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Curriculum Modification for Gifted

From the Multi-Tiered System of Support Guide for Advanced Learner, the following strategies are ways in which content, process, and product are modified to meet student needs:

Abstraction

What Is It? (Definition)
Content that goes beyond surface detail and facts to underlying concepts, teneralizations, and symbolism.

Choice

What Is It? (Definition)
Provide opportunities for choices and flexibility. Many advanced learners love the opportunity for choice and given an opportunity, will construct their own differentiated choices. Possibilities include choice boards, tic-tac-toe, and layered assignments. (Advanced Learner MTSS Guide)

How Do I Use It? (Process, Strategies, Steps)

Why Use It? (Research Support)

To engage students, give them meaningful choices in the classroom

The Key Benefits of Choice - Chapter 1 from the book, Learning to Choose, Choosing to Learn by Mike Anderson.

Compacting

What Is It? (Definition)
“This important instructional strategy condenses, modifies, or streamlines the regular curriculum to reduce repetition of previously mastered material. ‘Compacting’ what students already know allows time for acceleration or enrichment beyond the basic curriculum for students who would otherwise be simply practicing what they already know” - National Association for Gifted Children

How Do I Use It? (Process, Strategies, Steps)

Why Use It? (Research Support)

Conceptual Discussions

What Is It? (Definition)
High level discussions of themes, concepts, generalizations, issues, and problems, rather than a review of facts, terms, and details.

How Do I Use It? (Process, Strategies, Steps)

The Key Practice, Discuss and Debate Ideas: Conceptual Framefork, Literature Review, and Provisional Learning Progressions for Argumentation

Extensions

What Is It? (Definition)
Offer relevant extension options for learners who need additional challenges. The extension should be different from rather than in addition to the whole class assignment.

How Do I Use It? (Process, Strategies, Steps)

Rethinking Extension Menus

Flexible Assessments

What Is It? (Definition)
Offer different assessment options that allow students to demonstrate their mastery of new concepts, content and skills.

How Do I Use It? (Process, Strategies, Steps)
Provide a list of items or allow the student to create a way for them to show they have mastered the new concepts, content or skills that is not a formal assessment.

Exemplars

25 Alternate Assessments Ideas

Alternatives to Traditional Exams and Papers

Colorado Measures of Academic Success (CMAS) Administration Training for DACs - Click the link for a PowerPoint download.

Authentic Assessment - Click on the link for a PowerPoint download.

Flexible Project Time

What Is It? (Definition)
Students negotiate for more or less time to complete a learning experiences and its matching product or assessment. Consider the use of learning contract.

Why Use It? (Research Support)

Use Flexible Pacing to Embrace Students' Differences

Grouping (Cluster, Cooperative learning, Cross-graded, Flexible skills, Full time ability, Achievement for Subject instruction, Performance)

What Is It? (Definition)
Vary opportunities to work in whole groups, small groups, with a partner, or in an independent setting based on readiness and/or interest.

How Do I Use It? (Process, Strategies, Steps)

Grouping

Why Use It? (Research Support)

Grouping

Higher-order Thinking Skills

What Is It? (Definition)
“Higher-order thinking skills go beyond basic observation of facts and memorization. They are what we are talking about when we want our students to be evaluative, creative and innovative.” - Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning

What is higher-order thinking? Why is it important?

How Do I Use It? (Process, Strategies, Steps)

Critical Thinking and other Higher-Order Thinking Skills

Higher-Order Thinking Skills (HOTS) in Education

Why Use it?

High Level Thinking and Questioning Strategies Research Brief

Developing High Order Thinking Skills and Team Commitment via Group Problem Solving: A Bridge to the Real World

Bloom’s Taxonomy Levels

What Is It? (Definition)
“Put simply, Bloom’s taxonomy is a framework for educational achievement in which each level depends on the one below. It’s often depicted in the form of a pyramid—similar to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.” (https://tophat.com/blog/blooms-taxonomy-ultimate-guide/)

http://www.celt.iastate.edu/teaching/effective-teaching-practices/revise...

How Do I Use It? (Process, Strategies, Steps)

Using Bloom's Taxonomy to Write Effective Learning Objectives

Bloom's Taxonomy

50 Ways to use Bloom's Taxonomy in the Classroom

Why Use It? (Research Support)

Bloom's Taxonomy: What's Old Is New Again

Bloom's Taxonomy (University of Central Florida)

Independent Study

What is It? (Definition)
Students research a teacher-chosen or self-chosen topic/question/problem, developing either traditional or nontraditional products to demonstrate learning. The independent study should be different from rather than in addition to the whole-class assignment, project, or unit. (Advanced Learner MTSS Guide)

What is INDEPENDENT STUDY? What does INDEPENDENT STUDY mean? INDEPENDENT STUDY meaning.

How Do I Use It? (Process, Strategies, Steps)

How to Plan and Implement an Independent Study in High School

Independent Learning in the Classroom

Independent Study Ideas

Why Use It? (Research Support)

Independent Study: Purposes and Goals if Independent Study, Independent Study and Extensiveness in Grades K-(12)

10 Reasons Why Educators Should Encourage Independent Learning

Jigsaw/Cooperative Learning

What is It? (Definition)
Just as in a jigsaw puzzle, each piece-each student’s part- is essential for the full completion and full understanding of the final product.

How Do I Use It? (Process, Strategies, Steps)

The "Jigsaw" Technique

Why Use It? (Research Support)

The Jigsaw Classroom

Mini-lessons

What Is It? (Definition)
Mini-lessons provide levels of scaffolding, support, and challenge as needed for students of like ability/need.

How Do I Use It? (Process, Strategies, Steps)

The mini lesson may be taught to a whole class, a selected small group, or individual students. The mini lesson should be short and focused on one strategy, skill, or deeper concept. Teachers introduce the topic; demonstrate the strategy, skill, or concept; guide student practice; discuss the topic; volunteer more examples; and talk about what was taught.

Most Difficult First

What Is It? (Definition)
This strategy is a very simple first step to full-scale compacting. It is usually used with skill-type activities such as math, grammar, map reading, vocabulary, or spelling. A teacher allows students to demonstrate mastery of the five most difficult problems of an assignment and then to participate in alternate activities without having to do an entire assignment. Some students already have mastered a skill and do not need additional drill and practice. They may become bored and disruptive if forced to participate in activities that they perceive as rote, routine, and/or repetitive. This strategy allows them to do alternate, more meaningful activities.

How Do I Use It? (Process, Strategies, Steps)

After the teacher has finished teaching a lesson and has assigned homework or classwork to practice the skill just taught, the teacher stars the five most difficult problems of an assignment.

All students have an opportunity to do only these 5 most difficult problems to try to demonstrate mastery. If a student achieves the level of mastery determined by the teacher, the teacher gives him/her full credit for doing the entire assignment and allows him/her to do something else while the rest of the class does the assignment. The student who demonstrates mastery receives an A that mastery would represent had he/she completed the entire assignment. It is best for students not to have to answer 5 out of 5 questions correctly to demonstrate mastery; this sends the message that perfection is necessary. Any student who does not demonstrate mastery on the five most difficult problems or who needs to ask the teacher for help must do the entire assignment.

Exemplar (s)

Most Difficult First: A Strategy for Modifying Assignments for Gifted Students

Why Use It? (Research Support)
As an initial step toward differentiation, this strategy allows students who demonstrate mastery to do anything else that they choose as long as they follow two basic rules: They must not interfere with the learning of others and they must not call attention to themselves. Later, when a teacher is comfortable with full-scale compacting, appropriate replacement activities will be provided for students who already know certain material.

Teaching Gifted Kids in the Regular Classroom by Susan Winebrenner is a book available from Free Spirit Press. Information on Most Difficult First is on pages 35 to 39 of the book.

Short Changing the Gifted

Pre-assessment

What Is It? (Definition)
Use an array of pre-assessment options to check for student mastery prior to instruction. By regularly pre-assessing students, teachers can flexibly group students by ability and readiness levels. Pre-assessment is also essential for curriculum compacting and other methods of advancing student learning. (Advanced MTSS Learner Guide) By pre-assessing students, teachers can better determine a student’s current level of mastery and adjust instruction.

How Do I Use It? (Process, Strategies, Steps)

Six Traits of Quality Pre-Assessments

Differentiation: It Starts with Pre-Assessment

Does Pre-Assessment Work?

Why Use It? (Research Support)
Black, Paul and Wiliam, Dylan (1998) 'Assessment and Classroom Learning', Assessment in Education: Principles, Policy & Practice, 5:1, 7 — 74

Varied Level of Complexity

What Is It? (Definition)
Books and instructional materials at different levels of complexity allow students to study the same concepts but at levels of depth and complexity to fit their learning needs. The minimum level of complexity should be that which is demanded by the standard or learning target. Variations on the approach to the curriculum may include studying rules, trends, multiple perspectives, patterns, power , ethics, details, cross-disciplinary themes/concepts, and changes over time. Additionally, bundling standards within or across disciplines is an appropriate way to increase the learning experience.

Varied Pacing Plan

What Is It? (Definition)
Plan to accommodate varied pacing, allowing students to move through content at a pace appropriate for their learning needs.

Other (not included in the MTSS Guide for Advanced Learner)

Hess Cognitive Rigor Matrix

Using the Hess Cognitive Rigor Matrix to extend grade-level standards for Advanced Learners.

Free Resources from Dr. Karin Hess' website

Extending the Standards for Gifted/Advanced Learners - Doreen Underwood, Diverse Learners Specialist from Great Prairie AEA, shares a PowerPoint on how to use Hess Matrices to create defined expectations for what extended work looks like. Using the matrices start with slide 29.