Diorama’s are a great activity that is used more often in primary school than secondary school. I think this is unfortunate especially for those students who have a kinesthetic multiple intelligence learning style or a spatial multiple intelligence learning style. Doing hands on activities might take a little longer to do but the time it takes can be decreased if materials are prepared ahead of time and are limited. I believe that supplies should be limited to necessities because many students will preoccupy themselves with making it “pretty” or “cool”. Students need to be focused on showing the content in the scene not decorating.
Activities like a diorama are a great way to bring the multiple intelligence learning styles into a classroom. The following are used for a diorama activity:
- Kinesthetic Multiple Intelligence Learning Style
- Linguistic Multiple Intelligence Learning Style
- Spatial Multiple Intelligence Learning Style
- Intrapersonal Multiple Intelligence Learning Style
- Interpersonal Multiple Intelligence Learning Style
A diorama is a hands on activity. They literally have to be built. If the supplies are limited and the directions clear and concise it could be a magnificent activity for a student diagnosed with ADHD because it allows them to move. On the other hand if the supplies are endless or have to be foraged for and or the directions are unclear, it would be disastrous for students diagnosed with ADHD. Students who are labeled ADHD do often have the kinesthetic multiple intelligence learning style because of their need for movement.
Another multiple intelligence learning style that is used in a diorama is the spatial multiple intelligence learning style. The spatial multiple intelligence learning style has to do with visuals. The spatial multiple intelligence learning styleis sometimes called visual learning style. A diorama serves as a scene. As they build, the scene comes to life. Before they build it they need to visualize what they want it to look like.
Teachers can bring in the linguistic multiple intelligence learning style by expanding the diorama activityto include an oral or written description of the scene. If time is a concern, oral will be faster. If you don’t think you will have enough time to listen to each group, you can have cameras set up that can record their oral description.
Dioramas can be done either individually, intrapersonal multiple intelligence learning style, or with a partner, interpersonal multiple intelligence learning style. I do not recommend doing this as a group activity of more than 3 because there will be too many students not actively engaged in the project.
Teachers can differentiate instruction for this project in two ways. The first is to offer other activities as an alternate that use the other original multiple intelligence learning styles from Dr. Howard Gardner. These would be musical and logical-mathematical multiple intelligence learning styles. A teacher can then allow their students to choose which one interests them the most. Another way to differentiate instruction for this activity is to allow students to choose how they would like to work. They can choose to work individually, with a partner or with a group. If teachers allow these choices to be made the day before, then:
- the students look forward to the next day.
- the students have more ownership in their education.
- it allows the teacher enough time to run copies and get materials ready.
- it allows the teacher to group students within their choices but with the appropriate people to get the best outcome.
http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Kasha-Mastrodomenico offers more than 50 activity templates with rubrics, like the diorama above, that can help teachers differentiate instruction using the multiple intelligence learning styles. Check it out! If you are only interested in the diorama activity with a rubric you can click here. You can also get advice from Kasha Mastrodomenico by connecting with her on Linkedin.com.