Waiheke High School recognises that gifted and talented students have unique academic, social, emotional and cultural needs which can require a diversified, appropriate and responsive learning environment.
The Gifted and Talented Coordinator at Waiheke High School is Claire Mahaki
Giftedness is evidenced in all societal groups, regardless of culture, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, gender or disability. Gifted and talented students are those who demonstrate or show the potential for a high level of performance in one or more area when compared to others of a similar age, culture, experience or environment.
What is Giftedness?
Giftedness is a multiple construct which falls under these broad categories.
“g” or General Intelligence: based on the speed of mental processing, memory skills, logic and critical thinking ability.
Creative Intelligence: the generation of a range of new, original ideas or products; fluency, flexibility, originality and elaboration.
Emotional Intelligence: the emotional development required to see talent through to fruition; leadership, personal and social competencies.
Giftedness at WHS
In acknowledging the unique bicultural heritage of New Zealand, Waiheke High School values and distinguishes students who demonstrate additional gifts and talents from one or more of the following curriculum and non-curricular perspectives.
Academic abilities / Matauranga
Intelligence; knowledge; wisdom; inquiry; depth of thought; achievement
Leadership / Rangatiratanga
Mana; service; unity; vision; strategic thinking; protocols; role models
Giftedness is usually associated with high intelligence or aptitude whereas Talent is usually related to a high level of performance. The purpose of identifying students’ gifts and talents is to enable teachers to provide a responsive learning environment which will meet the needs of individuals and groups.
This process may include gathering data from the following sources:
Teacher checklists and assessments
Parent information feedback
Teacher knowledge and intuition
Students portfolios and products
Peer/ Self nomination
“Renzulli developed a concept of giftedness based on the interaction between a high level of these three basic clusters of human traits. He claimed that Gifted and Talented students are able to utilise these and apply them to human performance and achieve extraordinary results”
Identification processes should:
Be inclusive and wide ranging – following multi-category, culturally relevant approaches
Be a flexible and continuous to allow for the recognition of emerging stages of gifts / talents
Utilise a cumulative data base so that identification is on-going and dynamic
Utilise information from a variety of sources and approaches
Involve open communication between parents, students, teachers, SMT and BOT
Be as unobtrusive as possible and a natural part of the students’ learning environment
Use a team approach to coordinate identification processes
School-wide support provision will include:
A key team with responsibility for leading special needs education
A co-ordinator to record G & T provisions from each faculty and identify areas for professional development
Identification of a budget to support educational resources
Provision for differentiated or extended learning may be made through:
Multi-level or Year level ability grouping
Extension / enrichment / accelleration groups
Specialists / mentors working alongside teacher
Critical, creative and caring (ethical) thinking skills
Independent study • High ability co-operative learning groups
Thematic / integrated learning
Field trips / excursions
Ability grouping and/or interest grouping
Higher level research skills
Current opportunities available for gifted and talented students at Waiheke High School
All intermediate students taught by subject specialists, within specialized learning areas where appropriate
Literacy – extension classes in the junior school and opportunities for subject acceleration for gifted individuals in the senior school
Numeracy – extension classes in the junior school and opportunities for subject acceleration for gifted individuals in the senior school
Scholarship classes in maths and English at Year 12 for gifted students
Cross year grouping within the humanities, science, maths, English, Maori, art, graphics and music
Physical education – Sports Academy – enrichment opportunities within Auckland Athletics Association
Music – three choirs: junior, senior and all male. Jazz ensemble under development for 2011. Appointment of new Jazz Director
Drama – whole school productions
Hospitality – students given the opportunity to work alongside professional chefs and experience the island –based hospitality industry
Science – all junior students provided with specific teaching areas (three laboratories) and specialist teachers. Standardised tests used to identify top 20% of students – upper juniors streamed
Leadership training via AUT for Year 13 prefects. This is to be extended to include Year 12 by end of 2011
Business – Young Enterprise opportunities for junior school
Year 13 students identified as gifted in maths and English attend Auckland university to gain tertiary papers
Viticulture – tertiary course available to senior students and course mentored by world renowned viticulturist
Students have the opportunity to enter national and international competitions
Tailored career advice for those students identified as gifted and talented