Teacher Training 

Perceptions and beliefs
Gifted & Talented Education

Teacher Training

Perceptions and beliefs

Gifted & Talented Education

Teachers show some prejudices and misconception towards gifted children because a lot of them never attended a teacher training in gifted education. For example, often teachers tend to have a unique and clear image of gifted children. Teachers could think that gifted students are all brilliant and autonomous, so they do not need any support from teachers. In the other hand, teacher could believe that all gifted children have some problems in the management of emotional dysregulation.

Teachers’ beliefs play an important role in gifted & talented education. Some teachers do not want to differentiate teaching because they think that gifted children are excellent in all classes. Other teacher would like to change teaching, but they do not know how.

In this sense, when I trainer teachers I like to promote different perspective using three paradigms of Dai and Chen (2014) and illustrate the best practices in gifted & talented education for the regular classroom, keeping an pedagogical and inclusive approach

The best teacher training should provide theoretical framework and educational tools to use in the classroom. All tools should be adapted to the context, so I usually help teachers to adapt and experiment in their school. The first step is observing the gifted children in the classroom and then differentiate teaching.

The topics I deal with, based on the time available, during a training course are:

  • Theoretical framework on gifted & talented education

  • Multiple Intelligences Theory

  • Myths and misconceptions on giftedness

  • Paradigms in gifted education

  • Gifted children’s profiles

  • Twice-exceptionality

  • Gifted Education in Italy

  • Gifted Education in Europe

  • Giftedness in the family

  • Gifted children at school

  • Differentiated teaching to include gifted children

  • Pedagogy of Talents

  • The Enrichment Model (Renzulli)

  • Gifted Education in the regular classroom

  • Inclusive tools for teachers

  • Personalized Plan for Gifted Students


Teaching for talents development

Theories, reflections and methodologies

Starting from the characteristics of gifted children I propose a teaching oriented to the talentsdevelopment of each student. Children and young people with giftedness manifest specific needs that teacher should know, to promote inclusive teaching and, therefore, participation and well-being. Adopting a Teaching for the Talents’ Development means finding a balance between a specific teaching for students with giftedness and an inclusive teaching, oriented towards the involvement of all. In this sense, I think that teacher can practice strategies that encourage the talents’ development of each student.

The book consists of five chapters: the first three chapters offer a theoretical framework, from the history of the concept of giftedness, proposing various models that offer different definitions of giftedness and talent, and then treat the characteristics of gifted children; the concept of intelligence in pedagogical key; the underachievement and the phenomenon of twice-exceptionality at school.

I believe that knowing and deepening some aspects of giftedness is useful for teachers to develop a refined critical sense, to choose independently, and in line with the objectives set by current school legislation, best educational practices to involve all pupils in the classroom. The didactic strategies suggested by the references are described in the last two chapters, offering both cues for reflection and operational suggestions to manage the classroom through the perspective of talent. In addition, there are operational cards spendable in everyday life.

The book is a useful tool for all teachers who want to acquire knowledge, broaden perspectives and find new ideas for (r)innovate teaching with the aim of managing all the nuances of human talent.

The didactics for the surplus endowment through the development of the talents

The teaching for the plus equipment is a “specific” teaching for students with extra equipment. On the basis of some research (Zanetti, 2016; De Angelis, 2017; Brazzolotto, 2020) it emerges that Italian teachers and school managers are disoriented when they learn that in their class group or in the school there is a pupil or pupil with surplus endowment. The feeling of bewilderment leads to a stasis, or to the desire to better understand surplus endowment.
This book is dedicated to all those who intend to study the phenomenon of surplus endowment with an inclusive pedagogical approach, through a deep and critical reflection.  Reflecting on students with surplus equipment helps us to critically question the label of surplus equipment, the consequences and our way of approaching the talent of others (and ours).
Within the volume were collected national and international research, as well as many documentation of educational activities already experienced in schools of all levels, in different Italian regions. In addition, we provide data sheets and a model of a Personalized Learning Plan for Talent Development (PDPst) to use, pending the publication of the National Guidelines for gifted children.
This work is a continuation of the text I wrote in 2019 “Teaching for the development of talents”, published by Pythagoras.



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