Monthly Archives: March 2018

Critical Issues in Gifted Education

gtchat 03222018 Critical

Before we began the chat, we thanked the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented for 6 years of incredible support for #gtchat!

Critical Thank You 6 Years

AND … Congratulated TAGT on their 40th Anniversary of serving the gifted and talented of Texas!

Critical TAGT 40

Today, there are many critical issues facing gifted education and this week at #gtchat we focused on six issues. These issues covered a wide-range including where the emphasis should be placed in educating gifted children – whole child or strictly academics; teacher certification; identification; funding; equity; and best practices.

Should teachers of gifted students be required to be certified in gifted education? Any profession benefits from certification. Gifted education is rarely covered at the undergraduate level. Educators often lack the knowledge to recognize giftedness or the know how to respond to gifted students. Certification enhances a teacher’s ability to fairly and competently provide the best possible education for gifted students.

There are ways of identifying students for participation in gifted programs that respect equity regarding race, gender, economic status, 2E, and more. Identification needs to be universally done  in the early elementary years. If a child shows strong signs of giftedness, earlier assessment should be considered. Lack of challenge can lead to many behavior and academic issues later. Specific assessments that reduce bias are available and should be used when appropriate.

Gifted education has a place even in tight school budgets. Denying students services claiming there is no money is just an excuse. School districts always ‘find’ the money when they need to do so. All students deserve a free and appropriate education. Full stop. Gifted education does not have to be expensive. An open mind to its ‘appropriateness’ can lead to many low-cost interventions such as acceleration, genius hour, and PBL.

Should greater emphasis be placed on the whole gifted child or academic achievement? Gifted education should meet the unique needs of each individual student. High achievers are not necessarily gifted and vice versa. Gifted students have many needs beyond academics; dealing with myths about being gifted, bullying, social-emotional needs, and finding intellectual peers.

Many options for gifted programming can be considered best practice. It begins with acknowledging the need for gifted services, early assessment and intervention, and providing a long-term individualized plan. Differentiation and acceleration are widely accepted as exceptional gifted programming; however, they don’t provide for students who exhibit an increased rate of acquisition. This leads to GT students relegated to the back of the room reading.

Critical Mona Quote

Why is it important to define what it means to be ‘gifted’? What are the consequences for failing to do so for educators, counselors and associated professionals? When teachers equate the ‘gifted’ label solely as high achievers, the gifted student will rarely receive appropriate intervention or adequate instruction and challenge in the classroom.  Professionals who lack knowledge about what it means to be gifted cause a ripple effect throughout the system; such as referring students for inappropriate services, misdiagnosis of gifted characteristic traits, and misunderstanding 2E kids. A transcript of this chat may be found at Wakelet.

Global #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented  is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Thursdays at 8E/7C/6M/5P in the U.S. and Fridays at 1 PM NZDT/11 AM AEDT/Midnight 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 and information regarding the gifted community. Also, checkout our Pinterest Page and Playlist on YouTube.

Head Shot 2014-07-14  About the authorLisa 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:

Exploring Critical Issues in Gifted Education: A Case Studies Approach (Amazon)

Critical Issues and Practices in Gifted Education, 2E: What the Research Says (Amazon)

Overlooked Gems: A National Perspective on Low-Income Promising Learners (pdf)

Recognizing, Supporting and Nurturing Underserved Gifted Students: A Moral Imperative

Understanding the Learning & Advocacy Needs of a Twice-Exceptional Student Through A Strengths-Based Lens: A Case Study in California (pdf)

The Impact of Vulnerabilities and Strengths on the Academic Experiences of Twice-Exceptional Students: A Message to School Counselors Article Critique

The Interest Issues of Gifted Children (pdf)

Gifted and Talented Education: A Review of Relevant Literature (pdf)

6 Gifted Children Problems

State Report Card Shows Most States Struggle to Support High-Achieving Students with Financial Need

States Faulted on Help for High-Ability, Low-Income Students

County Aims to Break Down Racial Barriers to Gifted Classes

The Framework for Gifted Endorsement Guidelines – PA (pdf)

Gifted Education Practices

No, It’s not Time to Ditch the Gifted Label

Cybraryman’s Gifted Identification Page

Sprite’s Site: Brown Brogues

I Did Something I would NEVER Do in Most Classrooms

Photo courtesy of Pixabay  CC0 Public Domain

Image courtesy of Pixabay CC0 Public Domain

Graphics courtesy of Lisa Conrad.

 

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Encouraging Intellectual Curiosity

gtchat 03152018 Curiosity

Intellectual curiosity is a deep and persistent ‘need to know’ feeling that propels you to  ask questions and seek answers.  It means never having to say “I don’t know” about a topic you’ve found interesting. Intellectual curiosity is important for the advancement of society; a way forward in which we don’t do something stupid to end our existence. It is the basis for how we improve and grow as a species.

How can teachers develop intellectual curiosity in students? Model, model, model intellectual curiosity themselves; show an interest in what they are teaching and never be afraid to admit they don’t know all the answers. Intellectual curiosity can be sparked simply by asking students thought provoking questions and not giving the answers. Going far beyond test prep and encouraging more questions can be the beginning of intellectual curiosity.

Parents can nurture intellectual curiosity in their children. They can be patient when their children are young and always asking ‘why’. Never discourage their inquisitive nature; rather nurture it by showing an interest in their passions. Parents can provide a wide array of resources to assist their children in seeking answers to their questions. It doesn’t have to be expensive; it may require a time and interest commitment on their part.

Why do some people lose their intellectual curiosity? Sometimes children lose their intellectual curiosity because of factors beyond their own control; an inability to focus, to stay on task or lack of encouragement to explore new things. A person’s response to early failures or criticism from others can extinguish the spark of intellectual curiosity.

There are personal benefits to increasing intellectual curiosity. It encourages lifelong learning which not only benefits ourselves but those around us as well; whether they are our children, students or friends. Intellectual curiosity can increase our chances (not necessarily insure) of success in life as we integrate what we learn into our everyday life. As students, academic achievement is most often preceded by intellectual curiosity. 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 Thursdays at 8E/7C/6M/5P in the U.S. and Fridays at 1 PM NZDT/11 AM AEDT/Midnight 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 and information regarding the gifted community. Also, checkout our Pinterest Page and Playlist on YouTube.

Head Shot 2014-07-14  About the authorLisa 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:

Intellectual Curiosity

Virtuous Minds: Intellectual Character Development (Amazon)

Is Intellectual Curiosity a Strong Predictor for Academic Performance?

The Hungry Mind: Intellectual Curiosity Is the Third Pillar of Academic Performance (pdf)

Learning approaches: Associations with Typical Intellectual Engagement, intelligence and the Big Five (pdf)

Typical Intellectual Engagement as a Byproduct of Openness, Learning Approaches, and Self‐assessed Intelligence (pdf)

Innovation through Intellectual Curiosity

A Journey of Intellectual Curiosity

Intellectual Curiosity and the Scientific Revolution: A Global Perspective (Amazon)

Intellectual Curiosity in Our Schools (Amazon)

The Importance of a Curious and Stimulated Intellect

Cultivating Intellectual Curiosity (Prezi)

Why Children Ask ‘Why?’ and What Makes a Good Explanation

Sprite’s Site: Flight School Hits the Asynchrony Speed Bump

Wonder Day Project (YouTube 1:55)

Cybraryman’s Intellectual Curiosity

Curiosity 1: Anticipation and Dopamine

Curiosity 6: Recipes for Curiosity

Image courtesy of Pixabay   CC0 Public Domain

Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.

Building Empathy Through Critical Thinking

gtchat 03082018 thinkLaw

This week, Global #gtchat Powered by TAGT welcomed Colin Seale and Sarah Pfeiler of the team from thinkLaw to chat about “Building Empathy Through Critical Thinking” on Twitter. thinkLaw helps teachers teach critical thinking  through legal cases. To learn how your gifted students can benefit from thinkLaw’s standards-aligned program that helps educators teach critical thinking  to all students, click this link to schedule a brief call.

Colin Seale

Colin E. Seale, Founder & CEO

 

Sarah Pfeiler

Sarah Pfeiler, Curriculum & Training Manager 

 

GT students often experience a significant lack of empathy from their teachers at very young ages. It can cause a lifetime of discouragement when they feel misunderstood and marginalized by adults. When teachers fail to understand what the label ‘gifted’ entails – more than academics; it can create an atmosphere in which GT students no longer feel they should be expected to show emotions that aren’t extended to them.

 

Empathy pic thinkLaw

 

Students need to understand what empathy is and ways to express it. By opening a dialog on what it is and isn’t, students gain a greater appreciation of its importance in their own lives. Introducing the idea that empathy can improve both the student’s life and the lives of those around them becomes challenging when you realize that they’re only in school a fraction of their day. Home environment matters, too.

“We often see little empathy for gifted students because too many think “they are going to be just fine.” 4 students in my 2nd grade g/t class didn’t graduate from HS. They are not going to be “just fine.” And even if they were, is “just fine,” really good enough?” ~ Colin E. Seale

Emotional empathy can be extremely difficult to foster in classrooms where teachers are overworked, underpaid and expected to be defender, counselor and psychologist all while trying to teach. It can be integrated across the curriculum with careful and thoughtful planning and included by subtle reminders to students to think before they speak to or act toward others.

“Using mentor texts is a great way to teach empathy because it’s not personal.  You might select a story about a kid who is struggling socially but has a lot going on at home that people don’t know about. It’s harder for students to start with trying to understand what’s really going on behind the scenes with someone who is targeting or being mean to them.” ~ Sarah Pfeiler

Intellectual empathy must be modeled by teachers and administrators every single day. It isn’t enough to touch upon occasionally. It should be an integral part of lesson planning throughout the school year. It requires teachers to thoughtfully listen and respond to students in a respectful manner. GT students don’t tolerate ‘lip service’ when they are giving careful consideration to the questions they’re asked.

“Building Empathy vs. Academic Rigor is a false choice! When your instruction involves analysis of multiple perspectives, root cause analysis, collaboration, and design thinking, you necessarily enhance our students’ ability to put themselves in someone else’s shoes.” ~ Colin E. Seale

Intellectual empathy is drowned out by emphasis on test prep, lack of support staff, tight budgets and time constraints which redirect discourse to rote learning and preconceived notions of what is meant be ‘education’. It is not valued any longer by society; it’s not included in the standards. Base knowledge trumps comprehension in most general education classrooms where GT students spend a majority of their time.

We all can play a role in teaching empathy in an effort to build critical thinking. It’s important to realize the impact it has on the lives of students. A transcript of this chat can be found at Storify.

Global #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented  is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Thursdays at 8E/7C/6M/5P in the U.S. and Fridays at 2 PM NZST/Noon AEST/1 AM 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 and information regarding the gifted community. Also, checkout our Pinterest Page and Playlist on YouTube.

Head Shot 2014-07-14  About the authorLisa 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:

thinkLaw website

The thinkLaw Team

Help Me Understand: 4 Ways to Use Critical Thinking to Develop Empathy

The Critical Thinking Gap: How thinkLaw is Fighting the Equity Issue of Access to Deeper Learning

The State of Critical Thinking Part 1: What is Critical Thinking?

The State of Critical Thinking Part 2: Persevering When Thinking Gets Hard

Webinar: It’s Time for a Critical Thinking Revolution!

Empathy plus Critical Thinking equals Compassionate Action

What are the Importance and Benefits of “Critical Thinking Skills”?

How to Be Empathetic

How Dialogue Teaches Critical Thinking and Empathy

How Cross-Cultural Dialogue Builds Critical Thinking and Empathy

Compassionate Critical Thinking: How Mindfulness, Creativity, Empathy, and Socratic Questioning Can Transform Teaching (Amazon)

How Empathy Affects Learning, And How to Cultivate It In Your Students

Teaching Empathy through Design Thinking

Template Independent POV Project (Google Doc)

Bad Luck? An Exercise in Critical Thinking for St. Patrick’s Day (TPT)

Story Telling with Persona Dolls (pdf)

Cybraryman’s Empathy Page

Gifted Unit Plan (Google Doc)

40 Kindness Activities and Empathy Worksheets for Students and Adults

Five Principles of Extraordinary Math Teaching (TEDx 14:41)

Emotional Intensity in Gifted Children

The Care & Feeding of Advanced Readers Resources (Google Drive)

Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.

Entrepreneurship for Gifted Kids and Their Parents

gtchat 03012018 Entrepreneur

Why and when should gifted children be exposed to entrepreneurship? Some children display an entrepreneurial spirit at a very young age and may seek out resources to nurture their innate talents. Some of the world’s most successful entrepreneurs showed signs of interest when they were considered too young, but through early failures and successes were able to not only reach but exceed what others thought was their full potential.

There are skills associated with entrepreneurship that may benefit gifted kids. These skills may be some they already possess, but not appreciated; such as following the path less traveled, acceptance of risk, and thinking outside the box. Beneficial skills associated with entrepreneurship include leadership skills, people skills, problem-solving skills, creativity, etc.

There are questions which can be asked to foster entrepreneurship. The age old question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” can be enhanced by asking, “What are your goals? What do you hope to accomplish? What do you imagine your life will be like in 5, 10 years?” Fostering entrepreneurship can be as simple as asking kids “what are your dreams?”, “what do you aspire to?”, “what would your ideal world look like?” We must also ask gifted youth what they feel they need to reach their goals; training, resources, mentors?

How do we teach kids entrepreneurship? What’s involved? Entrepreneurship involves many core skills such as ideation, cross-cultural competencies, and design thinking. It must be coupled with a deep understanding of economics, an openness to collaboration (virtual and in real life), and an innovative mindset.

Entrepreneurship education must incorporate a basic understanding of social responsibility early in the process; learning and understanding what real consequences of one’s actions can have on society. By creating authentic learning environments, students can realize how their actions can affect the world around them; that they can make a difference in the world for good.

Parents can have a profound effect on their child’s entrepreneurial spirit by responding to failure in a positive manner and encouraging resilience/determination to overcome adversity by trying again. They can support their child’s interests by seeking out mentors for them, exposing them to new experiences that match their interests, guiding their children toward resources that can inspire them to be successful.

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 Thursdays at 8E/7C/6M/5P in the U.S. and Fridays at 2 PM NZST/Noon AEST/1 AM 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 and information regarding the gifted community. Also, checkout our Pinterest Page and Playlist on YouTube.

Head Shot 2014-07-14  About the authorLisa 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:

The 5 Core Components of K-12 Entrepreneurship Education

Cultivating an Entrepreneurship Mind: Teach Kids to Problem-Solve

Left to Chance: Early Identification and Development of Gifted Entrepreneurs

A Better Way to Teach the Gifted—and Everyone Else

The ONE Question to Start with When Creating Independent Learners

Why Kids Should Be Taught Entrepreneurship Early On

Let’s Raise Kids to be Entrepreneurs (YouTube 2:15)

These Nine Organizations Are Turning Kids into Entrepreneurs

Taking the Entrepreneurship Challenge

The Benefits of Teaching Entrepreneurship to Kids

Teaching Next Gen Entrepreneurs

Entrepreneurship 101

How Universities are Fostering Innovation, Entrepreneurship

How to Foster the New Generation of Entrepreneurs, Through Nonprofit Partnerships

Cybraryman’s Entrepreneurship Page

8 Entrepreneurial Skills You Should Teach Your Kids

Kidpreneur

So What is Design Thinking?

Teaching Empathy through Design Thinking

Image courtesy of Pixabay    CC0 Public Domain

Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad

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