|From the ERIC database
Developing Learner Outcomes for Gifted Students. ERIC Digest #E514.
"What new skills will I master during this next school year? What new knowledge will I gain about an area I am interested in? How will I become more effective in working with my classmates? How will I improve my work habits?"
These are the legitimate questions asked by gifted students about their own anticipation for school learning, and they nicely frame the basic questions that educators must answer to create appropriate outcomes for such students. If gifted students are to thrive, there must be in place a coherent curriculum structure that defines for teachers, administrators, parents, and the students themselves the goals and purposes of a specialized program, the specific outcomes anticipated, and a prescribed time frame for learning.
NEED FOR LEARNER OUTCOMES FOR GIFTED STUDENTS
HOW LEARNER OUTCOMES FOR GIFTED STUDENTS DIFFER
1a. Comprehends a variety of materials.
2a. Is familiar with the structural elements of literature.
3a. Develops an understanding of the chronology of American literature.
1b. Evaluates diverse materials according to a set of criteria or standards.
2b. Creates a literary work in a self-selected form, using appropriate structural elements.
3b. Analyzes and interprets key social, cultural, and economic ideas as expressed in the literature, art, and music of America at 40-year intervals.
The examples in the gifted set are consistently more challenging, broader in scope, and more focused on specific higher level thinking tasks. They imply that students have mastered the basic underlying skills necessary to undertake required tasks (e.g., that students can basically comprehend what they read), and demand the development of multiple perspectives within and across areas of knowledge. These aspects of differentiation are central in comparing generic and gifted outcome statements.
HOW TEACHERS CAN WORK WITH LEARNER OUTCOMES
ALIGNMENT WITH STATE LEARNER OUTCOMES
SUGGESTIONS FOR CREATING APPROPRIATE LEARNER
1. Create a curriculum articulation task force representative of subject areas, grade levels, and a broad cross section of school personnel interested in curriculum.
2. Organize subtask forces to examine state/local learner outcomes by subject area and across K-12 levels. (Vertical planning is essential to the success of this task.)
3. Review existing state or local learner outcomes, using the stated criteria for judging whether they are challenging for gifted learners at the requisite stage of development.
4. Discuss findings with the overall task force. Have each subtask force justify the decisions made regarding adaptations in the generic learner outcomes for gifted students.
5. Review gifted program goals/curriculum goals; align with subject area outcomes.
6. Create additional learner outcomes for gifted students as needed, using the notes and suggestions of the subgroups.
7. Develop analogous assessment protocols for the differentiated outcomes.
8. Align the differentiated learner outcomes for gifted students with existing classroom activities and materials; develop new activities and locate supplementary materials as needed.
9. Hold a staff development session for all teachers on gifted learner outcomes and the linkages already present in the curriculum that address them. Demonstrate activities and materials that specifically teach to the attainment of gifted learner outcomes.
10. Develop an on-going staff development program that assists teachers in facilitating the attainment of the specified learner outcomes.
11. Tailor all teacher evaluation instruments to include an emphasis on using activities and materials shared in staff development sessions that contribute to the attainment of specified learner outcomes.
12. Use annual assessment data to determine needed changes in key aspects of the teaching learning cycle (e.g., better assessment tools, more activities, more targeted materials, insufficient training?).
13. Engage in continued curriculum development tasks such as alignment of activities and materials, creation of curriculum units that fill gaps, and the development of alternative assessment tools and strategies.
Gallagher, S. (1992). "Assessment in the science classroom." Williamsburg, VA: College of William and Mary, Center for Gifted Education.
"Georgia State Department of Education resource guide for secondary teachers of English." (1992). Atlanta, GA: Georgia State Department of Education.
Sher, B., VanTassel-Baska, J., Gallagher, S., and Bailey, J. (1992). "Developing a scope and sequence in science for high ability students K-8." Williamsburg, VA: College of William and Mary, Center for Gifted Education.
VanTassel-Baska, J. (1988). "Developing scope and sequence in curriculum: A comprehensive approach." GCT, September-October, 42-45.
VanTassel-Baska, J. (1992). "Planning effective curriculum for gifted learners." Denver, CO: Love Publishing.
This publication was prepared with funding from the Office of Educational Research and Improvement, U.S. Department of Education, under contract no. RI88062007. The opinions expressed in this report do not necessarily reflect the positions or policies of OERI or the Department of Education
Title: Developing Learner Outcomes for Gifted Students. ERIC Digest #E514.
Descriptors: Curriculum Development; Elementary Secondary Education; Evaluation Methods; * Gifted; * Goal Orientation; * Outcomes of Education; Student Development; * Student Educational Objectives; Student Evaluation; Teacher Role; Time Factors [Learning]
Identifiers: ERIC Digests
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