Association for Bright Children

April 2016

EVENT: Join Us Saturday, April 9!

ABC is hosting an afternoon of socializing and learning on Saturday, April 9 from 2-4 pm. Activities at this event include:


  • BYOG room - a fan favourite for kids who love to play games. Bring a game and play with some friends!
  • Open time in the gym with equipment for kids to use together
  • Building and programming using Lego robotics materials (recommended 8+), hosted by Sylvan Learning Centre and their Robotics 200-series classes.
  • Surprise hands-on science workshop


Parents will have the opportunity to participate in a presentation entitled "Addressing the Elephant in the Room: What is Giftedness and Why is it Important We Talk About It?"


Click the link below for details and registration information for our "GiftED" series.

TVDSB Gifted Screening Meeting and Results


On March 23, ABC hosted an information night to help demystify the gifted screening process in Thames Valley District School Board. Representatives from the school board answered questions from parents. The audio recording, divided into two parts, can be reviewed here and here . Our ABC London SEAC reps in TVDSB will be meeting with the school board again soon to further clarify questions about this process to help parents become informed partners in the education of their children.


On March 31, the results of the gifted screening process will be at the school's according to TVDSB. If you have any questions, concerns, or need support, please contact us at abclondon@abcontario.ca.

THANK YOU!

We would like to say a big thank you to the families who supported the fundraiser to help one of our Jr FLL teams attend the World Expo this month. The team is the only Jr FLL team representing Canada at the expo and is looking forward to sharing their work and the stories of the other amazing teams that they worked with this past winter with other teams from around the world.


We'd like to express our gratitude to Jr FLL Ontario for supporting all of our teams through start-up grants and this team's trip to the World Expo.


A very special thank you goes also to photographer Tracy Zimmerman of TAZ Photography. Tracy donated her services and raised nearly $400 to support the Jr FLL team's trip!


We'd also like to thank private donor, Mr. Richard Thorman, for supporting this team. We appreciate your generosity!


If you would like to help this team or any upcoming ABC projects through corporate or private sponsorship, we invite you to contact us at abclondon@abcontario.ca. As a registered charity, anyone who chooses to donate to ABC can receive a receipt for income tax purposes. We hope you will support our 100% parent volunteer run activities and advocacy for gifted children at the local and provincial levels.

EVENT: Robotics Mini-Course Update

Revised April 1:

We have had an amazing response to the robotics mini-course that we are offering in partnership with Western Engineering! Because of the incredible demand, our June 14-15 mini-course is full. We were able to secure another set of dates for a second mini-course, however: Saturday, June 11 & Saturday, June 18 from 10:00-3:00. A very limited number of spaces remain for girls and boys who will be 9 or 10 by August 2016. Please email abclondon@abcontario.ca directly with your child's name, date of birth, and school name (if attending).


Thanks to everyone who has chosen this event as an enriching opportunity for their child and we look forward to seeing you in June.


If you are interested in this mini-course for 9-12 year olds and wish to be placed on a wait list, please email abclondon@abcontario.ca with your child's name, date of birth, and school name (if at school). Since ABC is run entirely by parent volunteers from the local chapters to the provincial level, please let us know if you can support this event by volunteering your time as a parent helper.


Note:

We will be offering Jr First Lego League (ages 6-9) sessions in the fall and winter this year thanks to volunteer Beth Mai and supporting parents (whose role is invaluable). We are offering our support to ABC parents who are interested in coaching fledgling First Lego League (9-13) teams. Since ABC is entirely volunteer-run, opportunities like this depend on the shared enthusiasm and expertise of parents in the group. ABC will need to apply for any grants to help start teams in May (for the 2016 season starting in August), so please contact us this month if you are interested in coaching or would like more information.

Recommended Reads

in 2004, a groundbreaking report was published. It highlighted the disparities between the research on acceleration and the educational beliefs and practices that often run contrary to the research. A Nation Deceived: How Schools Hold Back America's Brightest Students, can be downloaded by clicking on the hyperlinked title of the report.


"Evidence Trumps the Excuses Holding Back America's Brightest Students."

A Nation Deceived has been followed up with A Nation Empowered. Published in 2014, its goal "is to inform educators, parents, and policy makers of current research on acceleration, how that information has been applied to educational policy throughout the nation, and how educators can use the findings to make decisions for their brightest students."


You can order a paper copy of this more recent release or download a e-version for a few dollars. This link has both options.


As a community of parents raising bright and gifted children, we recommend that parents and educators read these excellent resources. There is a great deal of sound research from all over the globe that examines acceleration and these studies contain valuable information that parents and educators need in order to address not only the myths and misconceptions about giftedness but to make plans to meet the needs of gifted children that are supported by sound research.


ABC London has a copy of A Nation Deceived as well as the Iowa Acceleration Scale should you wish to borrow either.


Happy reading!

CONNECT: Get Involved With ABC London

Have you enjoyed the events we have planned this past year? Do you want more? We want to connect with you!


Since its beginnings in 1975, ABC has been an all-volunteer group of parents and community members advocating for bright and gifted children and their needs. Many hands make light work, as they say, and we invite you to commit to helping out in some way during the 2016-2017 school year. Some ways you can contribute:


  • be a parent greeter at a community event
  • work with our Events Coordinator to plan events for next year (maybe making some calls, making a poster, or distributing information in our community)
  • be the lead parent to host an event (the Events Coordinator supports you as you bring an event to life)
  • connect with the ABC London SEAC representatives and ask about representing gifted learners in TVDSB and LDCSB.
  • offer a hand when an upcoming event is advertised :-)
  • make a donation to support the outside programs we offer to our ABC London community



Sharing in the shaping of the presence of ABC in London and supporting your own and other gifted children is a rewarding experience. You'll be glad you volunteered some of your time.


We welcome high school students who would like to volunteer with ABC London to contact us about how they can help at upcoming events. We welcome volunteers at our upcoming April, May, and June events. Please email abclondon@abcontario.ca for more information. Be sure to include a contact number.

EVENT: ABC PROVINCIAL CONFERENCE MAY 7

ABC'S provincial leadership is working hard to finalize the details of the annual conference, held this year in Toronto, Ontario. The theme this year is "Do gifted children have special needs?" The conference begins by 9:00 and ends around 4:45.


The conference offers workshops for educators, workshops for parents, and activities for children and adolescents. Babysitting will be available for children 4-5 years of age.



Some highlights:


  • Dr. Gordon Flett (keynote): perfectionism and anxiety.
  • Dr.Marion Porath: learning from the life trajectories of our most able students
  • Natalie Orenchuk: raising gifted children
  • Lynn Dare, acceleration and gifted children
  • workshop for educators offered by instructor of Gifted AQ (additional qualifications) course at Redeemer College
  • games and activities for children


Online registration will be available soon on the provincial website: abcontario.ca. We'll post to Facebook once registration is open to help spread the word. Anyone interested in carpooling is invited to check out the Facebook thread we'll open to help interested families connect.

Research into giftedness and acceleration (Western)

Lynn Dare is a Ph.D candidate from Western University who is studying acceleration, an educational strategy for high-ability students. She invites "you to share your insights on what you think about this strategy and what factors to consider when deciding to accelerate students".


As a parent community, we can support an interest in gifted children and research that is being conducted by working with researchers whenever possible. Clicking on this link will bring you directly to Lynn's survey, which will take only 5-10 minutes to complete. There is a second part her study which you can read more about after completing this survey if you would like to participate.


Questions can be directed to ldare@uwo.ca

View Lynn's profile here.

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CONNECT WITH US!

Do you have a question about your child? Looking for advice or support as you raise your child and navigate their education? Are you an educator with an interest in gifted children and want to learn more? Connect with us!