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POETRYETC  2005

POETRYETC 2005

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Subject:

Re: Gardner's intelligences

From:

Ann White <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Poetryetc provides a venue for a dialogue relating to poetry and poetics <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Tue, 22 Feb 2005 07:45:35 -0500

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

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text/plain (110 lines)

Sue,

Sue Stanford wrote:

> At 08:16 AM 2/21/2005, you wrote:
>
>> Hi Sue,
>> Aren't skills part of the learning package, whereas intelligence is the
>> gas to make that package run?
>
>
>
> To postulate a separate driver seems to me to invoke an extra unnecessary
> layer.
>
When you say "driver" I'm thinking you are referring to the various
intelligences, and that you believe there is just a single, omnipotent
kind of intelligence.I'd like to know how you identify this single
intelligence.


> Recognition of beats, I would call a basic level skill. This has
> pertinence
> to many different areas of experience. Not just music but sport, poetry,
> fluent handwriting, stress  in speech, dance among many other activities
> all use depend at least to some extent on the recognition of beats.
> Musical
> ability presupposes some sensitivity to recognition of beats, but also
> pitch, intonation, pattern recognition, physical control etc.

Recognition of beats is part of Musical/Rhythmic Intelligence as defined
by Howard Gardner, the guy who came up with the theory of multiple
intelligences. But it isn't the whole of that area of intelligence. Even
if it were one and the same, there are obviously some people who are
lousy at "keeping a beat." Just as there are people who cannot "hear"
the music in poetry, the rhythm and patterns.

Gardner says this about musical/rhtymic intelligence:
"These "music  smart" people learn best through sounds including
listening ands making sounds such as songs, rhythms, patterns and other
types of audoitory expression. They are able to use inductive and
deductive reasoning and identify relationships in data."


>
> It seems to me absurd to assume that we are all born with a specific
> 'intelligence' (ie 'driver' as you have above) that relates to a
> relatively
> new technology.

Sue, if the idea of multiple intelligences is "absurd" that's your
feeling to keep, of course. But if I've given the impression that people
are "born with a specific intelligence.. that relates to a relatively
new technology," then I need to clear up what sounds like some kind of
magical gift.

The idea of a digital intelligence has still not made it past a
theoretical hypothesis. But what I know of it, is that it is called the
"click" reflex or something similar, and it is indeed, something we each
possess to varying levels of proficiency. It is not specifically related
to "new technology." It is an ability that can be applied to the use of
computers. Just as recognitoin of patterns can be applied to use and
enjoyment of music or poetry.

> A couple of generations (or more) ago there would have been
> some people who were specially keyed into observing say the weather for
> farming purposes, animal tracks for hunting purposes, relating colour to
> the temperature of a fire (as potters who use long kilns still do today).

I think this is true. But just because the uses or applications of an
intelligence change from one generation to the next (ie recognizing
animal tracks as opposed to recognizing some other pattern), does not
mean the basic "intelligence" that allowed for that recognition was
nonexistent.

>
> We can see how both personal/economic need and cultural supports would
> enable these skills to be developed on the basis of observation,
> comparison, salience etc. We don't need to relate each one of them to a
> specialised intelligence.

Well if you do not "recognize" the intelligence, then how do you develop
it? If you deny it exists, how do you develop it?

>
> But to return to what I said in my first post, I do think that Gardner's
> theory helps us teachers to realise that individuals have their own
> profiles with some strengths and weaknesses and that concepts need to be
> introduced and reinforced through a number of different channels. It also
> helps us to recognise the pure variety of these strengths, and make things
> like good communication skills more 'respectable' by giving them the name
> 'intelligence'.

Laugh. well Sue, you've given a nice summary to what I've just been
introduced to... but I do believe there's more than "respectability" or
credibility involved in naming these intelligences. If they are not
recognized, how can teachers develop the intelligence? How can
individuals recognizew and master these intelligences? I think naming is
essential here.

take care,
Ann

--
It is our duty to proceed as though the limits of our abilities do not exist.
        - Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

***
The Red Hibiscus   http://theredhibiscus.blogspirit.com/

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