We should not ask, "How smart are you?" but rather, "How are you smart?" This multiple intelligences activity will:
*Be a great back to school activity that allows you to get to know your students and their learning styles!
*Allow students to identify their own "smarts" (learning styles): math smart, word smart, people smart, self smart, music smart, nature smart, art smart, and body smart.
*Teach students more about what it means to be a specific "smart."
*Reinforce basic graphing and labeling skills.
As a great getting to know you and back to school activity, I read my students the book "Ish" by Peter H. Reynolds and we discuss how we all have our strengths and weaknesses. We also discuss how people are smart in different ways.
After reading the book and having a discussion, students take this multiple intelligences survey. Depending on the age of the students, you could have them read it, or read it to them. Each of the 8 sections contains 5 kid friendly statements that the students must either agree or disagree with. Students total the number of statements they agreed with within each section.
Following the survey, students graph the number that each section totaled. After students fill in the graph, the teacher should reveal what each section actually meant! The students then fill in the labels on the bottom of their graph.
Once students see what their highest "smart" or "smarts" are, they are eager to know more! I then pass out a small card giving them more information, such as what skills someone with their "smart" has, what they could grow up to be, and a famous person who is also considered to have that same "smart."
If time allows, I usually let students then meet with other students who share their same "smart" to design a poster for the classroom.
This activity really motivates students at the beginning of the year and reinforces that all students can be successful!
(This document comes in color AND black & white.)
***If you are interested in a great follow-up activity that will allow the students to apply what they have learned about themselves, please visit:
Multiple Intelligences Investigate a Book Menu
***Or to purchase the multiple intelligences bundle which includes the Survey, Graph, and Explanation Cards as well as the Investigate a Book Menu for a discounted price, please visit:
Multiple Intelligences Bundle