Educating the Gifted and Talented

“People should be free to find or make for themselves the kinds of educational experience they want their children to have.” -John Holt-

Saturday, April 07, 2007

This puts it in perspective!

From the book,"Out of our Minds - Gifted Children Left Behind" by Deborah L. Ruf, Ph.D. She describes the various characteristics and abilities of children with different IQ levels. She categorizes the various levels as follows:

Level 1:
IQ of 120-130 (90th-98th percentiles; 4 - 6 per 100 children)
Level 2-3: IQ of 131-134 (98th -99th percentiles; 4 - 6 kids per grade level)
Level 4:IQ of 135-140 (99th percentile; 2 or 3 kids per grade level)
Level 5:IQ of 141 and up (above 99th percentile; only 4 in 1 million school kids)

This is why it is important to find out the IQ score of your child(ren)! In Greeley-Evans schools the results of the student's test are kept in a
red folder. Set up an appointment with the GT teacher to view it!

If you click on the following link you'll learn more about IQ score and interpretation. You'll also find an interesting and important study which I have copied below.
  • "It appears that once children of above average intelligence begin formal education there's a real possibility that their intelligence will dwindle if their intellectual needs go unmet!"

The Milwaukee Project

In the late 1960s, under the supervision of Rick Heber of the University of Wisconsin, a project was begun to study the effects of intellectual stimulation on children from deprived environments. In order to find a “deprived environment” from which to draw appropriate subjects for the study, Heber and his colleagues examined the statistics of different districts within the city of Milwaukee. One district in particular stood out. The residents of this district had the lowest median income and lowest level of education to be found in the city. This district also had the highest population density and rate of unemployment of any area of Milwaukee. There was one more statistic that really attracted Heber’s attention: Although this district contained only 3 percent of the city’s population, it accounted for 33 percent of the children in Milwaukee who had been labeled “mentally retarded”! [Of interest is that according to Bruce Perry, a child psychiatrist. most cases of mental retardation are not because of birth defects, but because of neglect in childhood]

At the beginning of the project, Heber selected forty newborns from the depressed area of Milwaukee he had chosen. The mothers of the infants selected all had IQ’s below 80. As it turned out, all of the children in the study were black, and in many cases the fathers were absent. The forty newborns were randomly assigned, 20 to an experimental group and 20 to a control group.

Both the experimental group and the control group were tested an equal number of times throughout the project. An independent testing service was used in order to eliminate possible biases on the part of the project members. In terms of physical or medical variables, there were no observable differences between the two groups.

The experimental group entered a special program. Mothers of the experimental group children received education, vocational rehabilitation, and training in homemaking and child care. The children themselves received personalized enrichment in their home environments for the first three months of their lives, and then their training continued at a special center, five days a week, seven hours a day, until they were ready to begin first grade. The program at the center focused upon developing the language and cognitive skills of the experimental group children. The control group did not receive special education or home-based intervention and enrichment.

By the age of six all the children in the experimental group were dramatically superior to the children in the control group. This was true on all test measures, especially those dealing with language skills or problem solving. The experimental group had an IQ average of 120.7 as compared with the control group’s 87.2!

At the age of six the children left the center to attend the local school. By the time both groups were ten years old and in fifth grade, the IQ scores of the children in the experimental group had decreased to an average of 105 while the control group’s average score held steady at about 85. One possible reason for the decline is that schooling was geared for the slower students. The brighter children were not given materials suitable for their abilities and they began to fall back. Also, while the experimental children were in the special project center for the first six years they ate well, receiving three hot, balanced meals a day. Once they left the center and began to attend the local school, many reported going to classes hungry, without breakfast or a hot lunch.


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