Article: Smunty, J.F. (2000). Teaching Young Gifted Children in the Regular Classroom. Council for Exceptional Children. Summary and Critique:
Joan Franklin Smunty’s article “Teaching Young Gifted Children in the Regular Classroom” is an excellent resource for classroom teachers. In this paper, the author provides the reader with a definition of an intellectually gifted child; she discusses the identification process of a child with this exceptionality; strategies for teachers who are addressing the specific learning needs of students who are intellectually gifted; as well as methods of assessing students with this exceptionality. Smunty (2003) commences her paper by advocating the importance and urgency of early identification of giftedness in young learners. Smunty (2000) argues, “schools need to respond to their [gifted] students educational needs before their abilities diminish or become less recognizable to those who can do something about them”. She defines giftedness in young children as “precocity, a rapid rate of development in one or more realms” (Smunty, 2000). Gifted children are known to be intensely curious, produce a constant stream of questions, learn quickly and remember easily, and think about the world differently then other children in their classes. In her introduction Smunty (2000) also suggests that giftedness can at times be associated with boredom, frustration and depression as these students may not be challenged appropriately through the regular curriculum and normal pacing of the content. I believe that Smunty could have offered more background information about the exceptionality during her introduction. There were a few questions left unanswered. For example, how does the ministry define intellectually gifted students? What is the prevalence of gifted students in today’s schools? How many are going unidentified? Are these students’ needs being adequately meet on a day-to-day basis? What are schools currently doing to...
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