Innovation in ELT
Brookemead Associates Ltd
Educational Publishers
London, UK - San Francisco, USA

QSE & Multiple Intelligences

The theory of Multiple Intelligences, first posited by Dr Howard Gardner in 1983 and modified many times since then, has divided teachers and educators as much as it has brought them together. But this is really a matter of the details. Most educational theorists now agree that the long-established methods of teaching and testing, which only appealed to a learner's linguistic or logical-mathematical intelligences, work well for some students but exclude others whose intelligences are of a different type.

What we have tried to do in QSE is address certain other aspects of the theory, particularly the distinction between interpersonal and intrapersonal intelligences. Students do not always want to interact with each other and provision needs to be made for 'lone' activities as well as pair and group work.

However, we also feel that the notion of bodily-kinaesthetic intelligence is a key factor in language learning and enjoyment of the process. But as these are choices and decisions which are best made by the teacher, activities that involve sharing, moving around to find the answers with other students, participating and mingling have been included in the Teacher's Guides rather than on the pages of the Student's Books.

Auditory learners will find plenty of stimulation in the varied audio (and video at Advanced level) material on the CDs.

Visual learners will find that QSE is lavishly illustrated with photos that make the texts come alive. Most of the photographs are authentic news pictures and there are Picture Notes that describe the back story to many illustrations in the Unit-by-Unit part of the Teacher's Guides.

We have also tried to balance giving teachers and learners what they like, expect and are used to and giving them something new and different, without making them alarmed or uncomfortable. The principles of Accelerated Learning also inform what we write, particularly ideas of multi-sensory teaching and learning and, in particular, how teachers can pay more attention to their students' physical and emotional well-being. Many of these ideas are in the Teacher's Guides rather than on the pages of the Student's Books.