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Effective Grouping of Gifted Students with guest Lisa Van Gemert

Lisa VanGemert2014

This week #gtchat welcomed longtime friend, Lisa Van Gemert, the Youth and Education Ambassador for American Mensa, to tackle the tough questions surrounding effective grouping of gifted students. Lisa explained to us the many different types of grouping that were possible, but reminded us “it’s important to keep groups fluid – allowing movement with achievement and progress.” She went on to say, “Teachers need to teach the skills of working in groups. It doesn’t come naturally to anyone, especially the gifted.” A valid point often overlooked by critics of grouping.

One of the biggest complaints that gifted students have about grouping is having to do the majority of the work. Lisa told us, “It is *critical* that a student never be graded on another student’s effort (or lack thereof). Instant frustration. It’s unfair to set up GT kids for social failure by putting them in groups in which they have to take over in order to succeed.

An oft heard criticism of ability grouping is that it undermines less-able children. However, Lisa pointed out that this is just an excuse to deprive GT kids of the opportunity to work with their peers. Her philosophy ~ “I believe that best serving all children best serves all children. The end.” We couldn’t agree more! A full transcript of this chat may be found here.

Lisa Van Gemert will be presenting at this year’s TAGT Conference in Fort Worth, December 3rd to the 5th. You can register for the conference here. Check out the conference schedule here.

 

Global #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Fridays at 7/6 C & 4 PT in the U.S., midnight in the UK and Saturdays 1 PM NZ/11 AM 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 Pageprovides information on the chat and news & information regarding the gifted community.

Head Shot 2014-07-14About 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:

Amazing Classrooms: Engaging the High Achievers (YouTube 14:35)

Why Separate Classes for Gifted Students Boost All Kids

To Track or Not to Track via @jeff_shoemaker

Grouping Students by Ability Regains Favor in Classroom

Differentiation Class Poster – Free Download from Lisa Van Gemert

Lisa Van Gemert’s Profile at eSpeakers

Lisa Van Gemert’s website GiftedGuru.com

Grouping without Fear from Lisa Van Gemert

The Resurgence of Ability Grouping and Persistence of Tracking

Effective Classrooms, Effective Schools: A Research Base for Reform in Latin American Education

What Educators Need to Know about Ability Grouping (pdf)

The Relationship of Grouping Practices to the Education of the Gifted & Talented Learner (pdf)

Grouping Gifted Children at Hoagies Gifted

The Schoolwide Cluster Grouping Method (SCGM) A Paradigm Shift in The Delivery of

Gifted Education Services by Susan Winebrenner (pdf)

Your Favorite Grouping Strategy Creates Bullies from Ginger Lewman

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Locating Age-Appropriate Books for High Ability Learners

M3352M-1009Young Reader*

Locating age-appropriate books for high ability learners can prove difficult  for several reasons. Asynchronous development may mean that a very young child could comprehend reading material well beyond what may be considered appropriate for their age. As Lisa Van Gemert of American Mensa pointed out, interest levels and sensitivities also play important roles when finding appropriate yet challenging books for these children. Jo Freitag of Gifted Resources commented that material deemed appropriate for a child’s chronological age might be considered too simplistic and unsatisfying to the child. Leslie Graves, President of the World Council for Gifted and Talented Children, noted that the depth of thought embedded in the content and the pace of information offered would also make many leveled offerings inappropriate as well.

Young reader black and whiteChild Reading**

Reading patterns found in gifted readers can be different than those of typical readers. These kids often start reading earlier than their age peers and demonstrate deeper comprehension of what they read. Kate B.  stated they may be self taught, read faster and be voracious readers.  Justin Schwamm, Latin teacher at Tres Columnae, related that many gifted learners read and enjoy multiple books at once; which can drive others crazy. Moderator, Lisa Conrad, added that it’s still important to respect the developmental process and allow a child to enjoy reading at various levels. Parents should resist the urge to ‘push’ a child to read simply because they excel in other academic areas.

Parent readingParent Reading to Child*

Reading to children was still considered an important role of both the parent and teacher even after children were reading well on their own. Jerry Blumengarten, well known content curator Cybraryman and former teacher, remembered family reading time as enjoyable and an important time to be set aside even after children were reading. When he taught Language Arts, his 9th grade students loved when he read dramatically to them. Jayne Frances reminded us that reading aloud is important for pronunciation of words and sharing more precise or alternate definitions than those gleaned from context. Many also related the importance of emotional bonding that occurs when adults read to children whether it was a parent or teacher.

The popular school reading program ‘Accelerated Reader’ did not fare well in the opinions of many at this chat. This program seemed out-of-sync with high ability learners. Justin Schwamm told us that he was not a fan because extrinsic rewards for an intrinsically-valuable task are problematic at best.

Questions for this chat are here  and a full transcript of this chat can be found at Storify. Links from the chat and additional links are below.  Thank you to all chat participants who shared links with us.

gtchat thumbnail logoGlobal #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Fridays at 7/6 C & 4 PT in the U.S., midnight in the UK and Saturdays 1 PM NZ/11 AM 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 Pageprovides information on the chat and news & information regarding the gifted community.

Head Shot 2014-07-14About the author: Lisa Conrad is the Moderator of Global #gtchat Powered byTAGT 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:

Search Book Titles by Conceptual/Vocabulary Difficulty Age from Armadillo Soft

67 Books Every Geek Should Read to Their Kids Before Age 10

Some of My Best Friends Are Books: Guiding Gifted Readers (Amazon)

Guiding the Gifted Reader (1990)

Reading Lists for Your Gifted Child from Hoagies Gifted

Best-Loved Books: A Unique Reading List for Gifted Students Grades 6-12 (pdf)

Book List for Very Young Precocious Readers (link on bottom right of page)

Book List for Pre-teen Gifted Readers from Suki Wessling

The Challenge of “Challenged Books” Gifted Child Today Magazine Spring, 2002

GT-World Reading Lists

Books for Young Readers from the MN Council for the Gifted & Talented

Appropriate Content for Gifted Readers from Duke TIP

13 Age-Appropriate Books for Young Gifted Readers

Gifted 101: Choosing Books for Your Young Gifted Reader

3 Reasons I Loathe Accelerated Reader from Lisa Van Gemert, The Gifted Guru

Dear Google, You Should Have Talked to Me First from Jen Marten

Reading Lists from Jo Freitag of Gifted Resources

Appropriate Expectations for the Gifted Child from SENG

Slow Down and Look at the Pictures

Early Literacy Page from Cybraryman

Mensa Foundation Excellence in Reading

What Should I Read Next 

Reading List for Key Stage 1 Gifted Readers (pdf) from Potential Plus UK

Reading and Literacy Skills Page from Cybraryman

Books Page from Cybraryman

Newbery Medal Winners 1922 – Present 

Caldecott Medal and Honor Books 1938 – Present

Mrs. Ripp Reads

Additional Links:

Orientation (The School for Gifted Potentials Book 1) by Allis Wade

Revelations (The School for Gifted Potentials Book 2) by Allis Wade

Gifted Readers and Young Adult Literature: A Perfect Match from Duke TIP

Book Lists from Davidson Institute for Talent Development

The Gifted Reader’s Bill of Rights (pdf) by Bertie Kingore

Mind the Gap: Engaging Gifted Readers 

Resources for the Middle School Gifted Reader 

Books for Gifted Readers (Middle School)

Reading Projects for Gifted and Talented Students

Just Because They Can Doesn’t Mean They Should: Choosing Age-Appropriate Books for Literature Circles

*Photos: Courtesy of morgueFile

** Photo: Courtesy of Pixabay

What Do Parents Want from a Gifted Organization?

This week, participants at #gtchat on Twitter had the opportunity to tell gifted organizations what they wanted to be offered to parents. A full transcript may be found here.

Missed the chat, but still want to make your voice heard? Below are the questions. Feel free to leave your answers via comments on this post!

Questions from chat:

Q1) Do you belong to a gifted organization or group at any level –local, state, national?

Q2) What do you look for from a gifted organization – information, support, advocacy?

Q3) How do you prefer information to be categorized – by age, grade. or level of giftedness (G, HG, PG)?

Q4) Are you interested in the latest research on topics such as neuroscience, executive functioning, etc.?

Q5) How do you prefer information delivered – email, digital magazines or mobile apps?

Q6) How often would you use online components – Twitter chats, webinars, Google Hangouts?

Q7) Do membership fees play a role in your decision to join a gifted organization?

Q8) How likely would you be to attend a conference & what would influence your decision?

Q9) How can organizations foster an atmosphere where parents and teachers can come together?

Links:

National Association for Gifted Children

NAGC’s State Affiliate Association Web Sites

Supporting Emotional Needs of the Gifted

Gifted Homeschoolers Forum

World Council for Gifted and Talented Children

Texas Parents of the Profoundly Gifted

American Mensa

A Look Back at 2013 and #gtchat

gtchat rectangle

2013 proved to be a tremendous year for ‘Global’ #gtchat. Chat participants joined us from over 30 countries and 46 states. Our blog was visited over 12,000 times from 95 countries. Our Facebook page now has over 430 Likes. None of which would have been possible without the tremendous support we receive from the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented ~ the Board of Directors; J.J. Colburn, Executive Director; Tracy Weinberg, Associate Director and the entire Staff.

TweetUp All NAGC 2013TAGT & Friends in Indianapolis

In addition to the weekly chats, we held 4 Tweet-Ups and 3 LIVE chats this year: in Pittsburgh at the annual conference of the Pennsylvania Association for Gifted Education; in Louisville for the biennial conference of the World Council for Gifted and Talented Children; in Indianapolis at the annual convention of the National Association for Gifted Children; and in Houston for the annual conference of the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented. It was a thrill to get to know in person so many of the folks we chat with each week!

Behind the scenes with Lisa Van Gemert, Dr. Brian Housand and Erik Schwinger waiting for #gtchat to start.

PAGE Conference in Pittsburgh

We are extremely happy about the many gifted organizations who have provided #gtchat with guests, retweets, interviews, promotion and words of encouragement. We want to thank Gifted Homeschoolers Forum, GT Voice (UK), IEA Gifted, SENG, Hoagies Gifted, Byrdseed Gifted, American Mensa, ESSDACK, Davidson’s Young Scholars, Venspired, GiftedNZ (New Zealand), Ingennios (Mexico), Gifted Resources Inc. (Australia), NAGC, WCGTC, European Council for High Ability (EU) and the Vietnam Association for Talent Development. Thank you also to our many guests who took the time to chat with us!

TAGT 2013 gtchatLIVE chat at TAGT

TAGT 2013 TweetUp 1

Plans are already being made to continue these successes in the New Year with exciting new guests both from within and outside the gifted community, joint chats with other educational chats on Twitter, and expansion of our presence on Twitter to include new formats to increase involvement of those not yet involved in chats.        (At left, Tweet-Up, Houston)

Join #gtchat on Friday, January 3rd at 7PM ET/6PM CT/Midnight UK/4th 11AM Australia (ET) to discuss what you would like to see in the coming year!

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