Date of Award
Master of Arts in Education
The establishment of a kindergarten for gifted children on the campus of Lindenwood College, St. Charles, Missouri, created the need for a curriculum designed to meet the special strengths and weaknesses of those who would attend.
While these children often possessed advanced skills in reading and math, they were still five-year-olds with certain emotional, social and physical limitations due to their young age.
Also, research suggested that high IQ scores and accelerated cognitive, left brain learning did not usually exist with high levels of creativity. Yet futurists noted that creative, divergent thought skills would be essential in the world of tomorrow with its ever-expanding, changing technology.
Could creativity and divergent thinking skills be taught? Research indicated that training in these areas was possible and desirable. The right brain, the dreamer, had too long been neglected with the growth of its skills left to chance.
Using the arts as a vehicle for learning, the functions of the right brain could be stimulated. Imagining in the right hemisphere, then verbalizing in the left would strengthen the whole brain. Movement and use of the five senses would involve the whole child--whole brain in the learning process, where cognitive and affective skills would work together.
This curriculum was then designed with consideration for the chronological and mental age of the children enrolled in the program, the desirability of teaching for creativity, the continued growth of cognitive learning, and the stimulation and development of the brain's right hemisphere with the arts serving as a vehicle for teaching/learning.
Hoffmeister, Kay, "A Curriculum for the Gifted Kindergarten Program on the Lindenwood College Campus" (1984). Theses. 805.
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