Re: gifted programs in your area
- From: kevles@xxxxxxx (Beth Kevles)
- Date: 01 Oct 2007 20:43:37 GMT
In Montgomery County, MD, they have various ways of dealing with gifted
chidren. In all grades teachers are supposed to "differentiate"
instruction, so that all kids (low, middle and high level) get
challenged at the appropriate level. There are GT resource teachers
available (not one per school, but one per several schools) to help
teachers with this. However, our experience has been that the results
are decidedly mixed. Some teachers differentiate instruction very well,
while others are, um, less successful. Having taught in a mixed
classroom myself, I have to admit that if the range and quantity of
students is sufficiently high, then differentiating instruction can be
very challenging, to the point of having to prepare several lessons
plans per class every day.
Kids in 3rd grade can test to get into one of the "highly gifted"
centers scattered about the county. The centers are supposed to be for
those kids who are such outliers that they don't have friends on their
wavelength at their local elementary school, and are therefore not
developing *socially* in an appropriate fashion. The centers are also
geared to teaching these kids the study skills that they've never yet
needed, because school has been a breeze so far. These skills include
paying attention in class, developing a moderate level of meticulousness
(as opposed to sloppiness) which they'll need in higher level classes,
and making sure there aren't any holes in their education caused by
skipping over some of the basics. The centers are for grades 4 and 5
only, and then the kids are sent back to their own schools.
In grades 6-8 we return to differentiated instruction, but there are
also some honors classes, and some kids taking higher level classes (in
math, for example) which the low-achievers tend not to take. There are,
however, some middle school magnets, some of which are test-to-get-in
In high school there are, again, a few magnet programs, highly
selective, but there is also a great deal more tracking in the different
subject areas. There are below-level, on-level, honors (occasionally),
AP and IB classes in many subjects. (Since my kids aren't yet in HS, I
can't tell you more than that.)
There are also special programs for GT/LD kids (a combo. that can be
challenging to teach and sometimes to parent). And there are also
magnets at most levels that are admission by lottery rather than by
If you google "Montgomery County MD public schools" you'll get to the
main web site. And then you can poke around to see what else they have
to say about GT education.
http://web.mit.edu/kevles/www/nomilk.html -- a page for the milk-allergic
Disclaimer: Nothing in this message should be construed as medical
advice. Please consult with your own medical practicioner.
NOTE: No email is read at my MIT address. Use the GMAIL one if you would
like me to reply.
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