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Great Books for Gifted Students

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Challenge Worthy of Your Potential: Summer Acceleration, Online Engagement, Collaborative Curriculum Design MORE

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 News from NAGC

From Where I Sit
You Are NAGC

Jane Clarenbach, Director of Public Education

"Change is inevitable. Change for the better is a full-time job." — Adlai E. Stevenson

Now here's a quotation that applies to the gifted education community! It often seems like NAGC members need to make time for a second full-time job in order to keep up with — and influence — the changes in education policy and practice that affect gifted and high-potential students.

In addition to volunteering locally, and with their state associations, many NAGC members also volunteer their time and experience to NAGC to make a difference for gifted children. Many get involved by networking with colleagues, sharing successful classroom and district strategies, and advocating at the national level to strengthen services and opportunities for our most advanced learners. We welcome volunteers from across the nation. As your professional organization, it is NAGC’s goal to bring together a range of perspectives and state and local experiences that when combined provide a national voice on behalf of gifted students.

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Capital Update
TALENT Act Introduced in the U.S. Senate: Help Secure Additional Co-Sponsors

On March 11, longtime gifted education supporter U.S. Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, along with Sens. Robert Casey, D-Pa., and Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., introduced the TALENT Act. The bipartisan bill, S.512, would include gifted students in federal education priorities and would help close the widening excellence gaps that sap the pipeline of talent in this country.

The legislation, which would amend the Elementary & Secondary Education Act (ESEA), embeds the needs of gifted students into key areas, such as state and district plans for the use of federal funds for low-income schools, the use of federal teacher preparation funds, reporting on top student achievement for public accountability purposes, and in continuing the investment in research to develop best classroom practices. "For too long, federal education policy has slighted the needs of high-ability and high-potential students, particularly those students from low-income and underrepresented populations who are particularly vulnerable," said NAGC president Paula Olszewski-Kubilius.

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Gifted Education Seminar-National Edition

45 hours of interactive training: flash drive, differentiation book, and CD. This innovative, economical professional development, developed/field-tested by Illinois State Board of Education, ensures a solid foundation in gifted education with resources from experts including Bertie Kingore, Carolyn Coil, Jim Delisle,
Frances Karnes, and Kristen Stephens.
Modules: Perspectives, Understanding Gifted, Differentiation, and Curriculum/ Programming.

How Social Are You?

Take a look at the NAGC group page on Facebook, and don't miss the pages for Parenting for High Potential and Teaching for High Potential. You have a lot to say, and we appreciate seeing posts from the G/T community.
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Looking for Leaders
Volunteers contribute at so many levels to NAGC. If you have served on the NAGC Board of Directors in the past, we encourage you to consider submitting your application to run for the President-Elect position.

If you've not yet served on the Board of Directors, but wish to serve your Network, apply to run for the Network Chair-Elect position. Elections for these networks will take place in June:
  • Computers and Technology
  • Conceptual Foundations
  • Counseling and Guidance
  • Early Childhood
  • Global Awareness
  • Middle Grades
  • Parent and Community
  • Professional Development
  • STEM
Application materials for the President Elect and Network Chair-Elects must be postmarked by April 8. Newly elected Board Members and Network leaders will begin their term of service on Sept. 1.

Please visit the NAGC website for nomination procedures, qualification guidelines, and forms.

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Working with Different Learning Styles
Are you a parent with a question? Are you a teacher who needs to know more information about what's happening at home? NAGC gives you an opportunity to explore how the "other side" might face the issue with Connecting for High Potential! This quarterly electronic publication examines a subject from different perspectives, because we know that parents and educators have different roles to play in helping gifted children reach their potential. Our ongoing goal is for teachers and parents to develop a broader understanding of their students' potential (and one another), which will enable them to build stimulating learning environments at home and school.

The current issue examines "Learner Preferences and Teaching Strategies: Finding a Perfect Match." You will need to log in to view the issue. You are encouraged to print and share the issue with others.

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The Learning Curve
Cultivating a 21st Century Differentiated and Thinking Classroom

It takes constant work to "cultivate" a successful differentiated classroom. Revisit just what it takes in our spring series of Webinars on Wednesdays, "Planting and Growing Differentiation in the Classroom." Designed for both the advanced teacher needing to" "enrich their soil" and those desiring to learn the "perennial" basics, this is a series of three webinars about an "evergreen" topic. You'll gather "seeds" for your own professional growth and learn from, and ask questions of, experts in the "field":
  • Julia Roberts and Tracy Inman from the Center for Gifted Studies at Western Kentucky University, and authors of the recent handbook, Teacher's Survival Guide: Differentiating Instruction in the Elementary Classroom will discuss the necessary elements for a classroom to be effectively differentiated (April 17). They will continue by showing how best to use the strategic tools at hand to provide the appropriate challenge for your students (April 24).
  • Richard Cash of nRich Educational Consulting, and author of Advancing Differentiation: Thinking and Learning for the 21st Century, will demonstrate how to set up a thinking classroom that stimulates and encourages students to persist toward decision making. WOW participants will discover questioning typologies along with rubrics for assessing students’ thinking development, and designs of sophisticated levels of complex thinking will be recommended (May 1).
Join us as we spring into Spring and register today.

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Study French This Summer
Students 9-16 learn French while participating in outdoor and artistic activities on private Canoe Island in the San Juan Islands. Founded 1969. 46 campers; 1:5 counselor:camper ratio; counselors from France. Kayaking, sailing, theater, art, cooking, snorkeling, photography, fencing, swimming. No language pre-requisite. Family Camps over Memorial and Labor Day weekends. MORE
Phillips Exeter Academy Summer School
Phillips Exeter Academy Summer School welcomes to campus over 780 middle and high school students for five weeks of academic study, athletics, and exploration. If you are a serious student, intellectually curious, creative, and eager to embrace new challenges and opportunities, then Summer School may be a program for you. MORE
A Lifetime
Summer Experience
Challenge and motivate yourself in science; boost your interest and aptitude in biotechnology, nanotechnology, marine and environmental science and space science; learn and do science in the rural environment of NH making life-long friendships and networking with faculty and students from the US and abroad Visit:

Our Community
Two NAGC Members Recognized by American Psychological Foundation

The American Psychological Foundation, which is part of the American Psychological Association, has awarded a $50,000 Esther Katz Rosen Early Career Research Grant to Matthew McBee, East Tennessee State University, Kingsport, Tenn.; and Carlton Fong, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas. According to an article in Monitor on Psychology, McBee will focus his work on insight, problem solving, and academic performance. Fong's work will involve a meta-analysis of programs designed to address the needs of underachieving gifted students.
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Comments on Teacher Standards Accepted Online Through March 29
The Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP), which is the new organization created by the merger of two accreditors, NCATE and TEAC, is soliciting public comment on its draft standards that will apply to educator preparation institutions.

Developed by a Commission on Draft Standards and Performance Reporting whose membership included educator preparation providers, policy makers, researchers, and P-12 educators, the next generation of accreditation standards is based on evidence, continuous improvement, innovation, and clinical practice.

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Looking for adventure this summer?

The Acadia Institute of Oceanography in Seal Harbor, Maine introduces young people to the exciting world of marine science through a unique hands-on curriculum that combines biological, physical and chemical oceanography with field, classroom, offshore, and laboratory work. MORE
Robinson Center for Young Scholars

Challenging K-12 students in an intellectual community through early entrance and outreach programs:

  • Transition School
  • UW Academy
  • Saturday Enrichment
  • Summer Programs
For more information, visit our website

 From the Headlines

Giftedness Should Not Be Confused With Mental Disorder
Psychology Today
The 3-5 percent of kids who are particularly gifted are also at special risk for being tagged with an inappropriate diagnosis of mental disorder. Marianne Kuzujanakis, M.D., MPH is the perfect person to explain why. She is a pediatrician and a director of SENG (Supporting Emotional Needs of the Gifted)- an organization dedicated to helping the gifted and their parents.
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Ten Ways Gifted Education Has Helped Me
Education Week Teacher
Tamara Fisher, a K-12 gifted education specialist for a school district located on an Indian reservation in northwestern Montana, writes in her "Unwrapping the Gifted" blog: "Last week, on a bit of a lark, I wrote something on the whiteboard in each of my 'classrooms,' then waited to see if the kids would notice and what, if anything, they would contribute. Below are the results. (Multiple kids added to each list, so there's an occasional repeat within a list.)"
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Arizona's Gilbert Public Schools Establishes Self-Contained Gifted Program
The Republic
The Gilbert Public Schools governing board in Arizona took a big step toward accommodating gifted students last week when it established a self-contained gifted program for fourth- and fifth-graders. The program opens this fall at Towne Meadows Elementary School, where the classrooms will be equipped with technology, and two teachers will be hired. Each classroom, open to highly-gifted students within and outside the district, will be capped at 25 students.
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Growing Up Exceptional: 'Some Thought I Had Rare Insight, Others Thought I Was Crazy.'
High Ability/Gifted Adults
Being exceptional may cause a variety of reactions; some of those responses are supportive, but others can discourage or discount one's talents.
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Archaeology Experiential School Programs

Excavating at a real or simulated archaeological site, analyzing artifacts
in the lab, touring Mesa Verde National Park—students in Crow Canyon's school programs learn by doing!
Explore Odyssey
of the Mind

Creative problem-solving. Team-building. STEM. The Arts. Students will experience this and more while having fun and making friends. There’s still time to join!

No Child Left Behind Neglected Gifted Students. That is About to Change in Georgia.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (blog)
One of the great tragedies of our American public schools in the past decade has been the neglect of our brightest children. While struggling students have made gains, high-achieving students have stagnated. During the reign of No Child Left Behind, our schools have been so intent on lifting low-performing students to a level of minimum aptitude that they have ignored the needs of those who already exceed basic proficiency and are ready for greater challenges. The result: Top students are languishing.
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Ending Racial Inequality in Gifted Education
The Hechinger Report
Starting in second grade, I took a school bus from my middle-class neighborhood to downtown Louisville, Ky., where my grade school was surrounded by public housing projects, as part of an effort to desegregate schools. The year I started there, I was identified as “gifted” and put in a separate, accelerated class where my classmates were mostly other white boys and girls from the suburbs.
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Op-Ed: We Must Do More for Our Gifted Kids
Gifted education programs are unfortunately often referred to as "elitist." In reality, we owe it to our gifted and talented students to differentiate their educational experience not only in academic ways but also by providing them with social and emotional support.
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Compass Points
Karen L. Yoho, CAE, NAGC Senior Director, Marketing and Member Services, 202.785.4268

Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Yvette Craig, Managing Editor, 469.420.2641   
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