Strategy 3: Posing Questions
In the world of education today we as educators learn new processes, programs, and strategies that enable us to best suit the needs of all of our students. Differentiation is a trend that is bestowing a positive impact on all learners. We are striving to excel lower and average students and at the same time finally address the needs of our gifted students. Differentiation is a new trend in which teachers have to change their old ways of planning and balance all levels of learners. We must create a cooperative, tiered classroom environment. We must ensure we plan lessons that cover core materials and then provide opportunities to re-teach and enrich. This brings us to the topic of “posing questions”. Are we planning correctly for gifted and talented students?
The “could/would/should test” is a great tool to make sure you are correctly meeting the needs of all learners. This test raises the following questions:
1. Could all students do this?
2. Would all students benefit from this?
3. Should all students do this?
Teachers must ensure we are not enriching gifted students with an activity that would benefit all students. We must focus on adding higher-order thinking for the gifted children that is designed for them, to actually give depth to a concept. At the same time we must not exclude average children from enrichment lessons.
Curriculum Compacting is a very helpful tool in the world of planning for gifted students. It is a strategy that involves three stages.
Stage 1- The teacher identifies students who are in need of enrichment and then assesses their knowledge of content to have a stable place to begin planning.
Stage 2- The teacher notes any skills or understandings in which a student did or did not gain mastery and lay out a plan.
Stage 3- The teacher and student design or investigation for the student to engage in while others are working on a general lesson.
I believe that this is a wonderful way to plan and involve the students but also provide guidance and student freedom. The chart below shows some wonderful strategies for planning for gifted students. I think this would be helpful to use as a guide to “Pose Questions” about our planning.


|| Level
Ask students to:
Suggested end results:
Analysis
Compare/Contrast
Solve
Investigate
Examine
Classify
Inspect

Report,
conclusion,
plan,
survey,
solution to mystery or mock crime scene, questionnaire

Synthesis
Create
Develop
Design
Compose
Invent

Original story,
game,
musical composition,
poem,
invention,
piece of artwork,
hypothesis,
experiment,
script

Evaluation
Choose
Rank
Assess
Grade
Critique
Judge

Book review,
self-assessment,
current events debate,
court trial,
editorial



Websites for posing questions in planning:
www.hoagies**gifted**.org/
www.suite101.com/.../free-time-**websites**-for-elementary-**gifted**-kids-a93236
www.brighthub.com/education/special/articles/70490.aspx


References
Heacox, D. (2009). Making differentiation a habit: How to ensure success in academically diverse classrooms. Minneapolis: Free Spirit Publishing.
Tomlinson, C. A. (2005). How to differentiate instruction in mixed-ability classrooms. (2nd Ed.) Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson.