With School ending and Summer upon us, I feel compelled to touch on the very important Intelligence from the MI model – Bodily/Kinesthetic. As it sounds, the BK Intelligence centers on physical activity, coordinated hand-eye activities and basically spending time moving.

Nowadays, there are so many reports of obesity in children and it makes sense if you consider all the distractions that kids have available in today’s society – game systems, television, and generally boredom. Depending on where you live, the weather is going to dictate how much time your children can/should spend outdoors, but one thing is universal…kids NEED time to play outdoors. We refer to this as Active Play!

Active Play = Bodily/Kinesthetic Intelligence

In the Gardner MI model, the Bodily-Kinesthetic (BK) Intelligence is defined as follows:

The core elements of the bodily-kinesthetic intelligence are control of one’s bodily motions and capacity to handle objects skillfully. This intelligence also includes a sense of timing, a clear sense of the goal of a physical action, along with the ability to train responses so they become like reflexes. Along with these, you often find a high degree of fine-motor control and a gift for using whole body motions.

Children with seemingly natural athletic abilities most probably have a predisposition towards the BK Intelligence, but that doesn’t mean BK is theirs exclusively. Most children have mounds of nervous energy that can only be satisfied by “letting them run around”, but your child may actually learn better when they are in motion. It is possible, in cases like those that a child may be tagged as having an attention deficit disorder, or hyperactive disorder simply because they are unable to learn effectively without moving. While I’m not trying to say that all children with ADHD or the like are simply misunderstood BK-oriented kids, it should be a consideration that parents explore with their children and teachers.

That said, let’s focus on how to cultivate the BK intelligence by a method we refer to as Active Play.

Active Play is a great way to get your children moving and the earlier your child begins to enjoy physical activity the more likely they are to remain physically active throughout their lives. We cannot stress this point enough. If you, as a parent, are a couch potato, it should come as no surprise when your child becomes one as well. Now, I’m not trying to be critical of anyone, I enjoy vegging in front of the TV just as much as the next guy, but the best way to keep your kids active is to get active with them.

For the young child (under 1) the Time to Play Activity Table is great for engaging them as well as helping them stand and balance while playing. Another great toy is the Baby Activity Pool, perfectly sized for young kids allowing them to enjoy splashing around on a hot summer day. Another great choice for all ages is the Mondo Glitter and Magic Gertie Balls. These balls can be great fun for parent and child alike as your child learns to roll a ball, grip and throw and running to get the ball.

As kids get a little older, your choices really open up. We have some great Active Play and Water Play options for kids 3 and up. In the Active Play arena there are solitary and group choices.

Water Play all Summer long…

Ok, getting the kids outside is important, but it’s SUMMER…that means for most of us, it’s HOT! No worries, WonderBrains has plenty of Water Play toys as well that help them stay cool while they enjoy the great outdoors.

We’ve covered Active and Water Play toys and one might think that about covers all your Summertime needs, but in our next article – Summertime Part 2 – we’ll cover some toy options for those traveling this summer, as well as some other toy options for the Spatial Child.

Until then, we hope you have a WonderFUL time and enjoy the summer!!