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Educating High Ability Students I'm curious to hear thoughts from a wide pool of teachers on the necessity of educating high ability students in a mixed-abilities classroom.  Do you feel that there...

Educating High Ability Students

I'm curious to hear thoughts from a wide pool of teachers on the necessity of educating high ability students in a mixed-abilities classroom.  Do you feel that there is a need?  Does your corporation have a well-developed high ability program? What have been your personal experiences with teaching students who have been identified as high ability (gifted and talented)?

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pacorz eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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I think it's important to recognize that very few students are actually gifted in all areas of the curriculum uniformly. In many cases a student's abilities are quite different in languages than they are in mathematics, for instance. Making sure that attention is paid to the student's progress in his or her weaker areas as well as in areas of strength is good practice, but is often overlooked.

Additionally, gifted students need to be pushed to develop a solid work ethic in school. I have seen many high school students who coasted through classes with  ease when they were younger; when these...

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wanderista | Student

Students with high ability should be given more material that extends their knowledge of the subject. It's unfair to let them drag on with a syllabus that isn't challenging them, when they can give so much more to the classroom. Maybe, students with high ability should be put up a class. So say a student is in Year 9 English, and wishes to be extended, they should be given the opportunity to go to Year 10 English and try it out.

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najm1947 | Student

 

I have always enjoyed the mixed-ability classes both as a teacher and a student at all levels from elementary to university. High-ability students are an asset to the class and keep the interest alive. They not only stimulate the teachers to come to the class well prepared to face tough questions in the class about the subject but also help in creating a real learning by student participation by presenting alternative solutions to specific problems and by asking questions that would lead to further elaboration of the subject topic.

The average or low-ability students benefit from these discussions and have a better understanding of the subject in such environment. However, I must say that I have observed this only in subjects that are more analytical like Math, Science and Engineering subjects. I don't know about other subjects like language and literature whether the high capability students can be advantage in the mixed ability class.

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teach21st | Student

All that was said makes sense as every case has unique needs. These are valuable tools. I would add cultivating the artistry of the achievement for the gifted students, not just achieving the goal, but also nurturing other qualities that can translate it into a well felt, enriching experience, be it artistic, or social-humanitarian. In that way the glass ceiling is removed and the fruits of their efforts can travel much farther and gather extra meaning. The world needs their gifts.

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