The most important thing I will take with me is the skills of how to conduct research. I thoroughly enjoyed doing the literature review for this project. It allowed me to read a plethora of research that other people had done and analyze the information from them. I liked how my group approached the literature review because it allowed me to stretch my own knowledge about how to research. We made a folder on Google Drive and we shared everything there. All of us had access to all of the articles that we’d found so we could all read the same things or we could pick and choose what we wanted to read.
I am ashamed to say that I had never heard of Google Scholar before this course. I used that site for a lot of the research that I did for the literature review and then I extended that and used it for a project at work too. I was impressed with the wealth of knowledge that was housed there and how easy it was to access good articles. It was a bit frustrating when I would come across an article with an abstract that I really wanted to read and I could not access it without paying a fee. Maybe it is a topic for another discussion, but research being locked behind a payment plan seems a little bit counterintuitive. It would make more sense if research was done to benefit society as a whole.
I also will take with me all of the knowledge about gifted students. I had never researched anything about gifted students in the past so this was all new for me. Gifted students truly do need special attention in the classroom and they can benefit from a differentiated classroom just as much as special needs students can. I feel like society pays special attention to the students who are below average rather than also focusing on those who are above average. We assume that the above average students will do just fine without our help. In actuality they probably will do “fine” but with our help they could really do great things. This has forced me to think about educational policies that have been put into place recently. I wonder if No Child Left Behind (NCLB) forced teachers and administrators to focus on the below average students and try to bring their scores up so that they could keep their funding and accreditation. If I were an administrator and the rules said everyone had to be at least average, I can see how this would make me ignore the students who are above average. This is definitely something to think about because the above average students could really go on to do great things for this country in the future.
I have enjoyed this course. Thank you to my classmates and Remi for making it an enjoyable experience. Have a great holiday!