The authors presented different counseling tenets that not just counselors, but also, we, as teachers can use to address the concerns of our gifted learners. We can incorporate these tenets in our lessons so that others students can benefit with it as well. The counseling tenets discussed the book Socio-Emotional Curriculum with Gifted and Talented Students (2009) include the following: nonjudgmental, focusing on strengths, respecting and fostering autonomy, active listening, open-ended questioning, avoiding teacher/facilitator self-disclosure, respecting privacy and processing.
According to the book, nonjudgmental happens when a teacher does not impose his/her values to the students, he/she is open to learning more about the students’ world and collaborate with the families in order to get insights about the students (p. 212). One way that I have used for the past years on getting insight about my students with special needs was sending welcome letters and in that letter I included another sheet asking the parents to provide me information about their child’s strengths, weaknesses, likes, dislikes and expectations. Another way to incorporate nonjudgmental in the lessons or activities is by allowing students to share their belief and the reason for believing this way. This can be in the form of projects, essays or debates.
Focusing on the strengths of the students goes hand in hand with being nonjudgmental. As a special education teacher, I learned to focus on what the exceptional children students can do well and work our way out on the things that they need to work on. The book discussed to focus on the solution and not on the problem (p. 215). How can we incorporate this in our daily lessons and activities? If a student is good in math, he/she can be a peer tutor. If a student lacks social skills, then allow that student to work with a partner more often and start building a relationship with that partner and then later on in groups.
Respecting and fostering autonomy can be a key issue to our gifted learners. Autonomy was defined in the book (p. 216) as being able to make choice appropriate to their level of cognitive ability and they are able to make reasonable judgment, able to pay attention to their needs and preferences. Allowing students to work on PBL (Problem-Based Learning) and discovery learning will allow them to pace their own learning but of course all activities should be provided with rubrics and expectation to guide the students. With the use of PBL and discovery learning in our classrooms, gifted learners will be motivated to learn and they will become more active in their learning process because they are given the autonomy to make decisions on their own.
Listening is one skill that everyone needs to learn and practice. In any classroom setting, listening is very important. In page 217, it mentioned the importance of active listening in the classroom. Active listening will help the...