Engaged, not Overwhelmed


I have been teaching gifted children for over a decade now. I often talk to my colleagues about ideas/strategies on how to teach gifted children, but for some they don’t change. They feel that gifted children need more work to keep them busy.  They place the burden of engagement with the student. Now this isn’t all my colleagues. I work in a great school district with some great teachers, but there are those few who want to control their classroom the way they want regardless of the outcome.
We know that when gifted children are given the same work as average learners they will most likely finish it quickly since it isn’t challenging to them. Instead of using differentiation strategies like curriculum compacting, acceleratation, or independent study of a topic, they give more busy work. They feel they need to overwhelm the student with work so they don’t become an issue. When in reality they are making the situation worse. Gifted children can and often will rebel when given nonsense work to do. Gifted children need to be challenged and engaged in the learning process. 

One aspect I will work on this year is to create an environment that is safe, engaging, and challenging for students to learn in, but also colleagues can peek in and see an example of what they could do in their classrooms.

What will you do in the coming year to challenge your students, to stay engaged, and not overwhelmed with nonsense work?

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4 thoughts on “Engaged, not Overwhelmed

  1. Marti Pike

    I believe in “more appropriate” not “more.” I’ve been teaching GT students Spanish. I’ve covered why it is important and use a variety of methods to keep interest. Still, they treat it like busywork. I’m pretty sure the requirements are not too stringent. At what point is their do-nothing response and indication of laziness?

    Reply
    1. Marti Pike

      Something I have neglected in that Spanish Class is parent by-in. I plan on using Google Classroom to keep parents up to date on student progress and to invite them to learn along with their children.

      Reply
  2. Jeffrey Shoemaker Post author

    Marti Pike Thank you for your comments. It is awesome to see people so passionate about learning and gifted children. Thank you for the link to the Youtube. I love John Green.

    Reply

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