PreK-12 Enrichment & Educational Resources

 

Learning from home is the new normal for gifted learners. Whether it be lesson plans and ideas for teachers—or enrichment content for specific areas of interest—these free resources will spark gifted minds in art, music, science, language arts, social studies, and other disciplines.


Updated 5/8/20

 

New! Toys & Games

NEW! Toys & Games for Gifted Kids. For years, NAGC had a tradition of recruiting gifted tot and tween toy testers to select which just-released toys and games appealed to them most. During COVID-19, we've opened up the archives, updated, and repackaged toy reviews and Parenting for High Potential articles from the past decade to create one jumbo resource list. Contains 40+ toys and games for parents, grandparents, and caregivers to engage gifted learners while passing the time and creating family fun. All urls, pricing, and availability updated in April 2020.

 

Curated by State Departments of Education & State Affiliates

Check out these dynamic resource pages courtesy of NAGC state affiliates! They're updated regularly and are chock-full of curriculum ideas, lesson plans, enrichment, and valuable links to support PreK-12 gifted learners.

NEW! North Carolina Dept of Public Instruction: Remote Learning Resources for AIG Learners. Developed in partnership with Duke University Talent Identification Program (TIP), Advanced Learning Labs are provided for K-12 students each week beginning May 1st. Students explore logic puzzles, go on field studies, engage in research explorations, participate in mindfulness activites and more -- all through remote learning. Either printed or online for both educators and parents,

Kentucky Association for Gifted Education (KAGE) Curated Resources. Numerous education and enrichment resources, including K-12 enrichment lessons organized by grade level and discipline, and links to 1,100 online university courses, and thousands of movies, educational shows, virtual museum tours, and cultural experiences.

Massachusetts Association for Gifted Education (MAGE) Project Menus. Two downloadable PDFs that offer a quick menu-based approach to learning, allowing gifted students freedom of choice and a way to create in-depth, complex enriching activities.

Ohio Association for Gifted Children (OAGC) COVID-19 Links for GISs and Parents. General home learning resources, plus online gifted resources for Columbus City Schools.

Texas Association for the Gifted (TAGT) G/T Resources for School Closures. Educational and digital resources (websites, platforms, lessons, games, activities) to support educators and parents during school closures.

Wisconsin Association for Talented & Gifted (WATG). WATG is providing a place for PreK-12 students to showcase their “quarantined time” creations, experiments, musings, and inventions. Their “Nothing Can Stop Me” movement is all about students having an opportunity to stretch out and grow their ideas, and then having an audience with which to share. Great idea for other state affiliates to consider.

 

Resources by Discipline

General & Cross-Disciplinary

NEW! Programs for Talented Youth: COVID-19 Resources for Parents. In collaboration with Prufrock Press, Vanderbilt University's PTY has re-designed select lessons in Literature and Science that use critical-thinking and relationship analysis to support gifted children’s learning during social distancing.

Distance Learning Resources from the Smithsonian. The Smithsonian Learning Lab offers teachers and parents access to millions of digital resources from across the Smithsonian's museums, research centers, libraries, archives, and more. Includes pre-packaged collections that contain lessons, activities, and recommended resources made by Smithsonian museum educators. Includes self-directed learning modules for teens and tweens.

Educational Companies Offering Free Subscriptions Due to School Closings. Listing of 100+ organizations offering free subscriptions to educational resources—for all ages and all disciplines.

Just in Time: 20 Terrific Free Content Resources Author curated favorite list of resources to help educators deliver meaningful learning experiences to students in various curricular disciplines.(Brian Housand, Ph.D., and former Teaching for High Potential columnist)

Low-Prep (and Teacher Approved) Activities YOU Can Do with Your Children. Great ideas parents can do with their young gifted children at home (Ruth Lyons, Teaching for High Potential columnist)

Paradise Valley USD Gifted Education Teacher Project Menu. Technology, tips, and resources created specifically for educators who are facilitating online learning with gifted students. (Courtesy of Dina Brulles, Ph.D., and Paradise Valley USD, Phoenix, Arizona.)

PBS Learning Media. Tens of thousands of state curriculum-aligned digital learning objects, searchable by state, grade level, curriculum area, and state and national standards. Includes content from NASA, the American Archive, Library of Congress, Ken Burns’ series, and new “PreK-12 Resources for Emergency Closings.” Integrates with Google Classroom and Remind.

Prufrock Press At-Home Student Activities & Worksheets. Resources for engaging young gifted learners’ minds and to promote learning at home, including free eBook of Thinking Skills Activities for Grades 3-6.

Resources for Learning from Home during COVID-19 School Closures. Recommended best educational You Tube channels, educational videos (Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime), podcasts, and free online instructional materials for kids. (Michael J. Pettrilli, Flypaper, The Fordham Institute.March 16, 2020)

Virtual Instruction for Gifted Students. Online educator shares tips and tools for best ways to serve gifted learners with remote instruction. (Jessica Stargardter, Norwalk Public Schools, March 24, 2020)

What Teachers in China Have Learned in the Past Month. An American whose classroom in Beijing is now online shares what she and her team have learned since the coronavirus hit. (Laurel Schwartz, Edutopia. March 13, 2020)

 

The Arts

Kennedy Center Artist-in-Residence Virtual Workshop. Join beloved children’s book writer and illustrator Mo Willems virtually in his studio for a free live, bite-sized lunch doodle session each weekday at 1 p.m. EDT, focused on doodling, drawing, and writing. Appropriate for all ages.

Kennedy Center for Performing Arts Digital Stage. Watch extraordinary performances from the Kennedy Center's stages and beyond, featuring original works, new clips, and access to vast archives for self-exploration. Includes ballet, hip hop, comedy, jazz, theater, and performances by the Washington National Opera and National Symphony Orchestra.

Metropolitan Opera: Free Nightly Opera Stream. Each day, a different encore presentation from the company’s Live in HD series is available for free streaming on the Met website, with each performance available for 23 hours, from 7:30 p.m.-6:30 p.m. EDT (next day). Includes complete performances from the past 14 years of cinema transmissions, starring all of opera’s greatest singers. Streams also available through the Met Opera on Demand apps.

Stuck at Home? Take Free Drawing Classes from Famous Illustrators. Ten famous illustrators have stepped up to create virtual ongoing free art classes and/or readalongs during the midst of this pandemic. (Lilly Smith, Fast Company, March 18, 2020)

 

Language Arts & Reading

CTY Reading List: Good Books for Bright Kids. Compiled by the John Hopkins Center for Talented Youth (CTY) reading experts, this list encourages gifted and talented PreK-Young Adult readers to follow their passions and explore things that makes them happy.

Leave Your Sleep for Education. Free online curriculum platform that offers literature, theatre, music and dance, art, history, and science applications using poetry and music to engage students. Great resource for April’s National Poetry Month. (Recommended by Gifted Support Center in San Mateo, CA.)

Mensa for Kids Excellence in Reading Program.  This free program is open internationally to any and all readers under 18 years of age (Grades K-12), their teachers, and librarians, which encourages students to read to the level of their ability or interest, regardless of age or grade level.

NEW! Stay at Home with Candlewick Press. A book-based, easy-to-navigate resource site with learning material, activities, podcasts, and videos for all ages. Many of the resource links feature favorite book series, characters and authors—from Kate DiCamillo to Waldo to Judy Moody to the Princess in Black—that kids will know and recognize from their home and school bookshelves. Also, a free, downloadable, kid-friendly, illustrated e-book about the coronavirus.

 

Using Picture Book Biographies. This article demonstrates how to infuse culturally relevant material into K-2 classrooms to the nurture interests, strengths, and talents of gifted Black students. (Erinn Fears Floyd & Thomas P. Hebert, Gifted Child Today, Spring 2010).

 

Science, Technology & Math

NEW! Natural History Museum of Utah Daily Chats with Experts. With the introduction of Research Quest Live on March 17, 2020, students from around the world are tuning in to daily fun, interactive, and educational programs that stimulate key critical thinking skills for middle school-aged children. Led by science educators and featuring scientists who are experts in their field, students learn and participate in a variety of real-life scientific research questions across various fields such as paleontology, biodiversity, ecology and more. Each weekday the museum hosts live classes at 9:30 a.m. MDT.

Alternative Method of Learning: Supporting Parents and Students at Home.  Insight regarding how and why gifted students need challenge when learning from home. Offers augmented reality and virtual reality resources, and a link to home science experiments and other teaching resources. (Debbie Dailey, NAGC STEM Network chair and co-chair of the NAGC Professional Standards Committee, March 17, 2020)NEW!  “Boolean Girl” STEM Activities. New, free, live instructor-led webinars that teach girls (and boys!) in Grades 3-8 how to code and invent. Offered every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 3-4 p.m. EST.

NEW! Earth Day 2020 Resources. Want to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day on 4/22 with your K-12 gifted students? Check out these resources from PBS Learning Media as curated by the Kentucky Dept. of Education. Plus, check out Nova Education's Facebook page for a live conversation 4/22 @ 1 pm EDT, w/ Dr. Kirk Johnson, host of "Polar Extremes" and Sant Director of the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History. He discusses why we study the Earth and what we can do to protect it.

NASA STEM @ Home for Students Grades K-4. NASA is helping inspire the next generation of STEM professionals with these free, at-home, hands-on Build It! Solve It! Launch It! Play It! Color It! Read It! projects.

Ranger Rick. The National Wildlife Federation has opened all articles behind its paywall through June 30. This includes Educator’s Guides and Ranger Rick, Jr. Parent Reading Guides in English and Spanish.

Take a Hike Part 2: The Encyclopedia of Life. Lesson plans using The Encyclopedia of Life, an online “open-science” database and website of over one million species, with aggregated text, descriptions, video clips, and sound files from over 180 scientific organizations and scientists around the world. (Jeff Danielian, NAGC teacher resource specialist and editor of Teaching for High Potential, April 2014)

Virtual Camp Discovery. The Museum of Discovery and Science (MODS) in Fort Lauderdale hosts virtual learning videos with accompanying activities weekdays, with playback on YouTube. Content includes school program lessons, outreach classes, Makerspace activities, Slime of the Day, storytelling, early childhood education, science shows, and animal meet and greets.

 

History, Geography, & Social Studies

Smithsonian Channel Plus.  Offers a variety of content for free without a trial or subscription, including the popular 68-episode series "Aerial America," plus "The Day We Walked on the Moon," "Orangutan Jungle School," and "The Pacific War in Color."

 

Advanced Placement (AP) Supports