Bodily-kinesthetic: A bodily-kinesthetic student learns best through movement and hands-on activities. They are usually very good with physical activities.

  • Musical: Musical students are tuned (pun intended) into rhythm and sound. These students might benefit from music in the background while they're trying to learn or work.

  • Interpersonal: Interpersonal students work very well with others and learn better when in group environments and activities. They benefit from interaction with other students and teachers.

  • Intrapersonal: Intrapersonal learners are very independent students. They benefit from quiet, solitary study and work time. They are also thoughtful and understanding of their own goals and desires.

  • Linguistic: Unlike a visual-spatial learner, linguistic learners process information better when it's present through text. These students learn exceptionally well from books.

  • Logical-mathematical: These learners are able to think very abstractly and recognize patterns very easily. They prefer top-down learning (moving from big ideas to smaller details).

Teaching Multiple Intelligences

It might seem daunting to attempt to design your lessons to include all multiple intelligences or preferred learning styles. However, it's not as difficult or complicated as it seems. There are a few simple guidelines to follow that will allow your students to learn in whichever style they prefer.

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