NAGC now using term High Learning Potential rather than Gifted

(63 Posts)
Niceweather Wed 31-Oct-12 20:40:19

Thought it might be of interest:

Why is NAGC now using the term High Learning Potential?

Over the years, NAGC has observed that in the UK, there is a definite social stigma attached to the word 'gifted' and that parents, teachers and children themselves feel that the word is limiting, exclusive and at times unnecessary to bestow upon a child who has as yet to fulfil their true potential.

Joyn Wed 31-Oct-12 23:22:15

The term gifted to the general population in the uk equates pretty much to genius. If you were to say my child is gifted, they think you are saying this kid is going o be the next Einstein. It doesn't have the same meaning in other countries, but I think it might be good for the nagc to change their terminology.

madwomanintheattic Wed 31-Oct-12 23:26:36

I like that.

CURIOUSMIND Wed 31-Oct-12 23:47:31

That's more like it.

zillyzilly Wed 31-Oct-12 23:50:59

God yes. Much better. Hooray.

Have to get MNHQ to change this topic now. might get less flak for hlp.

WereTricksPotter Wed 31-Oct-12 23:56:21

Thank goodness. I've always cringed a bit at 'Gifted'.

BackforGood Thu 01-Nov-12 00:04:02

Agree with everyone else - that's a much better label if label we must.

richmal Thu 01-Nov-12 08:16:27

How will it be possible to tell those children with a higher learning potential from those who have received a better education?

iseenodust Thu 01-Nov-12 12:44:18

Like use of potential - links to need for some application to learning.

TunipTheHollowVegemalLantern Thu 01-Nov-12 12:49:51

I really like that. 'Gifted' is wrong for so many reasons.

mummytime Thu 01-Nov-12 13:10:41

I prefer it as those recognised as Gifted and Talented aren't always those with High learning potential IMHO. For example my non G and T daughter (as recognised by school) often helps 2 girls on the G and T register for DT girls, with their DT.
Also my very talented son (as proved by in school tests) son has never been offered G and T events etc., as he is also dyslexic. I wonder if the same will happen with my littlest because of behaviour, that is at least partly caused by her advanced ability. But schools sometimes prefer hard working compliment children, or don't want to "reward" a child with behavioural issues, although those issues may be caused by boredom at school or lack of challenge.

StarsGhostTail Thu 01-Nov-12 13:31:15

That describes DFs daughter exactly. Whether its academic, music, art or sport she just learns it more easily and to a higher level than most DCs her age.

High Learning Potential describes her kind all round ability much better than Gifted, which always leaves me wanting to add "in What?" I know specific talents were supposed to be covered by the "and Talented", but it was confusing.

It also helps the constant problem of explaining why the Grammar schools have such high value added scores.

It's not that they are amazing schools, its that they are good schools, with well behaved pupils, with "High Learning Potential" ie they make more than the expected level of progress easily.

The DDs comprehensive have a group of DCs with Low Learning Potential, who need outstanding teaching and behaviour management to stay motivated to get close to expected progress.

The value added scores ought to be weighted to take this into account, but they don't seen to be. Which means comparing schools in an area where geography means the Grammar schools take a vary variable number of able children out of the comprehensives is almost impossible.

richmal Thu 01-Nov-12 20:46:58

How can a child's learning potential be measured? One of the main factors will be the quality and quantity of teaching they get. Will one of the assessments of the child's potiential be what education the parents intend to give them and how good their schools will be?

TunipTheHollowVegemalLantern Thu 01-Nov-12 21:21:58

It makes sense politically, doesn't it, if you are an organisation that wants to ensure 'gifted' kids get the support they need?
If you say they are 'gifted' it's more tempting for everyone to go 'oh they'll be fine whatever they do, they already have a gift'. But if you call them 'high learning potential' that implies that you need to look at what to do to ensure that potential is fulfilled.

zillyzilly Thu 01-Nov-12 21:25:38

Yes, exactly, it's just more accurate.

mummytime Thu 01-Nov-12 22:01:21

I have sat in meetings with a SENCO who was supposedly a specialist in G and T; discussing a child's problems. The problems were defined well but I learnt more about strategies this afternoon in reading a book written by former NAGC counsellors (this one), than were ever mentioned in those meetings, it was also obvious from my reading that the problems are just what you should/could expect from someone who has HLP.
G and T became all about laying on a few extra activities for the chosen. Also the needs of someone gifted in football are quite different from the highly academically able. The first might fit in very well at school but need some extra time off, the second may need to learn skills of perseverance and the thrill of achieving something hard.

richmal Thu 01-Nov-12 22:02:05

But how can anyone distinguish between a child of "high learning potential", from one of lower learning potential who has already recieved quite a bit of education and is at the same accademic level? Or does the later now have a higher learning potential because of that education?

Niceweather Fri 02-Nov-12 07:39:23

If you go to the NAGC website, they have a page on "Identifying a child with High Learning Potential".

mummytime Fri 02-Nov-12 08:15:54

If you know a child then spotting HLP isn't that hard, eg. They ask more and more profound questions, than an "average" child that has just been well taught. I would think it would be hard to set a paper test for, although an experienced teacher/educational psychologist could probably recognise it in a conversation. For example the 8 year old who was discussing " Dark Energy" with fascination in a ten minute chat with an educational psychologist.

Frontpaw Fri 02-Nov-12 08:22:44

Why isn't there a program that covers all schools? Our school has no G+T provision. If you're lucky, your child gets extra homework, but that's about it.

richmal Fri 02-Nov-12 08:44:53

Surely if an average child who is well taught can learn as much as a child with HLP according to the NAGC website, by definition, their learning potential is the same.

Will schools be looking at the questions children ask or how far ahead they are accademically when classing them as HLP?

Niceweather Fri 02-Nov-12 09:51:34

I don't think schools will be changing what they do already which varies from school to school. I think DS2's Junior School identify those who are Level 3 at KS2. DS1's school identify by Yr7 CATS or teacher, parent, pupil nomination in Yr9. No amount of teaching would enable me to understand or have a passion for high level mathematics. In the same way, no amount of teaching is going to give any child HLP. I guess?

richmal Fri 02-Nov-12 10:24:14

The majority of children are able to be taught a lot more doing 1 to1 at home than they are taught in schools. IME teaching does icrease what a child learns. It seems wrong to class a child as having higher or lower learning potential when the ability of the former may be due entirely to how much the child has been taught by parents. It would be better to say the child has aquired more ability in an accademic subject.

Niceweather Fri 02-Nov-12 10:58:47

I've just copied this list of characteristics of HLP children from a website. I think that they are characteristics that are not easily taught.

Very Observant
Extremely Curious
Intense interests
Excellent memory
Long attention span
Excellent reasoning skills
Well-developed powers of abstraction, conceptualization, and synthesis
Quickly and easily sees relationships in ideas, objects, or facts
Fluent and flexible thinking
Elaborate and original thinking
Excellent problem solving skills
Learns quickly and with less practice and repetition
Unusual and/or vivid imagination

I think that teachers are quite suspicious of SATS results as children can be taught to do well in them. Schools rely more on CATS tests in Yr7 as these are not so easily taught. The problem with CATS tests is that they don't identify all HLP children. My friend teaches History and he told me that he knew how to get a child to tick all the right boxes in order to get a high level but it did not mean that they had a deep understanding of the subject.

mummytime Fri 02-Nov-12 11:14:36

School used to have money and pressure to identify their G and T, but they often just identified their top performing pupils, not necessarily those with HLP. These pupils then got a few extra activities, such as extra French, access to Latin at a private school, entered in competitions, maybe summer school. However children who were "doubly" special, eg. Also ASD or dyslexic, or under performing (boredom or home life issues) often missed out.

The reasons society should value and encourage children with HLP is because they are the ones likely to create the "break throughs" necessary to solve the worlds problems, also if they don't use their potential they can either become a drain (instead of an asset) or use their problem solving for antisocial ends.

However well taught I do not think I would have ever solved the Mathematical and Physics problems that Stephen Hawkins did.

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