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Chapter 15. Learners with Special Gifts and Talents. What does “gifted and talented” really mean? .

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Chapter 15

Chapter 15

Learners with Special Gifts and Talents

What does gifted and talented really mean
What does “gifted and talented” really mean?

  • The short answer? Nobody can agree on a definition. The only thing that all definitions have in common is that the “gifts” are relative and depend on what any given society finds important/useful.

  • Our book defines giftedness as “cognitive superiority, creativity, and motivation in combination and of sufficient magnitude to set children apart from the vast majority of their age peers and make it possible for them to contribute something of particular value to society”.

Other terms for gifted
Other terms for “gifted”:

  • Precocity: Advanced development in a given field (music, language, math, etc) at a very early age.

  • Insight/Creativity: Ability to look at things in new ways, synthesize information, and sort out irrelevant information.

  • Genius: Very rare level of creativity or intellect (as measured by IQ tests).

  • Talent: A specific special ability.

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Who gets left out
Who and subjective, there is not a “valid” data set regarding the rate of students falling into the category. Gets Left Out?

  • While African-American and Hispanic children are over-represented in special education in America, they are under-represented in the category of “gifted and talented”. At the same time, likely due to the model minority stereotype, Asian-American students are under-represented in special education but over-represented in the “gifted and talented” category.

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  • Students of lower socio-economic status are less likely than their peers to be enrolled in gifted and talented programs.

  • Twice Exceptional refers to a person with both a disability and a special gift or talent. Society and teachers tend to focus on the disabilities of the student and any special gift s/he has may get overlooked.

  • Females get left out more than any other group, and amongst those who are labeled gifted and talented, their scores (on IQ tests, etc) are not as high as those of their male cohorts.

Enrichment vs acceleration
Enrichment vs. Acceleration their peers to be enrolled in gifted and talented programs.

  • Enrichmentinvolves a student staying with his/her peer age group in school, but engaging in extra work either in the classroom or outside of it (tutors, extracurricular “class”).

  • Accelerationof a student happens when s/he skips grades and attends classes either with older students or with a cohort of other gifted students.

Enrichment vs acceleration1
Enrichment vs. Acceleration their peers to be enrolled in gifted and talented programs.

  • This is the main debate regarding how to best educate students with special gifts and talents. The main source of tension is over the issue of social and emotional development.

National association for gifted children nagc org minnesota chapter
National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC.ORG) Minnesota Chapter

  • Statistics

  • ALL DATA FROM 2010-2011 (unless otherwise noted) 823,235

    Total Student Population (K-12)

  • Number of Identified Gifted Students  47,255

  • State Funding for Gifted and Talented Education$11,377,000 (2010-11)
 $11,365,000 (2009-10)

    $11,400,600 (2008-09)
 $11,441,200 (2007-08)
 $8,579,600 (2006-07) 

Policies Minnesota Chapter

  • Does the State Mandate Identification for Gifted and Talented Education? No

  • Does the state have a definition of gifted/talented?; Are districts required

    to follow the state definition? Yes; No

  • What areas of giftedness are specifically

    addressed in the state definition of gifted/talented? Intellectually gifted; Academically gifted; Specific academic areas; Leadership; Performing/visual art arts; Creatively gifted; Low SES; Underachieving; Geographically isolated/rural; Culturally/ ethnically diverse; ESL/ELL

  • Does the State Mandate Services for Gifted and Talented Education? No

  • Does the state provide guidance or guidelines for the process of

    identifying gifted/talented students? Yes

  • Are districts throughout the state required to follow the same

    identification guidelines or uniform identification process? No

  • Does the state have a policy requiring districts to recognize gifted No state policy; up to

    eligibilities from other districts in the same state? LEA to determine

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  • Does State Policy Permit Early Entrance to Kindergarten Minnesota Chapter? State policy leaves LEA to determine

  • Does State Policy Permit Students to be Dually or

    Concurrently Enrolled in a Community College, College or State policy

    University? specifically permits

  • Does State Policy Permit Middle School Students to be No state policy; up

    Dually or Concurrently Enrolled in High School? and if so, to LEA to determine

    May they Receive Credit Towards High School Graduation?

  • Does the State Have an Acceleration Policy? State policy specifically permits

  • Does the state require general education teachers to have

    training on the nature/needs of gifted students? No

  • Does the State require professionals working in specialized

    gifted education programs to have a gifted education

    endorsement or certification? No

  • Does the state monitor/audit LEA programs for gifted/

    talented students? No

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Minnesota Department of Education Legislation for Gifted and Talented (Minnesota Department of Education Website)

  • Legislation Minnesota Statutes, section 120B.15 GIFTED AND TALENTED STUDENTS PROGRAM (a) and (b), permit school districts and charter schools to identify students who are gifted and talented, develop and evaluate programs to serve them locally and provide staff development to ensure that they have access to challenging educational programs. The legislation also provides guidance for districts to adopt procedures for assessing and identifying students.

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  • Section ( Talented (Minnesota Department of Education Website)c) directs school districts and charter schools to adopt procedures for the academic acceleration of gifted and talented students that include an assessment of students’ readiness and motivation for acceleration and a match between the curriculum and the students’ academic needs. (Districts may wish to implement policies that reflect gifted and talented best practices, consistent with Minnesota Statutes, section 120B.15)

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  • Gifted and talented revenue (Minnesota Statutes, section 126C.10 Subd. 2 (b)) provides school districts and charter schools with $12 times a district’s adjusted marginal cost pupil units (AMCPU). Uses of this revenue:

    • 1.) Identify gifted and talented students

    • 2.) Provide education programs for gifted and talented students.

    • 3.) Provide staff development to prepare teachers to best meet the unique needs of gifted and talented students.

Minnesota council for the gifted and talented mcgt net
Minnesota Council for the Gifted and Talented ( 126C.10

  • Offers many resources for people who are seeking resources for their Gifted and Talented children.

  • Testing and Counseling options

  • A Minnesota guide (101) to Gifted and Talented

  • Advocacy Group Representation

  • Locations of Gifted and Talented schools

  • Communication with Gifted and Talented schools

  • Preparing students for entering Gifted and Talented schools

  • Different chapters exist in the Metro and MCGT offers communication help with the chapters.

  • Twice Exceptional - (2E) service for parents with a child who may require help with a child gifted abilities but may have some learning disabilities. (Savants)

Learners with special gifts and talents in general classrooms
Learners with Special Gifts and Talents in General Classrooms

  • With much of the nation’s attention currently focused on improving student performance to meet proficiency standards, it is often difficult to create a sense of “urgency” for the needs of gifted/talented students (due to the fact that many of them are already scoring well above average on standardized tests).

  • There’s the myth that these students will “succeed no matter what” and oftentimes as a result, do not receive the individual support they need to reach their full potential.

  • A gifted child may become bored because school isn’t challenging enough. It is part of our role as an educator to accommodate and meet the needs of each individual learner (this may require a more in-depth/challenging homework assignment for gifted children).

Knowledge skill standards in gifted and talented education for all teachers
Knowledge & Skill Standards in Gifted and Talented Education for All Teachers

  • According to the National Association for Gifted Students all teachers should:

    • 1.) Understand the issues in definitions, theories, and identification of gifted and talented students, including those from diverse backgrounds

    • 2.) Recognize the learning differences, developmental milestones, and cognitive/affective characteristics of gifted and talented students, including those from diverse backgrounds, and identify their related academic and social-emotional needs; and

According to the national association for gifted students all teachers should
According to the for All TeachersNational Association for Gifted Students all teachers should:

  • 3.) Understand, plan, and implement a range of evidence-based strategies to assess gifted and talented students, to differentiate instruction, content, and assignments for them, and to nominate them for advanced programs or acceleration if need be. (National Association for Gifted Students, 2008).

Curriculum planning instruction for general educators
Curriculum Planning & Instruction for General Educators for All Teachers

  • Educators should use, “research-based models of curriculum and instruction related to students with gifts and talents and respond to their needs by planning, selecting, adapting, and creating culturally relevant curriculum and by using a evidence-based instructional strategies to ensure specific student outcomes” (NAGC)

Curriculum planning instruction
Curriculum Planning & Instruction for All Teachers

  • Design differentiated curricula that incorporate advanced, conceptually challenging, in-depth, distinctive, and complex content for students with gifts and talents.

  • Educators should provide opportunities for students with gifts and talents to explore, develop, or research their areas of interest and/or talent.

  • Use critical-thinking, creative-thinking, and problem-solving model strategies to meet the needs of students with gifts and talents.