Diversity in Gifted Education

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by leeannburger77
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Diversity in Gifted Education

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Underachievers* The National Commission on Excellence in Education (1983)reported that half of gifted children do not perform up to their abilities in school. *Gifted underachievers are not as likely to identify or relate to their same sex parent, so children in single-parent households are affected by this issue.*Too much competition in the classroom can be devastating to the underachiever.*Low expectations of gifted students by teachers helps foster a climate for underachievement.*Underachievers need to connect effort to achievement*The difficulty of a task may lead to underachievement.*If gifted students earn good grades effortlessly, the curriculum is not sufficiently challenging and they are underachieving. Further, they may not be prepared to cope with a challenging curriculum and competition when those circumstances occur (Rimm, 2008c).

*For the purpose if identifying these students, Eisenberg and Epstein successfully used IQ and achievement scores, and Renzulli used rating scales, peer nominations, and self-nominations, for identification.*Rimm emphasized the importance of discriminating between learning disabilities and underachievement. *Maker and Silverman recommended comparing students who are disabled with other students who are disabled and to heavilyweight skills used by students to compensate for theirdisability. *The Renzulli Creativity Scale and the PRIDE, GIFT, and GIFFI inventories might be used for identifying creative giftedness.Gifted programs that include gifted children with disabilitiescan include the same acceleration, enrichment, grouping, and counseling components as other programs. However, the program also must include some special components,chosen on the basis of additional needs related to thehandicapping condition.*Developing positive self-concepts should be a main program goal of teaching the gifted with disabilities.*Learning to value their own superior achievements and talents should help their self-concepts.*Helping other studentsto appreciate the achievements of gifted students with disabilities also may be valuable. *Peer support groups help gifted students with disabilities develop good selfconcepts and social skills.*Other children probably will require sensitivity andvalues training to help them empathize with students whoare disabled. *Learning teams may help improve attitudes toward students with disabilities.*Teaching coping and problem-solving strategies and using self-assessments are appropriate for gifted students who are learning disabled. *Understanding the characteristicsand behaviors of successful adults who were gifted learning-disabled children can help teachers encourage and inspire learning-disabled students. *Mentorships, especiallyfor children with disabilities, encourage identification withtalented adults who are learning disabled.

*Culturally different and economically disadvantaged African American, Hispanic American, Native American, Asian American, and Caucasian children living in large urban centers, in underprivileged rural areas, and on Indian reservations rarelyare identified or described as gifted or talented.*Their formal educational needs are assumed to be only in basic skills areas, and their adjustmentto school and learning almost always involves strict discipline.*Their cultural and language differences plus their lack of exposure to mainstream U.S. culture usually combine to obscure from society the gifted children among them. These gifted minority and disadvantaged children typically proceed invisiblythrough school until they drop out or, with luck, barely graduate.*In addition to their wholesale exclusion from G/T programs, the families and peers of minorityand economically disadvantaged children also often do not reinforce the development of their intellectual or creative talents.

*For underachievers, educators can follow the steps in the TRIFOCAL Model in order to reverse underachievement: (1) assessment of skills, abilities,reinforcement contingencies, and types of underachievement;(2) communication between parents and teachers;(3) changing the expectations of parents, teachers, peers,and siblings; (4) locating appropriate role models; (5) correcting skill deficiencies; (6) modifying home andschool reinforcements that support underachievement.ALLIANCE is another great strategies to utilize when dealing with gifted underachievers. The acronym follows these guidelines:Ally with the student privately about interests and concerns.Listen to what the student says.Learn about what the student is thinking.Initiate opportunities for recognition of the student’s strengths.Add experimental ideas for engaging curricular and extracurricular activities.Nurture relationships with appropriate adult and peer role models.Consequence reasonably, but firmly, if the student doesn’t meet commitments.Emphasize effort, independence, realistic expectations, and how strengths can be used to cope with problems; and extend possibilities patiently.

*Gifted children with disabilities typically are recognized for their disability, not their gifts.*There have been few G/T programs designedfor the gifted who are disabled, and too oftenschools fail to accommodate these students. *If the giftedchild can function reasonably well, special education servicesmay be withdrawn. *Gifted children with disabilities continue to be ignored, and their problems are compoundedby sometimes severe social problems and rockbottom feelings of self-worth and personal integrity.

*he education of gifted girls and women has been a low priority throughout history, a matter that has led to wholesale female underachievement. Some gifted girls have been, and continue to be, systematically discouraged by peers and family—and, sometimes, by teachers and counselors—from using their talent in productive ways.*The statistics show us that when looking at students choosing careers in Math and Science, femals are the minority.

Would current test data be helpful when identifying underachievers?

How would you define underachievers?

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*Rimm’s Six-Step Model (1) assessment,(2) communication between home and school(3) changing the expectations of important others4) role model identification(5) correcting skill deficiencies(6) modifying reinforcements at home and at school. Appropriate mentors are important for fostering the success of women, and email extends the availability of mentors. Sports provide opportunities for girls to learn how to function in competition.*All-girl classes, Girl Scouts, girl friendship groups, and all-girl schools foster leadership and the acceptance of academically challenging coursework.*Schools that successfully produce high-achieving girls make Advanced Placement classes a natural part of the sequence and actively recruit girls for Advanced Placement classes.*If gifted females are to develop their talents and make their contributions to society, they must acquire confidence and strong achievement needs, and they must make plans for a sound education.

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Underachievement

Gender Bias

*Studies show that support from family, other adults in the community, and teachers help gifted disadvantaged students develop their potential.*Low IQ or achievement-test scores may be misused to “prove” the absence of giftedness. Because average or below-average achievement can be common among gifted disadvantaged, identification must be based on potential, rather than actual, academic performance.*Perceptual IQ tests are nonverbal and can assist in identification of economically and culturally disadvantaged youth. Yet, they may not hold all the answers to identification either. Cultural beliefs and values may also affectminority students’ test scores.*Research indicates that creativity tests such as the Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking and the GIFT and GIFFI inventories are good instruments for identifying creative disadvantaged and minority students.*Programming options described in earlier chapters may be used with disadvantaged and minority students. However, the following additional components should beincluded: (1) maintaining ethnic identity(2) providing extracurricularcultural enrichment(3) recognizing learningstyledifferences(4) counseling(5) developing parentsupport groups(6) using significant models(7) placing greater emphasis on enrichment (8) providing for career education. School, family, personal issues, and community all must be considered.*Teachers of gifted minority students should incorporate the beliefs of a culturally responsive classroom

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Diversity ' Economically Disadvantaged

Diversity in Gifted Education

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