Category Archives: Creative Thinking

Best Movies & Television for Inspiring Gifted Kids

gtchat 06142018 Movies

This week at #gtchat, we explored movies and television that inspire gifted kids. They can portray gifted children in a negative light. Negativity, however, is often in the eye of the beholder. Movies and television programs reflect popular culture; and for that reason portray gifted children in a way they feel meets their audience’s expectations. Those which show gifted children in a one-dimensional light – smart kid who’s socially inept; the perfect student; a child regarded only for their contributions to society … these are negative portrayals.

What’s the downside of movies and television portraying gifted children only as geniuses or nerds? Kids are kids; they process what they see on the big and small screen. Gifted children rarely receive guidance on how to perceive these images and many adopt negative responses to being seen only for their intelligence or talents. When gifted children believe that they are only appreciated for their brain power, it can affect not only their behavior towards others but also their self-image. A poor self-image can lead to mental health issues and worse.

When gifted children see kids like themselves valued by society in films and television, they will benefit in how they see themselves and how they interact with others. Self-worth is a powerful motivator to be successful, respectful, and empathetic toward others. It improves their quality of life and of those around them; with family members, schoolmates, and teachers.

“When gifted kids see an “average” child in film or on television, they don’t see a reflection of themselves. They see someone with whom they can’t identify. This contributes to a sense separateness & increases feelings of isolation. Representation does the opposite.” ~ Jeffrey Farley, M.Ed., District Special Programs Coordinator, Beaumont ISD

When integrated into a gifted curriculum, movies and television can be a powerful teaching tool to guide students; to project role-models; to inspire creativity; to promote social consciousness. Using film and television in the classroom requires careful scrutiny of resources prior to their use. Teachers should be cognizant of individual needs of their students.

Many are fans of the recent movie, “Gifted”. They did a good job of portraying a multi-dimensional character in a highly relatable situation in a realistic way. It was obvious they knew their subject matter. Another film, Incredibles 2, debuts this week. The original, The Incredibles, has been a favorite of parents. Many films in the scifi genre include gifted children. They can often provide kids with a positive role-model.

Please check out our resources listed below! A transcript of this chat can be found at Wakelet which includes many great suggestions for movies and television programs that can inspire gifted children.

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 Noon NZST/10 AM 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 Wakelet. 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:

Movie: Gifted (2017) (Preview YouTube 2:34)

Movie: The Incredibles (Trailer YouTube 2:24)

Movie: The Incredibles 2 (Trailer YouTube 2:16)

Reel Life this Ain’t

Sprite’s Site: Gifted in Reel Life

Columbo: Breaking Gifted Stereotypes

Movies Featuring Gifted Kids (and Adults!)

25 of Our Favorite Gifted Kid Movies

Giftedness in the Media

Film Producer Seeks Honest Portrayal of Growing Up Gifted

10 Movies Gifted Children Will Love

Gifted Role Models in Literature and Film

The Impact of Popular Culture on Gifted Children

Cinematherapy in Gifted Education Identity Development: Integrating the Arts through STEM-Themed Movies (pdf)

Using Movies to Guide: Teachers and Counselors Collaborating to Support Gifted Students (pdf)

Fostering The Social and Emotional Development of Gifted Children through Guided Viewing of Film

The Literacy Shed: Alma

Sprite’s Site: Googlebox

Sprite’s Site: Googlebox 2

Cybraryman’s Teaching with Movies Page

Observations on Gifted the Movie

AUS: Gifted Resources Film Discussion Series

Duke TIP: A Look at the Movie “Gifted”

GHF: Gifted in Reel Life

Image used with permission

 

Chat image courtesy of Pixabay CC0 Creative Commons

Graphic 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.

Using Constraints to Boost Creativity

gtchat 02222018 Constraint

Constraints come in many forms including time, money, and the availability of appropriate resources. Less obvious constraints can include the accessibility to comprehension of suitable outcomes, talent and the intellect necessary for task completion.

No matter the project, a change in your perspective will enhance creativity. Daily routines though comforting, don’t provide stimulation or novel thinking. Changing things up can give you that creative spark you seek. Changes in when you wake up, the route you take to work, work location, how you approach colleagues; increasing novel experiences can increase creativity simply by rethinking your restrictions, limitations, interactions,  or your comfort zone.

Constraints exist in virtually all real-life problems that need solving. Overcoming constraints requires creative solutions. Without time constraints, there would be little incentive to find a solution that would be worthwhile to benefactors. Our brains are constantly in efficient mode, constraints force us to think. They can inspire us to use our minds to be more resourceful; responding to challenge. This is a major reason we want our children to face challenge early on in school.

How can we inspire students to persist through constraints, complete tasks & be more creative? Teachers should consider the scope and breadth of assigned projects and even tasks. It’s important to consider time constraints will reach across all areas of your students’ lives. By cutting down the number of choices, projects are more manageable.  Most students will be able to respond better to smaller projects with tighter schedules rather than semester long projects. Even with increased workloads, creativity can increase in these situations. Students who encounter constraints tend to think more deeply about options. They were also more motivated. They explore less familiar paths, to diverge in previously unknown directions (Haught-Tromp.)

How do we overcome the Goldilocks effect; to find the right balance to spur creativity?  The severity of limited resources leads one to contemplate where to draw the line. Creativity can be squashed if the limitations are simply too great. Finding balance to spur and optimize creativity requires us to prioritize necessary resources, innovate and be thoughtful of how we approach each project.

There are some examples of famous projects that took advantage of constraints. Monty Python & the Holy Grail – a low-budget movie where the actors decided to pound two coconuts together to imitate the sounds of horses was incredibly creative while adding hilarity to the film. A famous use of constraints was Hemingway’s response to a proposal to write a memoir in 6 words: “For sale: baby shoes, never worn.” Tragic, thought-provoking, and genius. Check out the transcript of this chat 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:

Why Imposing Restrictions Can Actually Boost Creativity

Moderate Constraints Actually Boost Creativity. Here’s Why

Theory of Constraints 3 Bottle Demo to improve Flow (YouTube 6:01)

The Power of Doing More With Less Using Constraints to Enhance Creative Problem Solving

Boosting Creativity through Constraints

How Constraints Force Your Brain to Be More Creative

The Love Affair between Creativity and Constraint (TEDx 11:32)

The Power of Constraints (TEDx 11:47)

Creativity from Constraints: The Psychology of Breakthrough (Amazon)

Stretch: Unlock the Power of Less and Achieve More Than You Ever Imagined (Amazon)

Wired to Create: Unraveling the Mysteries of the Creative Mind (Amazon)

Constraints: The Mother of Creativity

Creative Constraint: Why Tighter Boundaries Propel Greater Results

The Cambridge Handbook of Creativity (Amazon)

How to Use Constraints of Time Money and People for Better Innovations

David Kwong: Finding Creativity within Constraints

Creativity: How Constraints Drive Genius

Image courtesy of Pixabay  CC0 Public Domain

Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.

Authentic Learning in Gifted Education

gtchat 01252018 Authentic

Authentic learning occurs when a student confronts real-world problems and explores ways to solve them. It can only truly happen when the student feels the project or problem is relevant to them. Authentic learning engages students through opportunities to create meaningful outcomes by doing real-life tasks.

Why is authentic learning important for gifted students? It requires higher-order questioning and thinking; as well as an ability to express conclusions in writing. This leads to intellectual development and career success. Authentic learning is achieved through academic discourse and argument which is the essence of intellectual maturity and a way to nourish critical thinking capacity; all factors important to gifted students.

Authentic learning activities must include real-life tasks that make a difference to both the student and their immediate environment. They can be viewed through the lens of student passions; ideas and concepts achieved through deeper-learning. These activities need to encourage students to think critically; then organize and evaluate their findings.

An authentic learning environment must provide a way for meaningful exploration and discussion of real-world concerns; not simply predetermined projects. They extend beyond the boundaries of the traditional classroom and must be a place where ideas are tested and meaningful concepts actually used to solve problems. Authentic learning environments can include simulation-based learning, student media creation, inquiry-based learning, peer-based evaluation, working with research data or working with remote instruments.

Authentic learning helps students develop skills to be able to verify the reliability of newly learned information; the ability to complete complex problems; and to recognize relative patterns in new contexts. It encourages them to engage in cross-curricular activities; seeing value in this process. It also creates curiosity to work across cultural boundaries and find creative solutions to problems on which they’re working.

How should authentic learning be assessed? Authentic assessment measures significant and meaningful accomplishment which reflects student choice and investment in the outcomes. It may be produced by a teacher and is in stark contrast to standardized testing. Presentation before an authentic audience can enhance the product for students.

In the final analysis, authentic learning is something that should be considered essential for gifted students at every level of their education. It plays a vital role in their academic careers and is a solid predictor of enhancing future opportunities for success. 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:

How to Develop an Authentic Enrichment Cluster

The PBL Classroom of Twists and Turns

The Four Characteristics of ‘Authentic Learning’

Authentic Learning Environments

What is Authentic Pedagogy?

What Is Authentic Assessment?

Authentic Literacy and Intellectual Development

27 Characteristics of Authentic Assessment

Authentic Learning: It’s Elementary!

Authentic Learning: A Practical Introduction and Guide for Implementation

Authentic Assessment Toolbox

Bringing Authenticity to the Classroom

Examples of Authentic Culminating Products (pdf)

Top 12 Ways to Bring the Real World into Your Classroom

Authentic Task- Based Materials: Bringing the Real World into the Classroom (pdf)

Linguistics Course for Language Loving Kids

Hacking Assessment: 10 Ways to Go Gradeless in a Traditional Grades School (Hack Learning Series) (Volume 3) (Amazon)

Pic courtesy of Pixabay  CC0 Public Domain

Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad

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