Problem/issue Summary Kyle has demonstrated some of the characteristics of giftedness outlined i...

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Problem/issue Summary Kyle has demonstrated some of the characteristics of giftedness outlined in the textbook as highlighted in the article at an early age when he was put in a gifted program. As outlined in the text, most educators recognize giftedness as a dynamic exceptionality too complex to be confined to a list of characteristics. When Kyle started school he had already developed some characteristics of giftedness. However, as he grew up these characteristics dissolved as he began struggling in the gifted programs, which he was then evaluated and IPRC suggested he did not qualify for the enrichment program and be placed in a regular class. by Mind Map: Problem/issue Summary  Kyle has demonstrated some of the characteristics of giftedness outlined in the textbook as highlighted in the article at an early age when he was put in a gifted program. As outlined in the text, most educators recognize giftedness as a dynamic exceptionality too complex to be confined to a list of characteristics. When Kyle started school he had already developed some characteristics of giftedness. However, as he grew up these characteristics dissolved as he began struggling in the gifted programs, which he was then evaluated and IPRC suggested he did not qualify for the enrichment program and be placed in a regular class.

1. Interpretation/Connection to Text

1.1. The Enrichment Triad Model outlined in the text outlines that a gifted individual demonstrates a high level of general ability, high level of task commitment, and a high level of creativity but not all in equal parts. I believe that when Kyle started school, growing up in such an enriched household helped him develop these three traits strongly and thus he was characterized as gifted. But once he was in the classroom these three traits did not continue to develop at a gifted level and the gap became more obvious.

1.2. Differentiated instruction is outlined in the text as a teaching method that takes into account the individual needs and abilities of each student. In Kyle’s case, the differentiated instruction that he received was in the form of a gifted program but this is a strategy that can be implemented into any classroom, gifted or not. Kyle can still receive accommodations to his learning in the regular classroom as well, which would provide him with the social interactions that he desires and the academic opportunities that his parents are seeking. This would be in the form of an IEP where Kyle's parents and educators along with Kyle can participate in developing the IEP. This will allow for enrichment in areas where he excels and keep him from falling behind his peers like in the gifted program.

1.3. While it is likely that Kyle is quite simply in the wrong program and while it is difficult to say considering the information we have been given, this could be a case of David Sternberg's Pentagonal Implicit Theory of Giftedness. In this instance, Sternberg defines that regular giftedness ignores some areas of expertise at the expense of others (i.e., a gifted violinist is valued more than a gifted cabinetmaker in a school setting). This could be the cause of the disconnect between Kyle's aptitude at schoolwork in an academic setting, and his work in a non-academic setting, such as at home with his parents. While Kyle may be falling behind as a whole, it could be possible that his parents see him to be gifted in other areas and are hoping that the gifted school might refine those skills to a more academic stream.

2. Parent's Perspective Alasdair Dunbar

2.1. From the research I have done about this topic I have found that one of the largest misconceptions about giftedness is that a gifted student will always outpace his peers, and that there is no one definition of giftedness. With this in mind I find it difficult to accept that the only possible answer to my son Kyle's struggles are because he is not gifted.

2.2. At home Kyle has shown any number of "gifted characteristics". He is well-read and informed on a wide-range of topics, many of them much more sophisticated than what a normal grade 3 student normally would be interested in, and he possesses a well-developed attention span. He is also incredibly disciplined, taking time out of his day to work independently on his school work without being prompted. Not to mention that he has an extraordinary vocabulary for a child his age.

2.3. As a parent, I feel that removing him from the gifted program would be terrible for Kyle. He has shown in the past that he is simply too intelligent to be in a standard class, and his trouble with comprehending French aside, I feel he would not be challenged in a regular classroom to the same extent that he is in the gifted program. I thought the point of the gifted program was to push gifted students to a point where the work was at such a high level for their age they were forced to work at it, I feel that part of this issue is that Kyle maybe does not want to work as hard as other students because for the first time he has reached subjects that are not easy as they used to be.

2.4. Finally, I also feel that this would be detrimental to Kyle socially. He has been a part of the gifted program almost since he began school and all of his friends are in the gifted program. Not to mention the stigma that will be attached to a student returning from the gifted program to regular class. I feel that not only will this badly damage my son's self-esteem, it will make him likely to be bullied and could cause him to do poorly.

3. Student's Perspective Kelly Taylor

3.1. My parents feel as though I should be in a gifted school but I have been falling behind in my class and my teacher thinks I would be better suited in a regular classroom program. There is so much debate going on around me but nobody has asked for my opinion about where I would prefer to be. I would really love to have a say in my own future.

3.2. At first I really enjoyed being in the gifted program because although it was challenging I could work through the problems and find the proper solutions. The work I was supposed to be doing in the regular classroom was too easy and I liked this work much better. After a while though, I started to struggle and the work became too difficult for me. I don't even want to do my schoolwork anymore because I know I can't do it and I am always getting frustrated. I am falling behind my classmates and don't enjoy being the weakest student in my class.

3.3. Not only am I struggling academically in the gifted program, I am having a difficult time socializing with my classmates as well. Ever since I started to fall behind, I have been feeling very disconnected as I don't have anything in common with my classmates anymore. I would much prefer to be in a regular classroom where I can be with like-minded peers and develop relationships.

3.4. My parents want me to be in the gifted program and I want to make them proud, so I am afraid to tell them how I really feel and what it is that I really want. I know I will be more confident in my abilities in a regular classroom environment where I can also develop friendships with my classmates. I don't want to struggle anymore or feel like I am lesser than my peers. I would love to be included as part of the decision-making process so that I can share my thoughts with my parents and teacher about my education, I just don't want to disappoint anyone.

4. Teacher's Perspective Victoria Giudice

4.1. At first, I noticed that Kyle demonstrated some characteristics of giftedness. But I now believe this was a result of his home lifestyle before entering school. Within a few years of being in the classroom Kyle's marks levelled to those of a regular student. He struggled with French Immersion and this was when I noticed he may not be as gifted as his parents led to believe.

4.2. I spend a lot of time with Kyle at school and have seen that he is falling through the cracks in the gifted program. I do not like to see my students fall behind so I have suggested that he be pulled from the gifted program and placed back into a regular classroom. Having this available to Kyle will not take away his self-esteem as a gifted student as he will be surrounded by students that he could build other social skills as well as utilizing his gifted skills to help other students.

4.3. As a teacher, this puts me in a difficult situation with my students as well as their parents. Kyle was seen as gifted in his early years but has declined over time and would benefit in a regular classroom. However, this is difficult to suggest because the parents do not agree.

4.4. I think a good idea would be to monitor his behaviour and academic work in the regular classroom and see how well he does with this change and hopefully reconsider his qualifications for the weekly enrichment program in the future, if suitable to his needs and academic grades. I do not want to see Kyle fall behind his peers but rather to build relationships in both classrooms where he can learn from other students like him as well as use his giftedness to help others.

5. Principal's Perspective Stefan Pavlovic

5.1. At first Kyle appeared to be quite gifted and met most of the criteria and characteristics of giftedness. Going through proper steps which were initiated early by Kyle's parents, we could start him off in the gifted program.

5.2. By grade 1 Kyle entered French immersion which was very hard from him. The teacher reported that it was obvious that the program was not suitable for Kyle at all. The parents seemed reluctant at first to follow our recommendation of removing him from French immersion but later accepted our decision. This was the first indicator that Kyle may not be suitable for the gifted program but since there are multiple indications of giftedness, I thought of it as more of a glitch.

5.3. It is the end of grade 3 for Kyle and I have been informed by his teacher that he is just not able to keep up with his classmates in several of the giftedness criteria and the gap between him and his peers is growing larger and larger. It seems that Kyle realizes that he is falling behind and struggling compared to his peers. His giftedness was very likely a product of his environment, having lots of attention and access to wonderful learning resources early on. I have to recommend that Kyle go to the regular classroom for grade 4. His parents are not open to this at all and have begun the appeal process. I must find a solution that is realistic and best for Kyle while still keeping his parents happy.

5.4. The solution that would be best for Kyle and his parents is to develop an IEP for Kyle. Information has already been gathered as Kyle was closely observed during his education. The IEP can focus on enriching Kyle's strengths and not deny him any opportunities to progress. His self-esteem will better off in a place where he is not struggling to keep up with his peers. The parents can take part in setting the direction and developing the IEP to make sure Kyle is being offered every opportunity and I will make certain that my teachers are implementing the IEP effectively and keeping it up to date with Kyle's progress.