Gardner, a Harvard professor, researcher, and author, proposes that there are
eight main areas in which all people have special skills; he calls them
intelligences. Every one of us possesses all the intelligences to various
degrees of development, from highly developed to fairly underdeveloped.
Schools and standardized testing typically teach to and
test for only two of the intelligences: linguistic and logical-mathematical.
This is a shortcoming of the educational system, as many children with other
abilities are overlooked in the process.
In this series, I give some information about each
intelligence, with the hopes that parents will recognize themselves and their
Bodily-kinesthetic Intelligence: using one's body to solve
problems and express ideas and feelings. Actors, athletes, and dancers use their
whole bodies in this way, much the same way that craftspeople, sculptors, and
mechanics use their hands.
These questions can determine if an adult has a
strength in Bodily-Kinesthetic Intelligence:
- Do you regularly participate in a sport or some physical
- Is it difficult to sit still for long periods of time?
- Do you enjoy working with your hands in creating things?
- Do you find that ideas and solutions to problems come to
you while you are exercising or doing some sort of physical activity?
- Do you enjoy spending your free time outdoors?
- Do you speak with your hands or other body gestures?
- Do you learn more about things by touching them?
- Do you enjoy thrilling amusement park rides such as the
roller coaster and other activities like this?
- Do you think of yourself as being well-coordinated?
- In order to learn a new skill, do you have to practice it
to learn it, rather than read about it or see it in a video?
These are some questions to determine if children may
be exhibiting a well-developing Bodily-Kinesthetic Intelligence. Does your
- excel in more than one sport?
- move various body parts when required to sit still for long
periods of time?
- have the ability to mimic others’ body movements?
- enjoy taking things apart and putting them back together?
- have a hard time keeping hands off objects?
- enjoy running, jumping, or other physical activities?
- show skill in activities that require fine-motor
coordination, such as origami, making paper airplanes, building models,
finger-painting, clay, or knitting?
- use his body well to express himself?
All columns are copyright © Jay Davidson.
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