Updated: Aug 9, 2019
In 1983, Howard Gardner, a psychologist at Harvard, forwarded the theory that intelligence is a lot more complex than what we think of when we think of “intelligence.” He speculated, and subsequently researched and published his theory, which has since become validated and accepted. He thought, “I believe there are multiple intelligences, not just logical-spatial (conventionally known as mathematical ability) or linguistic (laymen’s term: language). Actually, I think there are 7 different innate abilities, or intelligences, that should be considered when we speak of intelligence.”
By the late 90s, he had come up with 8. Here they are:
In addition to saying that we’re not looking at the full picture when we talk about “intelligence,” Gardner also said that, unless something is really wrong physically, people are capable of developing multiple intelligences (depending on genetics and their environment).
There’s a mathematician in Canada who proved this to be true when he started questioning why kids hate math. This guy - his name’s Dr. John Mighton - failed math in grade school, suffered through it in high school, went to college to study Drama and then thought about math again. He began to study math on his own, discovered that it made sense to him, and went back to college to get a doctorate in math.
What Dr. Mighton learned form his experience is that math is not a fixed ability or intelligence; with the right teaching methods, it is learned, just like a foreign language. Which it actually is…its own language, that is. So he developed a curriculum called JUMP (Junior Undiscovered Math Prodigies) Math and tested it in inner-city (impoverished) schools with wild success!
But let’s go back to Dr. Gardner and his multiple intelligences. His theory further says that even identical twins will show unique abilities; their genes are the same, but the environment (mom, dad, auntie, cousins, grandparents, teachers) treats them differently, which means that they have different experiences of the world and therefore develop their same genetic potential in different ways!
More recently, another psychologist, this one at Stanford - Carol Dweck - explored the ramifications of innate ability and what it could mean for learning. Her research resulted in what we now call “growth mindset.” She said it doesn’t matter so much what you’re born with; it’s what you do with it that counts. Her theory says that there are two kinds of people: people who have a fixed mindset (“I’m good at hockey; I’ve always been good at hockey; I’m not good at foreign languages.”) and people who have a growth mindset (“I’m curious about things and I will try really hard to understand something that captures my interest.”)
What does all of this mean for you?
A couple of really important things, actually. You should probably remember these names, though: Gardner and Dweck. You’ll come across them again; they studied human behavior so that they could help us to better understand how we’re hard- and soft-wired to learn. Your lesson here is this:
You were born with a blueprint to LEARN and GROW.
What you do with that blueprint is really (really!) up to you.
You are here because you probably have a great deal of kinesthetic intelligence. You probably have a couple of other ancillary intelligences, like intrapersonal and interpersonal. “Intra” is self-knowledge; this is the one that you use when you spend a lot of time with yourself, understanding yourself, how and why you work, and what you want to work on. “Inter” is the intelligence that makes it possible for you to be on a team with other human beings; your social skills. I’m assuming you have these intelligences because you’re working with Hockey Horizons; if you weren’t, you’d probably be taking an easier road. You know yourself better than your non-player peers. You know how to get along with people better than your non-player peers. And probably most important of all, you know your body, what it can do, and how you can control it to give you what you want.
We are here because we want to grow your already-existing potential. This is our job, our purpose, and our passion. The growth of YOU.
Thanks for wanting to be here!