How do you learn? Have you ever thought of the way your team acquire information? Do you know their learning strengths? According to Howard Gardner we all possess learning strengths and are capable of displaying intelligence in multiple areas. Nadia M. Ollivierre writes about how these strengths can be of great benefit to childcare professionals.
Childcare professionals can use their predominate areas of intelligence to identify their teaching style, since we tend to teach the way we like to learn. Teams can use Gardner’s areas of multiple intelligence to enhance their early years program by identifying their team members strengths.
Educators can determine their predominate areas of multiple intelligence by completing a questionnaire. Questionnaires require users to score a few short statements based on how well it describes them. The scores are then tallied up, to reveal the strongest areas of multiple intelligence in the following nine areas: linguistic, logic-mathematical, musical, visual, kinesthetic, interpersonal, intrapersonal, naturalistic and existential.
The Linguistic Educator
The linguistic educator has a way with words! They always seem to know how to express themselves verbally and can put well thought-out sentences together when needed. They have enhanced narrative skills and a good memory. This educator is the go to person when it comes to communication, they can help articulate messages and add those much-needed details. This educator may be found playing with words and rhythms while working with the children or reading lots of stories.
The Logical Educator
The logical educator is a critical thinker. They are good at problem solving and reasoning. They are capable of hold many concepts in their head in order to determine common elements, patterns or relationships. This educator can help analysis situations to determine next steps, and offer recommendations providing measurable evidence. This educator may also be found helping children understand abstract ideas or enhancing their ability to identify numbers and quantity.
The Musical Educator
The Musical Educator has enhanced auditory ability. It is not hard to believe that this sensitivity makes them heighten to sounds, pitch, and tone. They use music, rhythms, and instruments as an instructional tool to learn or teach new concepts. This educator would be good at interpreting how information is presented. They could help determine the flow of information to create the appropriate sentiment. This educator may also be heard creating lyrics or using a steady beat to introduce learning material.
The Visual Educator
The visual educator has a vivid imagination. They are not intimidated by a blank canvas and are able to interpret and understand how visual images convey messages. They can see the final product before it is complete. This educator can help you reorganize the learning environment; create displays, charts or event correspondence that will capture the attention of others. This educator may use lots of real pictures and child initiated creations throughout their classroom to make the environment aesthetically pleasing.
The Kinesthetic Educator
The kinesthetic educator that is always on the move! They have great coordination and physical agility and are able to control how their body moves with dexterity. They can help demonstrate or complete tasks that require your whole body.
This educator can support by participating in physical demonstration, hands-on learning and helping you find ways to keep others moving during program planning and events. This educator would be found actively participating in children physical activities whether it is on the playground or in the field.
The Interpersonal Educator
The interpersonal educator is in touch with others. They understand how other feel and can relate empathetically. They have a good sense of judgment and tend to analysis behaviour and the way people around them communicate their emotions.
This educator can provide mediation and coaching support in addition to leadership skills. They can also help motivate the team with their ability to connect and interact with others. This educator may be found showing an in-depth interest in the children’s social-emotional development, in order to help them understand how they impact those around them.
The Intrapersonal Educator
The intrapersonal educator has a keen sense of self. They are very aware for what works well for them and can identify their contribution to situations and personal beliefs. This educator has made a personal connection to the program philosophy and knows what would complement their personal and professional development.
They are self-motivated and highly independent individuals that can help determine ways for others to reflect on situations and discover personal growth and understanding. This educator may be found teaching children about self-awareness and offering techniques or strategies that promote self-regulation.
The Naturalistic Educators
The naturalistic educator is a connected to the natural environment. They are interested in the relationship between nature and the species that live in it. They enjoy being outdoors and caring for animals. They are able to categorize and sorting information easily. This educator can help other be mindful of environmental needs and how to support related initiatives.
They are passionate and can help find the interconnection between all living things. This educator may be found teaching children about living and non-living things, or showing an added interest in modeling how to care for class plant and pets.
The Existential Educators
The existential educator has a sixth sense. They are able to use personal experience and their intuition to guide their decisions and understanding of the world. They show wisdom by using a broad view of situation. This educator can help others slow down and think through a process by listening to their internal signals. This educator may support children’s understanding of meditation and focusing their energy to formulate ideas.
On the journey through lifelong learning and professional development, teaching and learning are interchanging roles. If we are better able to understand our learning strength, it will easier fine tune our ability to teach and manage eclectically.