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Working in Partnership With the Schools for Your Child: Ten Things to Round Out the School Program Professor Karen B. Rogers GERRIC/ The University of.

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Presentation on theme: "Working in Partnership With the Schools for Your Child: Ten Things to Round Out the School Program Professor Karen B. Rogers GERRIC/ The University of."— Presentation transcript:

1 Working in Partnership With the Schools for Your Child: Ten Things to Round Out the School Program Professor Karen B. Rogers GERRIC/ The University of New South Wales Sydney, Australia

2 What to Ask of the Schools Meet the needs of all gifted children through –Daily challenge in areas of strength (>50%) –Consistent remediation in areas of weakness (<25%) –Regular attention to socialization/affective issues (25%) Large blocks of time with intellectual/academic peers Mixed ability peer time for open-ended, higher level activities only (PBL, Inquiry Learning, etc.) Sessions on perfectionism, social skills instruction (fending off the intolerant) –Fast-paced acquisition of new content & skills (academic) –Compacting of regular curriculum to make room for challenge –Subject acceleration/ individualisation –Opportunities for competition, benchmarks of progress

3 Things You Must Do Outside of School 1. Provide opportunities, regardless of child’s age, in the specific area(s) in which your child’s talent and interests lie –Regional and local newsletters (also check out Hoagies.com) –Regional/ School/Community Resource Centre –Talent Search programs –Museums –Camps –Educational Opportunity Guide (919/683/1400) –Special Schools/Instructors - coaching, tutoring –Parent magazines - Gifted Child Today OR Parenting High Potential Children

4 Things You Must Do Outside of School 2. Provide opportunities for socialization with others of like ability or interests –Newsletters and Yearly Conference for Gifted Parents NSW) –Interest Clubs or Competitions –Talent Search Courses –Gifted Association/university/school district classes, experiences 3. Provide opportunities for socialization with mix of adults and children of varying abilities, ages –Community Projects (B. Lewis,“A Child’s Guide to Social Action” –Scouts –Nature Center experiences/classes –Church Projects and Socials

5 Things You Must Do Outside of School 4. Provide ways for child to understand own identity and uniqueness –Home projects instead of television –Private lessons –Direct moral/ethical dilemma discussions –Bibliotherapy reading (Halsted, Baskin & Harris) –Benchmarks of Progress through contests, competitions 5. Provide child with the “classics” of literature, philosophy, art, music, theater –Great Books Foundation, Classics to Read Aloud, Great Books, Philosophy for Children, Child’s History of the World,... –DBAE - Getty Museum –Performances

6 Things You Must Do Outside of School 6. Provide a variety of experiences that build fine motor skills, dexterity, and spatial visualization –Musical instruments (non-blowing!) –Keyboarding speed –Painting and drawing lessons –Orienteering –Books on tape 7. Provide experiences that require memorization and improving the ability to remember (visual, auditory, episodic, geographic) –“Committed to Memory” –Historical dates, facts –Scientific dates, facts –Geography

7 Things You Must Do Outside of School 8. Help your child learn to communicate precisely and expressively –Books on tape –Book discussions –Writing outlets (poetry, short stories, novelettes) –Practice in giving directions, describing pictures in detail –Theatre classes –Communication web sites (Voices of Youth, Deja News, Peace Pals) –Current events, social/moral dilemma discussions at dinner

8 Things You Must Do Outside of School 9. Teach child a variety of problem solving strategies to help in social, real world, and academic situations –Repertoire of jokes, ripostes, phrases for negative social situations –Evaluation grids (Creative Problem Solving) –Activities from “What Do You Stand For?” by Barbara Lewis, “What Would You Do: A Kids’ Guide to Tricky and Sticky Situations” by Linda Schwartz –Scavenger hunts, Treasure hunts

9 Things You Must Do Outside of School 10..Help your child feel comfortable in and knowledgeable about the world –Backyard search –Behind the scenes tours of local companies, etc. –Travel books –Stamp, coin collecting –Map making –Travel –The ‘Deep Web” on the Internet

10 Final Survival Tactics Don’t wait for the school to get things in place. Go ahead and start what you have asked for on your own (tutoring by an honor student, etc.) When requesting services from the school, go with a group of other parents who want this service too Insist on services within the school day. After school options send a message that this service is not important enough to be taught during the school day Start saving your money now for university. Your child may need to go early and there just aren’t many breaks (scholarships, etc.) for bright children anymore (except for sports and music)

11 A Quote to Live By “The family is the single most important determinant in the ultimate development of a child’s gift or talent.” (Sato, 1998) What that means is, the dynamics, expectations, hopes, access, etc. that a family possesses can either hinder or enhance the child’s development. (Not to put too much pressure on you or anything!)

12 So, How Far Are You Willing to Go As a Parent? Are the Ten Options Expecting too Much of You? Do You Want Your Child to Be “Eminent” At Some Point in His/Her Life?

13 Cradles of Eminence: Childhoods of More Than 700 Famous Men and Women Ted Goertzel & Ariel Hansen (2004) First edition written by Ted’s parents, Victor and Mildred in 1962 about 400 outstanding persons of the 20th century. To be “outstanding” there had to be at least two biographies about the person in their Montclair, New Jersey library. Second edition reproduced the first edition with updates and included an additional 300 outstanding persons culled from the Montclair library and Life magazine’s “100 Most Influential Americans” and Time magazine’s (and book) “Great People of the Twentieth Century”

14 Categories of Eminence Activists Actors Architects Artists Athletes Business Leaders Criminals, Assassins, Spies Dancers, Choreographers Diplomats Editors and Publishers Explorers and Adventurers

15 Categories of Eminence Film Makers Journalists Judges and Lawyers Labor Leaders Law Enforcement Military Leaders Musicians and Composers Photographers Physicians Pilots Political Leaders

16 Categories of Eminence Psychics and Hypnotists Scientists, Scholars, and Educators Famous Wives, Family Members, Socialites Writers

17 Summary of the Findings About Those Who Became Eminent All had a desire to be “great”. Almost all of them had a parent or another person who helped them identify their strengths and natural abilities. 60% expressed dissatisfaction with schools and teachers, although 80% showed exceptional talent while in school. None had an easy time of it in childhood. Almost all possessed superior ability to reason and recognise relationships, had strong intellectual curiosity, wide-ranging interests, and were effective at working independently. Most had their greatest superiority in reading and were early readers (with a few notable exceptions). Most had capable brothers and sisters.

18 Homes That Respected Learning and Achievement, But Not Necessarily School There was personal involvement with ideas in the home. The child showed great intensity in following his/ her own passions and was encouraged to do so by one parent. Often there was a strong family value system, a parent who was willing to sacrifice for greatness. Children (90%) were removed from school for long periods of time or never sent at all. CASALS

19 Opinionated Parent(s) 50% of the families had strong political attitudes, religious views, or espoused unpopular causes, working for reform and expressing or acting out controversial views publicly. Child tended to adopt parental views, did not rebel against parents, only teachers. (Only 11 did rebel against parents). Those who tended to emulate their fathers became social rebels, revolutionists, or philosophers. Those who emulated their mothers tended to become artists.

20 Conclusions to be Drawn Most of these children had exceptional talents that could have qualified them for programs for the gifted and talented, but they also had a drive or set of goals that set them apart from the “crowd” of gifted children. Most of these children were “allowed” to take a risk to develop their talent rather than pursue the traditional-university-world of work career path. Being in the right place at the right time accounts for some of the fame and eminence, but those who “cashed in” on this were well prepared,open to what they were offered, and persistent as well.

21 Conclusions to be Drawn --For Good or Bad! Most of the families supported the child’s exceptional talent and alternative goals or were benignly neglectful so that the child was free to pursue personal goals. Many of the most creative in the sample suffered unresolved emotional problems, economic, health, or safety problems. What they did have in abundance was being “hooked” on being challenged or on solving problems. Often their response was rooted in anger or frustration about their misfortune or mistreatment.

22 Conclusions to be Drawn “The freedom to follow paths that are non- traditional is important if one is to learn to be independent in thought and action. Parents and educators can perhaps help best by encouraging young people to explore their options and make the most of available resources as they follow their own muse-- wherever it leads them.” (Goertzel & Hansen, 2004, p. 347).

23 And Does That Bring Us Back to Our Ten Options for Rounding Out What Schools Can Provide? You Decide… Thank You


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