journal 2015 - Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

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JOURNAL 2015

Illinois Association for Gifted Children A Not-For-Profit Organization

IAGC JOURNAL FOCUS: CREATIVITY, CRITICAL THINKING, AND CURRICULUM From the Editor’s Desk Joan Franklin Smutny

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I. Framework for the Classroom Creative and Critical Thinking in Curriculum 3 Sally Y. Walker The Importance of Challenge for Thinking and Learning 4 Tracy Ford Inman Classifying Giftedness in the Age of the Common Core 7 Maurice D. Fisher Addressing and Assessing 21st Century Skills for High-Ability Learners 12 Dina Brulles and Karen L. Brown

II. Application to Content Areas Supporting Creative and Critical Thinkers: Accessing the Arts and Higher Order Thinking Skills in Early Childhood and Elementary Classrooms 16 Stephen T. Schroth and Jason Helfer Creating a Writing Community: Fostering Multiculturalism in the Gifted High School Creative Writing Classroom 23 Elizabeth Brown Spread Newspapers Around: Students Acting! The Invaluable Role of Modern Theater Class in a STEM Environment 26 Leah A. Kind Patricia Polacco and The Three C’s: Creativity, Critical Thinking, and Curriculum 29 Jerry D. Flack Tolkien and Gifted Students: Blending Creative and Critical Thinking 41 Adam Kotlarczyk More Than Just a Video Game: Tips for Using Minecraft to Personalize the Curriculum and Promote Creativity, Collaboration, and Problem Solving 44 Cathy Risberg Let It Ring! Creative Music Making—Motivating and Inspiring Musicians of all ages to Love What They Do and Do It Well 48 Sarah Hodges Sherban

Fostering Ownership of the Democratic Election Process in the Primary Grades Through Creativity, Analysis, and Self-Reflection Carol Sandberg Howe Connecting The Dots: c.c.c. “Bringing Rail to Higher Education” Christine Ohtani-Chang My personal experience as a parent… Michele Foote

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III. Diverse Populations: Promising Practices Creative Underachievers: Children Who Are Too “Out-of-the-Box” 60 Sylvia Rimm Safe Haven: Parenting Creative Children Amidst Abundant Conformity 63 Kathryn P. Haydon Is STEM for all? Perspectives of Black and Latino Students on STEM Motivation 67 Adrienne Coleman and Kayla Ingram Episodes in Education, a Teacher Researcher’s Reflections on “Five Minds for the Future” 75 Dorothy Clare Massalski Educational Impact on Spiritual Growth: A Case Study 80 Kristy Kowalske

IV. Looking Ahead… Changing Education-Thoughts about Creating and Inventing Tomorrow’s School Harry T. Roman

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Getting Students Ready for College and Career Through Creative Thinking 88 Diane Witt and Elizabeth Hahn IB Programmes: Creativity, Critical Thinking, Curriculum, and So Much More Susan Rhodes

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V. POETRY Dear Teacher, Kathryn Haydon Torrance Legacy Creativity Award 2014 Winners

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FROM THE EDITOR’S DESK Joan Franklin Smutny

In this time when standardized education and testing could not be greater, gifted children often feel contained within the narrowest restrictions. Creativity and higher level thinking come naturally to these learners and would continue effortlessly if they were not schooled out at a young age. What Toni Morrison has called “our busied-up, education as horse-race, trophy-driven culture” continues to set the tone and pace of our schools (1996, p. 13). In this frenzied pace where teachers and students have to focus more on crossing the finish line than anything else, the lively art of teaching and learning often slips away. A mother once commented to me, “it’s odd to watch my daughter create and grow intellectually when she’s at home, but in school, she barely has the freedom to stretch her wings. It’s not the teachers but our system. When she tries to fly, she keeps hitting the wall.” Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, “No bird flies too high if he soars with his own wings.” The authors in this issue have attempted to explore creativity and critical thinking in the curriculum from the inside out—that is, from an understanding