Welcome back as we continue discussing how Howard Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences apply to learning in children’s outdoor play areas. Another intelligence that can be encouraged and can flourish on the preschool playground is the logical-mathematical intelligence. This intelligence has to do with the ability to problem solve, investigate, use reason and logic, and think critically.
To encourage children to use and develop their logical-mathematical intelligence outdoors on the preschool playground, try some science and math activities. Experiment with water play, investigate different types of plants, observe bugs and animals, or use natural loose parts such as sticks and pinecones to build.
As far as math activities on the preschool playground, rocks and gravel make great outdoor learning equipment. Children naturally sort and make patterns with rocks and gravel. Try counting, weighing, arranging, and making new patterns with small rocks. Sort them into “big” and “small” piles, arrange them from biggest to smallest, count the rocks and put them into groups of five, use a scale to see which rocks weigh more, there are so many possibilities!
To learn more about what children are learning when they play with gravel, visit http://adventurouschild.com/truck-pit.php to read about our Truck Pit, which is filled with pea gravel.
Smith, Mark K. (2002, 2008) “Howard Gardner and Multiple Intelligences,” The Encyclopedia of Informal Education, http://www.infed.org/thinkers/gardner.htm.