Monthly Archives: February 2017

What Can Parents’ Groups Do for Gifted Kids?

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Starting a Parent Group for Gifted Kids can be a daunting task, but the rewards are many. Parent groups should mainly be in support of their children, but a bonus is to be able to support each other. Parenting gifted children can be extremely stressful and lonely. Parents need to know that they don’t have to re-invent the wheel. Parent groups can assist teachers and schools; such as coaching academic competitions, leading after-school programs.

The structure of the group (local, online, blended)  can have an affect on the gifted children of its members. Parent group structure should be matched to the needs of the local area; ie, rural schools might prefer face-to-face meetings while urban areas might find online meetings more convenient. Certain activities undertaken by parent groups might dictate group structure; fundraising, competitions, or extracurricular activities. Online structures can provide special opportunities for gifted kids to participate in global activities; make new friends.

How can parents combine building support for a new parent group and providing options for their children? Weekend and extracurricular activities for kids provide great networking opportunities for parents. Parents can volunteer to act as coaches and judges on school teams while getting to know other parents of gifted kids.

Most gifted parent groups initially start as support groups, but evolve into advocacy groups as children’s needs are realized. Parent groups need to collaborate with school committees, advisory boards and other parent groups to develop advocacy.

There are many activities that parent groups of gifted kids can support. They can help start clubs (ex.: chess)and set-up Super Saturdays for kids to meet peers and have fun. Parent groups can provide coaches for groups such as Destination Imagination, Lego First Leagues, and Odyssey of the Mind.

Where can parent groups find support and information from state and national organizations? Most states have gifted organizations that can be found via a Google search. Some national groups include the NAGC, SENG, and Gifted Homeschoolers Forum in the U.S. and Potential Plus UK in the UK.

Ultimately, parents groups for gifted kids benefit all stakeholders – the student, the parents, and the school. It’s a lot of work, but well worth it. A transcript of this chat may be found at Storify.

Global #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented  is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Tuesdays at 8E/7C/6M/5P in the U.S. and Wednesdays at 14.00 NZST/12.00 AEST/1.00 UK  to discuss current topics in the gifted community and meet experts in the field. Transcripts of our weekly chats can be found at Storify. Our Facebook Page provides information on the chat and news & information regarding the gifted community. Also, checkout our Pinterest Page and Playlist on YouTube.

Head Shot 2014-07-14  About the author: Lisa Conrad is the Moderator of Global #gtchat Powered        by TAGT and Social Media Manager of the Global #gtchat Community. She is a longtime  advocate for gifted children and also blogs at  Gifted Parenting Support. Lisa can be contacted at: gtchatmod@gmail.com

Links:

Ten Suggestions for Parents of Gifted Children (pdf)

Starting & Sustaining a Parent Group to Support Gifted Children (pdf)

Effective Advocates: Find “Kindred Spirits”

Meeting Needs of High Ability & High Potential Learners in Middle Grades (pdf)

High-Potential Students Thrive when School Districts Develop Sustainable Gifted Services

Care & Feeding of Gifted Parent Groups: Guide for Gifted Coordinators, Teachers & Parent Advocates (pdf)

Gifted Parent Groups: The SENG Model

The Value of Parent Support Groups

Power in Numbers: How Gifted Advocacy Parent Groups Can Help You & Your Kids

Dear Gifted Parent: A Letter from an Educator

SMPGs: The Heart of SENG

Starting a Gifted Parent Group

Starting a Gifted Parents’ Group

Frisco Gifted Association

Gifted Minds Prosper

Cybraryman’s Parent Involvement Page

Cybraryman’s Gifted and Talented Page

UT High School GT Professional Development

NAGC

SENG

TAGT

Gifted Homeschoolers Forum

Start a Support Group for Parents of Gifted Kids

NAGC’s 2014-2015 State of the States in Gifted Education

Gifted Family Travel

Parent Resources from TAGT:

Parent Support Groups

Parent Resource Page

Parent Support Groups in Texas

 

Photo courtesy of Pixabay   CC0 Public Domain

Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.

Extending Student Voice to Gifted Students

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Accepting input from students concerning their education has become an important part of moving education forward today. Student voice isn’t necessarily spontaneous, and may need to be nurtured in students. It can be nurtured by creating positive student-teacher relationships. Student voice ‘doesn’t need adults to agree with it, incite it, define it, or appreciate it’. (Soundout.org) Student voice acknowledges and values what students are saying. It can empower students to become engaged in their learning and life.

“Student voice is empowering students to take charge of their education. It is powerful self-reflection. It motivates learning.” ~ CW Gifted Teacher

The role played by ‘respect’ when implementing student voice can’t be underestimated. When teachers listen to students, they show that what the student says is important; it shows respect. Respect is, however, a two-way street and student voice encourages all parties to listen and to value each other.

“Students need to know that what they have to say doesn’t need to be moderated or edited. Acknowledge their voice and respect by letting it go out into the wild without moderating or criticizing.” ~ Kimberley Moran, Education Writer and GT Teacher

In what way can student voice be promoted and improved in the classroom and schools? It can be promoted by taking time to welcome feedback through surveys and  by allowing students a say in classroom routines which can encourage them to provide their voice in class. Schools can improve the richness of student voice by actively responding to student concerns and suggestions.

Each student is unique and their ability, once identified, can play a significant role in how they express themselves. Higher-order thinking and deeper understanding of their environment can enhance a gifted student’s voice.

Yet, the question remains; how much voice should gifted students have in their educational options? Gifted students often have more options to consider and their voice plays an implicit and necessary role. It may not be about how much, but rather enough voice that they understand their investment in the process.

Student voice is a valuable concept in education today and must be acknowledged by teachers and administrators. It can reap rewards both in the classroom and for the student’s personal development. A transcript of this chat may be found at Storify.

Global #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented  is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Tuesdays at 8E/7C/6M/5P in the U.S. and Wednesdays at 14.00 NZST/12.00 AEST/1.00 UK  to discuss current topics in the gifted community and meet experts in the field. Transcripts of our weekly chats can be found at Storify. Our Facebook Page provides information on the chat and news & information regarding the gifted community. Also, checkout our Pinterest Page and Playlist on YouTube.

Head Shot 2014-07-14  About the author: Lisa Conrad is the Moderator of Global #gtchat Powered        by TAGT and Social Media Manager of the Global #gtchat Community. She is a longtime  advocate for gifted children and also blogs at  Gifted Parenting Support. Lisa can be contacted at: gtchatmod@gmail.com

Links:

Sound Out

Activating Student Voice Empowers Learning (pdf)

Student-Centered Learning with a Learning Platform (pdf)

School Voice Report 2016 (pdf)

Successful Education Requires a Stronger Student Voice

Three Ways Student Voice Can Elevate Motivation and Engagement

Motivation, Engagement & Student Voice (pdf)

Motivation, Engagement & Student Voice Toolkit (pdf)

A Model for Student Voice

How to Use Student Voice to Improve Engagement

Student Engagement and Vision

Student Gets ‘Seat at the Table’ on School’s Decision-Making Council 

Do You Know Me? The Voice of a Disgruntled Student in a Boring Class

Student Voice: Inspiring and Empowering Students to Take Charge of their Education 

Cybraryman’s Student Voice Page

Cybraryman’s What Students Want Page

Photo courtesy of Pixabay   CC0 Public Domain

Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.

How Does Full Inclusion Affect Gifted Students?

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Full inclusion places all ability levels in one classroom. It expects a teacher to be responsible for all children; regardless of ability or behaviors. Todd Kettler, assistant professor at UNT, explained, “Full inclusion makes big assumptions about curriculum and instruction in order to be effective for all learners. I’m not a fan of full inclusion. I recommend flexible grouping based on ability and interest with a modified curriculum. Well designed curriculum, trained and qualified teachers, and grouping will lead to the highest achievement for GT students.”

Full inclusion is very popular in education generally today. It is a real boon for strained budgets. Many administrators believe inclusion is the only appropriate approach to equity in education for all students.

How does inclusion impact gifted kids? Do other students really see them as role models? Far too often, gifted kids are relegated to the back of the room reading while other students learn material new to them. Rather than being role models, gifted students become the subject of ridicule or bullying. It can create lasting scars. Dr. Gail Post expressed that inclusion’s impact on gifted kids is “rarely positive – they have to fit in, dumb down, wait for others to catch up, and manage boredom. [It’s a] huge myth that at-risk kids will see them as role models – if anything, the situation will evoke envy and possible bullying.”

Professional development for teachers may sometimes compensate for classroom attitudes toward gifted students. It can go a long way is shaping attitudes; but more may be needed to change preconceived notions about gifted students. The core of education should always be to create empathy for one’s subject matter; with learning comes understanding. Jonathan Bolding, a MS G/T educator and 2015-16 NAGC Javits-Frasier Scholar in TN, pointed out, “PD for teachers is only part of the equation. Follow-up on fidelity of implementation, leadership support, and whole school buy-in” are also necessary.

Does removing gifted students from a classroom negatively impact the rest of the class? More often, the removal of gifted students from a classroom may have a positive effect. Removing them can allow teachers more time to work with other students who need their assistance.

Can differentiation of the curriculum really meet the academic needs of gifted students? It is dependent on the quality of professional development provided to classroom teachers. Differentiation may meet the needs of some students, but rarely the needs of highly-abled students. Jo Freitag, coordinator of Gifted Resources and author at Sprite’s Site in Australia, told us, “Differentiation is only effective if each student receives their required level of depth and pace; however extreme.” A transcript of this chat may be found at Storify.

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Global #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented  is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Tuesdays at 8E/7C/6M/5P in the U.S. and Wednesdays at 14.00 NZST/12.00 AEST/1.00 UK  to discuss current topics in the gifted community and meet experts in the field. Transcripts of our weekly chats can be found at Storify. Our Facebook Page provides information on the chat and news & information regarding the gifted community. Also, checkout our Pinterest Page and Playlist on YouTube.

Head Shot 2014-07-14  About the author: Lisa Conrad is the Moderator of Global #gtchat Powered        by TAGT and Social Media Manager of the Global #gtchat Community. She is a longtime  advocate for gifted children and also blogs at  Gifted Parenting Support. Lisa can be contacted at: gtchatmod@gmail.com

Links:

Educating Gifted Ss in Regular Classroom: Efficacy, Attitudes & Differentiation of Instruction (pdf)

Gifted Students and Inclusion

Teaching Young Gifted Children in the Regular Classroom (pdf)

Teaching Young Gifted Children in the Regular Classroom (Amazon)

Toward More Research on Effective Practices w/Gifted Students in Gen-Ed Settings (pdf)

Highly Gifted Children in Full Inclusion Classrooms

Maximizing Gifted Students’ Potential In The 21st Century

Gifted Programs: Is Inclusion the Answer?

Six Strategies for Challenging Gifted Learners

Differentiation in Key Learning Areas for Gifted Students in Regular Classes (pdf)

The Gifted Child and the Inclusive Classroom (pdf)

What the Research Says about Gifted Learners

Cybraryman’s Inclusion Page

Sprite’s Site: De Bono’s 6 Action Shoes 9: One Size Shoe Cover System

Photo courtesy of Pixabay    CC0 Public Domain

Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.

Inspiring Self-Efficacy in Gifted Kids

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Self-efficacy is a psychological construct attributed to Dr. Albert Bandura and is considered one of the most important developments in psychology as it encompasses motivation, learning, self-regulation, and human accomplishment. It is broadly defined as one’s internal belief about how their ability impacts events affecting their life.

Self-efficacy beliefs form through mastery experience, vicarious experience, verbal persuasions, and physiological cues. The most influential source of self-efficacy is considering one’s own performance. Confidence follows past performance and influences future behavior in developing one’s self-efficacy.

The idea of educating gifted children with academic peers may be one way to develop self-efficacy beliefs. Children are always comparing themselves to other children. Easy comparisons can make for overestimating one’s own ability. Peer comparisons resulting from ability grouping can be detrimental to self-efficacy of less-able age-mates.

Mastery-based learning can have a strong influence in the development self-efficacy as well. Mastery experience is the prime factor in developing self-efficacy and necessary to positive outcomes when viewing ‘self’. Mastery-based learning is how children determine what they’re good at and how they define potential personal success.

Self-efficacy beliefs can have motivational consequences. Belief in what one has accomplished influences future choices and provides inspiration for future success. A sense of competence can motivate a student to attempt more difficult tasks and consider them as challenges. The existence of high self-efficacy is usually accompanied by feelings of calm when faced with tough tasks.

What are the implications for teachers in teaching self-efficacy in schools? Teachers need to take seriously the importance of nurturing self-efficacy and how it can have beneficial or destructive influence in a student’s life. Teachers are often first academic role model for students and can empower self-assurance or diminish a student’s self-efficacy. Young students need guidance on self-appraisal as they rely on adult assessment to create judgement of their own capabilities. Teachers can ensure robust self-efficacy for students by providing appropriately challenging and meaningful work. For more from this chat, a  transcript may be found at Storify.

Global #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented  is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Tuesdays at 8E/7C/6M/5P in the U.S. and Wednesdays at 14.00 NZST/12.00 AEST/1.00 UK  to discuss current topics in the gifted community and meet experts in the field. Transcripts of our weekly chats can be found at Storify. Our Facebook Page provides information on the chat and news & information regarding the gifted community. Also, checkout our Pinterest Page and Playlist on YouTube.

Head Shot 2014-07-14  About the author: Lisa Conrad is the Moderator of Global #gtchat Powered        by TAGT and Social Media Manager of the Global #gtchat Community. She is a longtime  advocate for gifted children and also blogs at  Gifted Parenting Support. Lisa can be contacted at: gtchatmod@gmail.com

 

Links:

An Introduction to Self-Efficacy

What Influences Self-Efficacy?

Self-Efficacy Theory: Sources of Self-Efficacy Beliefs

Self-Efficacy Beliefs of Adolescents (Adolescence and Education) (Amazon)

Self-efficacy: Toward a Unifying Theory of Behavioral Change (pdf)

4 Ways to Develop Self-Efficacy Beliefs

Self-Efficacy During Childhood & Adolescence: Implications for Teachers & Parents (pdf)

Self-Efficacy Development in Adolescences (pdf)

Sources of Science Self-Efficacy Beliefs of Middle School Students (pdf)

Peer Group as Context for Development of Young Adolescent Motivation & Achievement (pdf)

The Peer Network as a Context for the Socialization of Academic Engagement (pdf)

Using Self-Efficacy Theory as a Guide for Instructional Practice (pdf)

Self-Efficacy: Why Believing in Yourself Matters

Bandura’s Self-Efficacy Theory (YouTube 3:05)

Classroom Strategies to Improve Student Self-efficacy and Learning Outcomes 

Albert Bandura: Self-Efficacy for Agentic Positive Psychology

The Strengths Self-Efficacy Scale: Assessing Strengths in Action

Cybraryman’s You Matter Page

Struggling with a Solution? Make it a Design Challenge

Photo courtesy of Pixabay   CC0 Public Domain

Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad

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