Naturalistic intelligence: How to apply it in the classroom
27 de February de 2024

If you’ve been following us for a while, you’ll know that we’ve been dedicating several blog posts to analysing the different intelligences that are part of Howard Gardner’s Theory of Multiple Intelligences. Some of the ones we’ve talked about before are interpersonal intelligence, linguistic intelligence, and spatial intelligence, among others. We encourage you to take a look at these posts! But before that, stay to read today’s post, where we’ll explain everything you need to know about naturalistic intelligence.

You’ll discover what naturalistic intelligence is, the advantages of working with it in the classroom, and how you can do it. Ready? Let’s get started!

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What is naturalistic intelligence and what characterises it?

Naturalistic intelligence is one of the intelligences proposed by Howard Gardner in his theory of multiple intelligences. This theory holds that there is not a single type of intelligence, but rather several types that people can develop to a greater or lesser degree.

Naturalistic intelligence is the ability that people have to relate to nature and the environment, as well as to observe nature, identify and classify living beings, understand natural processes, etc.

The characteristics of people who have developed naturalistic intelligence are as follows:

  • They are more sensitive to the environment: they are able to appreciate the beauty of nature and understand the importance of its care.
  • They have a high capacity for observation: they are people who pay close attention to their surroundings and are able to detect details that may normally go unnoticed by others.
  • They are concerned about the environment: they are concerned about the environment and enjoy being in contact with natural environments, whether it’s going for walks in nature, visiting parks, etc.
  • They have the ability to identify and classify living beings such as plants and animals.
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Advantages of working with naturalistic intelligence in the classroom

Whether you teach a subject related to the natural world (such as Biology or Natural Sciences) or not, working with naturalistic intelligence in the classroom has many advantages for your students:

  • It fosters respect for and care of the environment.
  • It develops critical thinking and problem-solving skills.
  • It promotes detailed and careful observation of the natural environment.
  • It improves emotional well-being.
  • It increases empathy for animals and plants.
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Ideas for working with naturalistic intelligence in the classroom

You may be thinking that you already understand the concept, and you just need to know how to apply this type of intelligence in the classroom. Don’t worry, because we’ll explain some ideas below that will inspire you:

  1. Take outdoors trips

A good way to develop your students’ naturalistic intelligence is to take trips to natural environments, such as fields, farms, parks, etc. Your students will be able to come into contact with nature and animals, learning to appreciate them. There’s probably a natural park or forest near your school, or even a farm where they can have contact with animals.
If your school needs to manage permissions from families for these excursions, you can explore the functionality of authorizations and forms, included in the Additio for Schools plan. With this functionality, families can fill out forms, even with digital signatures.

  1. Carry out class projects related to nature

Especially in subjects such as Biology or Natural Sciences, carrying out class projects related to nature is one of the most direct ways to develop your students’ naturalistic intelligence.

Some ideas are:

  • Make a quiz in Additio App where students have to identify and classify trees.
  • Create a didactic unit where your students have to collect flowers and dry leaves (this can be useful for Art classes).
  • Evaluate an infographic on the water cycle using rubrics in Additio App. If you also want to involve your students in their own learning and that of their peers, you can evaluate with self-assessment and peer assessment rubrics.
  1. Take care of a school garden

In recent years, taking care of a school garden has become a common activity in many educational centres. This helps students develop their naturalistic intelligence while also developing responsibility and teamwork skills.
If you want more information about school gardens, take a look at this post we made.

  1. Align your class activities with the SDGs related to the environment

Did you know that with Additio App you can link your didactic units with the 17 SDGs? That way, you can indicate which SDGs you work on in each didactic unit. Therefore, we encourage you to create activities that are linked to the SDGs related to the environment, such as clean water and sanitation, affordable and clean energy, or life below water, among others.

Image by Dids . on Pexels

How would you apply it in class?

After all we’ve told you, we want to ask you: What subject or subjects do you teach? How would you apply naturalistic intelligence in your classes to help your students develop it? Do you think your students have developed this type of intelligence?

As always, we’re listening to you on social media: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Youtube.

Remember that if you want to keep track of all the activities you do on naturalistic intelligence, you can do so comfortably and easily with Additio App. You’ll be able to have your digital gradebook, create rubrics, make interactive quizzes, create didactic units… Do you think it fits your needs? Get your free license and boost your teaching!

See you in the next post!

Related posts
Spatial intelligence in the classroom: what is it and how to develop it?
Interpersonal intelligence: what is it and how to develop it in the classroom?
Kinesthetic-bodily intelligence: all the keys to developing it in class
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