Monday, May 30, 2011

Of course, you are intelligent! Find it out from the 8 Realms of Multiple Intelligence

Dr. Abe V. Rotor
Re-posted by popular requests, appropriate for the opening of the schoolyear. Discover yourself, your children, friends, through this simple evaluation. Photo: Scene at the old Saint Paul University Museum, 1996

The Concept of Multiple Intelligence

1. Man’s intelligence is vast and varied, permeating into five divisions, namely, logic, mathematics, science, philosophy, history and humanities.

2. Knowledge becomes self-conscious, that is, knowledge is reflective of its diverse disciplines, modes of inquiry, fields of scholarship and systematic study. The thrust is what and how far do we know of the knowable universe.

3. Knowledge builds upon knowledge with the divisions of knowledge closely interconnected. It is not a matter of summing up knowledge, because knowledge is synergistic, which means that the whole is far greater than the sum of all its parts.

4. The growth of knowledge is enhanced through encyclopedic growth and development as it bridges history, cultures and generations – indeed mankind’s greatest heritage to its members and society.

5. Like the Maslow’s ladder organization, the usefulness of intelligence follows a four-tier structure - first, the accumulation and organization of knowledge and information (which involves the head); second, expression through skills (hands); third, valuing (heart); and fourth, concern and involvement (humanity). These 4 Hs are the pillars of education.

The 8 Realms of Intelligence

1. Interpersonal (human relations) - Sometimes this is referred to as social intelligence. Leaders, advertising experts, politicians, teachers excel in this field. “They exude natural warmth, they wear disarming smile,” to quote an expert on human relations. Name your favorite characters. My models are Nelson Mandela, Condolezza Rice, Henry Kissinger and our own, the late Carlos P. Romulo.

2. Intrapersonal (inner vision self-reflection and meditation) – Masters in this realm are priests, nuns, poets, yogi practitioners. St. Francis of Assisi is a genius in this domain. Pope John Paul II, Maximilian Kolby, Mother Teresa of Calcutta are unparalleled. Didn’t Beethoven compose music with his inner ear and Helen Keller “see” from an inner vision?

3. Kinesthetics (athletics, sports, body language, dance, gymnastics)- Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, Roger Federer and Bjorn Borg excel in their respective sports. Now think of your idol in the sports world, or in the art of dance. Lisa Macuja Elizalde is still the country’s top ballet dancer. Paeng Nepomoceno, Efren Bata Reyes and Manny Pacquiao top the local list.

4. Languages or linguistics - There are people who are regarded walking encyclopedia and dictionary. The gift of tongue in the true sense is in being multilingual like our very own Dr. Jose Rizal. Authors like Ernest Hewmingway, John Steinbeck, Charles Dickens, Leo Tolstoy, Boris Pasternak, Miguel Cervantes, to name a few, represent this realm. How fast can you learn the dialect or language of a place?

5. Logic (dialectics, Mathematics) - Marxism is based on dialectics which is a tool in studying and learning philosophy. Likewise, this realm includes the intelligence of numbers – mathematics, geometry, accounting, actuarial science, etc. This is the key to many IQ tests. Einstein, Mendel, Newton, Socrates, Plato, Aristotle are popular figures who represent this realm. I saw "A Beautiful Mind," the story of Noble Prize winner John Nash who excelled in a new field of economics.

6. Music (auditory art) – Frederick Chopin, Nicanor Abelardo, Lucio San Pedro, Ryan Cayabyab, Lea Salonga – name your favorite. Amadeus Mozart produced therapeutic musical compositions. Beethoven is perhaps the most celebrated composer of classical music. Surprisingly he could hardly keep pace with his steps when dancing. I like to listen to Pangkat Kawayan play Philippine music. Mabuhay Singers, Madrigal singers, the Las PiƱas Boys, and the UST Choral Ensemble, have won international fame.

7. Spatial intelligence (drawing, and painting, sculpture, architecture, photography) - The greatest contemporary artist, Pablo Picasso, was robbed in his studio. Hog-tied, he carefully studied the robber, the way an artist studies his model. After the incident he sketched the face of the robber and gave it to the police. The police made a hundred arrests without succeeding in pinpointing the culprit. The sculptor Rodin wanted his subject to look as if it were melting, like clay softened by rain. What could be a better expression of poverty for his masterpiece, “The Burghers of Calais?” Juan Luna and Fernando Amorsolo remain unequaled.

8. Naturalism (Green Thumb, Relationship with the Natural World) - There are people who have “green thumb”. Their gardens are beautiful even with little care. There are those who can predict weather, fishermen who know when a fish bites, farmers who pick the reddest watermelon, fullest macapuno nuts, just by feel and sound. Good doctors, I am sure are not only good because of high scholastic records, but have the green thumb as well. Charles Darwin and Carolus Linnaeus are the world's top naturalists.

Here is an exercise on Multiple Intelligence. With a piece or paper, list down the eight realms on the left column. Through self-analysis score each realm using the Likert Scale: 1 is very poor (VP); 2 is poor (P), 3 is fair (F), 4 is good (G), and 5 is very good (VG). This exercise takes around ten-minutes. It requires concentration and objectivity.

What are your top three realms? Can you draw out their interrelationships? Relate them with your personal strength. On the other hand, in what ways can you improve on the other realms? Now relate your score with your present studies or work, and with your relationship with your family and community.

Yes, everyone has a distinct intelligence - and spark of genius, too. ~

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