Category Archives: Gifted Conferences

How to Use Twitter to Advocate for Gifted Education

gtchat 03222016 Advocate with Twitter

 

This week, #gtchat celebrated 4 years of support from the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented. Pictured below is the staff of TAGT and our Advisory Board. I am so thankful for the support they give me each and every week. #gtchat simply would not be possible without it. They are always a phone call or email away.

 

gtchat Thanks TAGT Staff

Texas Association for the Gifted & Talented Staff

 

gtchat Advisory Board 2016

Global #gtchat Powered by TAGT Advisory Board

 

During the TAGT 2015 in December, the question came up in one of my sessions, “How can we use Twitter to advocate for gifted education?” This led to the topic for this week’s #gtchat. Although I am admittedly biased, I believe Twitter is the best form of social media to use for advocacy. It is concise; to the point; and without the ‘drama’ of other platforms. As pointed out by #gtchat Advisor, Lisa Van Gemert, “Twitter is less susceptible to the echo chamber that you get in Facebook.” Twitter encourages and facilitates creation of communities with shared interests, desires, end goals. (Putnam) Twitter chats with a recognizable and unique hashtag promote a continuing conversation over time. Using appropriate hashtags wisely allows advocates to reach beyond the ‘choir’; outside the box.

“Twitter is less susceptible to the echo chamber that you get in Facebook.”

~ Lisa Van Gemert, the Gifted Guru

Advocacy via Twitter can be accomplished by retweeting, hashtagging and liking tweets. One can use Twitter to identify gifted education advocates or organizations and build relationships by ‘following’; using DMs; and adding to lists.  The strategic success of advocacy via Twitter requires a fluid and an evolving approach to using social media. Over time, other forms of social media may be used to supplement the reach of Twitter by tapping audience preferences.

“Twitter brings a much wider conversation; other social media can become silos.” ~ Dr. Brian Housand

How can gifted organizations use Twitter to advocate for gifted education/children & benefit their members? As the quote below reminds us, on Twitter organizations can simultaneously provide information, foster involvement and promote advocacy. (Lovejoy and Saxton) must commit to a

gtchat Organizations Information

long-term presence on social media; specifically Twitter and eschew ‘quick result’ strategies. Twitter provides conduit to reaching existing supporters and potential audiences; i.e., educators needing gifted classroom strategies. The ‘community’ paradigm can extend to fostering interaction between organizations for the greater good. Twitter can be used to forge an authentic voice; replicate print and web communications; and as a conversational tool. Organizations can also use Twitter to share information on upcoming conferences, webinars, and chats; always using hashtags to widen reach.

gtchat Tweet Smart

Parents, too, can use Twitter to advocate for gifted children and their education. Parents meeting on Twitter can facilitate in real life meetings for kids and their peers. By Participating in Twitter chats related to gifted education and gifted students, they are able to affirm positive messages about these kids. In several states, parents along with advocates have combined forces to use Twitter to effectively appeal to politicians considering gifted education legislation. Tracy Fisher, #gtchat Advisor, told us, “Part of advocating is LEARNING! They can lurk, ask experts for info, etc.”

“It is easy to share with several groups of people by using multiple hashtags.” ~ Tyler Clark, Executive Assistant of the World Council for Gifted & Talented Children

Twitter is often used at gifted conferences as a backchannel for attendees as well as presenters. It is used to initially promote and raise awareness about upcoming conferences. Then, Conference attendees can use conference-specific hashtags to tweet from sessions. Presenters use Twitter to connect with their audience and get immediate feedback during sessions. It’s even a great way to plan Tweet-ups at the conferences!

“Commentary tweets and special twitter sessions from conferences can give people a vicarious feeling of attending.” ~ Jo Freitag, Gifted Resources & Sprite’s Site

 

“A conference can encourage social media participation before and during the conference; including all!” Carolyn K., Hoagies Gifted

Finally, we discussed how to  use Twitter to connect with peers and colleagues to advocate for gifted issues. Gifted advocates can connect with leaders in the field in real-time to tweet issues important to all. It can be used to acknowledge accomplishments within the gifted community; announce new books; and link to relevant blog posts. Users can encourage followers to connect by tagging them in tweets and graphics. It’s an excellent way to build communities of like-minded advocates. A transcript of the chat may be found at Storify.

gtchat-logo-new bannner

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  Noon  NZST/110.00 AEST/1.00 UK (Subject to change due to Daylight Savings Time). 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:

Cybraryman’s Educational Websites Page

Sprite’s Site: The Twitter Stream

gtchat Sprites Site Twitter Stream

Cybraryman’s Educational Sites: Edcamps, Teach Meets and Conferences

Sprite’s Site: Global GT Chat on Twitter

gtchat Sprites Site GT Chat on Twitter

Tweeting Social Change: How Social Media are Changing Nonprofit Advocacy

How Organizations Use Social Media: Engaging the Public

Tweet, Tweet! Using Live Twitter Chats in Social Work Education

8 Tips for Effectively Using Social Media for Social Change

Cases on Strategic Social Media Utilization in the Nonprofit Sector (Amazon)

Connecting with Social Media to Drive Change (Amazon)

Users of the World, Unite! The Challenges & Opportunities of Social Media (pdf 2010)

Social Media Best Practices for Nonprofit Organizations (pdf)

Information, Community & Action: How Nonprofit Organizations Use Social Media (Prezi)

Dialogic Connections (Shaw) (pdf)

Chirping for Charity: How U.S. Nonprofits are Using Twitter to Foster Dialogic Communication (pdf)

 

Photos courtesy of morgueFile , Pixabay  CC0 Public Domain , Jo Freitag

Graphics courtesy of Lisa Conrad.

Global #gtchat Powered by TAGT in 2016

gtchat 01052016 The Year Ahead

 

It’s a new year and #gtchat is now at a new day and time! Join us on Tuesdays at 8E/7C/6M/5P in the U.S. and on Wednesdays at 2PM (14.00) NZDT/Noon (12.00) AEDT/1 AM (1.00) in the UK. We realized that there could not be a perfect time for everyone which involves a global audience, so we polled our followers and this was the number 1 choice (87 votes). It was exciting to see many new faces at our first chat in the new time slot!

As is our custom, the first chat of the new year is a time to ask our participants what they would like to chat about in the upcoming year and who they’d like to see as guests in 2016. We received many excellent suggestions and will do our best to contact those who were mentioned. Several changes have been made to how #gtchat will proceed in the new year including no longer polling for topics. However, we think you’ll like the ones chosen (many of the suggestions from this chat have been added to the schedule) and we’re always willing to entertain new ones as well. A transcript of this chat may be found at Storify.

 

gtchat-logo-new bannner

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  1 AM (1.00) in the UK,  2 PM (14.00) NZDT/Noon (12.00) AEDT 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:

Links:

Information and Publications

Gifted Topics

Special Topics in Gifted Education

9 Important Topics about the Social and Emotional Needs of the Gifted 

NAGC Award Recipients 2015

Gifted History

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

Books on Gifted Education at Amazon

Legacy Book Awards via TAGT

Global #gtchat Powered by #TAGT at Storify

Global #gtchat Powered by #TAGT on Facebook

Global #gtchat Powered by #TAGT on Pinterest

Global #gtchat Powered by #TAGT at YouTube

 

Finding a Good Fit: Evaluating Gifted Programs

gtchat 12042015 TAGT 2015

This week marked our 4th Live chat from the Annual Conference of the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented. As with many live chats, most of our regular participants were not available at the time of the chat. However, we were thrilled to have many new faces at the chat and we hope that the first timers will be back in future weeks.

First, we considered some attributes that define high quality gifted programming. They should include differentiated instruction delivered at an appropriate depth and  breadth; curriculum that involves abstract, complex, higher levels of thinking; and programs that identify twice-exceptional, culturally different, and underachieving gifted students.

What steps should be taken by school personnel when evaluating & implementing a gifted program? School personnel need to prepare for evaluation, design data collection and analysis, conduct evaluation, and follow-up. Steps should be taken to involve all stakeholders: students, parents, educators, admins, school boards, and community. Evaluations should identify outcomes, create a written plan and establish a timeline.

It’s important to match student strengths with appropriate gifted programming. Student’s abilities must be assessed including present levels of performance. Effective identification procedures will ensure a student is challenged but not overwhelmed. Also, a gifted student’s progress needs to be assessed appropriately. Out-of-level testing is essential; grade level achievement tests are inappropriate. Identification should be continuous beginning in kindergarten. Classroom teachers should assess transference of skills and knowledge from gifted programs to regular classroom.

What questions should parents ask when considering a gifted program for their child? Initially, they need to ask if the school has a systematic procedure for gifted identification in place. Also, does the gifted program offer a continuum of educational services based on assessed abilities. Ideally, they could ask if counseling related to giftedness is provided for students and parents. A transcript of the chat can be found at Storify.

During the conference, we also announced our intention to change the time slot for #gtchat. Although there will never be a perfect time for everyone, Friday night is a difficult time for a multitude of reasons. Look for a link to a poll from @gtchatmod on Twitter in the near future.

 

Global #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented  is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Fridays at 7E/6C/5M/4P in the U.S., Midnight in the UK and Saturdays 13.00 NZDT/11.00 AEDT 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:

Designing Services and Programs for High-Ability Learners (pdf)

Designing and Utilizing Evaluation for Gifted Program Improvement (Amazon)

Gifted Education Program Standards: Planning/Implementing High-Quality Services (pdf)

Aiming for Excellence: Gifted Program Standards Tiers of Competency (pdf)

Institute on Gifted Program Evaluation Evaluating Effectiveness & Services for Gifted Children (pdf)

NAGC: National Standards in Gifted and Talented Education

Gifted and Talented Program Evaluation Template for Large Districts (pdf)

What to Look for in a Good Gifted Program

Advanced Academics and Gifted and Talented Program Evaluation (pdf)

TAGT: Program Evaluation

Gifted Education Practices

The Best Practices Manual for Gifted and Talented Programs in Idaho (pdf)

Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.

Turning Gifted Education Research into Practice

gtchat 08122015 WCGTC Odense

 

This week, #gtchat was live via Twitter at the 21st World Conference of the World Council for Gifted and Talented Children in Odense, Denmark. In order to accommodate multiple time zones, the chat was held mid-week rather than on Friday. Thanks to Tyler Clark for his assistance.

Our topic was the conference theme “Turning Gifted Education Research into Practice”. Bridging the gap and stereotypes that exist between researchers and practitioners is an important component of this discussion. Andrea from giftedandtalented.com suggested, “Encourage researchers to practice and practitioners to research. Collaborating at GT Education Conferences is a good place to start.”  Tracy Weinberg, Associate Director at TAGT, said, “That is an eternal question. Research from A Nation Deceived & A Nation Empowered shows the gap remains, if a bit improved.” Also, researchers should ensure that the quality and utility of their work is applicable in the classroom.

What responsibility should researchers bear in assuring their research reaches teachers? “Researchers must make their work practical and understandable; administrators must take the role of instructional leader seriously,” continued Tracy Weinberg. Improvements to the ‘paywall’ system need to be looked at and implemented for the benefit of all parties.

How can research be effectively used in the classroom? Educators need to look at current research and be willing to implement in timely manner when applicable. It’s helpful also for teachers to know the needs of their students and use research-based pedagogy throughout their careers. Jo Freitag of Gifted Resources in Australia added, “Educators can incorporate the recommendations from the research into their teaching when appropriate.”  Hilde of Twice Exceptional Dk in Denmark said, “Targeting the right types of classrooms and following up on implemented projects” is another way of using research in the classroom.

Next we discussed what guidelines should be used in determining ‘best practices’ in gifted education. Major gifted organizations such as the NAGC in the U.S. have guidelines available. Guidelines should consider under-served and diverse populations in all cultures; including twice-exceptional kids. Gifted education should be viewed as a continuum of services to address the overall needs of gifted students.

What benefits can accrue for gifted & talented students when research is put into practice? Students as benefactors would include latest research on social-emotional, twice-exceptional and delivery options. Research can highlight both strategies that work and those that do not to support curriculum and program changes.

Finally, we took a look at what areas of gifted education and talent development need further research. It was noted that the definition of the nature of giftedness continues to confound progress on advocacy for gifted education. Also, cooperative research on a global basis could reduce ‘reinvention of the wheel’ syndrome. It was agreed that further research on benefits of ‘challenge’ for gifted students and consequences of not challenging them is needed. A transcript of this chat may be found at Storify.

 

gtchat-logo-with-sponsor

 

Global #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented and sponsored by GiftedandTalented.com is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Fridays at 7E/6C/5M/4P in the U.S., Midnight in the UK and Saturdays 11 AM NZST/9 AM AEST 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:

World Council for Gifted & Talented Children (website)

21st World Conference of the World Council for Gifted & Talented Children 2015 (website)

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

Best Practices in Gifted Education: An Evidence-Based Guide (Amazon)

Gifted Education Practices (NAGC)

Handbook of Intelligence: Evolutionary Theory, Historical Perspective & Current Concepts (Amazon)

Research Sheds Light on Identification, Ability Grouping, Acceleration, Curriculum Design in Gifted Education

AERA Research on Giftedness, Creativity & Talent Development

Giftedness and Gifted Education: The Need for a Paradigm Change

State of Research on Giftedness & Gifted Education: A Survey of Empirical Studies (pdf)

 

Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.

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