I have never really considered matching theory such as Gardner’s multiple intelligences to the task of selecting literature to read aloud or in advising readers on what to read. I have however, considered deeply elements of curriculum, particularly the reflection of “big idea” concepts through literature. In advising individuals, their interests and developmental characteristics have certainly been considered but without any explicit theoretical framework, just that of passion for literature and children as the individuals they are! I have worked at too showing students how nonfiction texts are structured and read differently. Discussion given to Rosenblatt’s transactional theory brings clarity big time in this regard. I feel I have a vocabulary to apply!
Returning to the idea of “goodness of fit” (literature matching the child matching the developmental level), I need to keep in mind development is about change in all aspects of a child’s life – physical, psychological, and social (biopsychosocial interactions). Again I think the committed TL actively works at this knowledge but certainly the specificity of application to different theorists (extending beyond developmental psychology eg. Gardner) operates to highlight and both broaden and hone. Is it not what education is all about in its essence ? Vgotsky’s zone of proximal development surely relies on an intimate knowledge of individuals and the clues to their challenges and interests such theorists offer – building from the known to the unknown.