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Anyone a gifted teacher?
Old 03-30-2010, 07:29 AM
 
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My school's gifted program is, well, terrible. The kids leave for a whole day, and play "games" pretty much. They don't learn anything that contributes to our classroom learning. I was wondering if any of you had a great gifted program that you'd like to share with me how it is run.

The teacher who teaches gifted at my school is leaving this year, and as far as I know, no one has shown interest in teaching it. I would like to, but it seems like it would be a HUGE workload, and as a first year teacher (next year would be my second) I'm just not sure I want to take that on. However, I'm fairly certain if I went to my principal I could have the job today. I don't want to ask for it without some ideas of how to run it, though.

In a perfect world, the gifted class would learn the same thing they would learn in their regular classroom, just more in depth. For instance, if the third graders were learning 2 digit by 1 digit multiplication, the gifted class should learn, say, 3 digit by 1 digit, or 2 digit by 2 digit. Does that makes sense?

Is anyone's program run this way? Or is there anyone who likes the way their program is run, and would like to share some ideas?

Thanks, guys!


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my two cents...
Old 03-30-2010, 07:44 AM
 
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One of the things that is very important for gifted students is to practice higher order thinking/reasoning skills and creative thinking. There are many games that allow them to do just that, in a fun way. I wouldn't be so quick to discredit the role of games in their program. This is an excellent way to enrich their school experience, which in many ways often lacks this type of skill development. Now, if they're playing Monopoly, that's another story....
As far as learning a more advanced level of what is happening in the regular classroom, that is the regular classroom teacher's job. In a perfect world, as you say, what would actually happen is that the gifted program teacher would provide opportunities for enriching experiences, not an extension of regular classroom teaching. The regular classroom teacher should be providing the student the opportunity to utilize a third grade math book in second grade, for example, if the student demonstrates mastery of second grade skills. This would be what you are talking about regarding multiplication. I would recommend a book entitled "Teaching Gifted Children in the Regular Classroom" for more information. Reading over the GIEP's of your gifted students would be helpful as well.
I'm saying this as an experienced teacher who was a gifted student myself. I also have a daughter who is a gifted student. I have done extensive reading on the topic of giftedness and recommend that you would do the same if you are thinking of attempting to teach this population or offering criticism of those who do. As a first year teacher, there are apparently many things you do not understand about gifted students and their needs.
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Gifted...
Old 03-30-2010, 07:47 AM
 
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We have gifted classes that are held before/after school and during 2 days a week during their non- PE days.

I teach the math and it is called "deeper math". It is invite only. We teach just like your perfect world gifted class.

I have removed a kid or two because they are gifted but give no effort.

We offer it in Math, Reading and Science. Math during school. Reading before, and science after. A kid may be in one, or all. We start with the the top 24 in each subject area and make adjustments if needed.

Teachers get an extended contract for teaching the "Deep" classes.
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This is my class...
Old 04-07-2010, 01:10 PM
 
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My class is much like what you described, my students come once a week and we do some extension of curriculum, and some project-based learning.

I would suggest, before you dive into this, doing some training in working with gifted students. We regularly have game time in my class, games are a great way for students to learn (even Monopoly ). We also have building blocks and Legos and Play-doh and paint (you have to consider the creativity). Gifted education is not just about "adding to the curriculum" - you have to look at all aspects of the gifted child - academic, social/emotional, creative, etc.

Depending on how many students you'd be serving it is a ton of work (I currently have over 90 students, in four grades, from five schools). Also, consider as a "pullout" there will be many days that you won't have your class for assorted reasons (testing, field trips, etc.), so you end up falling behind in your plans.

I love teaching gifted and wouldn't do anything else... but it is not all "you get the smart kids, that should be easy."...

(Am I the only one that thinks it's odd to title a post "Anyone a gifted teacher" on a Gifted Education board?? What else would we be?? )

Last edited by yesteach; 04-07-2010 at 02:02 PM..
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Thanks for the replies
Old 04-08-2010, 03:54 AM
 
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I guess I shouldn't judge the class based on the games they play...I know there are MANY educational games (I play some in my own classroom). I guess it's just that everytime my kids come back from her room, it seems they've learned some pointless facts...however, that may not be true. Thanks, everyone, for giving me a little insight into what really may be going on in there.

As for the one who asked about the title...I originally posted in the teacher's lounge (I didn't even know there was a gifted board!) and it was moved.


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Gifted Classes
Old 04-08-2010, 07:34 AM
 
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We have pull out for gifted students. It is required in our district that students have a certain number of minutes a week with a certified gifted teacher. I would check into that
or possibly getting the certification if that is the direction you would like to go. The training would also give you more of an idea of a gifted student's needs and strategies to incorporate
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One last thing...
Old 04-09-2010, 05:20 PM
 
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consider that if you are basing this on what the kids tell you... they remember what was "fun." My students went back after working all day on their games they were creating for their toy business and the principal asked one little boy what he'd done in GT. He replied, "we played games while Ms. Yesteach ate rice cakes"

Well, while he was telling the truth, it was a little out of context and overblown. After their lunchtime, we had "recess" (which we have about once a month) and they had 30 mins to play a game of their choosing from my game shelf. While they were playing, I did some paperwork, and there were some rice cakes at my desk and I was munching on them... apparently, that was the only 30mins he remembered!
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Gifted
Old 04-10-2010, 05:39 AM
 
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Check out

www.hoagiesgifted.com

This website IMO is the most comprehensive website out there on the needs of gifted students.
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Everyone Wants to Join
Old 05-26-2010, 05:54 AM
 
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All the regular ed students want to join my gifted class because all we do is "play". At least that is what they think. But as one of my 5th graders pointed out " we do hard work that is fun".
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small group gifted class
Old 06-04-2010, 01:37 AM
 
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I have been taking groups of 8 or so gifted children for extension and enrichment classes for over 2 years. They are sessions that run for 50 minutes a week. I basically come up with a topic that I think the group will like or that the group choose. Before I run the 8 week course, I madly research everything I can about the topic and try to cater to the individual learning style of the student with my visual and auditorial aides. I then facilitate each session by imparting some information or generating a discussion on a relevant issue. The group will then involve themselves in the discussion and debate the issue. I also have a task board that requires that the students go home and research the topic in a manner that they enjoy (I refer to Gardner and Bloom) and come back and teach the rest of us.

We have a lot of fun (humour is a big part of dealing with Gifted and talented children), and the students are often very dramatic. These students just need to be taught a concept once. They will retain that information with ease, and will tend to get a bit annoyed (or worse) or bored if things are repeated (as in the usual class). They are a pleasure to deal with, but you do have to make sure that you know your stuff or they will surely catch you out!


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