Services for Teachers
My focus as an educational psychologist is on helping teachers become savvy consumers of evidence-based practices and on supporting families and teachers in communicating well with each other to meet the needs of each gifted child in the most appropriate way. Though I am not a certified teacher, I have been an instructor for an introductory course to teaching and child and adolescent development for pre-service teachers, as well as a course on human development for master's level teachers and counselors. I have worked in K-12 classrooms as a volunteer, substitute teacher, paraprofessional, and researcher. I understand the demands that are placed on teachers in school classrooms. I am very knowledgeable about curriculum models and classroom practices designed for gifted students and remain up-to-date on current issues and practices through membership in gifted and educational research organizations, journals, conferences, and webinars.
My services include:
- Providing resources and advice to individual teachers.
- Presenting to or conducting workshops for a team, school, parent group, organization, counselors, school psychologists, or medical or psychology practice.
- Facilitating parent/teacher meetings.
Common issues and topics of interest for teachers include:
- Understanding the nature and needs of my gifted students.
- Understanding the social and emotional needs of my gifted students.
- Communicating with my gifted students.
- Helping the non-gifted students in my classroom understand the gifted students.
- Helping my gifted students explore their strengths, learning preferences, and interests.
- Facilitating my gifted students' search for and development of independent projects or mentorships.
- Promoting successful teacher/parent relationships.
- Finding educational alternatives for my gifted students in and outside of my classroom when they face institutional barriers to going beyond the curriculum.
- Helping the parents of my gifted students develop a parent support group for the gifted program.
Advocating for Gifted and High-Achieving Students in the Era of NCLB
Although accountability is emphasized by No Child Left Behind, research studies provide evidence that high-achieving students are not making the gains in performance that are seen with low-performing, at-risk students. Equip yourself with talking points from national research supporting advocacy for gifted services required by many state regulations and rules, but which may have been de-emphasized by schools struggling to meet the requirements of NCLB.
Affective Development of Gifted Students
In this era of high stakes testing, gifted students need emotional support more than ever. This session will promote activities, discussions, lessons, and communication ideas to engage all gifted students, including culturally, linguistically, and economically diverse students and twice-exceptional students.
Evidence-Based? Research-Based? How Do I Know What Will Work for My Students?
Educators are hearing that classroom practices are evidence-based or research-based, but may not know what these terms mean or if a particular program is actually based on valid and reliable research. Join a discussion of guidelines from the federal government, the Council for Exceptional Children, and the National Association for Gifted Children for distinguishing between evidence-based and research-based practices, and for identifying and selecting practices in gifted education that will work for your students.
The Importance of Individual Creative Experiences in Programs for Talented Students
In examining the creative experiences of visual art students and their teachers at a fine arts magnet school, the results of a qualitative study revealed important physical, curricular, psychological, and emotional aspects of the program that enhanced and supported their creativity. Many of these aspects are supported by research in visual arts education and could be developed by other visual arts programs.
Gifted Military-Connected Students
Gifted students in military families face many challenges in seeking appropriate services in schools, compounded by issues due to relocation and deployment of a family member. Family transitions, in general, can lead to loss of achievement that is associated with college attrition. Participants will examine these challenges in light of current research and discuss resources for families, schools, and communities. Finding appropriate support for gifted military-connected students has implications for all gifted students experiencing transitions.