Stepping Up at Arahoe
Why Stepping Up?
Arahoe Primary School believes that the “purpose of defining and identifying giftedness is to uncover individual abilities, qualities and interests, and the objective of differentiation is to further develop them. Gifted education, in its simplest terms, is about enabling gifted and talented students to discover and follow their passions. It’s about opening doors, removing ceilings, and raising expectations by providing an educational experience that strives towards excellence.”
To ensure our gifted students are identified and receive specific educational opportunities, Arahoe School has established a “Stepping Up” programme. Children are nominated and selected, to take part in a variety of enrichment programmes which are run by passionate and talented teachers within and outside the school. These programmes are designed to extend the children’s existing abilities and enable them to reach their potential.
Stepping Up Programmes for 2018
This programme is designed to teach new skills and develop existing ones in students who have shown some talent and ability in art. Projects include observational drawing, painting and ceramics.
Stepping Up Gardening involves selected students from Year 5 and 6. The activities are designed to encourage learners to think about sustainability in school and in the wider community. We also cook with what we have grown and do experiments with plants.
The Stepping Up Te Reo Group is made up of children from Year 5 and 6 who meet weekly on Fridays. We learn greetings, simple phrases, commands and some basic tikanga/customs. We may learn through arts, games, sports and practising our reo with peers.
Stepping Up Singers include students from Year 3 up to Year 6 who have been involved in various choirs and show a passion and talent for singing. The students are auditioned by Mrs Sadgrove to be in this programme and need to be able to sing in tune, and successfully pass a pitch test. The choir rehearses a repertoire of songs for performance and often has opportunities to perform in the community. Last year our all Stepping Up Singers auditioned and were cast in our School Musical “Annie Jr” because of their ability to sing and act.
Gifted and Talented Definition
Gifted and talented students at Arahoe School demonstrate exceptional levels of performance and/or potential in one or more areas when compared with others of similar age, culture, experience or environment. As a multi-cultural school we recognise that giftedness and talent varies from culture to culture and is shaped by each group’s beliefs, values, attitudes and customs.
These areas may include the following six broad areas of giftedness and talent:
- Intellectual/Academic - refers to students with exceptional abilities in one or more of the learning areas (i.e., English, the arts, health and physical education, learning languages, mathematics and statistics, science, social sciences, and technology).
- Creativity - refers to students with general creative abilities as evidenced in their abilities to problem-find and problem-solve, and their innovative thinking and productivity.
- Expression - through the visual and performing arts refers to music, dance, drama, and visual arts.
- Social/Leadership - refers to students with interpersonal and intrapersonal abilities and qualities which enable them to act in leadership roles.
- Culture-specific abilities and qualities - refers to those valued by the student’s cultural or ethnic group, including traditional arts and crafts, pride in cultural identity, language ability, and service to the culture.
- Expression through physical/sport - refers to students with excellent physical abilities and skills, as evidenced through sport and physical education programmes.
Riley et al., (2004).
Acknowledging that a percentage of our students are Maori, the school values its gifted and talented Maori students and recognises that additional to the above areas, gifted and talented Maori students may demonstrate or show potential in any one or more of the following qualities:
- Manaakitanga - generosity - honouring, caring and giving mana to people thus maintaining your own, community service, food
- Whanaungatanga - family values/relationships, connecting with and supporting each other
- Wairuatanga - balance, harmony, spirituality, being grounded, calm, knowledge of whakapapa, legends and myths, karakia
- Kaitiakitanga - care taker/guardianship of knowledge, environment and resources
- Rangatiratanga - ranga – to weave, tira – a company – leadership that inspires unity, role model, courage, pepeha
- Matauranga - knowledge, intellect, thinking skills, wisdom, education, learned, studious
- Te Mahi Rehia - Recreational Pursuits - physical and artistic performance, reo, ngā tākaro
- Tikanga - approved etiquette – correct behaviour, truthful, proper, respectful, karakia
Mahaki & Mahaki, (2007).
Also acknowledging that a percentage of our students are Pasifika, the school values its gifted and talented Pasifika students and recognises that additional to the above areas, gifted and talented Pasifika students may demonstrate or show potential in any one or more of the following qualities:
- Church Affiliation
- Commitment to Excellence
- Language fluency
The Ministry of Education document Gifted and Talented Students: Meeting Their Needs in New Zealand Schools (2012) forms the basis of our school’s policy to ensure our gifted students are identified and provided for.
Riley, T., Bevan-Brown, J., Bicknell, B., Carroll-Lind, J., & Kearney, A. (2004). The extent, nature and effectiveness of planned approaches in New Zealand schools for identifying and providing for gifted and talented students. Wellington: Ministry of Education