Teach to Each Child's Intelligences

Notes by Howard Gardner

Fischer describes how, in his position as Dean of a College of Design, he makes use of spatial intelligence to teach many topics. He calls on K-12 education to do the same. Of course, I support the idea of making use of powerful intelligences to convey important lessons and skills.

But two cautionary notes. First of all, not every intelligence can be helpful for learning any topic. I am doubtful, for example, that the personal intelligences can be of much help in mastering mathematics; nor it is likely that logical-mathematical intelligences can significantly increase personal understanding.

Secondly, particularly for younger persons, there are reasons to nurture the less powerful intelligences.  Even if my spatial intelligence is not initially strong; indeed, perhaps especially if my spatial intelligence is not strong, there are good reasons to try to develop it further. Moreover, with respect to this profile, I am referring to myself. I have poor visual and spatial skills, but that has not prevented me from spending much time trying to understand the graphic arts and even conduct research in that area.

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