To answer the question, “are separate programs and pull-out programs harming high ability students?” I would have to state that with the development of a child, one job of the teacher has is to address where the student is at the present time, the goal of where to take them and how to accomplish that task. I chose to explore and understand the development of a gifted student in a pullout or regular classrooms setting.
Literature suggests that, at an early age, many gifted children are sensitive and show empathy for others, and care about world issues, which suggests an advanced understanding of moral development. Their desire for fairness brought me to the theories of Kohlberg, Piaget and Gilligan’s. Kohlberg and Gilligan both have philosophical arguments of moral development, which both agree that people develop from one stage to the next, however they differ on how a person makes the critical judgment.
Kohlberg focuses more on how they draw conclusion with justice and fairness. He believes that moral decision is required, and that young children are too young for this type of thinking. In Gilligan's model it is the interrelationships among people that are important, and these are based on empathic responses between people. To respond to someone else’s pain or difficulty is the basis of moral action. This requires an empathic attitude to others, an understanding of what that person is feeling. This type of thinking reflects sensitivity towards others. In interpreting the theory, both gifted youth, and gifted adults, feel a deep sense of justice, life, honesty and responsibility. I feel that in the classroom this can be thought every day with social skills and teacher modeling.
Gifted children tend to be perfectionist and idealistic, and in observing students I can see these two traits. As theory suggest, a child who may be able to reason at an exceptionally high level about moral issues, but may not be able to resolve social situations just as there...