The Gift School is sensitive to the specific needs of intellectually gifted children. Teachers adapt their methods and educational setting, so that “high ability” children can thrive in their school environment.
Here are a few of the actions taken by the Gift School with regards to teaching gifted children:
- Teacher training. There’s more to teaching IG children than providing care and attention, as crucial as those may be. It is also important that teachers gain knowledge and understanding on the specific cognitive and emotional needs of gifted children.
- The use of alternative teaching methods such as Montessori. These allow teachers to truly adapt their programs to the individual needs of gifted children, not only with regards to their areas of interest but also in consideration for their pace and rhythm. Because Montessori classes are multi-level, the classroom provides a natural framework within which each child can progress at his or her own pace.
- Framework. Intellectually gifted children need a well-defined structure with set goals to work towards and rules to understand and apply. This structure is reassuring to them and is also very helpful when it comes to managing emotions.
- Hypersensitivity and Managing Emotions. Special workshops are organized to allow gifted children to work on acknowledging and understanding the emotions that they feel, which can somtimes be overwhelming.
- Class curriculum. Depending on the child’s stage of development and desire, a specific program is devised from which the child can choose whichever activities are of most interest.
- Cognitive and social challenges. Because being a gifted child to society means being “different,” teachers design activities which are inclusive and shed light on the value of “being different”… so that children learn to gain self-confidence and ultimately overcome the barriers of peer pressure. The relationship between teacher and family is of great value here, and feedback and reports from teachers are fully individualized and frequent.
The Gift School curriculum was designed with the participation and support of many different experts on the subject of gifted children.