Understanding gifted learners
Gifted students have above average abilities and the potential to perform at high levels in certain categories—intellectual ability, academic aptitude, creative or productive thinking, leadership ability, or artistically.
The unique needs of gifted students, particularly those who also have one or more learning differences, often go unrecognized, usually due to one of three circumstances:
1. their strengths outweigh their weaknesses, and learning difficulties remain hidden or minimized,
2. students’ weaknesses outweigh strengths, so while learning differences may be identified, students aren’t properly recognized as gifted, or,
3. strengths and weaknesses cancel each other out, therefore students aren’t identified as being gifted or as having learning challenges.
These students are often the most challenging for schools to properly accommodate. While students with learning challenges know the frustration that comes with struggling to learn in traditional classrooms, those with learning differences AND giftedness often feel even more defeated. Because of the duality between their intellectual reasoning (“I should be able to do this” and “if I’m so smart why is this so hard?”) and the actual learning that happens in a non-traditional way, students can lose confidence in their academic abilities and become bored and unmotivated.
At the Jones-Gordon School, we provide gifted students an individualized, flexible, and balanced educational plan; one in which strengths are cultivated and areas of difficulty are supported and improved, and in which students receive appropriate advancement and challenge. Above all, JGS students experience a compassionate school environment where they feel understood—an essential component for all student success.