Engaging 6th grade students with mathematics by using multiple intelligence theory
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Mathematics is a source of fear for many students and many struggle while learning mathematics. Most believe that they do not have the ability to learn mathematics and this perception decreases their motivation. The relationship between teaching and learning mathematics has been improved by integrating various approaches into the mathematics lessons. By 2000s, multiple intelligence theory was taken into consideration as one such approach in Turkey. This study aimed to explore whether there was a correlation between 6th grade students’ multiple intelligence types and their preferences of components of math lessons addressing multiple intelligence theory. The study was completed with fourteen 6th grade students with ages ranging from 11- 13 years at Ankara Bilkent Laboratory and International School, Turkey. In the first session of the study, students’ multiple intelligence types were identified by administering a multiple intelligence survey. Then several mathematics lesson activities based on multiple intelligence theory were implemented during 2 math lessons in block schedule to discover students’ preferences of learning mathematics. In the next session students were expected to describe how their learning was affected by classroom activities based on the multiple intelligence theory. Students reflected on which activities they liked and which activities were most effective by rating the activities in the given reflection forms. Students’ reflections and their personal intelligence types were correlated. It was found that bodily-kinesthetic intelligence was rated to be the most dominant intelligence among the participating 6th grade students. However, lesson activities addressing linguistic and mathematical-logical intelligences correlated highest with students’ mathematical learning.
multiple intelligence theory
alternative methods for teaching mathematics