I'm baaaaaaack.

Hoarding All the Glitter Since 2001.

22 August 2010

Amazing Fun Fact Day!

ADHD and Giftedness look a lot alike, at least in the school setting.  In fact they look so much alike that it comes up in teacher credentialing classes.  They may also be co-morbid.  (Successful ADHD people are also often gifted, which I bet is the extent of the co-morbidity - the giftedness helps get around the disorder, and the successful ones write the articles.)

Given my high-faluting education, fabulous wardrobe and bougie lifestyle, I figure I can claim success myself.  So there.

Honestly I don't get the fascination with GATE programming.  Maybe I would had I received it myself, but I went on my merry, distracted, gifted way without it.*  I'm not sure what it's meant to provide.  As far as I can tell, GATE stuff tends to be more hands-on, more inquiry-based, more open-ended.  It may be somewhat accelerated, I suppose - but giftedness is not the same as skill, so if we are saying GATE programming starts at a higher level of skill we are excluding gifted persons who have limited familiarity with the material, right?

All of my Kindergarten students are gifted.  They have all learned a lot already - like, how to speak a language, how to walk, how to get attention, how cool their world is - before they come to school.  And they can all learn the school stuff.  Some of them have talents I don't.  This is not Hallmark stuff or even Howard Gardner, here: they are all gifted.

I have yet to meet the learner who does not learn more when the work is engaging and involves doing and asking.  So why isn't GATE good for everyone?  I have to wonder if GATE classrooms are fulfilling some other need we perceive children to have.

*Admittedly I spent a lot of valuable learning time staring out the window, getting in trouble, tapping my foot and ripping paper into microscopic pieces (unless I had scissors,  in which case I cut it into said pieces).  But I got a scholarship to fancy college and everything, so I must have learned something.

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