Persona Dolls

Recently I received a request from a teacher to answer some questions relating to giftedness to help her develop a persona doll for an assignment she was doing.

She supplied this information about persona dolls and the doll she intended to create.

A persona doll is a doll developed by a practitioner/educator to enable children to gain an awareness and understanding of the richness and diversity of different backgrounds and lifestyles as well as to help children learn strategies for dealing with unfairness against themselves and others.
The dolls are given personalities, family and cultural backgrounds, likes and dislikes and the stories that are created around them enable children to explore positive and negative emotions.
To be able to develop one, I need to research and consult with children and their families to develop the persona doll identity and story. This is to avoid stereotypes and to provide an authentic representation of the children and their challenges.
I believe that developing a persona doll about giftedness can also be a way to advocate because children, families and educators where it will be shared will be cognizant of the current realities and difficulties faced by children that are gifted.”

She then asked a large number of detailed questions about ethnic, socio-economic and cultural conditions and everyday life matters to help her build a unique and authentic persona for her doll.

She would have liked to ask the questions to my youngest child also, hoping to hear a child’s voice expressed. Our youngest is now in his late twenties; so was not able to provide the child voice.

After replying that gifted children can be found in every ethnic, socio-economic and religion group so she could choose whatever background she felt most comfortable to use; I answered the giftedness related questions and some of the everyday life issues questions using my twice exceptional blog character, Sprite, to personalise the answers.

I have written a separate blog post about my answers for a post on Sprite’s Site and will include the link here
http://spritessite.wordpress.com/2014/10/13/could-sprite-be-a-persona-doll/

I have enjoyed searching the Internet for information about Persona Dolls.

Here are some of the interesting and helpful sites I found.

http://www.persona-doll-training.org/ukhome.html

http://www.amazeworks.org/curriculum/personadolls.html

https://extranet.education.unimelb.edu.au/ceiec/DiversityDolls/index.html

http://www.montessori.org.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0005/99725/issue_66.pdf

http://www.teachingforchange.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/ec_personadolls_english.pdf

http://maisiareflections.wordpress.com/2011/11/03/personas/

I began to consider the idea of buying a persona doll here http://www.persona-doll-training.org/ukresources.html

 

or here http://www.amazeworks.org/store/p_pdoll.html

and dressing it as my Sprite (I already have all the mini versions of De Bono’s 6 Action shoes and a mini plaster cast); or of sewing one myself.

I found sewing instructions here
http://www.livingcrafts.com/blog/doll-room/a-doll-for-every-child

This is what I imagine a Sprite 2E twice exceptional persona doll would look like.

spritedolltf

 

RSCON 5 July 2014

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Last month I participated in RSCON 5 The future of education, an online symposium on the Blackboard Collaborate platform with presenters and attendees from around the world. The times of the sessions were not really Australia friendly and I was the only Australian in most of the sessions I joined. But it was certainly worthwhile to attend and it provides valuable PD for educators.

Website NING http://www.futureofeducation.com/

Those who missed RSCON 5 can still listen to recordings of the sessions here

Recordings http://www.futureofeducation.com/page/recordings-2014

Peggy George has compiled a collection of the tools and programs that were shared in the Swapalooza in a Livebinder at http://www.livebinders.com/play/play?id=1399927

A participant’s badge was given for each session attended. Here is my collection of participant badges.

rscon5badges

Here are some highlights, images, quotes and links from one of the keynote sessions I attended

Keynote Session Dean Shareski:  Whatever happened to joy?

http://www.futureofeducation.com/page/rscondeanshareski  

In a data driven, achievement focused system, does joy in learning matter anymore? Not that these are mutually exclusive but in our attempts to see results we often forget that joy should not be a means to an end but a worthy and important goal on its own. So how do we insure our students experience joy and wonder everyday? Let’s examine some practical ways that take advantage of new tools and affordances to be intentional and make our schools places of joy.

Moment 1 Why does Christina never smile?

Moment 2 Hearing a child singing when not in a formal music lesson – just for happiness

Link to trailer for The Happy Movie http://www.thehappymovie.com/

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rscon5scr02

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Wonder
Awe https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8QyVZrV3d3o&feature=youtu.be

How often do your students get to wonder?
What if each day your students left school with a great question?

All of Dean’s slides for the presentation are here
http://www.slideshare.net/shareski/what-about-joy-rscon-5

I am sorry that it has taken me so long to write this post but I do encourage you to visit the RSCON 5 NING and catch up with the excellent sessions that were presented on a wide range of education topics.

Details of future online conferences in the series can be found on the NING at http://www.futureofeducation.com/

 

One Page to Tell

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I needed to prepare a single page handout which could be used to provide a basic introduction to some of the important reference material and explain how Gifted Resources can help locate services and information relating to giftedness.

My first thought was to provide a page full of QR codes for all my favourite websites with the Sprite’s Site characters playing with the blocks and building with them. However, after experimenting with QR codes that were reduced in size and finding they were not clear enough to scan, I realised that I would not be able to fit all the QR codes of my favourite sites on a single page.

So I ended up creating the page pictured the top of this post. I am happy that almost all the topics I would most want to discuss are represented in some way in the picture.

I managed to include the signpost for information Gifted Resources can provide, all the methods of contacting me plus words or pictures relating to key issues such as

  • The specific educational and social/emotional needs of gifted people,
  • The Columbus Group definition of giftedness as asynchronous development
  • The Bell curve showing distribution of IQ levels in the population
  • Gagne’s DMGT model of development of innate giftedness into fully developed talent (emphasising the importance of internal and situation influences)
  • The diagram of underachievement (showing our role as teachers and parents in building a guard rail to prevent students falling into underachievement)
  • Myths surrounding giftedness
  • Dabrowski’s Overexcitabilities represented by the Dabrowski Dogs

In order to include more topics and give links to my favourite web sites I would need a much bigger page. I am thinking that a board game format could be very effective.

If you had only one page on which to record as many things that were important to you about a particular topic as you could how would you choose to do it?

Gifted Resources Blog has been nominated in the Australian Writers’ Centre Best Australian Blogs 2014 Competition
http://www.writerscentre.com.au/community/best-australian-blogs-comp/

If you would like to vote for Gifted Resources blog (and Sprite’s Site and as many other great Australian blogs as you wish) click on the badge in the sidebar of the blog and follow the link to the Survey monkey poll. Gifted Resources Blog is on Page 2 and Sprite’s Site is on Page 4.

 

Best Australian Blogs 2014 Post 2

bab14vote

Gifted Resources Blog has been nominated in the Australian Writers’ Centre Best Australian Blogs 2014 Competition http://www.writerscentre.com.au/community/best-australian-blogs-comp/

The shiny Vote for Me Now button has arrived and been installed in the sidebar of the blog.

If you would like to vote for Gifted Resources blog (and Sprite’s Site and as many other great Australian blogs as you wish) click on the badge in the sidebar of the blog and follow the link to the Survey monkey poll. Gifted Resources Blog is on Page 2 and Sprite’s Site is on Page 4. Be sure to select all the blogs you wish to vote for as you will only be given one chance.

Guest on Twitter #gtchat

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March was a very busy month and I am now playing catch up and blogging about the experiences.

It was a great thrill to be invited to be the guest for #gtchat on Twitter on 1 March 2014. The topic was the use of De Bono’s Six Action Shoes as applied to planning gifted programs and in particular programs suitable for Twice-Exceptional children.

I enjoyed the experience very much. The moderator #gtchat, of Lisa Conrad, provided me with the questions in advance so that I could prepare my answers and have them ready to post during the session. I also provided links which Lisa posted throughout the chat.

Here are the Q & A posts that we pre-planned

Hi! Jo Freitag from Gifted Resources & Sprite’s Site blog Victoria Australia here at 11.00am Saturday for #gtchat

Hi everyone! Today we are going to rummage through Sprite’s shoes especially her De Bono 6 Action shoes collection #gtchat

Q1) Who is Sprite and how is she involved with De Bono’s shoes? #gtchat

A1) Sprite is my 2E character exceptionally gifted with an unspecified learning difference/disability who illustrates Feetspeak. #gtchat

A1) She is always shown with an injured ankle to show that not all the shoes (plans) will fit comfortably on both feet #gtchat

Q2) What are De Bono’s 6 Action Shoes? #gtchat

A2) Most people know Edward De Bono’s 6 Thinking Hats program about ways to think about a situation or problem #gtchat

A2) Edward De Bono’s 6 Action Shoes is a book about ways to approach planning courses of action #gtchat

A2) Up there for thinking, down there for dancing, walking etc – taking action #gtchat

Q3) What do each of the De Bono shoes represent? #gtchat

debonoshoeposter

A3) Blue Formal Shoes = plan following routines and formal procedures; Grey sneakers = plan based on investigation #gtchat

A3) Brown Brogues = plan doing what is most practical and sensible; Orange gumboots = plan to cover emergency action #gtchat

A3) Pink Slippers = plan to act in caring compassionate manner; Purple riding boots = plan enacted by leadership or authority. #gtchat

Q4) How do you use these De Bono 6 Action Shoes plans? #gtchat

A4) I use the De Bono shoes as part of my Feetspeak 2E Shoes Program about planning suitable provisions for gifted and 2E students #gtchat

Gifted Programs Planned Using De Bono’s 6 Action Shoes as a Planning Tool http://goo.gl/vkKfvT

A4) Blue Formal Shoe Plans = fast paced accelerated above grade programs for highly motivated high achieving students #gtchat

Sprite’s Blue Formal Shoes http://goo.gl/OmokYK

A4) Grey Sneakers Plans= research investigations project/passion/problem based learning #geniushour #makerspaces #gtchat

Sprite’s Grey Sneakers http://goo.gl/kgQnZU

A4) Brown Brogues Plans = IEP or most suitable option for student – full or subject acceleration extension groups etc. whatever is needed #gtchat

Sprite’s Brown Brogues http://goo.gl/tLpXnT

A4) Orange Gumboots Plans = stop gap measures such as acting as teacher’s assistant #gtchat

Sprite’s Orange Gumboots http://goo.gl/KmYvfx

A4) Pink Slippers Plans = programs focussed on social/emotional needs coping strategies pastoral care etc #gtchat

Sprite’s Pink Slippers http://goo.gl/E7l1C4

A4) Purple Riding Boots Plans = I’ve used it to mean leadership training biographical studies & mentors could include creativity #gtchat

Sprite’s Purple Riding Boots http://goo.gl/RnIGXB

Q5) Do all the plans work well for gifted and 2E students? #gtchat

A5) All the plans have the potential to work well for gifted students but some do not fit 2E #gtchat

A5) I road tested them using Gagne’s DMGT model natural giftedness to fully developed competence/talent #gtchat

Building Gifts into Talents: Overview of the DMGT (pdf) http://goo.gl/trQ9Db

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Q6) Are there any other shoe plans apart from De Bono Action shoes in Feetspeak 2E shoes? #gtchat

A6) Yes, More shoes: Bare feet = Not having a plan; Sparkly sandals = appearance of having a plan but not really having one #gtchat

Sprite’s More shoes http://goo.gl/zW3z6v

A6) The Plaster cast = ideal provisions for the Learning Differences if student is eligible & funding is available #gtchat

Sprite’s Plaster cast http://goo.gl/7yBCxq

A6) The One size fits all paper shoe cover system = claim to be giving gifted program with differentiation #gtchat

Sprite’s One Size Shoe Cover System http://goo.gl/jozdEo

Q7) What inspired you to create Sprite’s Site? #gtchat

A7) Feetspeak grew from newsletter note re problem buying suitable shoes after I injured my ankle being like 2E students problems #gtchat

A7) 2E students need provisions for both their giftedness and their difficulties #gtchat

A7) Sprite was designed to illustrate Feetspeak but then developed a life of her own and needed a blog to tell the stories #gtchat

A7) I already had a more serious Gifted Resources blog but Sprite’s Site allows more freedom for whimsy and creativity #gtchat

Gifted Resources blog http://giftedresources.wordpress.com/

Q8) Sprite has many friends to guide her on life’s journey. What resources did you find helpful when raising a family

A8) Parent support groups, online email groups, books, websites, conferences, guest speakers were all helpful #gtchat

A8 Psychologist Lesley Sword was the foundation stone for me #gtchat

http://www.giftedservices.com.au/handouts/index.html

A8) Hoagies website was/is always a great source of information #gtchat

Hoagies http://www.hoagiesgifted.org/

Q9 What people and works provided the basis for Feetspeak 2E shoes? #gtchat

A9 Edward De Bono, Prof Francoys Gagne, Dr Linda Silverman, 2E newsletter, Prof Miraca Gross, Dabrowski’s Overexcitabilities #gtchat

Q9 Susan Baum, Alexandra Golon, Iowa Acceleration Scales, Lee Singer, Lesley Sword and of course Stephanie Tolan #gtchat

http://www.giftedresources.org/gr/feetspeakforweb01.htm

Q10) What other topics are covered on Sprite’s Site? #gtchat

blogtopics

A10) The Tweet family of Twitter birds consult the Psych-Owl-Ogist about giftedness and social/emotional issues #gtchat

The Psych-Owl-Ogist http://spritessite.wordpress.com/tag/psych-owl-ogist/

A10) The Tweet family are using Nest Ed and discuss homeschooling their gifted tweetlets #gtchat

Nest Ed http://spritessite.wordpress.com/tag/nest-ed/

A10) Sprite’s companions Dabrowski Dogs represent Intellectual, Emotional, Sensual, Psycho Motor, Imaginational overexcitabilities #gtchat

Dabrowski Dogs http://spritessite.wordpress.com/tag/dabrowski-dogs/

A10) The Black Dogs relate to causes of depression in gifted people #gtchat

Black Dogs http://spritessite.wordpress.com/tag/black-dogs/

A10) The Memory Elephant illustrates memory and the Visual Spatial Learners way of thinking #gtchat

Memory Elephant http://spritessite.wordpress.com/tag/memory-elephant/

A10) And @gtchatmod favourite Columbus Cheetah advocates for acceleration and busts myths about giftedness #gtchat

Columbus Cheetah Myth Buster
http://www.giftedresources.org/gr/columbuscheetah.htm

The Storify transcript of the chat session can be read at http://goo.gl/58T7du

The summary post on the TAGT blog can be read at http://globalgtchatpoweredbytagt.wordpress.com/2014/03/01/de-bonos-action-plans-with-special-guest-jo-frietag/

Gifted Resources Blog has been nominated in the Australian Writers’ Centre Best Australian Blogs 2014 Competition http://www.writerscentre.com.au/community/best-australian-blogs-comp/