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The Parallel Curriculum Model

Review and analysis of the Parallel Curriculum Model for high ability learners.
by

Danielle Coughlin

on 17 September 2012

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Transcript of The Parallel Curriculum Model

EPPL 612
Danielle Coughlin Understanding the Parallel Curriculum Model Theoretical Foundations of PCM PCM Beliefs What is it? An adaptable, heuristic, concept-based approach for developing curriculum designed for but not limited to gifted learners. The model is structured by a holistic approach of four interrelated yet parallel platforms. By whom? Tomlinson, Kaplan, Renzulli, Purcell, Leppien, and Burns (2002) Designed from and supported by the research of: Ausubel (1968), Bandura (1977), Bruner (1960, 1966), Gagne and Briggs (1977), James (1885), Phenix (1964), Taba ( 1962) and Bloom (1956) Concept-based curriculum promotes greater understanding.
Specifically selected content representatives best foster understanding of the discipline.
Process skills are essential.
Knowledge is most useful as continuous extension.
Concrete and abstract products place students in the authentic role of a practicioner. There is no specific kind of gifted learner. Effective teachers paired with effective curriculum should recognize and develop a diverse group of high ability learners while providing differentiation to support each student's interest and ability.

A fundamentally good curriculum is the same for virtually all students. Instruction should incorporate the key curriculum components teachers readily utilize. Core Parallel- key concepts, principles, information and skills; essential nature of the knowledge
Connections Parallel- students utilize key concepts to make connections within and accross disciplines
Practice Parallel- students utilize key skills and processes to act as a practitioner, expert and problem solver
Identity Parallel- students reflect on themselves and their lives within the key understandings of the discipline The Four Parallels Why Four Parallels? Think seven blind men and the elephant...
The four parallels offer varied perspective to a curriculum
Each parallel offers an unique approach to organizing information
Teachers can determine the extent to which each parallel is utilized by the content of the discipline, students' interests and students' needs. All parallels are built from the core content and principles. Components of a Comprehensive Curriculum Unit Content

Assessment

Introduction

Teaching Methods

Learning Activities Grouping Arrangements

Products

Resources

Extension Activities

Modifications Ascending levels of Intellectual Demand Teacher planned modification
Challenges set to student's growth toward expertise
Supports and scaffolds for student's progression Encompasses the fundamental, essential information on concepts, principles, and skills that provide the foundation for the other parallels.

There is no specific order in which parallels should be taught. The Core Curriculum Why provide AID? Distinguishes between a PCM unit and a PCM unit for gifted learners
To honor and address student differences
To support motivation by challenging each student appropriately Examples of AID Number of examples
More or less scaffolding
Adjust pace Vary depth Provide or infer related strategies more or less collaboration Curriculum of Connections Supports students discovery of the worlds interconnectedness
More meaningful and retrievable
Decreases fragmentation of core subject areas Curriculum of Practice Utilizes application to extend understanding and skills Students act as practitioners, problem solvers, and experts Student centered and hands on Authentic, real world application Curriculum of Identity Think of themselves within the discipline
Curriculum and reflection becomes a catalyst for self understanding
Impersonal content becomes powerful and influential Characteristics of Gifted Learners that are Supported by PCM The beliefs of PCM authors reflect support for high ability learners. Gifted learners tend to be highly motivated in what interests them and may learn more rapidly than their peers and even their gifted counterparts. Ascending Levels of Intellectual Demand ensures individual modifications will be made to challenge and support each student toward expertise. Gifted learners tend to have a high propensity for reflection. Both the Curriculum of Connections and the Curriculum of Identity support student reflections. The Curriculum of Connections may help student to discover similar ideas of justice across disciplines, time and cultures to better formulate their understanding. Gifted learners tend to have an early construct of justice. Gifted learners tend to be successful in defining problems and utilizing creative thinking in problem solving. The Curriculum of practice provides an excellent and authentic opportunity for gifted students to practice these skills. Strengths of the Parallel Curriculum Model Can be used in a variety of academic settings

Flexible to the interests of students

Modification by Ascending Levels of Intellectual Demand is incorporated into the model

Curriculum is represented by multiple perspectives

Encourages reflection and global thinking

Remedy for curriculum fragmentation

Encourages high levels of engagement by hueristic experience and individualized success. Limitations of the Parallel Curriculum Model Successful design would require significant planning time

AID would require a variety of necessary resources

Teachers would need to be trained in this model

SOL pressures limit time for continued learning Research on the Parallel Curriculum Model More research is needed to determine if the PCM curriculum is effective on student achievement Recommendation Flexible and adaptable for virtually every classroom
Structured around what would be benificial to all students
Concept-based and structured around curriculum components already utilized

I recommend that we invest in training workshops for our teachers and begin a transition to incorporate the components of this model. Before we officially adopt the Parallel Curriculum Model for our district, quantitative research on the model's effectiveness should be present. Resources Tomlinson, C.A. (2009). The Parallel Curriculum Model: A Design to Develop Potential and Challenge High Ability Learners. In Renzulli, J.S., Gubbins, E.J., McMillen, K.S., Eckert, R.D., & Little, C.A. (Eds.), Systems and Models for Developing Programs for the Gifted and Talented (2nd ed.) (pp. 571-598). Mansfield, CT: Creative Learning Press.

Tieso, C. L. (2008). An Introduction and Overview of the Parallel Curriculum Model [PowerPoint Slides]. Retrieved from people.wm.edu/~clties/PCM_Shelby_short.pdf

Tieso, C.L. (2012). Characteristics of Giftedness [PowerPoint Slides]. Retrieved from https://blackboard.wm.edu

Overview of PCM Module 1 [PowerPoint Slides]. Retrieved from http://www.nagc.org/index.aspx?id=1069

Van Tassel- Baska, J., Brown, E. F. (2008) An Analysis of Gifted Curricular Models. In Karnes, F.A., Bean, S. M. (Eds.), Methods and Materials for Teaching the Gifted (pp. 75-105). Waco, TX: Prufrock PressPurcell, J. H., Burns, D. E., Leppien, J.H. (2002) The Parallel Curriculum Model (PCM): The Whole Story. National Association for Gifted Children, 4(1), 1-4.
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