This week at Global #gtchat Powered by TAGT we chatted about the need for gifted students to become not only good digital citizens, but digital leaders as well. We first discussed what digital literacy is and why it’s important.
Digital literacy involves a firm grasp on technology vocabulary, comprehending the impact of online collaboration, understanding the how to use cloud-based storage, and acknowledging the moral consequences of one’s actions. GT students must develop specific skill-sets based on authentic learning opportunities including creation of collaborative engagement involving discussion built on credible arguments, negating others’ opinions & effective presentations (Coiro, 2016.) It’s important to not assume a new generation – digital natives – are automatically highly qualified digital citizens; they require guidance too.
Students are encountering new technologies and choices at breakneck speeds; developing a moral construct is essential to providing them with a safe and responsible online presence. Educating students about the consequences of online behavior must start early. They must learn about the instantaneous nature of their actions; their right to privacy and how to protect it; and the far reaching effects of cyberbullying.
GT students are poised to use social media to their benefit by exploiting the positive aspects of its use – connecting classrooms, fostering cross-cultural interactions, and choosing it for advocating positive change in the world. They can benefit from social media via online mentorships, connecting with professionals in their chosen fields, and promoting critical thinking among intellectual peers.
Teachers should model digital etiquette from the very beginning of student interaction. Goals vertically aligned across the curriculum involving digital citizenship can increase learning and provide students with an enhanced online presence. Strategies for teaching digital citizenship include a robust curriculum, including student voice in developing acceptable use policies, and impressing on students that what they do and say online is forever. Additional strategies include making sure students know their rights online, providing guidance for online behavior, and including parents in the learning process; especially relating to new technologies.
GT students need to be digital producers; not just consumers. Digital leaders are those who integrate technology to make life better for all through facilitating communication and by being transformative change agents. As digital leaders, GT students are those who value collaboration, understand how to integrate technology into their lives to increase positive outcomes, and embrace change to harness the future. Those who become digital leaders are flexible in their thinking, adept at problem solving, and analytical in their approach to global problems.
Why should schools involve parents in teaching digital citizenship? Digital citizenship goes far beyond the classroom walls. It is an integral part of life and as such must be addressed at home as well as at school. Parents should be encouraged to be a part of the education process. Schools can involve parents in teaching digital citizenship by informing them about new technologies, online trends, and the latest social media. This can be done through parent-teacher communications or even workshops. 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 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.
Digital Citizenship (Google Slides)
Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.
Global #gtchat Powered by TAGT is excited to begin its annual Summer Series; this year covering educational options for gifted students. Our first chat discussed Online Options and we were happy to welcome representatives from some of the premier providers in gifted education.
First, we discussed how online programs benefit gifted students in terms of time, financial considerations, and enrichment possibilities. Online learning can greatly benefit gifted students because it can cater to a student’s ability rather than age. These programs provide the enrichment and challenge of a private school without the necessity of moving or high tuition costs. Students who go unchallenged in the regular classroom for years can suffer intellectual decline as a result and online programming has also been successfully used to supplement their education.
Recently, schools addressing the needs of twice-exceptional students have come into existence to meet this all too often neglected population. We’ve been excited to see the development of schools like FlexSchool in Connecticut and New Jersey which is expanding their brick ‘n mortar schools to offer a cloud solution for students wherever they reside. Expanding gifted programming to the cloud can ameliorate many social-emotional issues 2E kids have in regular classrooms.
Many public schools have begun to use online programs to enhance blended learning for gifted students. Online programs help students by offering more challenging, accelerated coursework while still being able to socialize in their local schools. Integrating online classes can supplement, though not entirely replace, gifted programs at traditional schools. They can provide advanced courses unavailable at many schools allowing students to hone skills and avoid gaps in learning.
Online programs and classes are also a good choice for homeschoolers. They can ease the burden on parents looking for a challenging curriculum as well as provide opportunity for students to collaborate with intellectual peers.
How can students’ social-emotional needs be met who participate in online programs?Many online programs provide opportunities for students to meet and socialize in real life on campuses or with local groups. Social-emotional needs can also be met in out-of-school opportunities at the local level.
Parents can learn more about online schools at the links provided below. Many gifted organizations provide information on their websites for parents concerning online programs and classes. Parents can also go to university websites to search for information on online classes for gifted students. With so much excellent information shared, we urge you to 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 Tuesdays at 8E/7C/6M/5P in the U.S. and Wednesdays 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 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.
FlexSchool Cloud Classroom (Vimeo 1:18)
GiftedandTalented.com (formerly EPGY Stanford)
Prepare for the Future with UT High School (YouTube 1:00)
Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.
It’s no secret to parents of gifted kids that they often do not like or even feel the need to do homework and what may start as a simple assignment can quickly escalate to a full blown battle. Assessing the value of homework represents a great divide in education; expectations are rarely met. The purpose of homework is usually to reinforce lessons learned in class, but is this necessary for high-ability kids?
The effects of homework for our youngest students are unproven. Many believe time could be better spent in play and socialization activities. Homework may be more valuable at the secondary level for students considering higher education or to learn better work habits.
Socio-economic status can have a profound effect on the benefits of homework; many students must work and not all families have access to resources, such as Internet access at home, necessary to complete homework assignments.
Many believe that homework aids in student achievement. There are, however, many factors involved in realizing value from homework ~ i.e., subject matter, student ability. The quality of the homework assigned and an individual student’s needs affect the beneficial aspects of homework.
Should high ability students be required to do homework? Redundant, busy work provides few benefits to these students. They tend to work well independently in areas of interest. Meaningful, challenging work would provide greater benefits. High-ability students are often overloaded with homework; and experience high levels of stress, anxiety, health problems, and feelings of alienation.
Teachers can offer alternatives to homework. Younger students need to be actively engaged in ‘play’ time. Older students should be allowed to pursue passions so that they will be motivated to work outside classroom.
Homework is probably here to stay for the immediate future but educators are definitely taking a second look at when and what type of homework to give. A transcript of this chat may be found on our Storify page.
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 13.00 NZDT/11.00 AEDT/1.00 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 & information regarding the gifted community. Also, checkout our Pinterest Page and Playlist on YouTube.
Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.