How can we get gifted students to deepen their understanding of literary and historical characters? How can we bring together isolated facts and help students visualize and analyze the impact of a person on a story or a time period? A Body Biography is a way students can use images and writing to express that analytical and conceptual understanding of characters.
I once found my daughter at midnight sitting in the middle of her bedroom floor in tears. She was working on a project and refused to go to bed until it was complete, even though it wasn’t due for several days. She cried, sharing a list of things she had to do that week, including numerous rehearsals for her dance company’s upcoming performance and various school-related assignments that had, ultimately, sent her to the floor.
This post, the first in an occasional series, provides a framework for infusing rigor and relevance into a standards-based curriculum by looking for opportunities to help gifted students develop conceptual understanding and requiring them to use that understanding in the context of real-world problems.