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  • University : Tafe NSW
  • Subject Name : Early Childhood

Strategies for Working with Gifted Children

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Extensive range of teaching strategies and approaches when working with gifted children in early childhood and primary setting including disadvantaged children Gifted children differ from the others in learning in terms of absorbing concepts, organizing the contents, memorizing the same and retrieving when it is required. It can be stated that there are several teaching strategies that a teacher can use in a classroom settings. However, the approach to teaching gifted children may differ. As suggested by Callahan et al. (2015), child led, play based, teacher led and co-constructed learning strategies may improve the learning outcomes of the gifted children.

On the other hand, cluster grouping strategies are considered as effective in teaching the gifted children as well, especially children that are from disadvantaged settings. Rubenstein & Ridgley (2017) mentioned that collaborating with the family members of the gifted children will be effective in delivering effective teaching support to the children. Another strategy that can be used in this context is the shared thinking strategy. Adopting rural cluster grouping is also an effective strategy that can be considered applicable in the current context.

Child led, play based, teacher led and co-constructed learning strategies

Gifted children require effective treatment from the teaching agents. Most of the researches have provided ideation about how standard teaching approaches may fail to fulfill the needs of the gifted children as they are different in their capabilities of learning new things. As commented by Imbeau (2018), the learner centered approaches are required to be developed in order to assist the children with learning materials appropriate to their needs. The time, schedule and the learning materials are very crucial to decide upon how child is required to be treated against their capabilities. However, the approach is being taken to teach these children it is required to assess the capability of learning of each of the children to absorb the learning materials as well as store them in the memory. Therefore, it can be stated that the child-led teaching strategy allows the learners to take charge of their learning through independently going through the learning materials as well.

As per the views of Brulles, Saunders & Cohn (2010), gifted children learn from playing and other relaxing methods in their childhood and mostly do not get benefited through the traditional teaching and learning approaches. For instance, a gifted child may seem inattentive and disturbing at the regular class while other children are enjoying the same. It is often identifiable through their assessment. As mentioned by Callahan et al., (2015), the fast learning process of the gifted children lead them to face difficulties in paying attention to the repetitive learning materials which lead to inattention and disturbance at the classroom. This can be addressed effectively through implemented play-based teaching learning process where the teaching materials are decided beforehand though the lesson seekers direct the approach to deliver the teaching materials.

Mostly the children are allowed to learn freely playing at the premises with learning kits. For instance, the children may be assisted through providing learning materials that are attractive and colorful in nature and may lead the children to get interested in the teaching method. Therefore, it can be stated that learner-led teaching approaches are considered to be appropriate for teaching gifted children.

Co-constructed learning strategies

This strategy helps the students or learners to learn from others in order to expand their knowledge. As mentioned by Mindt &Rieckmann (2017), the Co-constructed learning strategies help the learners to construct the learning materials and processes together and solving the problems collaboratively. It does not only help in learning the classroom requirements it also helps the students to develop social relationships with their peers. Major benefits of this learning strategy are this increases skills and makes the learners independent. For instance, the learning content, sequencing, delivery mode and assessment of their skills are driven by the learners as well.

Cluster grouping strategies

The academic needs of the gifted children can be met through cluster grouping teaching method. Gifted children are grouped together in one classroom which makes it easier for the teachers to deliver the teaching materials as per the needs of the gifted children. This is an effective and inexpensive teaching method that can be adopted by the teachers at the school even for the disadvantaged children. It can be stated that this method of teaching the gifted children may also provide limited result if the gifted children may not be identified earlier when it is required. It may also become difficult for newcomers to adapt to the classroom situation; along with this the feeling of isolation can also increase among the students.

Shared thinking strategy

The shared thinking strategy in teaching is used in order to help the children develop their complex thinking and skills for problem solving through open-ended exploratory conversations. There are some set of actions that are differentiated based on the identification of the student requirements and teaching requirements. As per the views of Pohl (2014), the teacher in this strategy develops intentional and mindful learning experiences and provides the students with challenging play environment. This promotes conversation among the teachers and the students and increases the student collaboration. For instance, for the clarification of the complex ideas students approach each other which increase the chances of brainstorming ideas. This strategy is embedded with open conversation, creative thinking allowance, and helps in developing sophisticated and collaborative communication among the students.

Working in the partnership with the families and the community

Collaborating with the family members of the children is required in order to increase the awareness of the locality about the needs of the local children. As per the views of James et al. (2018), collaboration of the teachers with the community may increase the chances of sharing the learning resources. The school community partnerships may increase the use of libraries. The teaching program quality may also increase through the community collaboration and allows aligning the curriculum and teaching goals effectively. These are the supportive of the disadvantaged children that are unable to avail the learning resources and visit schools due to financial and other barriers.

Apart from that, a community consists of different traditions, practices, values and ethical considerations which a child becomes able to learn while collaborated with the community. They become able to reflect their values on their works through learning from their own community.

Community learner approach

The educators use a wide range of instruction approaches and programs in order to connect the learning content of the students with their communities such as institutions in local areas; it helps the gifted students to learn about their community history, literature and the natural environment along with the regular classroom contents. This broadens their area of understanding and sense of literature and culture. Oxoby (2009) mentioned that it is believed, all the communities have educational assets and resources that may enhance the experiences of learning of the learners as well.

Extensive range of pedagogical practices that would be most beneficial to improving the quality of gifted education for young children

The interactions between the teachers and the learners and the environment of the learning are considered as the Pedagogy. There are different pedagogical practices that help the teachers or educators to set effective learning premise for the young and talented children. As mentioned by Foley-Nicpon (2013), play-based learning or the interest based approaches to learning of the young children.

Ability grouping

The ability grouping is a pedagogical practice that allows placing students with similar academic abilities within the same class or group which is opposite of the approach of placing students based on their age and grade level. As mentioned by Polk et al., (2016), the ability grouping is effective more when the group consists of 10 or fewer students. The benefits of the ability grouping are, every individual student may be provided with individual attention as compared to the large classroom setting. Students may feel less intimidated while asking questions or solving queries when they feel that they are surrounded by the students with same skill levels. It is also easier for the teachers to target their instructions to a smaller group rather than in a large group of students.

Interest-based learning

This is a teaching process where teacher or the educator involves in one-on-one approach to address the student’s individual needs. The process of learning is slowed down and students are provided with time so that they can understand their own need and convey the same to their teachers for improvement of the learning processes.

Inquiry-based learning

The inquiry-based learning approaches help the learners to investigate upon a particular subject area. They are allowed to research concepts on their own (Saranli &Metin, 2014). The role of the educators here are to deliver driving questions through which learners can direction to which path they are required to adopt to reach the solution. The classroom here is a place to solve emerging problems and students are allowed to apply different range of ideas that are specific to the discipline. This helps to broaden up the minds of the learners by developing understanding of different problems and approach based solutions.

This includes project based approach that is helpful in extending the problem solving skills that sustains life-long. This approach does not provide a direct solution to a problem and this helps the children to explore new and different ideas and technologies. The project based learning in the pre-school may include subject’s life mathematics, drama, sports, science, musical activities and others. Children, through this approach are allowed to free learning about developing art, life-cycles of the plants, mixing of color.

Evidence based learning

This may include general solution finding approaches for accomplishing individualized learning, meta-cognition, peer tutoring and taking feedback upon learning. The role of the teachers is to identify the position of the learners against their learning module and to ensure that the children are provided with adequate opportunities for learning new things (Peters & Matthews, 2016). The evidence-based learning also leads the teachers to understand which strategies will be appropriate for which group of students. Therefore, it becomes effective as teachers become able to know the position and teaching strategies appropriate for the gifted children. The progress of the students is also evaluated based on the evidences of their learning capabilities.


In conclusion, the teaching learning approaches for the gifted children are required to be different from the regular teaching processes applied for the other children. It is also required to be understood that along with the teachers, community and family members also play important role in the learning process of the gifted children. Different pedagogical approaches also play important role in setting premise for comprehensive learning of the gifted children. Therefore, it is required to be developed effective teaching and learning method for assisting the gifted children specifically from the disadvantageous background to grow with their full potential.

Reference List

Brulles, D., Saunders, R., & Cohn, S. (2010). Improving Performance for Gifted Students in a Cluster Grouping Model. Journal for the Education of the Gifted, 34(2), 327-352.

Callahan, C., Moon, T., Oh, S., Azano, A., & Hailey, E. (2015). What Works in Gifted Education: Documenting the Effects of an Integrated Curricular/Instructional Model for Gifted Students. American Educational Research Journal, 52(1), 137-167.

Foley-Nicpon, M. (2013). Gifted Child Quarterly's Special Issue on Twice-Exceptionality: Progress on the Path of Empirical Understanding. Gifted Child Quarterly, 57(4), 207-208.

Imbeau, M. (2018). Evidence-Based Curricular/Instructional Suggestions for Meeting the Needs of All Learners Including Those Who Are Advanced. Gifted Child Today, 41(1), 5-6.

James, A., Jenkins-Henry, Toby, Myers, Michele, Thompson, Stephen, & Turner, Teresa. (2018). What Are the Effects of Curriculum Compacting on Students' Ability to Use Higher-Order Thinking?, ProQuest Dissertations and Theses.


Oxoby, R. (2009). Understanding social inclusion, social cohesion, and social capital. International Journal of Social Economics, 36(12), 1133-1152.

Peters, S. J., & Matthews, M. S. (2016). Gifted education research from the economists' perspective: What have we learned?: The journal of secondary gifted education JSGE. Journal of Advanced Academics, 27(2), 150-161. doi:http://dx.doi.org.ezproxy.sl.nsw.gov.au/10.1177/1932202

Pohl, M. (2014). Gifted students and the Australian curriculum : An introductory guide for educators (Revised ed.] ed.).

Polk, R., Harris, Sandra L., Butcher, Jennifer, & Shelton, Virginia. (2016). Educational Practices That Contribute to the School Success of Low-income, Gifted and Talented, Third Grade Students, ProQuest Dissertations and Theses.

Rubenstein, L. D., & Ridgley, L. M. (2017). Unified program design: Organizing existing programming models, delivery options, and curriculum. Gifted Child Today, 40(3), 163-174.

Saranli, A. G., &Metin, E. N. (2014). The effects of the SENG parent education model on parents and gifted children. Egitim Ve Bilim, 39(175). http://ezproxy.sl.nsw.gov.au/login?url=https://search-proquest-com.ezproxy.sl.nsw.gov.au/docview/1626670565?accountid=13902

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