The world is changing fast and with that, the aspirations of parents are changing even faster. Now-a-days there is an information overload and the parents do not want their child to lag behind in any field. The options, as well as the institutions, are so many, that we are spoilt for choice.
We want our child to excel in studies, oration activities, art and craft, outdoor sports, indoor sports, and so on and so forth. The children are running from one institute to another to gain excellence in every field. By the end of the day, they are dead tired. In this process these kinds are losing out their childhood which we, as an adult still cherish.
What to do! How to do! These are the general queries of parents when they come across such questions. This is the time when one needs to know the meaning of the term individual differences. Individual differences refer to the ways in which individuals of the same age are different from one another.
Why do we need to know about individual difference! This is really an interesting question. If we want to save our child from becoming a Ginny pig, not only do we need to understand this term better but also its gravity.
Intelligence in general, consists of ability to solve problems, that is, to deal with situations that are new to the person, as against merely carrying out well-practiced response to familiar situations. It consists of grasping the essentials in a given situation and responding appropriately to them. However, intelligence is not limited to this. It diversifies further into different kind of intelligence.
There have been detailed studies carried out by various psychologists on this topic resulting in various theories. The most important and popular theory in this context is that of Howard Gardner. Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences helps us to indentify the capabilities of our child in a significant way and channelize their efforts in desired direction.
In the year 1983, Howard Gardner came up with the theory of multiple intelligences. According to him there are 8 different kinds of intelligences:-
(i) Linguistic intelligence: A child is “word smart” if he/she has the ability to use language effectively. They tend to become poets, writers, authors, orators, journalists, etc;
(ii) Musical intelligence: A child is “music smart” if he/she has the ability for creating rhythm. They tend to become singers, composers, lyricists, musicians, etc;
(iii) Logical – mathematical intelligence: A child is “number, reasoning, smart” if he/she has the ability to reason logically, especially in mathematics and science. They tend to become scientists, mathematicians, physicists, etc;
(iv) Spatial intelligence: A child is “picture smart” if he/she thinks in pictures and has the ability to notice details of what one sees and able to imagine and `manipulate’ visual objects in one’s mind. They tend to become painters, sculptures, pilots, Engineers, surgeons, navigators etc;
(v) Bodily – Kinesthetic intelligence: A child is “Body smart” if he/she has the ability to use one body skillfully in terms of movement. They tend to become dancers, gymnasts, athletes, surgeons, etc;
(vi) Intrapersonal intelligence: A child is “Self smart” if he/she has the understanding of self as well as knowledge of one’s own feelings, emotions and desires. They tend to become novelists, counselors, therapists, etc;
(vii) Interpersonal intelligence: A child is “People smart” if he/she has the ability to notice subtle aspects of other people’s behavior and better understanding of others. They tend to become politicians, teachers, salesman, etc;
(viii) Naturalist intelligence: A child is “Nature smart” if he/she has the ability to recognize and classify varieties of flora-fauna and wildlife with ease. They tend to become agriculturists, farmers, botanists, tourists, etc.
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There may be correlation or connection between different intelligence. Intelligence is to some extent an inherited characteristic; at the same time it is becoming increasingly clear that environment also has a significant effect.
You must have noticed that there are certain children who are in constant motion, some children learn quickly with the help of pictures, some children like to stroll as they learn. Most of the times, they are not doing all this to irritate you. Instead, they are trying to follow the natural impulse of their body in order to make their learning easier.
All this is because of the existence of different kinds of intelligence. Some children may even have more than one kind of intelligence. This is the reason why a teacher tries to involve maximum senses of a child to achieve better learning outcome.
Also Read :- Know Your Child Better by Jean Piaget Theory
In the context of above-stated theory, it becomes your responsibility as a parent to channelize the energy of the child in right direction and not to force anything and everything as per your interest and desire. In order to make your work easier, there are various psychological tests that help you to find out the interest or inclination of the child.
Let your children bloom naturally and do not try to turn into what they are not meant to be. Don’t expect a fish to fly and bird to swim. They are best when they do what they are meant to do. All the best!
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