News

Wide range of materials on the Schoolwide Enrichment Model

We are happy to announce that Prof. Joe Renzulli and his colleagues at the University of Connecticut have granted our network access to the results of their work of over four decades in the field of Talent Development and Pedagogy of Gifted Education.
The Schoolwide Enrichment Model (SEM) is “both an enrichment program used with academically gifted and talented students and as a magnet theme/enrichment approach for all students. The theme of the SEM is to develop the strengths and talents of all students”.
According to Joe Renzulli “schools should be the places for talent development”. This theoretically established program enriches the regular curricular work of schools, focusing on Creative and Productive Giftedness, but giving opportunities to all students through their Comprehensive Strength Assessment

Process.

As they developed their Enrichment Triad Model they created a comprehensive system for the education of talented students that covers a wide range of aspects and issues of the pedagogy of gifted education and in the meantime they also developed and made accessible an Easy Access Toolkit for educators.

There are seven videos to watch and seven articles to read on the topics mentioned in the videos. All the materials you can find on the SEM page are free to download and use.
There are seven videos to watch available here:

There are several articles you can read on the topics mentioned in the videos. Lets see a short summary on them:

The articles:

General Background:
Renzulli, J.S. (2012): Reexamining the Role of Gifted Education and Talent Development for the 21 st Century: A Four-part Theoretical Approach (Gifted Child Quarterly, 56(3) 150-159.)
The article sets the goals of gifted education as a pursuit “to maximize young people’s opportunities for self-fulfilment and increase society’s reservoir of creative problem solvers and producers of knowledge” and gives a general background to his findings exploring the sub-theories of the Three-Ring Conception of Giftedness, the Enrichment Triad Model, Operation Houndstooth, and Executive Functions.

Comprehensive Strength Assessment:
Renzulli, J.S. (2016): The Three-Ring Conception of Giftedness: A Developmental Model for Promoting
Creative Productivity. In S. M. Reis (Ed.). Reflections On Gifted Education (pp. 173-192). Waco, TX:
Prufrock Press
In the article the author draws our attention to two types of giftedness that need differentiated provisions: the high-achieving students and creative productive giftedness, and states that both these types have given mankind “people who have changed the world in both large and small ways”. It provides a description of the major theoretical issues underlying various conceptions of giftedness as well as a new dimension of the overall theory, followed by an identification plan for students to get access to special programs.

The Enrichment Triad Model:
Chapter 8: The Enrichment Triad Model: A Guide for Developing Defensible Programs For The Gifted And Talented by Joseph S. Renzulli
This chapter is an updated version of his original work on the Enrichment Triad Model, serving as an overview rather than a practical guide. The goals of the Triad model are to:

(1) expose students to various topics and areas of interest,

(2) teach them how to integrate advanced skills, content and problem solving methodology, and

(3) to provide students the opportunities to apply them. It is based on the ways of natural learning, and it is designed to promote the interaction among the enrichment types. It is the pedagogical core for the organizational structure of the Schoolwide Enrichment Model.

Curriculum Compacting:
Reis, S. M. & Renzulli, J. S. (2005) Curriculum Compacting: A Systematic Procedure for Modifying the Curriculum for Above Average Ability Students. The National Research Center on the Gifted and Talented, The University of Connecticut.
The article offers an easy-to-implement instructional technique for modifying the curriculum for above average ability students, giving the chance to teachers to differentiate in their mixed-ability classroom work in any curricular area and at any grade level. The procedure consists of defining the goals, documenting on the different outcomes of different students, and providing replacement strategies for a more challenging and productive use of a student’s time.

Enrichment Clusters:
Reis, S. M. & Renzulli, J. S. (2005) Enrichment Clusters: A Practical Approach For Developing
Investigative Learning Skills. The University of Connecticut.
Enrichment clusters are one component of the Schoolwide Enrichment Model (SEM) that is designed to create a time and a place within the school schedule when the application of knowledge and investigative learning strategies are the major focus of students’ work. It provides an example in which students investigate a real-life problem and work together on a specified topic which gives them opportunity to apply the knowledge they have gained thus enriching the curricular work through the school year.

An infusion-based approach
Renzulli J. S. & Waicunas, N. (2016) An Infusion-Based Approach to Enriching the Standards-Driven Curriculum. In S. M. Reis (Ed.). Reflections On Gifted Education (pp. 173-192). Waco, TX: Prufrock Press
The article provides an example of how enrichment works in practice in the form of highly engaging activities related to particular topics within a school project month. The article enlists Type I, II, and III enrichment activities demonstrating how the structure of enrichment clusters can be built up within the context of the required curriculum in a primary school. The goals of the teachers were to minimize boredom and to improve achievement and creative productivity by infusing the Three E-s (Enjoyment, Engagement and Enthusiasm for Learning) into the school context.

A technology based program
Renzulli, J. S. & Reis, S. M. (2007). A Technology Based Program That Matches Enrichment Resources With Student Strengths. In International Journal of Emerging Technologies in Learning, Vol. 2, No 3.
The article introduces a comprehensive program called The Renzulli Learning System to promote advanced level learning, creative productivity and high levels of student engagement focusing the application of knowledge rather than the mere acquisition and information storage. It uses the Enrichment Triad Model and the Strength Based Learning Theory. This program uses the internet to help teachers and students find engaging enrichment activities matching the students’ strengths, interests and
learning styles, and it also has a project management system to track and evaluate the achievement of the students.

If you are interested in more details, or want us to send the original article please contact
fuszekcs@gmail.con or directly Prof. Joseph Renzulli: joseph.renzulli@uconn.edu and they will be happy to send you the articles you are interested in.

Mawhiba signs a letter of intent with UNESCO to foster scientific collaboration in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) as a fundamental engine to sustainable development

King Abdulaziz and His Companions Foundation for Giftedness and Creativity (Mawhiba) held a
symposium titled “High Impact STEM Programs: Success in measuring the global challenge” in
collaboration with UNESCO. The symposium was held on 28 th October 2019 at UNESCO’s headquarters
in Paris. A large panel of experts and professionals, as well as Mawhiba Alumni students from all
backgrounds, shared their views and experience about the benefits of STEM programs for general and
sustainable development. The expert panel shed light on the need to prioritize STEM education and
promoting critical and lateral thinking and present science in practical and creative means.
On the same day, Mawhiba foundation represented by General Secretary Dr. Saud Almthami and
UNESCO represented by Mr. Xing Qu, Deputy Director General signed a Letter of Intent. This agreement
aims at establishing a strong and long term partnership to foster scientific collaboration between both
parties in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) Education as a fundamental engine to
sustainable development. Echoing Saudi vision 2030, its goal to harness the potential of Gifted Youth and
to provide them with advanced skills to meet the challenges of the future. Both organizations are
expected to collaborate in enhancing STEM education globally and specially in Africa and Caribbean
islands.
Symposium Recommendations:
 Correct the misperception that a STEM career isn’t rewarding
 Give the child ownership and agency over its learning
o Make it experiential, allowing children to experiment
o Give the students freedom and flexibility – give them the opportunity to try their own
paths
o Give them the support to create their own clubs and competitions
o Make it fun and playful
o Take STEM teaching out of the classroom – organise weekend activities and
tournaments
 The ecosystem
o Use alumni to support and guide
o ‘on the Mawhiba programmes, they didn’t stop us when we failed’ – learning from
failing
o Enable exploration; enable access and let the child decide
o Stop rote learning!
o Not everybody learns the same way – explain and teach in different ways, based on the
child’s way of learning
o Making STEM subjects cool by bringing robotics into the learning experience/curriculum

o Build awareness within different parts of the population to build support within parents
– it’s not all about programmes. Also helps to achieve gender inclusion

Conclusion:
A lot can be achieved by continuous training of teachers – how they teach, identifying talent,
how to nurture talent.
Give the student agency and ownership, whilst supported

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Talent Support through Tales and Drama

Agnes Streitmann PhD 

Apor Vilmos Catholic College, Vác, Hungary

An article on the International Tale Project Week at Apor Vilmos Catholic College, Vác, Hungary, which was held in 2019 April

The Winchester Tale Project focusing on folk-tale traditions of different cultures is a cooperation between Apor Vilmos Catholic College (Vác, Hungary) and the University of Winchester (UK) launched in 2015. Since the beginnings it has been one of the most popular talent support projects with Hungarian students. At Apor Vilmos Catholic College (AVCC), which is  both a National and a European Talent Point, the project is based on two talent support courses: The Storytelling Course comprises students’ research work shared with the English students on a project website (Weebly), http://folkandfairytaleproject.weebly.com), as well as learning about and applying different storytelling techniques to perform tales. The Art Course includes art and craft activities aiming at preparing puppets, props, scenery illustrations to be used in performances. Besides in-college work both English and Hungarian students do pedagogical work at English and Hungarian primary schools, and participate in project-weeks in Winchester and in Vác: They lead workshops at the partner institution, do school work, and attend cultural events. 

In 2019 the project week at AVCC was organized as an International Week welcoming 14 international students and 5 lecturers from the UK, Belgium, Spain and Switzerland. The International Tale Project Week entitled Talent Support through Tales and Drama was supported by the National Talent Programme. The most popular activities of the Week were two student workshops: Belgian students gave Kamishibai (paper theatre) and shadow play performances based on Hungarian folk tales, which were followed by  a story-innovation groupwork. The English and Hungarian students led a workshop based on a local legend from the Southampton region applying exciting storytelling and drama technics.

The presentation of the English colleagues from the University of Winchester entitled Teaching Children’s Literature in English Primary Schools and the enjoyable workshop Body &Voice led by a Belgian drama teacher from Thomas More University also made a hit. The Spanish colleague from the Catholic University of Valencia gave a challenging presentation on the topic Gender Stereotypes in Folk Tales, which was followed by a passionate discussion in groups. 

The presentations of the two Hungarian guest lecturers were inspiring as well. Csilla Fuszek – the Director of the European Talent Centre-Budapest, and the Secretary of the ETSN Network Council – talked about national and international experiences within the framework of the ETSN. The presentation of Eszter Szoboszlay from Kecskemét Film Studio How to Make an Animated Film also contained a lot of interesting information for the audience. The animated cartoon series Gipsy Folktales were a unique experience both for the Hungarian and the international students. 

The international students gained insight into the pedagogical work of two Hungarian primary schools, attended the Budapest History Museum, and visited cultural sights in Vác and in Budapest. 

The beauty of Vác, the closeness of Budapest and last but not least the interesting, inspiring programmes proved to be greatly attractive for the international participants expressing their willingness to gladly return to other international talent support programmes at AVCC. 

At AVCC we are already planning the talent support programmes of the Tale Project for the next academic year. Hopefully they will also be successful, attracting quite a few international students and colleagues.

Link to the talent support Tale Project and the previous International Weeks at AVCC: 

http://avkf.hu/index.php/english/

Creating equal opportunities in education by means of academic language

Lineke van Tricht

Bureau Talent, Middelstegracht 87f, 2312 TT, Leiden, the Netherlands,

lineke@bureautalent.nl

Pupils from a less advantaged background, such as a low socioeconomic status or a native language other than Dutch, do not always fulfill their potential in terms of academic success. The project ‘Creating equal opportunities at school: Empowering pupils from less-advantaged backgrounds through teaching academic language’, financed by Erasmus+, contributes to bridging the gap between these pupils’ current academic success and their cognitive talent by means of teaching Dutch academic language.

Inequality in education is a big problem in every prosperous country. The Netherlands and Belgium even belong to the 10 countries in the world where socioeconomic status has the biggest impact on school success

1 . Socioeconomic status is the position people have in society. Examples of indicators that are used to measure socioeconomic status for children are: the language spoken at home and the income, professional status and educational level of their parents

2 . Inequality in opportunities means that background and socioeconomic status, instead of cognitive or academic abilities, determines academic success

3 . Language seems to play an important role in this. It is essential that schools, pupils and parents become aware of this problem. Also, they should know where to find and how to make use of the learning materials that are available to teach pupils ‘school language’, also called academic language.

The project ‘Creating equal opportunities at school: Empowering pupils from less-advantaged backgrounds through teaching academic language’, financed by Erasmus+, offers a solution.

The purpose of this project is to improve the academic language skills of cognitively talented pupils from less advantaged backgrounds. It aims to increase the chance that these pupils’ academic success is in line with their potential because language is no longer a barrier, leading to a growth in their motivation and self-confidence.

Different experts and schools from the Netherlands, Belgium and the UK are working together in this project, benefiting from each other’s experience and expertise. A similar project, which served as an example for this current project, has been carried out in the UK. It was called the REAL-project, and the results were very positive.

The first step in the Erasmus+ project is to select cognitively talented pupils from a less-advantaged background through a culture fair test. The 10% to 20% of best scoring pupils per school will start working with the Dutch academic words in September 2019. The project ends in June 2021, after which it will be evaluated.

The selected pupils will use on online programme to help them learn academic Dutch. Teachers and experts have worked together to compile a list of academic words, based on previously developed lists. The online programme allows pupils to actively study and use the words. The aim is that they will be able to recognize and use academic language in formal school settings as well as in their everyday lives so that a lack of language skills no longer forms a barrier when it comes to academic success.

The project is innovative because this is a target group which is underrepresented in many Gifted-and-Talented programmes. The way pupils are selected and the development of an academic word list in Dutch is also new. From a broad perspective, the end goal should be that the influence of socioeconomic status on talent development, school results and school success will diminish. This fundamental change could ultimately lead to a more diverse and equal society.