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Curriculum and Instruction for the Gifted Child

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on 29 July 2014

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Transcript of Curriculum and Instruction for the Gifted Child

How can we decide if it is a good model for gifted children?
There are many different curriculum models available today, Not all researchers believe the same thing or have the same philosophy. Different school districts work with different children and different children have different needs! So we have to choose the right model for our children in Loudoun County and here at Potowmack.
I have given you all a handout with 10 questions to think about as we try to choose
a curriculum model. These are guidelines
to promote discussion.
Why ICM for PMK?
Which model do you think it should be? Which do you like?
Which could you see one being more advantageous to our gifted children? Why?
Creativity Models
There are 8 levels of creative thought developed by Frank William. Fluency, Flexibility, Originality, Elaborating, Risk taking, Complexity, Curiosity, and Imagination.
What is Curriculum and What Are Models?
In the simplest terms, curriculum is a description of what, why and how students should learn. The curriculum is therefore not an end in itself. The objective of curriculum is to provide students with the knowledge, skills, values and attitudes to be successful in their lives. The ultimate indicators of curriculum success are the quality of the learning achieved by students and whether and how students use that learning for their personal development and to bring about positive social change. A curriculum model is simply the way in which knowledge and learning are offered.
Concept Based Curriculum model

Blooms Taxonomy

Problem Based Learning
Curriculum Models for the Gifted Child
Why do we Need to Rethink our Model for GT students?
While gifted students look perfect on paper, their teachers know that in the classroom they are not all the academic angels and stellar scholars that people assume they are. Successful teachers of the gifted require a special understanding of their students’ social and emotional needs and the children need a special curriculum model to help them reach their full potential. Currently we rely on differentiation in the classroom and that is not really enough.
What if there was a model that could challenge
our gifted children while benefiting all
the children at Potowmack...
Parallel Curriculum Model
As the name suggest it has 4 curricula that run alongside each other in parallel.
All can be taught at the same time, and in same room running parallel and they give teachers the opportunity to provide depth and breadth to the significance of the learning while allowing children to interact with the learning at individual levels
What are the needs of gifted children in L.C.P.S
The mission statement of LCPS gifted department is;
Identify students who are intellectually gifted and need academic challenge, and to provide advanced and challenging learning experiences to meet their academic and emotional needs.
So, how can we mete these needs? .....

With a well thought out curriculum model.
A Presentation on Behalf of the
Department of Curriculum and

September 2014
Steven Charlish
Acting as a Consultant for
Loudoun County Public Schools

Ten Questions to Ask When Choosing Curriculum

1. Is it comprehensive?

2. Is learning integrated?

3. Are a variety of instructional approaches used?

4. Is the curriculum developmentally appropriate?

5. Is it based on accepted research and theory?

6. Is there evidence that the curriculum works?

7. Are there clear goals for learning?

8. Does the curriculum actively involve all children?

9. Is family involvement encouraged?

10. Does the curriculum encourage training for staff?

Question Models
Activity for reviewing the models
A great deal to do with our SOL's
But it is more than that, it the very core that children need to be able to function within that discipline
The children are making connections
within and across a discipline.
They make connections and build
background information.
Here we begin to help students
function as if they were scholars within a discipline. E.g. they may work on experiments that have been
conducted by scientists.

Trying to get students to think
about what the learning actually
means to them, how does it affect their lives. It provides opportunities
to begin to discuss with students
what their own learning desires are.
The Integrated
Curriculum Model
Problem Based learning
It is real. It is exciting. It has a purpose. It removes the child’s “Why are we learning this?” question and replaces it with higher order thinking and motivation. PBL helps students improve in many areas through the same real-life problem. Some of these areas are, problem-solving skills, research skills, writing skills, and social skills. The most important aspect is that it through PBL they learn how to become lifelong learners.
“A Rising Tide Lifts All Ships” -Joseph Renzulli
In order to move the curriculum from TOPIC based
to CONCEPT based we must find ways to MEANINGFULLY INTEGRATE the curriculum! - Which leads us to....
The concept based curriculum has its clues in the title. It is a curriculum based around concepts as opposed to a set of facts or things children are required to know. It enables the children to see the bigger picture
Integrated Curriculum Model (VanTassel-Baska, 1986, 1995, 2002), is designed to respond to gifted learners' characteristics of precocity, intensity, and complexity through its three dimensions of advanced content, higher level processes and product development, and interdisciplinary concepts, issues, and themes.
Integration: the unification of all subjects and experiences.
What Should a Curriculum Offer?

Look at the handout in front of you.

Use your red pen to mark an X next to each statement you believe is true.

Now use your blue pen to mark an X next to each statement that you feel we do here in Loudoun County.

Share your thoughts with a neighbor.
In Loudoun County we currently use
Learning Progression Scales to map out the journey children will take to reach the target of level 3 and hopefully level 4. When we plan our curriculum we need to examine which method will best help our children meet these levels.

Look at the example of a Learning Progression Scale in your handouts. How could we help all our children reach level 3 and hopefully 4 and ALL our gifted students reach level 4 and beyond?
This is the reason we are trying to improve the curriculum, to guide us and help us meet the needs of all the children - remember the rising tide!
The Integrated Curriculum Model (ICM) is a specifically designed for gifted learners. It runs alongside the regular curriculum integrating advanced content, higher order thinking skills, and make real connections. According to research the greatest growth in student learning happens when emphasis is given to these areas VanTassel-Baska, 1986).
The design of this curriculum has gifted students needs at heart, they are precocious learners with complex thinking abilities ho thrive on making connections. The ICM encourages this to occur. The ICM also has many planned and tested units of instruction ready to go in science, language arts and social studies.
The ICM is a perfect blend of the best practice in gifted education. Higher level thinking, interdisciplinary connections, creativity and advanced content. It uses problem based learning at it's heart to engage children and, in my opinion offers more than the others on offer. It is also ready to go and use in the classroom which will help teachers who may be nervous about working with gifted children.
'The ICM synthesizes the three best approaches to curriculum development...The fusion of these approaches is central to the development of coherent curriculum that is responsive to the diverse needs of gifted students, yet provides rich challenges for optimal learning.' VanTassel-Baska, 2003
Students who were exposed to the language arts curriculum showed significant and educationally important gains in literary analysis and persuasive writing (VanTassel-Baska, Zuo, Avery, VanTassel-Baska, Johnson, Hughes, & Boyce, 1996).

Gifted, learning disabled, and typical learners all showed significant learning gains
in critical thinking through the W&M model of persuasive writing (Hughes, 2000).

The Research…
Language Arts Research Findings

Students engaged in the William and Mary social studies units showed significant growth in measures of conceptual thinking, content learning, and critical thinking.

Treatment effects were evident for the whole sample
including non-gifted students
. Gains were consistent for males and females.

-Little, Feng, VanTassel-Baska, Rogers, & Avery, 2007

The Research…
Social Studies Research Findings

Positive academic achievement effects
were significant for all groups of learners,
regardless of socioeconomic status, ability level, or ethnicity

Continued use of the science curriculum over a three year period resulted in continued academic
growth for gifted students.

-Feng, VanTassel-Baska, Quek, O’Neil, & Bai, 2005
-VanTassel-Baska, Bass, Ries, Poland, & Avery, 1998

The Research…
Science Research Findings cont.

Significant and important treatment effects were found for students’
ability to design an experiment after exposure to the
William and Mary units.

Teachers and students both found problem-based
science units more engaging than typical science units.

The Research…
Science Research Findings

Academic achievement effects were significant for all groups of learners regardless of socioeconomic status, ability level, or ethnicity
(VanTassel-Baska, Zuo, Avery, VanTassel-Baska, Johnson, Hughes, & Boyce, 1996).

Continued use of the language arts curriculum over a three-year period significantly enhanced students’ literary analysis skills and persuasive writing competency (Feng, VanTassel-Baska, Quek, Bai, & O’Neill, 2005).

Language Arts Research Findings

“Creativity is as much an attitude toward life as a matter of ability. We routinely witness creativity in young children, but it is hard to find in older children and adults because their creative potential has been suppressed by a society that encourages intellectual conformity. We begin to suppress children's natural creativity when we expect them to color within the lines in their coloring books.”
T.I.M – Teach creativity by integrating it into your original
lessons, we can do this! Torrance creativity skills are researched based and is designed to help me teach
better and teach for creativity. Most importantly they enable us to teach creativity through the
prescribed linear Sol’s that we teach from.
Through T.I.M we deliberately teach creativity. When we approach the teaching of creativity it needs
to have been thought out and proactive, not just an add on at the end or an after thought.

Torrance Incubation Model
Williams Model
What is Incubation
Keep the learning going. Encouraging children to learn with an unanswered question that excites the child and keeps the learning going beyond the classroom and lesson.

Generating new ideas, products, or ways of viewing things. Designing, constructing, planning, producing, inventing.
Justifying a decision or course of action. Checking, hypothesizing, critiquing, experimenting, judging
Breaking information into parts to explore understandings and relationships
Comparing, organizing, deconstructing, interrogating, finding
Using information in another familiar situation
Implementing, carrying out, using, executing
Explaining ideas or concepts. Interpreting, summarizing, paraphrasing, classifying, explaining
Recalling information. Recognizing, listing, describing, retrieving, naming, finding
Providing relevance is essential for creating meaningful learning and understanding. Concept based approaches encourage real thinking. The concept based curriculum believes that it
Raises Expectations for Students
Provides Flexibility
Provides Consistency Across Grade Levels
Gets the Teachers Working Together : True Team
Kids Understand Why.
Its aim is to get children thinking and to create lifelong learners
Williams creativity model is a hierarchical arrangement of thinking skills. The first four levels are essentially cognitive (thinking), while the last four levels are affective (feeling) in nature.

Each level of the Taxonomy is taught explicitly to children so that children are trained in creative thinking skills. Once familiar with each skill, teachers present the children with an opportunity to apply the skill to content.
Colangelo, N., & Davis, G. (2003). Handbook of Gifted Education.
Pearson Education.

Revised Bloom's Taxonomy. Retrieved July 17, 2014 from

The Integrated Curriculum Model. Retrieved July 20, 2014 from

Van Tassel-Baska, J. (2009) What Works: 20 Years of Curriculum
Development and Research for Advanced Learners. Retrieved July 21, 2014 from http://www.jarwan-center.com/download/english_books/powerpoint_presentations/Van%20Tassel%20Baska%20Keynote.ppt
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