Looking back on high school, I'm sure that everyone can fit their fellow classmates into distinct cliques. Some students were geniuses and could solve complex math problems at lightning quick speeds without even needing to use a calculator. Others had no idea what 1+1 equaled, but they made up for that weakness by scoring game winning touchdowns or smashing the baseball out of the park every time they went up to bat. Howard Gardner believed that intelligence was more than just book smarts. He proposed the theory of multiple intelligences which divided intelligence into eight different categories, including logico-mathematical to describe math experts and bodily-kinesthetic to identify athletes. Each person has their own strengths and weaknesses, which shows why some people who are great at math may not be able to throw a baseball more than a foot. Caitlin Upton, a 2007 Miss Teen USA pageant contestant, is a real life example of multiple intelligences.
As part of the Miss Teen USA competition, contestants are asked what they would do to solve serious problems that are currently afflicting the United States. As Caitlin Upton answered her prompt, she continuously repeated the same phrases over and over again, including "such as," and people were left baffled as to what she just said. This shows that Caitlin Upton possibly has weak interpersonal skills because people who possess this characteristic are known for inspiring people with their words. Nevertheless, correlation does not equal causation and a third variable may be involved. Her confusing speech could be due to a fear of speaking in front of big crowds, for example. After doing some research on her, one quickly learns that Caitlin Upton was an honor student and varsity soccer player in high school. As a result, she could be a high scorer in the logico-mathematical, linguistic, and bodily-kinesthetic intelligence categories. Every person has their own unique abilities.
Although it is uncommon for people to score dramatically high in a few intelligence types and low in the remaining ones, people do tend to do better in some categories and worse in others. Multiple intelligences can teach everyone an important lesson: before you judge a person for not being smart in math, for example, remember that they could be the next great musician or athlete.
-Psychology: From Inquiry to Understanding, p. 322