Don’t Look a “Gifted” Horse in the Mouth

Wow, I realized it’s been a couple weeks since I last posted, sorry! It’s the age old “it’s me, not you” excuse, since I’ve been so busy with training I’ve had little time to sit, reflect, and write. So, thanks for sticking with me!

On February 22nd I had the opportunity to attend the 2014 California Association for the Gifted Conference in Anaheim (thank you to Beth Andrews!). It was a really unique experience; not ever having had the pleasure of teaching a specifically “gifted” or GATE class. I feel like I walked away with a new perspective on what teachers of those students need in terms of support for technology and curriculum. The keynote was the amazing and extremely fashionable Richard Cash¬†(he has a lot of great resources on his website, so check it out!). Although he spoke specifically on differentiating learning for gifted students, I think these same strategies should be used across all disciplines, and students of all levels. The tagline of his website sums it up nicely, “every child has a talent worth developing.”

I wanted to focus my time at the conference primarily on the integration of technology and best practices for doing so. What I came away with were some amazing resources shared by Brian Housand that I have been delayed in sharing with you. Can you believe it is already March? Whew!

STEAM 60 in 60 (science, tech, engineering, arts, &  math)
Visual Writing Prompts (secondary prompts aligned with CCSS)
Wonderopolis (breeding curiosity & exploring wonders)
101 Questions (imagine this going around the dinner table)
GeoSettr (this + Mystery Skype could be awesome!)

I’d love to hear how you might or already are using any of these intriguing and thought provoking tools with your students. Leave a comment!