Category Archives: Education

Benefits of Online Learning for Gifted/2e

Our guest this week was Madeline Goodwin, of Exceeds Expectations Learning – 2EL. Our chat centered on the benefits of online learning for gifted and 2e (twice-exceptional) students.

Online learning for gifted students can be a way for these students to study with intellectual peers despite geographical barriers or lack of peers in local area. It has numerous benefits for 2e students who may struggle socially or emotionally to work or study in a regular classroom. The benefit of smaller classes and more individualized learning shouldn’t be overlooked.

Parents should take time to research whether their child would benefit from online learning. Participating in a free online class such as Khan Academy or similar program allows the student to experience online participation. Consideration should be given to the academic needs of the student and what classes are available. Also, it’s important to determine if classes fit in with long-range goals or may simply be taken for enrichment or a student’s passion. A student’s schedule should also be considered; does the student have time to take online classes?

What is the time commitment to take an online course? It is usually based on the program being taken. It may follow a semester format or calendar format. Online courses have evolved over time to include online live sessions, opportunities for  study sessions, and ability to meet other students from all over the world.

Online learning is excellent for public, private or homeschool students to work in areas of interests not available to them otherwise. They can be extremely cost-effective for both schools and families.

Resources can be provided to help students connect with other students. Many online classes provide times for online chat sessions for students to meet, ask questions, and study together. GT students work well with intellectual peers, but often don’t have contact with them in real life. When possible and appropriate, students may want to schedule time to meet outside of class or even facetime with classmates or instructors.

Take time to make sure a student wants to engage in online classes and has the requisite skills to complete tasks, stay focused, and time to commit to online learning. Before starting an online class, seriously plan for what to do if things don’t work out. Devise a plan B just in case and hopefully it will never be needed. Parents should be prepared to provide a strong family support system to ensure a successful outcome for their child. We encourage you to read the  transcript of this chat for additional information which 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 2PM 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 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

Resources:

Distance Learning Programs

Distance Education: Where It Started and Where It Stands for Gifted Children and Their Educators (pdf)

Online learning: A Smart Way to Nurture Gifted Kids

For Frustrated Gifted Kids, A World of Online Opportunities

Virtual Schools and Online Learning for K-12 Students is not a Trend or a Fad

Serving Gifted Learners Beyond the Traditional Classroom: A Guide to Alternative Programs and Services (Prufrock)

Online Learning for Gifted Students: An Idea Whose Time has Come

Is Your Gifted Child Ready for Online Learning?

Meeting the Challenges of Working with Gifted Students (pdf)

Distance Learning for Gifted Students: Outcomes for Elementary, Middle, and High School Aged Students (pdf)

Beyond the Classroom Walls: Teachers’ and Students’ Perspectives on How Online Learning Can Meet the Needs of Gifted Students (pdf)

“Just What I Need”: Gifted Students’ Perceptions of One Online Learning System (pdf)

Examining the Effectiveness of Using Web-based Learning for Gifted Students: Jordan as Case Study

Science, Creativity and the Real World: Lessons Learned from the U.S. Homeschool Community

Cybraryman’s Blended Learning Page

Cybraryman’s Google Hangout Page

Cybraryman’s Skype Page

Cybraryman’s MOOC Page

Image courtesy of Unsplash

Photo courtesy of Madeline Goodwin and graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.

Advertisements

Authentic Learning to Create 21st Century Learners

gtchat 11012018 Authentic

Authentic learning begins when a student engages because they can see relevance in what they are experiencing in the classroom and beyond. It is participating in meaningful, real-world learning that is in response to active student voice in the process of deciding what they need as an individual to succeed.

Our guest this week was Todd Stanley. Todd is the author (Prufrock Press) of many teacher-education books including Project-Based Learning for Gifted Students: A Handbook for the 21st Century Classroom, When Smart Kids Underachieve in the Classroom: Practical Solutions for Teachers, and his latest, Authentic Learning: Real World Experiences that Build 21st Century Skills. He served as a classroom teacher for 18 years and is currently the gifted services coordinator for Pickerington Local Schools (Ohio) where he lives with his wife and two daughters.

giftED 18 logo

Todd Stanley will also be a speaker at this year’s TAGT Wednesday Institutes prior to their annual conference, giftED18 in Fort Worth, TX, on November 28, 2018. He will present two sessions: Authentic Learning to Create 21st-Century Learners and Project-Based Learning (PBL): A How-To Workshop . Todd will also present three sessions on Thursday, November 29th: Let’s Talk: Project-Based Learning in STEM, The Myths of Gifted Children, and Tired of SMART Goals? Create DUMB Goals to Build 21st-Century Learners. You can register for the giftED18 here.

Authentic learning breaks through the decades of monotonous rote-learning to prepare students to become innovators, critical thinkers and leaders. It benefits all of society by providing future problem solvers who have learned the skills to think, assess, and imagine solutions unknown to us today.

What teaching strategies enable authentic learning? It does not lend itself to the old-time adage – ‘sage on the stage’. Authentic learning should be facilitated; not taught. Authentic learning strategies go by many names today … problem-based, cased-based, portfolio driven, etc. The goal should be to use the strategy most responsive to the student’s individual needs.

Authentic learning promotes critical thinking by pushing beyond content and striving to understand why things are the way they are and how they work. It encourages critical thinking by engaging a student’s curiosity because the learning is relevant to them. It gives them a reason to want to learn. It makes a difference in their lives.

Which 21st century skills have been missed by elevating ‘data and measurable goals’? A good friend of #gtchat once said, “Every time a data-driven decision is made, a fairy dies.” Many may disagree, but the point is that children are more than the data collected about them … and they know it! We should learn from them. Folks in the business community were first to realize that our test-obsessed, only by the numbers education system was missing things like creativity, working together for a common purpose, and being able to adapt to new situations.

Capstones are a good choice to show growth with gifted/high ability students. They are a reflection of growth not captured by standardized testing and an excellent choice for both gifted and high ability students. Capstones provide a vehicle to showcase the cumulative experience of students near the end of their educational experience. They are generally long-term in production and investigative in nature which result in a final product, presentation, or performance. A transcript of this chat can 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 Wakelet. Our Facebook Page provides information on the chat and news and information regarding the gifted community. Also, check out 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

Resources:

Authentic Learning: Real-World Experiences That Build 21st-Century Skills (Prufrock)

Todd Stanley – The Gifted Guy (website)

Todd Stanley’s Books

Todd Stanley’s Blog https://goo.gl/MH1ecq

Higher Level Thinking with Gifted Students with Todd Stanley (YouTube 36:12)

Authentic Learning for the 21st Century: An Overview (pdf 2007)

9 Ways To Make Student Work Authentic

Creating Authentic Learning Experiences in the Literacy Classroom

AUS: “Authentic” Learning Experiences: What Does this Mean and Where is the Literacy Learning? (pdf 2009)

Why Authenticity Matters: 5 Ways Authenticity Impacts Student Learning

AUS: Authentic Learning

10 Ways Authentic Learning Is Disrupting Education

The Futures of Learning 3: What Kind of Pedagogies for the 21st Century (pdf 2015)

21st Century Learning: Research, Innovation and Policy (pdf)

CAN: Technologies that Aid Learning Partnerships on Real-World, Authentic Tasks (pdf 2015)

Deepening and Transferring Twenty-first Century Learning through a Lower Secondary Integrated Science Module (pdf)

Allowing Authentic Discovery in the Middle School Classroom

How to Develop an Authentic Enrichment Cluster

Authentic Learning: A Practical Introduction and Guide for Implementation

The Global Achievement Gap: Why Our Kids Don’t Have the Skills They Need for College, Careers, and Citizenship–and What We Can Do About It (bn)

Image courtesy of Flickr  CC BY 2.0

Photo courtesy of Todd Stanley.   Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.

 

Gifted Education Coordinator: Stakeholder or Gatekeeper?

gtchat 10182018 Coordinators

 

The role of the gifted education coordinator is highly dependent on how a school district is organized. Their role may be strictly administrative or a blended role such as teacher, student advisor, and program coordinator. Administrative duties generally include producing student IEPs (where required), providing PD to district teachers and staff, meeting state mandates, and resolving parent/teacher or student/teacher issues.

Should the GT coordinator be seen as a stakeholder or gatekeeper?  Whether seen as a stakeholder or gatekeeper, the reality is often in the eye of the beholder (parents or other teachers) rather than as they see themselves. Parents who are happy with their child’s gifted program will most likely see a stakeholder. The manner in which a GT coordinator approaches their job and views gifted education in general often influences who they are viewed by teachers and parents. Gatekeepers may restrict access to programs for various reasons.

There are some ways GT coordinators can interact with teachers and staff to build consensus around the gifted program to benefit students. Professional development for teachers and staff trainings are seen as key consensus builders in gifted education. Few teachers have any exposure to gifted education courses at the undergraduate level. GT coordinators can model best practices in their approach to developing the gifted program in their school. They should seek certification or an advanced degree in gifted education if possible.

Positive interactions with other educators responsible for educating GT students is a good first step in recognizing the need for a strong gifted program. Attending conferences and workshops dealing with gifted education can have a profound effect on how a GT coordinator views gifted education.

What are some justifications GT coordinators can use for providing gifted education services when they are not valued by the local community? A local community will not support a program it does not understand or for which it sees no value being provided or returned to it. GT coordinators should develop outreach programs to educate the local community about gifted education. GT coordinators can periodically bring together the local community, teachers, and parents to serve together on gifted advisory boards. By involving community members in decision making, they can see benefits of the programs.

“If a student is operating at one-and-a-half or more standard deviations below average, we provide services in the form of Special Education. If a student operates at one-and-a-half standard deviations ABOVE average, shouldn’t we do the same?” ~ Jeffrey Farley

State and national gifted organizations such as the NAGC, SENG and TAGT are a good place for GT coordinators to find resources to inform their decisions about the administration of gifted programs in their schools. Also, most state departments of education have information on their websites about gifted education programming.

On a personal note: I would like to thank Mr. Jeffrey Farley, M.Ed., former District Special Programs Coordinator, Beaumont ISD, for taking over the moderator’s role this week so that I could take a few days off to visit family! ~ Lisa

Please check out the resources below about the role of gifted coordinators as well as resources for them.

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/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

Resources:

Stakeholder or Gatekeeper: The Role of the Principal in Gifted Education (pdf)

Ten Things All Administrators Should Know about Gifted Children

Shaping School Culture: The Heart of Leadership (bn)

TEMPO: Positive Ripple Effects of Professional Development for Gifted Programs (pdf)

Programs and Services for Gifted Secondary Students: A Guide to Recommended Practices (Prufrock)

Giving Our Gifted Students a Voice (pdf)

Administrator Quick Guide to Gifted Education (pdf)

Resources for Administrators

Administrator Toolbox 

Texas G/T Program Implementation Resource: G/T Coordinator-Teacher-Counselor Documents

How Leadership Influences Student Learning (pdf)

Pre-K to Grade 12 Gifted Programming Standards

Resources for Administrators

Gifted Tactics in the Field: Reports from Four School Districts on the Challenges of Instruction for Gifted Students

Snapshot Survey of PK-Grade 12 Gifted Education Programming Effectiveness Factors (pdf)

Image courtesy of Pixabay  CC0 Creative Commons

Photo courtesy of Jeffrey Farley.   Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.

Building Intentional Leadership in Gifted Learners

gtchat 10042018 Leadership

 

This week, our guest at #gtchat was Dr. Mary Christopher, Professor of Educational Studies and Gifted Education at Hardin-Simmons University and Program Director: Doctorate in Leadership. Dr. Christopher is a Past-President of TAGT and also does consulting in gifted education and leadership. She is the co-author of Leadership for Kids: Curriculum for Building Intentional Leadership in Gifted Learners from Prufrock Press.

The definition of leadership has been evolving in recent years. It now includes the ability to expect the unexpected and adapt quickly to change. Leaders today are seen as innovators and producers rather than simply consumers of someone else’s information or product. According to Robert Sternberg, gifted leaders possess creativity, intelligence and wisdom.

“Since the Marland Report, experts included leadership in definitions of giftedness and viewed leadership as integral to giftedness, but leadership remains the least served domain of giftedness. Gifted leaders may not be served within the gifted program.” ~ Dr. Mary Christopher

It is important for GT students to learn about leadership. Depending on their personal interests and goals, GT students often become future leaders and the quality of their leadership depends on understanding what makes a great (intentional) leader even better. Today more than ever, it’s important for GT students to see the value in moral and ethical behavior, clear communication with those they are working, motivating others through personal positive actions and providing inspiration.

“Gifted kids will often be ahead of the pack in some regard throughout their lives. Learning to achieve goals through teamwork whether they have formal authority or not is going to be crucial for a sense of satisfaction.” ~ Kate Arms

What characteristics, skills, and perspective of leadership are needed to become intentional leaders? Intentional leaders should be able to develop ideas to be studies, provide new solutions to existing problems, persuade others to assist in solving problems, and ensure implementation of those solutions. (Sternberg) They are willing to work with a diverse group of colleagues engaged in problem solving and seek to involve all stakeholders.

“It’s important that we balance students cognitive abilities with skills that allow them to be successful people in the world. It’s about challenging Ss to tap into the affective domain that will grow their capacity to bring positive change to society.” ~ Matt Cheek 

Educators can use many different strategies to incorporate leadership training into their curriculum. Students should be presented with opportunities for critical thinking, analysis and creative problem solving. For young gifted students, teachers can include biographies of great leaders in their LA curriculum to read and discuss.

Where can students find opportunities to develop leadership skills outside of the classroom? Finding mentors who are leaders in their community can help develop leadership skills and allow skills to develop naturally. Volunteering exposes students to opportunities to practice and model leadership skills while helping others.  Extracurricular activities can provide avenues for developing skills necessary to lead within group and team activities.

Below find curated resources from the chat and additional ones that can be used in and out of the classroom when teaching students about leadership. A transcript 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/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

Resources:

Leadership for Kids: Curriculum for Building Intentional Leadership in Gifted Learners (Prufrock Press)

Does Your Gifted Kid Have Leadership Characteristics?

Developing Leadership Goals for Gifted Learners (PP – pdf)

Eight Great Ways to Develop Youth Leaders

Developing Leadership Skills in Young Gifted Students (pdf)

Dare to Care: Teaching Leadership to Gifted Students (pdf)

Leadership Education for Gifted and Talented Youth: A Review of the Literature (pdf)

Intelligences Outside the Normal Curve: Co-Cognitive Factors that Contribute to the Creation of Social Capital and Leadership Skills in Young People (pdf)

Early Development and Leadership: Building the Next Generation of Leaders (CRC Press)

TEMPO: What the Research Says about Leadership Development of Gifted Students (pdf)

TEMPO: Understanding and Encouraging Leadership Giftedness (pdf)

The Most Important Leadership Competencies, According to Leaders around the World

The 8th Habit: From Effectiveness to Greatness (bn)

How Great Leaders Think: The Art of Reframing (bn)

Leadership for Students: A Guide for Young Leaders (Prufrock Press)

The O Factor: Identifying and Developing Students Gifted in Leadership Ability (Google Books)

Leadership Lessons with Raina Penchansky

Boundless Leadership: Leadership Hacks by Scott Stein – Book Review

Boundless Leadership: Now is the perfect time to take on a personal quest

Building Everyday Leadership in All Kids (Free Spirit Publishing)

Changing Tomorrow 1: Leadership Curriculum for High-Ability Elementary Students (Prufrock)

The Leader in Me Program

Co-Active Leadership: Five Ways to Lead (bn)

Photo courtesy of Dr. Mary Christopher.

Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.

%d bloggers like this: