In September 2018, Dr. Howard Gardner received an email about Metier, a game-based learning program developed by teachers at Pillager Public Schools. Metier uses MI concepts to help students find a career that aligns with their skills and their passions. Below is an introductory statement and video about Metier, followed by a brief response from Dr. Gardner.
Metier is a grades 5-9 experiential learning program that utilizes games to guide students in discovering the truest, happiest, and greatest versions of themselves and the career field that makes them come alive. These games allow students to uncover their state of flow, which is an optimal state of consciousness wherein you feel your best and perform your best. According to research, those with the most flow in their lives are the most satisfied with their lives. By monitoring what gets students into flow, including a self-awareness of their intelligences, we can help them find their Metier: the job and life they love and loves them back.
Watch an introductory video:
Notes by Howard Gardner
I was pleased to learn about the educational innovations that have been implemented by in the Metier program. I encounter many attempts to create educational programs associated with the idea of multiple intelligences, and this program is one of the most intriguing ones I've seen.
As I understand it, the architects of Metier have combined a focus on the intelligences favored by young people and the experiences that generate experiences of ‘flow’—that state of consciousness in which a person becomes completely absorbed in what he or she is doing and time flies by. I’ve always felt a kinship with the ideas of Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi—who developed the notion of flow in the 1980s—and in fact he and I have been colleagues since that time.
To the work on ‘MI’ and ‘flow’ I would now add the ideas of our valued colleague William (Bill) Damon. With Anne Colby and other colleagues, Bill describes the importance of a sense of purpose: the feeling of mission that motivates people of all ages, with that mission affecting more than one’s own pleasure—that is, a wider sense of purpose. As young people mature, it’s important that they do not only experience flow—but that they experience flow while carrying out work and play that serves others, including the wider community. And so I hope that in the future, programs like Metier will encourage young people not only to ‘follow their bliss’ but to contribute to the bliss of others.