1. Likes and strengths

Time to complete 1. Likes and strengths: 60 min

Year level: Pre-Primary


Students explore activities in each of Gardiner's Intelligences to determine what they enjoy and what their strengths are.

Learning focus

Personal strengths of individuals.


Key understandings

enlightenedEverybody has different things they are good at (strengths)

enlightenedWe often become good at something because we enjoy doing it (and the more we do it, the better we become at it). 

enlightenedWe should celebrate our own strengths and the strengths of others.


  • 8 stations set up with one activity from each of the following areas (Gardiner's Intelligences):
    • Words: play a rhyming word game; listen to a story being read; tell a partner a story about when they were good at something.

    • Logic/Maths: make or follow patterns with beads or blocks; gather, sort and organise a collection of buttons or markers.

    • Space/Vision: turn a doodle into a picture; complete a puzzle.

    • Body movement: complete a short obstacle course; cut along the lines or colour within the edges of a picture.

    • Music: use a small drum to repeat simple rhythms; play simple tunes on a xylophone; hum a simple melody back.

    • Nature: use a magnifying glass to study an insect, shell or flower; collect and categorise natural objects, e.g. rocks, leaves, flowers.

    • People: dress up in the Home Corner and think up a story that includes everyone; build a pyramid with plastic cups as a group.

    • Self: listen to a piece of music in headphones and doodle on a piece of paper whilst listening to the music to show how it makes you feel.

  • 8 pieces of paper for students to record if they feel smileyindecisionsad about each activity.

General capabilities

No General Capabilities values have been selected.

Health and physical education(P)

Personal, social and community health

This strand will develop students' knowledge, understanding and skills to support a positive sense of self, to effectively respond to life events and transitions and to engage in their learning. Effective communication, decision-making and goal-setting skills are integral to this strand as they help to establish and maintain relationships in family, school, peer group and community settings, support healthy and safer behaviours, and enable advocacy. Students will source and examine a range of health information, products, services and policies, and evaluate their impact on individual and community health and safety.

Relationships and sexuality

Mental health and wellbeing

Blooms revised taxonomy

No Blooms values have been selected.

Inquiry learning phase

No Inquiry Learning phase values have been selected.

Before you get started

  • The purpose of this activity is to assist students to identify their personal strengths, not to highlight their limitations.

  • Students should be encouraged to identify and describe their own and others' strengths from a basis of persistence and resilience with the focus being on personal achievement.

  • Gardner’s Multiple Intelligence Theory suggests intelligence has specific components rather than a single general ability. Gardner opposes the idea of labelling learners to a specific intelligence, rather that each individual possesses a unique blend of all the intelligences. 

  • Resilience and emotional wellbeing are important concepts to teach in the early childhood years as this is when younger students may need support to identify their own personal strengths. 

  • Read Background teacher notes:

Learning activities

Group agreement

Time to complete Group agreement: 5 min

yes Teaching tip: group agreement must be established before any RSE program begins to ensure a safe learning environment. Read Essential information: Establishing a group agreement for tips on how to create one and what to include.

  1. Revise the class group agreement.

Likes and dislikes

Time to complete Likes and dislikes: 10 min

  1. Show the students each of the eight stations. As you describe the activities ask the students the following questions.

    1. laughAsk:

❓ Words: Who likes reading stories? Who likes writing words?

❓ Logic/Maths: Who likes playing card games or adding up numbers?

❓ Space/Vision: Who is good at remembering things they have seen?

❓ Body movement: Who likes running and jumping?

❓ Music: Who likes singing or dancing to music?

❓ Nature: Who likes watching nature shows on TV or collecting insects?

❓ People: Who likes organising games to play with your friends?

❓ Self: Who likes setting a goal like saving up pocket money to buy something you really want?  

  1. laugh Ask the students to:

    • Point to the activity you think you will like the best.

    • Point to the activity you think you will like the least.

    • Point to the activity you think you will be the best at.

    • Point to the activity you think you will find the hardest.

    • Tell a partner which activity you think they will be they best at.

Gardiner's Intelligences stations

Time to complete Gardiner's Intelligences stations: 30 min

  1. Allow time for students to explore each of the 8 activities. This may be divided into two sessions with students exploring 3/4 activities in each session. The Words station could be a group shared reading session to break up the two sessions.

  2. Have students decide whether they liked smiley, didn’t like sad or were unsure indecision about each activity. This can be recorded on a sheet placed at each station, students can write their name and smileyindecisionsad next to their name. 


Time to complete Strengths: 10 min

  1. laugh Discuss:

❓ Which activities did you put a smiley for? 

❓ Why did you like those activities?

(model and emphasise feeling words such as happy, enjoyment, fun, good at, and strength, to help students explain why they potentially liked those activities)

❓ Which activities did you put a sad for? 

❓ Why didn't you like those activities?

(model and emphasise feeling words such as confused, OK, sad, angry, frustrated, not good at, challenging, boring and explain that these may be things that they are not so strong in)

❓ Which activities were you best at?

❓ Are the activities you were best at the activities you liked the same? Why do you think that is?

  1. laugh Explain:

"Something we are good at can be called a 'strength'.

Everyone is good at something. Everyone has strengths.

Tell your partner what some of your strengths are.

Tell your partner what you think some of their strengths are."

  1. laugh Ask:

❓ What are some ways that you can work out what your strengths are? 

 (listening to feedback from others; looking at what you really like doing; comparing yourself to others in this area)

❓ Why is it good for people to have different strengths?

 (to do different jobs - fix cars, nurse, teacher; to make a good team - batter/bowler; to get to learn from other people; etc)  


Time to complete Reflection: 5 min

  1. Ask students to draw a picture of their strength or strengths.

  2. Display in the classroom - students can add to their drawing as they discover new strengths throughout the year.

Take home activity

Have students take their drawing home and ask their family to add more of their strengths to the picture to bring back and share with the class in a display.