Category Archives: Gifted Needs

Are there novelists lurking in your classroom?

Are there novelists lurking in your classroom?  Do you think you and they could each create a novel in one month?

Many educators believe that the answer to both questions is YES!  In this Edutopia Blog Laura Bradley, an educator and blogger, explains how her middle school students accomplished this with oodles of excitement among the young writers – they were asking to write.  Those who are teaching Grade 8 students know what a feat this was.

Look at her blog and click on some of the links she used to help the process.  It is all part of a national project that you can learn more about by going to the National Novel Writing Month or NaNoWriMo site.  This is for any age writer so elementary and middle school teachers take heart.  You can download free materials to help in the process.

Share your progress, your success, your challenges as you attempt this project in November!  If you are going to participate, you need to check it out now and plan your classroom activities leading up to the Big Write!


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Challenging the Advanced or Gifted Student

We believe every student is “gifted” but we have to admit that some students are well “advanced”.  Well the question for every teacher is “How do I meet the advanced student’s needs”?  How do I add challenge to their day? 

We want to make sure that students are not losing ground while they are in the classroom.  Believe it or not, there are test scores that demonstrate that advanced students often lose ground as they progress through the middle grades.  Is that progress? 

That is definitely not the purpose of education.  Would a whiz kid in Math be better off not coming to class?  Would an avid scientist be better off at home?  Do they just mark time in the classroom?  How do you challenge them in your classroom?  Doing more of the same is not a challenge, it’s boring!

Here are five strategies for teaching in a regular classroom that might reverse that trend:Curriculum Compacting, Flexible Grouping, Product Choices, Tiered Assignments, and Multi-level learning Stations.  They are all tools that are promoted in any reading about Differentiated Learning Strategies.  Why not take the challenge and review your own strategies for your lessons and determine if any of these five are in your repertoire.  Perhaps a student is not performing because they really do “already know it” and they are not being challenged daily.

Students have a right to be challenged; Teachers have a responsibility to challenge!