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What Works: 20 Years of Curriculum Development and Research for Advanced Learners Dr. Joyce VanTassel-Baska The College of William and Mary Honolulu, Hawaii.

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Presentation on theme: "What Works: 20 Years of Curriculum Development and Research for Advanced Learners Dr. Joyce VanTassel-Baska The College of William and Mary Honolulu, Hawaii."— Presentation transcript:

1 What Works: 20 Years of Curriculum Development and Research for Advanced Learners Dr. Joyce VanTassel-Baska The College of William and Mary Honolulu, Hawaii 2009

2 National Curriculum Network Conference March 6, 2008 Dr. Joyce VanTassel-Baska Jody and Layton Smith Professor of Education Executive Director, Center for Gifted Education The College of William and Mary

3 The Process for Determining What Works TheoryPractice Research

4 The Theory… Differentiated characteristics of gifted learners: PrecocityComplexity Need for adaptations in school-based curriculum

5 The Integrated Curriculum Model Advanced Content Dimension Process-Product Dimension Issues/Themes Dimension VanTassel-Baska, 1986

6 The Practice… What Works in Curriculum and Instruction for High End Learners? William and Mary curriculum frameworks and models in core areas William and Mary curriculum frameworks and models in core areas Research-based instructional approaches (concept maps, higher level thinking, metacognition, developing concepts et al.) Research-based instructional approaches (concept maps, higher level thinking, metacognition, developing concepts et al.) Authentic Assessment tools Authentic Assessment tools

7 Strategies for Aligning Curriculum for the Gifted with Content Standards Content Standards Differentiated Task Demands Differentiated Product Demands Use of Overarching Interdisciplinary Models Acceleration of Standards -VanTassel-Baska, 2004

8 Science Curriculum Framework The Problem Understanding Systems Learning Science Using Scientific Research Concept Content Process

9 Wheel of Scientific Investigation and Reasoning Make Observations Ask Questions Learn More Design and Conduct the Experiment SCIENTIFIC INVESTIGATION AND REASONING Create Meaning Tell Others What Was Found

10 The Research… Science Research Findings Significant and important treatment effects were found for students ability to design an experiment after exposure to the William and Mary units. Significant and important treatment effects were found for students ability to design an experiment after exposure to the William and Mary units. Teachers and students both found problem- based science units more engaging than typical science units. Teachers and students both found problem- based science units more engaging than typical science units.

11 The Research… Science Research Findings cont. Positive academic achievement effects were significant for all groups of learners, regardless of socioeconomic status, ability level, or ethnicity Positive academic achievement effects were significant for all groups of learners, regardless of socioeconomic status, ability level, or ethnicity Continued use of the PBL science curriculum over a three year period resulted in continued academic growth for gifted students. Continued use of the PBL science curriculum over a three year period resulted in continued academic growth for gifted students. -Feng, VanTassel-Baska, Quek, ONeil, & Bai, VanTassel-Baska, Bass, Ries, Poland, & Avery, 1998

12 Project Clarion Goals To implement instrumentation sensitive to low socioeconomic learners for identification and assessment of learning. To implement instrumentation sensitive to low socioeconomic learners for identification and assessment of learning. To implement, refine, and extend research-based concept curriculum units of study at primary levels. To implement, refine, and extend research-based concept curriculum units of study at primary levels. To develop and implement professional training models for stakeholders. To develop and implement professional training models for stakeholders. To conduct research on short term and longitudinal learning. To conduct research on short term and longitudinal learning.

13 Project Clarion Research Findings Primary age students exposed to the William and Mary science units showed significant growth on a standardized achievement test in science (MAT8) compared to control students. Primary age students exposed to the William and Mary science units showed significant growth on a standardized achievement test in science (MAT8) compared to control students. Primary age students exposed to the William and Mary units showed significant growth in critical thinking when compared to those students who used the regular science curriculum. Primary age students exposed to the William and Mary units showed significant growth in critical thinking when compared to those students who used the regular science curriculum.

14 Performance-based assessments that emphasized higher-order concepts, scientific investigation, and content mastery showed significant growth for Title I students exposed to the science units.Performance-based assessments that emphasized higher-order concepts, scientific investigation, and content mastery showed significant growth for Title I students exposed to the science units. Positive academic achievement effects were significant for all groups of learners, regardless of socioeconomic status, ability level, or ethnicity -VanTassel-Baska, Bracken, Stambaugh, & Feng, 2007Positive academic achievement effects were significant for all groups of learners, regardless of socioeconomic status, ability level, or ethnicity -VanTassel-Baska, Bracken, Stambaugh, & Feng, 2007 Project Clarion Research Findings cont.

15 Social Studies Curriculum Framework The Social/Historical Context Understanding Systems, Cause and Effect Using Social Science Processes Learning Social Studies Content and Habits of Mind Concept Process Content Government Economics History Geography Reasoning Research Document Analysis

16 Reasoning about a Situation or Event What is the situation? Who are the stakeholders? What is the point of view for each stakeholder? What are the assumptions of each group ? What are the implications of these views?

17 The Research… Social Studies Research Findings Students engaged in the William and Mary social studies units showed significant growth in measures of conceptual thinking, content learning, and critical thinking. Students engaged in the William and Mary social studies units showed significant growth in measures of conceptual thinking, content learning, and critical thinking. Treatment effects were evident for the whole sample including non-gifted students. Gains were consistent for males and females. Treatment effects were evident for the whole sample including non-gifted students. Gains were consistent for males and females. -Little, Feng, VanTassel-Baska, Rogers, & Avery, 2007

18 Language Arts Curriculum Framework The Literature Understanding Change Using the Reasoning Process Learning Language Arts Content and Skills Concept Process Content Literary Analysis and Interpretation Persuasive Writing Linguistic Competency Oral Communication

19 Hamburger Model for Persuasive Writing Reason Introduction (State an opinion.) Conclusion Reason Elaboration

20 The Research… Language Arts Research Findings Students who were exposed to the language arts curriculum showed significant and educationally important gains in literary analysis and persuasive writing (VanTassel-Baska, Zuo, Avery, & Little, 2002; VanTassel-Baska, Johnson, Hughes, & Boyce, 1996). Students who were exposed to the language arts curriculum showed significant and educationally important gains in literary analysis and persuasive writing (VanTassel-Baska, Zuo, Avery, & Little, 2002; VanTassel-Baska, Johnson, Hughes, & Boyce, 1996). Gifted, learning disabled, and typical learners all showed significant learning gains in critical thinking through the W&M model of persuasive writing (Hughes, 2000). Gifted, learning disabled, and typical learners all showed significant learning gains in critical thinking through the W&M model of persuasive writing (Hughes, 2000).

21 Language Arts Research Findings Continued use of the language arts curriculum over a three-year period significantly enhanced students literary analysis skills and persuasive writing competency (Feng, VanTassel-Baska, Quek, Bai, & ONeill, 2005). Continued use of the language arts curriculum over a three-year period significantly enhanced students literary analysis skills and persuasive writing competency (Feng, VanTassel-Baska, Quek, Bai, & ONeill, 2005). Academic achievement effects were significant for all groups of learners regardless of socioeconomic status, ability level, or ethnicity (VanTassel-Baska, Zuo, Avery, & Little, 2002; VanTassel-Baska, Johnson, Hughes, & Boyce, 1996). Academic achievement effects were significant for all groups of learners regardless of socioeconomic status, ability level, or ethnicity (VanTassel-Baska, Zuo, Avery, & Little, 2002; VanTassel-Baska, Johnson, Hughes, & Boyce, 1996).

22 Project Athena Goals To develop and implement instrumentation sensitive to low socioeconomic learners for purposes of identification and assessment of learning. To develop and implement instrumentation sensitive to low socioeconomic learners for purposes of identification and assessment of learning. To implement, refine, and extend research-based language arts curriculum units of study. To implement, refine, and extend research-based language arts curriculum units of study. To develop and implement professional training models. To develop and implement professional training models. To conduct research on short term and longitudinal student learning gains To conduct research on short term and longitudinal student learning gains

23 Project Athena Research Findings Students in Title I schools exposed to the language arts units showed significant learning gains annually in reading comprehension and critical thinking compared to students who used a basal reader or teacher-created materials. Students in Title I schools exposed to the language arts units showed significant learning gains annually in reading comprehension and critical thinking compared to students who used a basal reader or teacher-created materials. Students who were exposed the language arts curriculum showed significant and educationally important gains in literary analysis and persuasive writing. Students who were exposed the language arts curriculum showed significant and educationally important gains in literary analysis and persuasive writing. Academic achievement effects were significant for all groups of learners regardless of socioeconomic status, ability level, or ethnicity. Academic achievement effects were significant for all groups of learners regardless of socioeconomic status, ability level, or ethnicity. -VanTassel-Baska, Bracken, Feng, & Brown, under review; Bracken, VanTassel-Baska, Brown, & Feng, 2007

24 Jacobs Ladder Research Findings When compared to students in Title I schools who used the basal readers only, those who were exposed to the Jacobs Ladder curriculum showed significant and educationally important gains in reading comprehension and critical thinking. When compared to students in Title I schools who used the basal readers only, those who were exposed to the Jacobs Ladder curriculum showed significant and educationally important gains in reading comprehension and critical thinking. Students reported greater interest in reading after exposure to Jacobs Ladder curriculum. Students reported greater interest in reading after exposure to Jacobs Ladder curriculum. Teachers reported more in-depth student discussion after teaching the Jacobs Ladder curriculum. Teachers reported more in-depth student discussion after teaching the Jacobs Ladder curriculum. -Stambaugh, under revision; Stambaugh, 2007; & French, 2006.

25 What Works in Assessment for High End Learners? Multiple assessments Multiple assessments Assessments that tap into higher level thinking and problem solving Assessments that tap into higher level thinking and problem solving Assessments that match curriculum outcomes Assessments that match curriculum outcomes Assessments that meet technical adequacy standards Assessments that meet technical adequacy standards

26 Assessment Instruments Test of Critical Thinking (TCT) Test of Critical Thinking (TCT) Classroom Observation Scale – Revised (COS-R) Classroom Observation Scale – Revised (COS-R) Student observation scale Student observation scale ASPIRE ASPIRE Professional Development Questionnaire Professional Development Questionnaire Science Observation Scale Science Observation Scale Performance-Based Assessments Performance-Based Assessments

27 Persuasive Writing Pre-Assessment Prompt: Do you think______ should be required reading for your grade? Prompt: Do you think______ should be required reading for your grade? Student B, Grade 3: Student B, Grade 3: Yes, I think the story The Wolf and the Lion should be required reading for all the students. Why? Its a great story with a very interesting topic. They could also learn from the story. Also they could get lots of interesting questions. Thats why I think 3rd grade students should read The Wolf and the Lion.

28 Post-Assessment Student B, Grade 3: Student B, Grade 3: Yes, I think all the students in 3rd grade should read this book. Its such an excellent moral. One reason I think everyone in third grade should read The Miser is because it does teach a good lesson. It could help them learn that things they never use are worthless. Another reason I think all the students in third grade should read this story is they use great, funny words. It basicly is a funny story. One of the parts I likes was He pulled his hair out (not really). It would make our writing better. Also, the students should read this because its similar to a true story. If you have a good, healthy body and you never use it, the muscles will be very weak, and youll miss out on a lot of things. As you see, its a good moral for all the students in third grade. They could learn great details for their own stories, and they can compare it with a true happening like this story. Its a great story.

29 Science Pre-Test Prompt: How would you do a fair test of this question? Are earthworms attracted to light? Tell how you would test this question. Be as scientific as you can as you write about your test. Write down the steps you would take to find out if earthworms like light.

30 Pre-test Response First, I would put some earthworms in a container. There would be lights and some dirt. I would put several different earthworms in it. If more earthworms like the light than that would be right. If more didnt like the light than that would be right. I would try this with about seven groups and decide if they like the light. First, I would put some earthworms in a container. There would be lights and some dirt. I would put several different earthworms in it. If more earthworms like the light than that would be right. If more didnt like the light than that would be right. I would try this with about seven groups and decide if they like the light. CFGE, 3 rd Grade

31 Science Post-Test Prompt: How would you do a fair test of this question? Are bees attracted to diet cola? Tell how you would test this question. Be as scientific as you can as you write about your test. Write down the steps you would take to find out if earthworms like light.

32 Post-Test Response Materials: Materials: Diet Cola, 3 large containers, 3 small containers, 6 bees. Diet Cola, 3 large containers, 3 small containers, 6 bees. Hypothesis: Hypothesis: If you give bees diet cola then they will be attracted to it. If you give bees diet cola then they will be attracted to it. 1. Gather 6 bees, diet cola, 3 large containers, 3 small containers. 2. Put 2 bees in each large container. 3. Pour 5 ml of diet cola in each small container. 4. Set the small container of diet cola in each large container that has bees in it. 5. Watch and observe to see if the bees are attached to the diet cola. 6. You should record if the bees like diet cola on a chart like below. Bees If they are attracted to Diet Cola CFGE, 3 rd Grade

33 What Works in Professional Development for High End Learners? Use of teaching and learning models to demonstrate high level instruction Use of teaching and learning models to demonstrate high level instruction Training on materials to reduce inferences about application Training on materials to reduce inferences about application Emphasis on the linkage between teacher behaviors and student learning Emphasis on the linkage between teacher behaviors and student learning

34 Professional Development Research Findings Teachers can significantly improve their skills in the differentiation strategies of problem solving, critical thinking, curriculum delivery, and metacognition, given ongoing professional development in such strategies embedded in a social studies curriculum (Avery, 1999)Teachers can significantly improve their skills in the differentiation strategies of problem solving, critical thinking, curriculum delivery, and metacognition, given ongoing professional development in such strategies embedded in a social studies curriculum (Avery, 1999) Untrained teachers of the gifted in Title I schools can significantly improve their skills in differentiation strategies across two years, given training and implementation support in language arts (Van Tassel-Baska, Bracken, Feng, & Brown, in press).Untrained teachers of the gifted in Title I schools can significantly improve their skills in differentiation strategies across two years, given training and implementation support in language arts (Van Tassel-Baska, Bracken, Feng, & Brown, in press).

35 Professional Development Research Findings Teachers score at differential levels in critical thinking and creative thinking, rendering it problematic for them to teach these skills to students if they are low in the capacity to use the skills themselves (McGowan, 2007). Teachers score at differential levels in critical thinking and creative thinking, rendering it problematic for them to teach these skills to students if they are low in the capacity to use the skills themselves (McGowan, 2007). Exemplary secondary teachers of the gifted in specialized schools in Singapore and the United States score high in the use of differentiated strategies and have incorporated these practices effectively into their daily repertoire (VanTassel- Baska, Feng, & MacFarlane, 2007). Exemplary secondary teachers of the gifted in specialized schools in Singapore and the United States score high in the use of differentiated strategies and have incorporated these practices effectively into their daily repertoire (VanTassel- Baska, Feng, & MacFarlane, 2007).

36 Professional Development Research Findings Teacher self-assessments of differentiation use suggest that they are using differentiation strategies more frequently and more effectively than external trained assessors would rate them (Tyler, 2006; Avery, 1999). Teacher self-assessments of differentiation use suggest that they are using differentiation strategies more frequently and more effectively than external trained assessors would rate them (Tyler, 2006; Avery, 1999). When teachers employ differentiation strategies, there is corresponding active engagement of students with the learning process (VanTassel-Baska, Bracken, Feng, & Brown, in press). When teachers employ differentiation strategies, there is corresponding active engagement of students with the learning process (VanTassel-Baska, Bracken, Feng, & Brown, in press).

37 Lessons Learned on Curriculum Development Today is always here…Tomorrow, never. -Toni Morrison

38 Lesson #1 1 Learner Characteristics & Needs 2 Curriculum Goals 3 Outcomes/Objectives 4 Activities/Task Demands/Questions 5 Teaching-Learning Strategies 6 Materials & Resources 7 Assessment of Outcomes 8 Evaluation of Curriculum/Revision VanTassel-Baska, 2003 Curriculum design matters.

39 Lesson #2 The curriculum development process matters. Field Testing Tryouts Piloting Revisions

40 Lesson #3 Curriculum development work for high-end learning requires collaboration with content experts and teachers. Teachers of the gifted Content experts Curriculum development

41 Lesson #4 Student exposure to repeated models over time enhances student achievement and learning transfer.

42 Lesson #5 High-level curriculum may be used successfully with all learners. Twice-exceptional Twice-exceptional Typical learners Typical learners High readers High readers Promising learners Promising learners

43 Lesson #6 Promising learners from low-income backgrounds and students of color benefit from high-powered curriculum.

44 Lesson #7 Use of authentic assessment documents authentic learning. Curriculum-based Curriculum-based Portfolio Portfolio Products Products

45 Lesson #8 Professional development on curriculum materials enhances faithful implementation. Modeling Modeling Explicit linkage to content standards Explicit linkage to content standards Guided practice Guided practice

46 Lesson #9 Fidelity of implementation of innovative curriculum efforts requires monitoring. Peer coaching Peer coaching Ambassador model Ambassador model Administrative technical support Administrative technical support

47 Lesson #10 Institutionalization of innovative curriculum and instruction requires ongoing attention.

48

49 Time is like a series of liquid transparencies. You dont look back Along time, But through it like water. -Margaret Atwood, Canadian writer Canadian writer

50 Center for Gifted Education School of Education The College of William & Mary Joyce VanTassel-Baska, Ed.D. Executive Director Jody & Layton Smith Professor of Education 427 Scotland Street Williamsburg, VA (757)


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