The Power of Neurodiversity: Chapter 7 – Thomas Armstrong

Chapter 7: The Rainbow of Intelligences.

One thing that struck me the most as I read this chapter, was that over time, an instrument can be used so differently from the original intention of the creator. In this case, the IQ test.

Henry Goddard, had a totally different working idea of intelligence (IQ representing a single innate entity that can not be changed through training) from Alfred Binet (students can improve their performance through further development and learning).  The origins of the IQ test, began as a quest to find a way to identify and help students in need. This was then taken after William Stern gave the test scores, by Goddard and Terman, to be used not to provide help to those that need it, but as a tool to justify labeling people into various groupings, with its implied stereotypes that came with each grouping. In other words, reading this part of Armstrong’s chapter, reminds me again how important it is to also consider the context, beliefs and historical situations under which concepts and psychological tools are created, definitions and assumptions used when such tools are created. Over time, has any of those components changed and if so how it changed and how the change/s now affects the results of such a tool.

Question to the author: Can you discuss how Howard Gardner’s multiple intelligences, affects our current education system in terms of curriculum differentiation between different groups of students? How do we incorporate Gardner’s multiple intelligences into our education system? 

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