Early Childhood


Instructional Strategies to Engage Early Learners

Friday, November 10
1:15 PM - 2:15 PM
Location: Exhibit Hall Roundtable 8

There is a plethora of information written on using differentiation strategies to engage early learners. Sometimes determining what is best for a young learner can be a daunting task. This session provides a variety of process-based instructional strategies and techniques for engaging children in preschool to grade 3. Instructional strategies generally fall into four areas – content, process, product, and environment. We explore strategies across these domains and share guidelines for selecting specific strategies.

Amy Clune

GATE Specialist
Clark County School District

Amy Clune began her teaching career over 20 years ago, and found her true passion, working with and for gifted children and their families in 1997, when she started as a teacher at the Ricks Center for Gifted Children. Amy worked in a first and second grade multiage classroom at the Ricks Center for five years before relocating to Las Vegas, Nevada. There she continued her work as a teacher of gifted students and later a district facilitator for Clark County School District’s Highly Gifted Program until her return to the Ricks Center in 2013. Her love for Las Vegas, Nevada called her back to the desert where she currently teaches gifted students.
Amy has completed two masters’ degrees; one Curriculum and Instruction with a cognate in Gifted Education from the University of Denver; the second in Educational Leadership from NOVA Southeastern University. She has been a contributing author for curriculum units published by the Institute for the Development of Gifted Education, as well as designing the Gifted Scope and Sequence for the Clark County School District’s GATE program and the Clark County School District’s Title I program in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Amy has presented at local and national conferences on a variety of topics; presentations include Literature Quilts, Creating and Sustaining a Highly Gifted Program, Lifebooks, Creating a Scope and Sequence for Gifted Learners, Marvelous Masks: a Creative Research Project, and Math Workshop. She is also a trained facilitator for SENG (Social Emotional Needs of the Gifted) and has conducted multiple teacher and parent workshops focused on the social and emotional needs of the gifted.
Amy can be reached at ac755@aol.com


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Ellen Honeck

Academy Program Director; Director of Curriculum and Instruction
Laurel Springs School; The Knox School of Santa Barbara

Ellen Honeck, PhD is currently the Dean of Laurel Springs Gifted and Talented Academy; Director of Curriuclum and Instruction at The Knox School of Santa Barbara, California; and Director of Curriuclum Development at Nasri Academy in Las Vegas, Nevada. She has taught children ages 3 to graduate level, been a speaker at numerous conferences, serves as a consultant for gifted schools and districts, and has published articles ranging in topics from physical education and giftedness, creativity, highly gifted, social emotional needs of learners and project based learning for young gifted students. Her book publications include the “Smart Start Series” for 3-5 year old children focusing on creative, critical and mathematical thinking as well as “Teaching Gifted Children in Today’s Preschool and Primary Classrooms” designed for teachers and parents, Teacher Compendium for Human Rights Education and various integrated curriculum units. She is currently serving on the Whole Gifted Child Task Force and is the past Chair of the Special Schools and Programs Network and Early Childhood Network.

Her doctoral degree is in the area of Curriculum and Instruction with a cognate of Gifted Education from the University of Denver. Her doctoral dissertation was on the topic are of Physical Education Curriculum and Instruction in relation to Intellectually Gifted Students specifically focusing on the social emotional aspects of the curriculum and instruction.

She has presented at numerous gifted conferences locally, at the state level, nationally, and internationally including the Colorado Association of Gifted and Talented, National Association for Gifted Children, California Association for the Gifted, Texas Association of Gifted and Talented, and the World Council for Gifted.

She has her Gifted and Talented Specialist endorsement for her Colorado Teaching license and was nominated and accepted into the Colorado Academy for Educators of the Gifted, Talented and Creative.


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Instructional Strategies to Engage Early Learners


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