One of the things I always think is a bit of a shame is that we have have great content at Creative (even if I do say so myself) but which only sees the light of day when someone joins us for a course.
I do think that’s a shame because some of it can be selected out relatively easily and we could help others by sharing it.
So this morning I could some time to look through our course on Stretching the Gifted and Talented in Geography. I really liked the content and thought it would be applicable to lots of other departments too.
So you are looking to develop G&T provision, hopefully this post should have a lot to offer.
1) Understand Where You Are
One of the first steps, particularly if you’ve just started to head up your department, is to get a firm grasp of exactly where provision for gifted and talented is in your team. There are a number of ways you can get evidence for this – lesson observations, pupil achievement and progress, discussions with the pupils themselves. All of these will help you build up a picture of what the current strengths and weaknesses are.
To help you I’ve attached a G&T Audit that allows you to record those judgements.
2) Develop a Sound Policy
The departmental G&T policy needn’t be complicated, rather it should be a working document that sets out clearly to the other teachers in your department what support and challenge you expect to give your gifted students and how you expect to do that. You want to provide something that will give your department consistency in approach rather than a straightjacket that will create extra boxes to tick.
I’ve attached a G&T Policy from a Geography department, which of course you can adapt to your own needs and requirements. An MFL department might have quite different G&T strategies than a Geography one.
Your whole school G&T Co-ordinator will be a useful source of help and guidance here, both for writing your departmental policy but also for making sure that it dovetails with wider school approaches.
3) Identify Your Gifted and Talented
If you’re going to track progress you need to identify who you mean by gifted and talented. If your school has a definition use that one, but otherwise it’s up to your own discretion and there are a range of schools of thought on it. Personally I’ve always taken a broad view of gifted and talented – let’s be honest it’s all differentiation really – but if you want to see your programme work you need to be clear who it’s targeted at.
There’s a section from the old QCDA website that had some useful guidance on how to identify gifted Geographers . There’s also the table below which could easily be applied to other subjects.
|More able/gifted geographer:||Bright pupil:|
4) Develop Stretching Activities
In many respects this is the most important aspect. Get your department together and share ideas. What different types of activity have colleagues used to develop gifted students in your subject? Even better – if you have a department member who’s particularly strong in this area get them to lead the session to help get ideas flowing. Even if with individual teachers your department needs a lot of work to improve its G&T provision, together you’ve got enough strategies and knowledge to be an excellent practitioner.
I hope you found that helpful. We haven’t previous given out a lot of actual resources on the blog so I’d love to have your feedback about whether you enjoyed the post.