Curriculum Studies


Beyond the Main Idea: Using Constructivist Approaches That Engage Gifted Students With Informational Text

Saturday, November 11
9:15 AM - 10:15 AM
Location: 209 B

Research shows that students need sustained exposure to informational text in order to develop important reading strategies that are critical to college and career success. What does this mean for the high-ability, fluent reader who demonstrates good comprehension skills but would also benefit from instruction that supports an in-depth understanding of advanced level informational content? This session explores constructivist approaches that engage and intrigue gifted students, encouraging them to develop an understanding of challenging content through rigorous learning tasks. Lesson plans are provided and bring along a device.

Magdalena Fitzsimmons

S.T.A.T. Resource Teacher
Baltimore County Public Schools

Magdalena Fitzsimmons is currently an Instructional Coach for the Baltimore County Public Schools S.T.A.T. (Students and Teachers Accessing Tomorrow) initiative at the George Washington Carver Center for Arts and Technology in Towson, Maryland. She is a graduate of the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, the City University of New York, Brooklyn College, and the University of Calgary, Canada. Ms. Fitzsimmons has presented at numerous national and state conferences on the topics of arts integration, problem-based learning, curriculum for gifted students, creativity, and technology integration. She received the 2011 Teacher as Leader Citation and Award from the Maryland State Advisory Council on Gifted and Talented Education, the 2005 National Music Foundation Lois Bailey Glenn Award for Teaching Excellence, a Certificate of Recognition for Outstanding Contributions to the Baltimore County Public Schools, and is a three-time winner of grants from the National Endowment for the Arts in performance and recording. Ms. Fitzsimmons has also written and edited reading language arts curriculum for gifted and talented students for Baltimore County Public Schools and the Maryland State Department of Education. She is the author of Grade 5 Challenging Common Core Language Arts Lessons, published by Prufrock Press in cooperation with William & Mary's Center for Gifted Education.


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Kimberley Chandler

Curriculum Director
Center for Gifted Education, College of William and Mary

Dr. Kimberley Chandler is the Curriculum Director at the Center for Gifted Education at the College of William and Mary and a Clinical Assistant Professor. Her professional background includes teaching gifted students in a variety of settings, serving as an administrator of a school district gifted program, and providing professional development training for teachers and administrators nationally and internationally.
Kimberley has served as the editor and contributing author of many curriculum materials (science, social studies, language arts, and mathematics) from the Center for Gifted Education.
Currently Kimberley is the Network Representative on the NAGC Board of Directors and newsletter editor of the CEC-TAG newsletter The Update. Her research interests include curriculum policy and implementation issues in gifted programs, the design and evaluation of professional development programs for teachers of the gifted, and the role of principals in gifted education.


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Beyond the Main Idea: Using Constructivist Approaches That Engage Gifted Students With Informational Text

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