Monday's Ticketed Sessions

IAG Conference 2018 / December 9th-11th

Susan Assouline


Serving the Twice-Exceptional Student in our Schools: Fact and Fiction

Twice-exceptional students have always been in our schools. However, until relatively recently, specific attention to the student who has very high ability and also a diagnosed disability has been limited. In this session, there will be a review of recent clinical research about the major forms of twice- exceptionality and how we can translate the research into best practice for educators who are responsible for accommodations and interventions. The three most widely recognized disorders: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Specific Learning Disability (SLD), and Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) will be discussed. There will be information about the ways in which twice-exceptional students demonstrate unique profiles with respect to their exceptional talent as well as their diagnosis. Recommendations for accommodations will be presented within the context of the newest research findings.

Audience: Teachers K-12, Administrators, Parents // Session Type: Lecture

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Heather Carmody


Attitudes and Emotions about Mathematics

Why do students rush early to class bursting with ideas? What has students so lost in mathematics that they jump at the sound of the bell? These intangible details are examples of affect: the emotions, attitudes, and beliefs that impact learning. Affect has been a part of mathematics education and gifted education research for more than 40 years. This session will present classic theories of affect (DeBellis and Godlin, 1997; MacLeod, 1989) as well as more recent work (Chamberlin, 2011; Sheffield, 2010). Participants will hear summaries of research on student affect and mathematics including details from a recent research study on adolescents’ affect (Carmody, 2017). This was a mixed methods study involving survey results from 394 middle and high school high ability students. Data revealed that students believed success was possible, and that the usefulness and enjoyment of mathematics precipitated high motivational ratings. Slight qualitative differences existed between the responses of boys and girls and larger differences existed when acceleration level was considered. At extremely advanced levels, significant quantitative gender differences existed relative to placement. Participants will leave with definitions of affect, a familiarity with several research studies, and concrete ways to improve affect for their students.

Audience: Mathematics Teachers, Administrators, Parents // Session Type: Informational Lecture with Small Group Discussions

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Mary Ruth Coleman


Time is Up: Gifted Students from Culturally or Linguistically Different and/or Economically Disadvantaged Families

Mindset Matters: am I “at risk” or “at potential.” This session will address ways that we can recognition and nurture potential in gifted students who have been historically overlooked. We will look at our current understanding of “intelligence” and what this means in terms of using authentic ways to identify student’s strengths. See me: I am here in your classrooms. We will explore the difference between recognition and identification – and the special need to address the outstanding abilities of students from economically disadvantaged and culturally/linguistically different families. Reach me: I deserve to be challenged! The five components of U-STARS~PLUS (Using Science Talents and Abilities to Recognize Students ~ Promoting Learning in Under-served Students) will be described as key pillars for change. An action planning template will guide final discussions taking the talk to the walk – because time is up!!!

Audience: All grades; Administrators // Session Type: Discussion and Action Planning

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Laurie Croft


Academic Acceleration: A Critical Cornerstone for Gifted Learners

A Nation Empowered: Evidence Trumps the Excuses Holding Back America’s Brightest Students (2015) updated A Nation Deceived: How Schools Hold Back America’s Brightest Students (2004). The two-volume report includes important information about the best-researched, yet most under-utilized educational option for gifted students: academic acceleration. In spite of the powerful research base supporting implementation of multiple options for providing acceleration, school personnel and parents may express concerns about pushing children, worrying about potential gaps in a student’s educational background. This session will provide an overview of the research about acceleration that has been published by the Belin-Blank Center, as well as where to get resources to better understand and support the practice. Academic acceleration has positive effects for students’ academic, social adjustment, and psychological development. We can only be a Nation Empowered, rather than a Nation Deceived, however, when we have helped you explore your own concerns and confidently advocate for acceleration as a cornerstone for gifted programming.

Audience: K-12 Parents, teachers, administrators // Session Type: Informational presentation, with opportunities to share perceptions and concerns

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Susan Rakow


The Missing Link: Executive Function Skills and Gifted Learners

What are executive function skills and what do they have to do with gifted learners? A LOT!! In this session, participants will be introduced to basic executive function skills: what they are, their impact on achievement and underachievement, their connection to gifted and advanced learners, and how parents can support their children by nurturing these skills. Educators often make assumptions about how gifted kids became gifted which leads to incorrect assumptions about their learning and study skills. These basic school and life behaviors can be nurtured as early as kindergarten and supported throughout a student's school career. Participants will leave with ideas for how they can embed these behaviors into subject specific as well as classroom behavior expectations. There will be time for questions at the end of the presentation.

Audience: K-12 // Session Type: Informational Lecture

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Emily Mofield


Beyond Plot and Theme: Bumping Up Language Arts Instruction

How can you add rigor to student learning in ELA? How can we make sure advanced ELA classes are truly advanced? This session will provide an overview of how to infuse depth, complexity, and abstractness within English Language Arts instruction. Dr. Mofield will show how to apply easy-to-use models to develop tiered assignments, projects, and tasks to ensure advanced learners are challenged.

Audience: Grades 4-8 Teachers (English Language Arts) // Session Type: Group activity, quick debates

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Scott Chamberlin


Using Mathematical Modeling as an Approach to Engage GT Students

This highly interactive session will entail the opportunity to solve a mathematical modeling task so that familiarity with the problem solving approach can be established. Once familiarity with the approach is developed, theoretical and pragmatic applications will be discussed. A specific emphasis will be focused on implementation issues, including, but not limited to questioning, assessment, and engagement. Mathematical modeling has existed for several decades, but only recently, in the NCTM Principles and Standards for School Mathematics (2000) and the Indiana Academic Standards for Mathematics (2014), as the fourth process standard: Model with Mathematics, has it become an emphasis in mathematics classrooms. To be able to utilize this approach in the classroom, resources will be provided.

Audience: Teachers/curriculum coordinators (grades 4-9) // Session Type: Highly Interactive

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Sally Dobyns


Developing Creativity in the Study of History, Geography and Language Arts

In April 2014, the Indiana Department of Education adopted Content Standards for Literacy in History/Social Studies for Grades 6-12. A major learning outcome specified in these standards is Synthesis and Connection of Ideas (LH. 4). Synthesizing and connecting ideas are essential components of creativity. Additional outcomes specified in standards for all grade levels include the utilization of higher order thinking skills that support analysis, reflection and research. The National Council for Social Studies focuses on the importance of young people making informed and reasoned decisions for the public good. Here again is the need for bringing together seemingly dissimilar parts and understanding others’ points of view. The opportunities for flexible thinking in considering the varied issues inherent in the social studies are endless. Across grade levels and across topics, students become most engaged when finding and investigating problems that are meaningful to them. Therefore, it makes sense that teaching with a goal of developing the essential skills of creativity would be a fundamental (and fun) part of social studies instruction. In this session we will explore methods that promote the development and reinforcement of the creative habits of mind most useful in investigating the social studies, including analogy, problem finding and solving, and data gathering.

Audience: Educators working with students in grades 5-12, specialists in the Social Studies and Language Arts, curriculum coordinators // Session Type: Small and whole group activities

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Scott J. Peters


Gifted Education within a Response to Intervention Framework

Gifted and high ability education has been criticized from a range of perspectives relating to purpose, equity, and effectiveness. This session will outline contemporary gifted education in contrast to more traditional views with regard to purpose, methods of student selection, integration with other school initiatives, and programming. The Advanced Academic perspective sees high ability education as one part of the Response to Intervention (RtI) framework where the goal is the same for all students: trying to make sure as many students are challenged as often as possible while engaged in public education. Implications will be shared for gifted student identification, program size, program content, general education classroom practices, and more.

Audience: All // Session type: Informational lecture with Q&A

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Bronwyn MacFarlane


Designing and Implementing STEM and Specialized School Programming

Why are some school programs better at preparing students for STEM careers than others? To develop high levels of STEM talent, high ability students need educational programs that provide rigorous articulation of multiple elements– curriculum, instruction, assessment, creativity, and more. This session will focus upon the critical elements to be included and articulated throughout a rigorous curriculum and infused into a specialized academic program for developing advanced talent among advanced learners. The facets of recommended practices for delivering specialized programming, such as STEM education, will be presented and specific elements critical to the design and implementation of STEM programs for advanced learners will be discussed. Techniques for differentiating STEM learning experiences with the intent of developing talent in the STEM domains will be shared. Further reading about these details is recommended with the new book Specialized Schools for High-Ability Learners (2018) and STEM Education for High-Ability Learners (2016), the first book of its kind on the market to bring together a discussion of the critical elements needed for delivering comprehensive STEM educational programming to develop high-ability talent in the STEM fields. Participants will learn about specific elements critical to the design and implementation of STEM and specialized programs for advanced students and application to local settings.

Audience: Administrators, Teachers, Parents // Session Type: Moderately Interactive

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Michael Clay Thompson


Introduction to Four-Level Grammar Analysis

This intensive session is for teachers who are new to Michael Thompson's four-level analysis method of grammar instruction and would like an introductory overview. Four-level analysis gives teachers a practical way to compact grammar instruction and launch it early in the year, so that grammar can be used throughout the year as a way of thinking about language, resulting in more effective writing and vocabulary usage. Participants will leave the workshop with an understanding of how four-level analysis gives students a clear, understandable approach to grammar that makes real application possible.

Audience: 3rd-12 grade // Session Type: Informational Lecture

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