Leonardo Gifted School is partner or member of: COBIS - Council of British International Schools, ECHA - European Council for High Ability, WCGTC - World Council for Gifted and Talented Children, AERO - Alternative Education Resource Organization, BPLUSA - Big Picture Learning Design USA, University of Bucharest - Faculty of Phychology and Educational Sciences, University of Connecticut - Neag School of Education, Simon Fraser University - Faculty of Education

Why?

Why

Why a Gifted Education School?

  1. “A report from Ofsted (Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills) on today (4.03.2015) claims that many state secondary schools are not supporting their most able pupils to reach their full potential. Bright children who feel bored and unchallenged at school can “switch off” from the education process and fail to achieve what they are capable of.” Press releaseSchools failing to support the most able pupils, MENSA UK, 2015, March.
  2. “According to Article 29 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, every child has the right to an education which develops their personality, talents and mental abilities to their fullest potential. It is enshrined in UK law as section 7 of the Education Act 1996, which requires the parent of every school age child to ensure that they receive an education that is suitable to their age, ability and aptitude and to any special educational need that they might have.” Potential Plus UK’s Manifesto for supporting children and young people with high learning potential 2015
  3. Because gifted children have special educational needs and are a vulnerable social group.
  4. They need to be identified and offered the support they need in order to learn and reach their potential
  5. Most of the gifted kids do not grow to reach social or professional success (50% of them according to international research)
  6. According to 2010 research from UK, 97% of gifted children do not achieve their potential.
  7. As a society, we need to provide equal development opportunities for all children from which finally children and lastly the society will get profit.
  8. It is guaranteed “the right to a differentiated education, to formal, non-formal and informal, educational programs as a whole, and appropriate development to the segment of the population represented by young gifted, capable of high performance, characterized by particular needs”(Article 3 / Law 17/2007 on the education of gifted, capable of high performance children) plus a whole list of other laws supporting gifted.
  9. Because there are indeed direct Benefits of Gifted Education; they have been studied at one of the most prestigious associations in the world, dedicated exclusively to Gifted, The National Association for Gifted Children, US. Here you can download the „ Research That Supports the Need for and Benefits of Gifted Education”.
  10. Please read the whole recommendation of Klaus Urban, ex president of WCGTC, and the recommendation of Judy Galbraith, M.A. Author of The Survival Guide for Gifted Kids. And many more legal arguments and recommendations here.

 

WHY LEONARDO GIFTED SCHOOL?

Leonardo Gifted School is designed to serve the needs of highly intelligent children, from preschool through the second grade (5 to 11 years old). We are an International British school, and our aim is to attract the most intelligent and talented youngsters all over Romania and from abroad. We understand the education and Counselling needs of gifted children and their parents.
What makes us completely different than any other school is that we are offer:
more than 24 differentiators, one of them being over an unprecedented 1000 hours of expertise and experience of direct work with gifted children. :) Why 24 differentiators? No reason at all. We like the number 😉 We reached 24 in 2014 and now we are building on it every day. So we work to become better and closer to the needs of children with our know-how.

 

What do our children achieve?

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See how a Leonardo Gifted Class looks like

10- 15 pupils Gifted pupils. IQ above or equal to 130 on WISC IV/SON-R.  See more on our Application process
1 Class Teacher Minimum 2 years of international educational system
1 Teaching Assistant (TA) Co-teaching for a more intensive learning experience in class
1 Specialist Co-Teacher Over the Enrichment, we also provide co-trainers, with a different Specialisation
1-2 volunteer Specialized in learning through games; healthy communication with kids; smart way to enjoy the breaks; safety
1 Counselling Education Specialist (psychoterapist) Support pupil’s needs of personal development (social, emotional needs)

Primary school

08.30- 12.30

British national curriculum with gifted methods

Break (Lunch)

12.30 – 13.30

Your child can enjoy our Bio Lunch recommended by a nutritionist

Individual study

13.30- 14.45

Exercises, questions, research, debates, group projects, personal projects with TA + 1 volunteer

Enrichment

15.00- 18.00

Specialised trainers, Mentors in specialised classes of Enrichment (based on 5 years of gifted education. See www.giftededu.ro)

How we understand Leonardo curriculum based on children needs

 

 
Differentiated Curriculum

CONTENT

  • Complexity
  • Imagination
  • Real life topics
  • Abstractness
  • Other people‘s lives and living
  • Going into Depth and Breadth
  • Systems of thought
  • Mentorship
  • Spiral curriculum around essential concepts
  • Self-selected content
Differentiated Curriculum

PROCESS

  • Complex thinking (HOTS)
  • Q-matrix of questions
  • Reflective
  • Expert methods of Inquiry
  • Diversity
  • Variety
  • Hands-on
  • Trial & error
  • Mentors’ support
  • International approach
  • Neuroscience applied in education
  • Individual trials
  • Open-ended
  • Self-Selected Process
  • SOLE – Self-Organized Learning Environment
  • Discovering through Outdoor activities / teambuilding
  • Project work in group and/or individual
Differentiated Curriculum

PRODUCT

  • Authentic Audiences
  • Self selected format
  • Understanding value of output
  • Innovations
  • Expert Panels
  • Exhibitions
  • Mind-maps
  • Essays
  • Debates in Public
  • Articles
  • Shows
Differentiated Curriculum

ENVIRONMENT

  • Supportive
  • Challenging
  • Stimulating
  • Nurturing
  • Healthy boundaries
  • Self-containing
  • Democratic rules
  • Flexible
  • Complex
  • Engaging
  • Encouraging Creative Productive Behaviour
  • Warm
  • Encouraging self-expression
  • Accepting
  • Highly Mobile (Moving places)
  • Independent & Varied Groupings
  • Non-Judgemental
  • Using Non-violent communication (Marshal Rosenberg)
  • Empowering kids to self-study
  • Leadership
  • Stimulating freedom to think, to acuire knowledge and skills
  • Providing Autonomy for personal development
  • Promoting an Open World
  • In connection with the real world and real audiences
  • In connection with the nature
Differentiated objectives
  • Confrunting theory with practice
  • Diversity
  • Discovering
  • Research
  • Presentation
  • Debate

Differentiated

learning activities

  • Attached resources
  • Flipped classroom
  • External links
  • Renzulli Learning
  • Documentation
  • Checking with mentors (individual sessions)
  • Peer talks
  • Doing it by her/his self
  • Asking for feedback
  • Giving Feedback
Evaluation
  • Feedback
  • Reflection
  • Extra-connections
  • Tests
  • Projects
  • Debates
  • Final products of learning
  • Team work
   
   

Our differentiators

We are:

  • unique in Romania and in the region;
  • especially designed with gifted in mind;
  • we offer an extremely important value added enrichment with selected high profile mentors which ensures that the child can extend the knowledge and talent in the area of passion with a person who has a romance with the subject, who has obtained highly respected status in the field and is in love with the idea of paying his knowledge forward to gifted children;
  • we select children in a non-biased process, based on a multidiscipline multi-specialist approach, with a very well researched and specialized International standards selection which includes international standardised tests, interviews both with the child (we see from the beginning the child as being able to choose and decide for his/her own development) and the parents and a behavioural evaluation to offer a rich and highly valuable input and feedback for parents on what is best suited for the child;
  • we work with a specialized team, which includes, among other specialists, dual degree teachers, Mensa teachers, psychologists as partners in the process of education and counselling;
  • we proudly announce 100% satisfaction rate among gifted kids.

We are here so that every child who shows high intellectual capacity can experience the enriched, differentiated and accelerated learning environment they need. This helps the child to experience his potential, to be happy with his being, all in all leading to a happy, responsible and meaningful adult life

Each gifted child deserves the best education he/she can possibly receive.

What if your kid is gifted? (for a list of Gifted Personality Characteristics click here). And what if your child would grow to be a Michelangelo, or a Leonardo da Vinci? What if your kid had a brilliant imagination, could dream up potential flourishing worlds and be as advanced as a student at the university in his subject of choice? Would you deny your kid the education and the imagination potential just to keep your child conformed to what is “normal”?

More on our Differentiators

More on our Differentiators

The differentiating factors are here in order to meet the special needs of gifted through a gifted education learning experience.

  1. Designing the curriculum with the needs of gifted children in mind: no school works on adapting the school to the needs of a child with asynchronous development (focusing on the emotional and social needs first); balancing the hemispheres and developing bodily thinking; developing the learning management so that the child remains motivated, focused, and develops abilities to manage self-learning and strategies for learning; developing of complex thinking, empathy, compassion and presence and good self condition; no school works so that the objectives of every lesson adapt to the child’s perspective – and we do that; we adapt the plan to the children’s perspective so that the children’s views on the world are the most important
  2. Individualised curricula to meet the needs of existing children in the enrolled generation. Every year, every generation of children gets the amount of deliberate consideration from the teachers and education department to adapt the offering of curricula to the needs of the children; children have the ability to choose and to make decisions on what they learn, when; they can also accelerate and they can also drop a class Enrichment) if they can’t cope with it. The Trainer’s vision is a centered holistic development – emotional, cognitive, social, physical and relates primarily to the child’s perspective. This means that any learning is updated continuously and adapted to the potential development of a child. We create the environment, the context with processes and relationships needed to facilitate the zone of proximal development.  The development of a child is seen as a whole, and seeks emotional and social development, as defining elements for using the full potential of the child – any acquisition at the cognitive level is tied to the acquisition at the emotional and social level, which makes the child competent, and it helps the child to integrate whatever the climate, context, performance or relationship to life. This is a major significant addition that any gifted child will have in a specialized school: he/she will be able to use the full native potential of the intelligences as belonging to the being as a whole.
  3. Selecting children at International standards
  4. Differentiating the learning environment: differentiating the curricula, the processes of learning, the products of learning, and the whole learning environment (which comprises the attitudes, the behaviours which include how we talk to each other, how we establish the rules, how we negotiate the learning products; we don’t sit still to wait for the teacher to teach, but we can move in the classroom; “any question is good”; teacher is equal to children and has only one vote in our democratic weekly days; teacher is considering the children as partners in the process of learning, we are accepting, complex, flexible, we allow for student mobility, we are learner-centered, we encourage independence, we are open and we involve ability, different learning style grouping, interest grouping, etc)
  5. Developing the curriculum with multi-specialists, with international view, national and international partnerships
  6. Respecting our law 17/2007 on gifted children and youth means our teachers are undergoing a continuous professional development on differentiated psycho-pedagogy
  7. Using best practices in Gifted Education from an international level and best practices in Education
  8. Using our expertise: More than 1500 hours of direct expertise of working with gifted children
  9. Involving our experience: More than 1500 children tested at international standards
  10. Parental and Counseling Support in a School for Parents. Knowing how important it is the parental -child relationship to the success of any education (see Harvard Family Research Project: Why Parenting Is More Important Than Schools), and also knowing how important it is for parents to develop skills to better understand and cope with the specific needs of the gifted child, and knowing that they need skills so that hey can support the gifted child on the long run, for a lifetime, our high focus is that parents are involved in parental counselling and parental education, specific to gifted, year-round. We support parents in developing their skills: there are classes that involve the contribution of parents in studying together with their child and also classes addressed only to parents. Data on the hours and mandatory classes will be sent to Parent group.  We work on all three pillars of the relationship the child: school (annual program on teacher training on the needs of gifted children), family (School parents) and social environment (i.e. the child gets involved in charity, in internships and receives guidance on projects to develop an approach to solving real problems)
  11. Working closely with a team of dedicated educational psychologists with expertise of work with gifted children
  12. Using Whole Brain Teaching
  13. Involving all senses, the learning styles and all intelligences of a child in the learning process. 
  14. Loving, affectionate, secure, positive and validating environment
  15. Using Accelerated Learning Cycles and developing Individual Education Plans
  16. Involving HOTS- Higher Order Thinking Skills in every subject and developing Thinking Skills with CoRT by DeBono lessons
  17. Learning through Hands On-Experience & Learning through experimentation Self-Organised Learning Environment (SOLE)
  18. Impacting and delivering the learning in the community, to real audiences, in order to make the process of learning applicable, worthwhile, and also, valuable in the eyes of the children, parents and the community as well.
  19. Respecting the Needs of the child, so socialising between children is at prime focus, as a gifted child needs friends and needs a peer group to develop
  20. Learning to have a vote, to have a say and manage by offering the direct experience of a democratic day per week at school
  21. Focusing on autonomous behaviour: our focus is to assist children in getting in touch with the inner resources and emotions so that they can manage in all situations to fit their needs. We seek to develop an autonomous gifted person, centered on the development in relation to the welfare of society. To give and to do good is the sign of a smart person: “If you would take,  you must first give. This is the beginning of intelligence”- Lao Tzu.
  22. Learning the management of self-development: gifted children can become experts in managing their own development if they get the proper counselling and the positive environment where they can test their learning strategies in safe, accepting, creative and risk-free environment
  23. Concentrating in all classes on integrating Renzulli’s Model
  24. Offering a Creative Environment where children create all the time, and acquire creative productive behaviour
  25. Offering a highly careful selected environment of learning, individualised for their special needs
  26. Focusing on seeing children get passionate and develop their own passion for something by grounding learning into their interests and experiences
  27. Offering co-teaching, as a modern, more intensive way of reaching student’s needs, which involves teachers with different Specialisations to work together on the subject in the classroom. We offer a very high staff to student ration. We know the high intensity of learning and the energy and the level of student involvement and we provide the means for a high collaborative and direct working with the teachers. In the classroom, there is one Class Teacher and one Teaching Assistant (TA), plus 1-2 volunteers and partially, a School Counselling Education Specialist – a licensed psychoterapist- who is a behaviour observer who is there to meet immediately the emotional needs of the child, which is very mportant for every child, and especially important for a gifted child. Over the Enrichment, we also provide specialist teachers to deliver specialty subjects (Emotional Intelligence, Thinking Lessons, Intelligent Games, Teamplay, Drama, Music, Management of Learning, Computer Science, Experential – Personal Development, etc), along with co-trainers, with a different specialisation. (Please see “Finland’s radical new plan to change school”).
  28. Using Big Picture Learning framework based on our exclusive partnership with Big Picture Learning USA. We support the development of a child in relation to creating for himself a behavioral “luggage” for life, made of values, skills and attitudes correlated with actual performance in a realistic setting in order to find out about their vocation based on specific processes  coming from domains like: career orientation, counseling and advisory. Each student at a Big Picture Learning School is part of a small learning community called an advisory. Each advisory is supported and led by an advisor, a teacher that works closely with each advisee to identify their interests and personalize their learning. Each student has an internship with a mentor, learning in a real world setting. Especially important for gifted children is that they shall be able to start early on in school, based on their abilities, to work on high skills or personal interested discovered with mentors. 
    Parents and families are actively involved in the learning process, helping to shape the student’s
    learning plan and enrolled as resources to the school community. The result is a student-centered
    learning design, where students are actively invested in their learning and challenged to pursue their
    interests by a supportive community of educators, professionals, and family members. The “vocation” is validated and put to work using the BPL framework which means going to internships with companies or nonprofits, going out for real knowledge on personal research or building personal projects. A central piece of the whole school is keeping a lively dialogue between what is learnt and what can be applied and used in real life