Sunday, February 17, 2013

They Identify Themselves

I have just finished reading the NY Times article:
and I am thinking about a recent subbing experience.  I was teaching 4th graders and had the students for 5 different small groups.  There were anywhere from 4 to 6 kids in each group.  Since I was a sub and not the regular teacher, the teacher had left the same assignment for each group.  Most of the groups needed a similar amount of support - help with vocabulary, connection of pictures to text, connection of text to knowledge, etc.  And all of the groups seemed to be quite interested in the topic - the volcanic origin of the Hawaiian Islands. 

But, there was one group that stood out from all of the rest.  They made connections to more other concepts, they had greater background knowledge, they asked more interesting questions.  They were intrigued by the pronunciation of Hawaii words.  And so on.  One young gentleman in particular, the class clown and the one who would certainly be voted "Most Likely to Interrupt the Teacher's Lesson with Some Hilarious Non Sequitur", stood out.  One young lady with sparkling eyes and insightful questions.  And one I had deemed unlikely in the large group, but who came alive in the small group. 

As someone who has nominated, tested, and taught (and raised) gifted children, I am thinking more and more that we could probably just bag the tests and do AnneMarie Roeper style interviews with groups of 4 or 5 students.  The gifted kids would identify themselves.  I love having test results - they are intriguing to me.  But I am not sure they are necessary.

No comments:

Post a Comment