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ACCELERATION: MYTHS, REALITIES, AND OPTIONS Kiri Jorgensen & Barbara Geller 1 October 2013.

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Presentation on theme: "ACCELERATION: MYTHS, REALITIES, AND OPTIONS Kiri Jorgensen & Barbara Geller 1 October 2013."— Presentation transcript:

1 ACCELERATION: MYTHS, REALITIES, AND OPTIONS Kiri Jorgensen & Barbara Geller 1 October 2013

2 What is Acceleration?  In general, acceleration is defined as the recognition of students’ prior achievement. (Southern, Jones, & Stanley, 1993)  However, the practice also includes academic progress based on individual abilities without regard to age (Paulus, 1994) and  Implies adjustment of the curriculum, as well as administrative procedures, for student placement (Schiever & Maker, 2003). 2

3 Types of Acceleration Whole-Grade Skipping Early admission to Kindergarten or First Grade Grade Skipping Early College Entrance Curriculum Adjustments Subject Acceleration Telescoping Curriculum Curriculum Compacting Fast Paced Extracurricular Classes 3

4 Bailey, Rachel, Kaleb, and Ben 4

5 Christina & Jack 5

6 Early Entrance to Kindergarten Should We or Shouldn’t We?  3 testors: absolutely not!  Introvert  Social repercussions  Experienced G/T teacher:  Humor  Knowledge & behavior  Attitude  Principal:  Problematic behaviors? 6

7 Myths about Grade Skipping  “It hurries children out of childhood”  “Acceleration hurts children socially”  “Children must be kept with their age group”  “It’s not fair to the other students”  “They will have gaps in their learning / skills” 7

8 Realities When GT students do not move ahead at an appropriate pace, the results are:  Boredom  Poor study habits  Underachievement  Behavior problems 8 NAGC: 20% of gifted kids drop out of high school

9 Realities of Acceleration Students who are moved ahead tend to:  Be more ambitious  Earn graduate degrees at higher rates  Say acceleration was an excellent experience for them  Feel academically challenged  Feel socially accepted 9

10 WHEN IS GRADE SKIPPING APPROPRIATE? Using the Iowa Acceleration Scale 10

11 Iowa Acceleration Scale It is a tool for use by a team of school professionals. It provides educators and parents with a systematic and defensible way to generate recommendations and guidelines to use for placement of highly gifted students. The IAS is not a test. 11 $179 for IAS Manual and ten IAS Forms and Summary and Planning Records

12 Why IAS Recommends a Team Approach  Discuss strengths and potential difficulties of the K- 8 student.  Designed to bring objective data to the discussion.  Minimize any potential bias for or against whole- grade acceleration.  Ensure that all who have relevant knowledge about the child will have input. 12

13 What Info Does IAS Require? 1. General info about student, family, team 2. Ability (IQ, intelligence) test such as WICS-IV  Preferably administered individually by a psychologist 3. Aptitude (above-level) test  Examples: ITBS, EXPLORE, SAT, ACT 4. Achievement (at-level) assessment  Examples: ITBS, CAT, Woodcock-Johnson Test of Achievement 5. School & Academic Factors: attendance, motivation, attitude toward learning, and academic self confidence. 6. Development: age, physical size, motor skills 7. Interpersonal skills: emotional development, behavior, and relationships with peers and teachers. 8. Attitudes: student’s attitude regarding the grade skip, level of parent support, and level of school system support 13

14 Interpreting the IAS Grand Total points totalExcellent candidate for whole grade acceleration. Acceleration is recommended pointsGood candidate. Whole grade acceleration is recommended pointsMarginal candidate. No clear recommendation. Consider curricular alternatives. 34 or fewer pointsWhole grade acceleration is not recommended. Consider curricular alternatives.

15 Reasons to NOT Grade Skip 1. The student’s ability (measured by IQ) is less than one standard deviation above the mean 2. The student would be accelerated into the same grade as (or a higher grade than) a sibling 3. The student presently has a sibling in the same grade 4. The student does not want to be whole-grade accelerated 15 Reasons to perhaps delay a grade skip: Divorce, move, disease or other temporary family disruption Disabilities English proficiency

16 When To Grade Skip  Kindergarten  Elementary  Middle School  High School  Mid-year or beginning of year? 16

17 The Child Study Team Model: What We Did  Started meeting early in K year to plan for current needs  Included parents, teachers - current and future, administrator, counselor, psychologist, GT Coordinator, mentor  Progressed through the IAS systematically throughout the year, breaking the actual form into two meetings 17

18 The Iowa Acceleration Scale The Iowa Acceleration Scale provided our school with an objective and defendable measure of the multiple aspects of whole grade acceleration consideration. We covered academic appropriateness, emotional readiness, social readiness, behavior and attitudes, the school itself, the family, and the thoughts of the student being considered. Many people were involved with the acceleration decision, and supported it. We are confident in our decision, and empowered by the plan we created. 18

19 Keys to Successful Acceleration Once the decision is made to whole grade accelerate, then the team’s work starts. What happens next? Who will make sure it happens? Who will monitor and provide support? What is expected of the student? When will the team meet again to evaluate progress and address concerns? What will show the acceleration as a success or failure? What will happen next year? The year after that?  Create an Acceleration Plan  Ensure receiving teacher has positive attitude  Trial period 19

20 Keys to Successful Acceleration  Our plan for Ben  Accelerate to 2nd grade.  Continue with his teaching mentor.  Provide opportunities for quick advancement, or high grouping in subject areas of strength.  Check in support from counselor, especially at the beginning of the year.  Establish clear expectations with fine motor skills, specifically handwriting. Teach keyboarding.  Make PE teacher aware of physical differences.  Meet regularly as a team to discuss progress.  Make necessary changes to curriculum as needed, including future acceleration. 20

21 No Policy?  Presents recommendations in five key areas for components of an acceleration policy.  Supports schools in creating a comprehensive and research-based acceleration policy that is compatible with local policies.  Provides an easy-to-use Checklist for Developing an Academic Acceleration Policy to guide policy development. Co-authored by Institute for Research and Policy on Acceleration, the National Association for Gifted Children, & the Council of State Directors of Programs for the Gifted Free PDF from 21

22 Early College Programs  HS diploma not required  Full fledged university student  Preferably a program, not an ad-hoc solution  “Considering the Options: A Guidebook for Investigating Early College Entrance from Davidson Young Scholars” _Guidebooks_375.aspx _Guidebooks_375.aspx  Not the same thing as an “early college high school” or a “boarding school” 22

23 Residential Early Entrance Programs  Bard College at Simon's Rock (MA) Bard College at Simon's Rock  Clarkson School (NY) Clarkson School  Georgia Academy of Mathematics, Engineering, and Science (GAMES) (GA) Georgia Academy of Mathematics, Engineering, and Science (GAMES)  Mary Baldwin College Program for the Exceptionally Gifted (PEG) (VA; for females only) Mary Baldwin College Program for the Exceptionally Gifted (PEG)  Missouri Academy of Science, Mathematics, and Computing (MO) Missouri Academy of Science, Mathematics, and Computing  Shimer College, the Great Books College of Chicago (IL) Shimer College, the Great Books College of Chicago  State University of West Georgia Advanced Academy (GA) State University of West Georgia Advanced Academy  Texas Academy of Mathematics and Science (TAMS) (Texas residents only)  University of Iowa National Academy of Arts, Sciences, and Engineering (IA) University of Iowa National Academy of Arts, Sciences, and Engineering  University of Southern California Resident Honors Program (RHP) (CA) University of Southern California Resident Honors Program (RHP)  University of Washington Early Entrance Program (WA)  Davidson Academy for the Profoundly Gifted (NV) – free for profoundly gifted local residents has a comparison chart of the programs 23

24  Who?  High achievers  Interested in math & science  Ready for pre-calculus  What?  Take university courses  Live in a dorm with (just) other TAMS students  TAMS specific extracurriculars  Possible drawback:  If student doesn’t finish college and has no HS diploma 24 Research on TAMS: Serving Gifted Learners Beyond the Traditional Classroom

25 Grade Skipping Isn’t a Total Solution 25

26 ALTERNATIVE FORMS OF ACCELERATION 1. Subject Acceleration 2. Telescoping Curriculum / Curriculum Compacting 3. Fast Paced Extracurricular Classes 26

27 Subject Acceleration Decison Option A: Administer an end-of-year, comprehensive subject exam Option B: Use state proficiency exam scores Option C: Belin-Blank “IDEAL Solutions ® for STEM Acceleration” report:  Gather recent scores for at least one of the following tests:  ACT EXPLORE Iowa Algebra Aptitude Test  $49 for one student; discounts for multiple students  Can be done by parent or teacher 27

28 Logistics of Subject Acceleration  Walk to another class  Zero hour class  Independent study / mentor  Online courses What happens when the class is in another building? You need a long-term plan. 28

29 Telescoping or Compacting Curriculum  Telescoping = Complete the curriculum in a shorter time period than normal  Example: Finish 3 years of science in 2 years  Gifted kids can learn in 1-3 repetitions  Typically done in middle or high school  Typically done for a group or class together  Compacting = Eliminate repetitive material or material already mastered  Pre-testing  Based upon individual’s gaps & strengths  Time saved is commonly used for enrichment 29

30 Extracurricular Acceleration  Summer camps  Math camps explore non-curricular subjects, like number theory, game theory  Regional talent search summer programs (Center for Bright Kids)  Online courses  Mentorships  Advice & resources:  For the profoundly gifted: Davidson Young Scholars  For minorities: The Next Generation Venture Fund  For 7 th Graders: Jack Kent Cook Scholarship 30

31 Effect Size of Acceleration OptionAcademic ESSocialization ESPsychological ES Early Entrance to School Grade Skipping Early College Residential HS (TAMS)1.04 Subject Acceleration1.02 (.49)*-.16 Curriculum Compaction1.48 (.45)* Grade Telescoping Mentorships (.01)*.48 Adv Placement.29.24**.07** Concurrent Enroll (.36)* Bold = statistically significant. (ES> +.30) *1 study may have overly influenced outcomes. 2nd # has study removed. ** Based on 1 study Karen B. Rogers: 10 “Things” That Work; A best-evidence synthesis of research on acceleration options 31

32 How is acceleration working for our kids? 32

33 60 Profoundly Gifted - Outcomes  Australian researcher Miraca Gross followed a group of 60 students with very high IQs for two decades. She found that those who were allowed to skip ahead at least three grade levels tended to do well academically and socially; most got PhDs, settled into professional careers, formed relationships, and developed good friends.  The 33 who were not allowed to accelerate in school had less charmed lives. Most ended up at less rigorous colleges and several never graduated high school or college. They also had more trouble forming social relationships. Having spent so many years feeling alienated, they had no practice connecting with people, Gross speculated. 33 “IQ like Einstein” by Susan Freinkel

34 Resources & Further Reading 34 A Nation Deceived – free download Re-Forming Gifted Education by Karen B. Rogers $11.50 Guidelines for Developing an Academic Acceleration Policy – free download Guidelines Iowa Acceleration Scale $179 for 10 students s.aspx s.aspx Belin-Blank “IDEAL Solutions ® for STEM Acceleration” <=$49/student “Considering the Options: A Guidebook for Investigating Early College Entrance from Davidson Young Scholars” – free download _Young_Scholars___Guidebooks_375.aspx– _Young_Scholars___Guidebooks_375.aspx

35 For Further Reading freeKaren B. Rogers 35

36 Questions?  Kiri Jorgensen   Barbara Geller  36


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