[Discuss-sudbury-model] All children being gifted

From: CRW Pup <crwpup_at_earthlink.net>
Date: Mon Oct 10 14:06:00 2005

Naomi wrote:

"I still believe that all children are gifted,
but it's only the one's who it's most apparent who are
labeled such. The others are never given the
opportunity, or encouragement, or room to explore
themselves to find what they are gifted at."

This is one of the problems I have with the "gifted" label - one can
be gifted at many things, but what "gifted" usually means in a school
setting is "high intelligence." No one wants to call it that at the
risk of being seen as elitist, so the label "gifted" is used. The
label is much more necessary in a standard school setting than in a
Sudbury type school. In an atmosphere where students learn at their
own pace, there is less need (perhaps even no need!) to distinguish
the more or less intelligent students from the others, because all
are getting to learn at an appropriate pace. But in a public school
setting, where I currently work, it is vital that special education
and gifted students are identified and provided with more appropriate
services. "Teaching to the middle" happens, and at great disservice
to our struggling learners and our highly able ones. So saying "all
children are gifted" is nice, but it also can have the negative
effect of diluting the very real fact that some children are smarter
than others and they have just as much right to intellectually
appropriate and rigorous experiences as other students do.

Liz
Received on Mon Oct 10 2005 - 14:05:13 EDT

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