Teaching Able, Gifted and Talented Children: Strategies, Activities and Resources
Publication Year: 2010
In Teaching Able, Gifted and Talented Children, the author Clive Tunnicliffe, offers a vision of provision for able, gifted and talented (AG&T) learners within the context of Every Child Matters (ECM) legislation and the drive to achieve personalized learning. Providing a clear and concise summary of an increasingly important area of educational provision, this book offers the right balance of theory and practical strategies. Each chapter contains a summary of key points, case studies of good practice, great ideas to use with students and Professional Development Activities for staff.
- Front Matter
- Back Matter
- Subject Index
Education at SAGE[Page ii]
SAGE is a leading international publisher of journals, books, and electronic media for academic, educational, and professional markets.
Our education publishing includes:
- accessible and comprehensive texts for aspiring education professionals and practitioners looking to further their careers through continuing professional development
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Find out more at: http://www.sagepub.co.uk/education
© Clive Tunnicliffe 2010
Apart from any fair dealing for the purposes of research or private study, or criticism or review, as permitted under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act, 1988, this publication may be reproduced, stored or transmitted in any form, or by any means, only with the prior permission in writing of the publishers, or in the case of reprographic reproduction, in accordance with the terms of licences issued by the Copyright Licensing Agency. Enquiries concerning reproduction outside those terms should be sent to the publishers.
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I would like to thank Jude Bowen and Amy Jarrold of Sage Publications for their unfailing support throughout the writing of this book. This expression of appreciation is more than the conventional vote of thanks for editorial assistance. It is in no small part due to their good humour, patience and professionalism that the text in its present form has come to publication and I owe them a genuine debt of gratitude for that.
I would also like to thank my wife Patricia for the advice and support she gave me in seeing this project to completion. I could not have done it without her.
About the Author[Page viii]
Dr Clive Tunnicliffe has wide and successful experience as a teacher, adviser, trainer, inspector and manager. He first became a Local Authority adviser for gifted and talented children in 1990, a post he held for five years. From this post he moved to another authority where he performed a number of roles, including English inspector, national strategy manager in the primary and secondary phases and, eventually, senior manager leading on audit and organizational review. He has been a successful academic (completing a PhD in Shakespearean studies as a major state scholarship holder, and also an MA in Language and Literature in Education) and for a number of years was a senior A level examiner and moderator. He has also enjoyed great success as a trainer with a broad range of educational experience and interests, particularly relating to learning and creativity.
Clive's work has covered all phases of the maintained sector from early years through to Further Education provision. He recently led an education, leisure and libraries department through its Ofsted inspection and the Annual Performance Assessment (APA) of Children's Services (being named employee of the year in the process). This focus on organizational audit and self-review led him to work as a member of a national steering group developing policy in this area. He has also worked with the UK government's academies programme in establishing two new secondary schools, and with the London Challenge as chair of a local School Improvement Partnership Board. In 2006 he became an accredited School Improvement Partner (SIP) within the New Relationship with Schools legislation, and worked in this capacity with schools in London and Essex.
In 2007 Clive became a freelance educational consultant, and has worked both nationally and internationally in this capacity. He has extensive experience and expertise in both leading and delivering school improvement initiatives within the areas of continuing professional development, the leadership of teaching and learning and targeted support for the able, gifted and talented. In 2008–9 he was living and working in China where he gained further insight into the learning needs of the exceptionally able.
How to Use This Book[Page ix]
Researching this book made it abundantly clear that there is now a wealth of material freely available on the internet to anyone seeking to improve or update their knowledge and understanding of able, gifted and talented education. So much so, that one way to use this book is to turn immediately to the final section and use the bibliographical material provided to compile a personal – indeed a personalised – library of bookmarked special interest sites, electronic articles, government-sponsored downloads and e-learning modules sufficient to acquire either a working knowledge of the entire field or else an authoritative take on a particular area of current professional concern.
As always, however, the problem for working teachers and other professionals is one of time. From this perspective alone the material gathered here seeks to offer a clear and relatively concise summary of an increasingly important area of educational provision for busy managers, project leaders, classroom practitioners and learning support staff. In a context in which significant emphasis is being placed on the need for schools to develop personalised pathways for all learners, there is still a clear need for an up-to-date overview of good practice and organisational opportunity in relation to able, gifted and talented (AG&T) learners.
While the book is therefore unashamedly written to provide accessible guidelines for readers requiring a short-cut through current educational debates and national developments for the AG&T, its main purpose is not so much didactic as developmental. To this end, each chapter contains a range of prompts for professional development activities intended to be used by:
- Individual readers as a way of embedding the advice provided into their own professional practice
- AG&T coordinators, lead practitioners and professional development providers as a readily available source of material to engage colleagues in discussion about provision for more able learners in their own schools
- School leaders as part of a structured programme of audit, self-review and organisational improvement focused on meeting the needs of all learners through raised challenge, differentiated learning and personalised provision.
In this sense, the way to use this book is as a compendium of generic exemplar material and stimuli for promoting organisational reflection on the individualised needs of target schools, curriculum areas and teachers. Although the examples and activities provided aim to be of direct relevance to particular teaching and support contexts (i.e. they may be freely adopted and adapted for use in the classroom), they are primarily models of provision which must [Page x]themselves be personalised to meet specialised subject and age-specific requirements. In this they provide models of approaches to teaching and learning which require the active professional understanding of teachers to make them applicable to their own situations.
Chapter 1 considers the development of whole-school policy and the need to align policy development to the wider ethos of the school/setting and its identified (audited) areas for improvement.
Chapter 2 goes on to examine how AG&T learners are perceived and defined within the school and its teaching and learning policy. It offers a range of activities to support schools in arriving at a consensus agreement with regard to terminology and the categorisation of able learners.
Chapter 3 considers a wide range of identification procedures for AG&T youngsters. Again professional development activities are included to assist schools in arriving at identification mechanisms that match their own ethos and cohort profile.
Chapter 4 focuses on the whole-school aspects of provision, including learning environment, cross-curricular planning and organisational support for the development of personalised learning.
Chapter 5 explores aspects of classroom provision including the role of higher order thinking, differentiated planning, creative learning and personalisation. Models of suggested approaches are provided for individual guidance and to support professional development activity generally.
Chapter 6 extends the concept of personalisation into the extra-curricular support provided for the more able learner and his/her parents. A range of audit strategies are suggested and opportunities provided to establish a developmental agenda for this area of the school's work.
Appendix a number of the planning models and activities used throughout this book draw on a generic version of Goldilocks and the Three Bears specifically adapted for this purpose. The version used is set out in the Appendix.
Throughout the chapters you will encounter the following icons:
Chapter objectives Activity Case study To think about Summary Photocopiable pages
[Page xi]NB: It should be noted that the acronym AG&T is used throughout to refer to the target group of learners. As Chapter 2 in particular will reveal, this is by no means an internationally accepted term and individual schools/settings may well decide on an alternative formulation better suited to local ethos and need. It goes without saying that what such youngsters are called is less important than the provision made to secure their entitlement as learners.[Page xii]
Appendix[Page 111]Goldilocks and the Three Bears
The three bears lived in a house in the forest. There was a father bear, a mother bear and a baby bear. Mother bear was big enough but father bear was even bigger and more scary, especially when he showed his long sharp claws and huge fangs.
In the bears' house there were three chairs. The biggest chair was father bear's. The smallest chair was baby bear's. There were also three bowls. There was a very big bowl for father bear, a smaller bowl for mother bear and a little bowl for baby bear. Upstairs there were three beds. Father bear had a great big bed. Mother bear had a smaller bed, and baby bear had a tiny little bed.
One day, mother bear made some porridge for breakfast. She put it in the three bowls on the table. But the porridge was too hot to eat, so father bear said that they should go for a walk in the forest until it cooled down.
A little girl called Goldilocks lived at the edge of the forest near to the bears' house. Her mother said that she was not allowed to go into the forest alone but that morning she decided to walk through the trees to find somewhere new to play. She saw the bears' house and wanted to see who lived there. She knocked at the door but no one answered. She pushed open the door and went inside.
She was hungry so she tried a spoonful of father bear's porridge but it was still too hot. Then she ate some of mother bear's porridge but it was too salty. Then she tried some of baby bear's porridge and it was just right. So she gobbled it all up.
Next she sat on father bear's chair but it was too high. She sat on mother bear's chair but it was too lumpy. Then she sat on baby bear's chair and it was just right. But Goldilocks was too heavy for the chair and it broke.
After that she went upstairs. She was tired, so she lay on father bear's giant bed but it was too hard. Then she lay on mother bear's bed but it was too soft. Finally Goldilocks got into baby bear's bed and it was just right, so she closed her eyes and went to sleep.
When the three bears came back from their walk in the forest father bear looked at his bowl and roared, ‘someone's been eating my porridge’. Mother bear looked at her bowl and added more calmly, ‘someone's been eating my porridge too’. Then baby bear cried, ‘someone's been eating my porridge and eaten it all up!’
When they saw their chairs, father and mother bear could tell that someone had been sitting in them and father growled angrily showing his fierce teeth. But baby bear said tearfully, ‘someone's been sitting in my chair and broken it to pieces’.
[Page 112]Rushing upstairs, father bear was furious. ‘Someone's been sleeping in my bed’, he snarled. ‘Someone's been sleeping in my bed too,’ said mother bear, more shocked than angry. But when baby bear gasped, ‘someone's been sleeping in my bed and she's still there’, all the bears howled in surprise, father bellowing loudest of all.
All this noise woke Goldilocks and she was frightened to see the three bears staring at her with their mouths wide open. Without a word, she got out of bed and ran down the stairs, out of the house and back to her own house. Mother bear cleaned the bedroom and made some more porridge while father bear made baby bear a new chair. Goldilocks never came back and the three bears never saw her again.
Useful Websites, Agencies and Associations[Page 113]
Schools may wish to align themselves with (or direct parents towards) some of the following agencies concerned with promoting gifted and talented education:
Brunel Able Children's Education (BACE) Centre
Centre Director: Professor Valsa Koshy. Email: Valsa.Koshy@brunel.ac.uk
Brunel Able Children's Education Centre
School of Sport and Education
Halsbury Building (Room 102)
Tel: +44 (0)1895 267164. Fax: +44 (0)1895 269806
The BACE Centre was launched in 1997 within the School of Education at Twickenham and undertakes research and provides evidence-based strategies for both policy-makers and practitioners. The BACE team contributes at national and international conferences and works with a large network of Local Authorities and schools, providing research-based strategies and systems for evaluating provision for gifted and talented students.
The Hong Kong Academy for Gifted Education
Kowloon Tong Education Services Centre
19 Suffolk Rd
Tel: +853 3698 4103. Fax: +852 3586 3445
HKAGE website: http://hkage.org.hk/en/index.html
The academy provides challenging learning opportunities for gifted students to enable them to stretch their potential in a wide range of specialist areas, including leadership, creativity, personal-social competence. All the courses are available ‘off site’, though school venues will not be uncommon. The website provides information and resources for students, parents and teachers.
British Mensa Ltd
St John's House
St John's Square
Tel: +44 (0) 1902 772 771. Fax: +44 (0) 1902 392 500
MENSA website: http://www.mensa.org.uk
MENSA is a registered charity (No. 00971663) for people with a high IQ. It provides a range of activities, social networks and research opportunities for members. Its website offers support, IQ testing and mental challenges for adults and children.
The National Association for Able Children in Education (NACE)
Chief Executive: Julie Fitzpatrick
NACE National Office
PO Box 242
Tel: +44 (0)1865 861879. Fax: +44 (0)1865 861880
NACE website: http://www.nace.co.uk
NACE is a registered charity (No. 327320) and is the UK's largest independent organisation supporting teachers, schools, local authorities and wider agencies in their work with AG&T learners. It has an extensive network of member schools and individual teachers throughout the UK, organises a wide range of conference and CPD opportunities, has developed (in conjunction with Oxford Brookes University) the NACE Challenge Award kitemark and self-review standard and publishes a wide range of resources for use in schools. NACE membership and services and publications can be accessed through its website.
The National Association for Gifted Children
Tel: +44 (0)845 450 0295. Fax: +44 (0)870 770 3219
The NAGC is a registered charity working on behalf of talented children and their families. Parents or organisations may join and a range of services are offered including counselling. It has a network of local branches that organise activities for children in the area. It has several publications for parents which may be accessed through the website.
[Page 115]The National Society for the Gifted and Talented
Membership Director: Emilia Musella
National Society for the Gifted & Talented™
9 West Broad Street
Tel: (800) 572 6748. Fax: (203) 399 5590
NSGT is committed to acknowledging and supporting the needs of AG&T children and youth through recognition of their significant academic and artistic accomplishments and by providing access to educational resources and advanced learning opportunities directly related to their interests and talent areas.
Ohio Association for Gifted Children
501 Morrison Rd
Tel: +1 614 337 0386. Fax: +1 614 337 9286
OAGC promotes and supports the development of gifted students through dissemination of information, advocacy on their behalf, encouragement of affiliate organisations, and promotes research and education for gifted children.
Oxford Brookes University
Westminster Institute of Education
Harcourt Hill Campus
Tel: +44 (0)1865 488600
OBU provides a wide range of information, resources, courses and professional development materials for AG&T.
The Queensland Association for Gifted and Talented Children
PO Box 3246
[Page 116]Queensland 4053
282 Stafford Rd
Tel: (07) 3352 4288. Fax: (07) 3352 4388
QAGTC is an association for children, teachers/professionals and parents and offers a full range of support and advocacy services including educational training events, publications and membership services which may be accessed through the website.
The Sutton Trust
111 Upper Richmond Road
Tel: +44 (0)20 8788 3223. Fax: 020 8788 3993
The Sutton Trust is particularly concerned with breaking the link between educational opportunities and family background. Its projects include independent/state school partnerships and university summer schools.
World Council for Gifted and Talented Children
World Council for Gifted and Talented Children, Inc.
c/o The University of Winnipeg
515 Portage Avenue
Canada R3B 2E9
Tel: 204 789 1421. Fax: 204 783 1188
WCGTC is a worldwide non-profit organisation whose primary goal is to provide advocacy and support for gifted children. It organises The World Conference through a membership of educators, scholars, researchers, parents and educational institutions.Some Useful Forums, Blogs and Online Communities for AG&T
American Gifted Education Blog
[Page 117]Cogito – connecting young thinkers around the world (Johns Hopkins University)
Edublogs – online communities for teachers and students
Gifted families – a place to share ideas and insights from around the world
Parents Centre on Department for Children, Schools and Families site UK
Radiowaves global communications network for talented children
Times Educational Supplement discussion boards (search for AG&T)United Kingdom National Strategies and Government Agencies
CfBT Education Trust manages the Young Gifted and Talented programme excellence hubs established in nine English regions to provide a diverse range of outreach provision to gifted and talented learners including master classes, specialist subject activities and blended/online learning throughout and outside of the school year.
Go to http://nationalstrategies.standards.dcsf.gov.uk and search for AG&T to select from an extensive range of guidance, resource information and e-learning modules compiled and promoted by The Department for Children Schools and Families.
The Qualifications and Curriculum Authority website has guidance on teaching and assessing AG&T pupils.
The Gifted and Talented area of the Standards Site outlines support strategies, identification issues and provides links to other agencies and NGOs supporting AG&T. http://www.standards.dfes.gov.uk/giftedandtalented/
Teachernet provides the latest information and news related to AG&T learners.General Resources and Useful Websites
The 21st Century Learning Initiative
[Page 118]Aquila magazine (8–13 year olds)
BBC Schools Online
Bloom's Taxonomy and Learning Domains
Cognitive Acceleration through Science Education (CASE) and Cognitive Acceleration through Maths Education (CAME)
Creative Learning Journey site
Critical and Creative Thinking
Critical Thinking Community
Critical Thinking Overview
Critical Thinking Skills in Education and Life
Gifted Students and the Socratic Method
Home Learning and Learning Styles
Independent Thinking and Multiple Intelligence Theory/questioning
Kidsource site with summaries and links to AG&T resources and articles
Leadership, human motovation & research programmes
Learning and Thinking provision for G&T
[Page 119]Learning Styles – http://About.com site
Learning Styles BBC Wales Home Education, The Learning Gate
Learning Styles inventory
Multiverse: exploring diversity and achievement in the UK educational context
New South Wales Association for Gifted and Talented Children Inc
Post-16 G&T policy
Queensland Gifted Education Site
SAPERE, The Society for Advancing Philosophical Enquiry and Reflection in Education
Schools site with discussion forum and information
Socratic Questioning – Changing Minds site
Socratic Questioning – Starting Point site
Talented and Gifted Educational Resources
Teaching Ideas for Primary Teachers
Thinking Styles and Learning Styles CENGAGE Learning site
[Page 120]Virtual Learning Environments – BECTA site and download
Wise Ones: Nurturing High PotentialIdentification and Assessment – Useful Websites
Creative Generation guidance on talent identification
Creativity – what is it? QCA site
Defining Giftedness – National Society for Giftedness & Talent site
Defining Giftedness – Rhode Island Advocates for Gifted Education
Definitions of gifted and talented – Hertfordshire Grid for Learning
Definitions of giftedness and talent – National Literacy Trust site
E-learning module on identification
Giftedness and the gifted – identification checklists Kidsource site
Innate Talent – Psychology Today
Is every child gifted? Probably not – Psychology Today
Talented performance: a Chinese model – Gifted Child Quarterly
What is a gifted child? Definitions and links
Who is gifted and talented? Standards Site definition
[Page 121]World Class Tests for Gifted and TalentedBibliographyWebsites and Downloads
All Our Futures: Creativity, Culture and Education
Bloom's taxonomy and classroom reading
English proverbs and sayings
Fairy stories and traditional tales
Fairy tales and jokes
Folklore and mythology
John Donne: A Valediction Forbidding Mourning
Read and talk about stories
Similes from ‘Said What’
Stimulate Higher Order Thinking with the random simile generator
Word gamesUK Government Publications and Downloads
Classroom Quality Standards (CQS) guided resource is an online tool, to support self-evaluation and improvement in classroom provision, with guidance and exemplification.
[Page 122]Developing school policy for AG&T
Early Years Foundation Stage Pack
Every Child Matters
Excellence and Enjoyment: Learning and Teaching in the Primary Years
G&T wise resources
Gifted and Talented Education: Guidance on Addressing Underachievement: Planning a Whole-School Approach (June 2009)
Gifted and Talented Education: Guidance on Preventing Underachievement: A Focus on Exceptionally Able Pupils
Search, using the reference ‘00066–2008BKT-EN’.
Identifying gifted and talented learners – getting started
London gifted and talented e-resources
National Curriculum AG&T guidance
National Quality Standards for Gifted and Talented Education
New relationship with schools
Ofsted interactive site on self-evaluation
[Page 123]Personalised Learning – A Practical Guide (October 2008)
Quality Standards (Institutional and Classroom)
Subject-specific teaching materials
Welsh Quality Standards document and download
Meeting the Challenge: Quality Standards in Education for More Able and Talented Pupils
(May 2008), Welsh Assembly Government Circular 006/2008[Page 124]
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