by Hanna Vock
An attitude that is supportive of giftedness
- appreciating giftedness and thereby promoting a trusting relationship.
Targeted individual observation
- by the use of applicable guidelines for observations,
as best soon after the beginning of attendance in kindergarten
- in order to identify the fortes, skills and interests of the child
- in order to determine what the child is intellectually occupying itself with, what it is fascinated by, what it is pondering and the way it thinks
- documentation of these observations
Continuous observation of everyday life in kindergarten
- and evocative observations in order to verify and substantiate early impressions
- of the extraordinary fortes and interests of the child
- even if these are „intellectual“ interests and dealing with academic topics
Active communication of that appreciation
- directed at the gifted child, its parents and the other children in the group.
- in cases of noticeably aggressive or depressive moods
- considering as a possible cause for these that the child is permanently not challenged enough
- put an end to this not being challenged enough and watch whether the child then becomes more balanced, happier and more active
Integrating the child in the group
- by enhancing communication between the gifted child and the other children
- by incorporating the gifted child’s interests and ideas for playing in projects
- by taking into account the child’s possibly asynchronous cognitive and emotional development
Organising „clusters“ of gifted children,
- in order to provide positive group experiences
- in order to experience encouragement and stimulation by other gifted children
- in order to promote satisfying playing and learning experiences for the child
Deliberately holistic advancement
- in projects – regardless of who initiates them, children or teachers
- always addressing several developmental domains simultaneously
Facilities and equipment at the kindergarten
- games and materials for playing, books and other media which are apt to provide stimuli and challenges even for a gifted child
- Invite them to kindergarten or go and meet them outside of kindergarten .
An athmosphere of genuine voluntariness
- should be created in activities.
- Any kind of pressure to perform should be avoided.
- As long as the child is always free to withdraw and does not have to fulfill the adults’ expectations there is hardly a chance that it will feel overwhelmed
Avoid too little challenge
- Ascertain the child’s potentials.
- Fully utilize the gifted child’s potential at its individual pace of learning.
Allow for „race tracks“
- Overcome your own reservations
- Encourage parents not to decelerate their child’s developmental pace.
Find a favourable time for school enrolment
- together with the child, the parents and the school.
Supportive cooperation with primary school
- is to be sought actively.
At best the entire team of a kindergarten assumes an attitude that is supportive of giftedness.
It is also vital that professional openness and competent communication prevail among the team. But even if it is only one person in the team who implements measures of advancement for gifted children, this is a great gain for these children.
This article was written in collaboration with the “Kita Sedanstraße” in Remscheid, which was certified “Integrative Focus Kindergarten for the Advancement of Gifted Children” in 2006.
Date of publication in German: September 22 nd , 2009
Copyright © Hanna Vock / Barbara Teeke, see Imprint.
Heike Miethig, Alsdorf, und Helma Dressen, Aachen.