Wednesday, November 11, 2009

IN THIS POST: JONATHAN MOONEY, NEUROEDUCATION, DSM-V, and GIFTED EDUCATION

JONATHAN MOONEY FANS will be interested to know that he has been selected to receive the "Outstanding Learning Disabled Achiever Award" from The Lab School of Washington, DC. Mooney is accepting the award today, November 11th, at an event keynoted by Vice President Joseph Biden. In an email, Mooney says that prior recipients have included Cher, Billy Bob Thornton, Richard Avedon, Magic Johnson and James Carville. Find more information about Mooney. Find more on The Lab School.

CEREBRUM has posted an article titled "The Science of Education: Informing Teaching and Learning through the Brain Sciences." The authors suggest ways that neuroeducation, the combination of education and neuroscience, will provide tools and guidelines for tomorrow's teachers. They note how a teacher's view of brain plasticity, for example, affects how the teacher views the learner, as does the teacher's understanding of effect of emotions on learning. The article notes obstacles to uniting science and education, but contends that collaboration between scientists and educators will be key for extending the effects of brain science into education. Find the article.

ASPERGER'S AND THE DSM. News reports indicate that the committee in charge of revising the DSM may remove Asperger Syndrome as a separate condition, instead considering it to be part of the autism spectrum disorder. In a New York Times opinion piece, an autism expert suggests caution in the revision, noting consequences to those diagnosed with Asperger's and on their families. Read the article.

BEYOND PULL-OUT. The Minneapolis Star-Tribune describes how a local elementary school has created a "school within a school" for its gifted students. The high-ability students have classes together that provide enrichment and faster-paced lessons. Read about it.

ACCELERATION GUIDELINES. On its website, NAGC offers a 46-page document called "Guidelines for Developing an Academic Acceleration Policy," developed in conjunction with the Belin-Blank Institute and the Council of State Directors of Programs for the Gifted. The document covers types of acceleration, research support for acceleration, recommended elements of an acceleration policy, and a checklist for developing such a policy. Also included is sample language from state acceleration policies. Find the guidelines.

THE STATE OF GIFTED EDUCATION in the United States can be characterized as "sorry," if we correctly interpret a report from NAGC called "State of the Nation in Gifted Education." The report calls our commitment to gifted an talented children "inadequate;" it goes on to call investment "scarce," teachers "unprepared," and services a "patchwork." If you have a gifted child, read the report and be depressed -- or be spurred to advocate on behalf of gifted education for students in the United States.

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