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The Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth (CTY) is pleased to be working with the Aditya Birla Education Trust (ABET) on several initiatives to identify and support the needs of bright young learners in India. This cooperation includes a new summer program in Mumbai, three workshops in February 2020 for Indian teachers on the characteristics of high-ability students, and the participation of students from Aditya Birla World Academy (ABWA) in CTY’s programs in the United States.

The new three-week summer day program at Aditya Birla Education Academy offers advanced learners in grades 5-9 the opportunity to immerse themselves in concentrated academic study among intellectual peers who share a love of learning. Four experienced CTY instructors and a veteran program manager will be present to teach courses regularly offered in CTY’s programs and work with the Aditya Birla organizers. CTY is collaborating with the Aditya Birla Education Academy (ABEA) on the program design, identifying and supporting the instructors, and licensing course content. ABEA is responsible for the administrative operation of its program, and families can contact ABEA directly to learn more about enrolling.

The ABEA educator workshops convened 150 elementary and secondary teachers in Mumbai and New Delhi in early February to learn about gifted education and the needs of high-ability students. Through these professional development sessions, teachers were able to gain perspective for their own classrooms and programs.

Looking to the future, both organizations hope to reach more students and educators in India and are also exploring cooperation on adolescent wellness and mental health, which ABET’s Chairperson Neerja Birla has championed.

Samuel Robfogel

Book cover Excellence Gaps In Education.Excellence gaps, those divides in achievement between academically advanced students of different racial groups, ethnicities, and income levels, aren’t just a problem for educators and advocates to fret over and solve, argues Jonathan A. Plucker, co-author of the new book “Excellence Gaps in Education” (Harvard Education Press, 2016). If we fail to close these significant achievement gaps among our brightest students, we’re hurting the nation’s workforce and economic development—and that affects everyone.  

“We’re getting most of our high-performing students from the same demographic groups that we always have, but those groups are shrinking,” says Plucker. “We have a culture and an economy with a huge thirst for talent, but if we don’t do something about the excellence gap we won’t meet these needs over the long term. We need as many talented people as we can get.”...Read more.

Picture of Robert Arena.Robert Arena, an online education executive with experience in course development and program marketing, has been named Senior Director of Online Programs at the Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth. At CTY, Arena will oversee all aspects of the center’s renowned online education for academically advanced pre-college students.

“Rob has a rare combination of technical expertise in online education, especially in courseware development for K-12, along with deep experience developing effective communications and campaigns,” said Elaine Hansen, executive director of CTY. “He is joining us at an important inflection point in the maturation of CTY Online Programs. We are confident that he will lead us in a quickly evolving educational environment to promote access and a secure future for CTY Online Programs aligned with CTY’s and Johns Hopkins’ mission.” ...Read more.

Those Lego bricks and wooden blocks littering your floor aren’t just pain-inducing clutter. These favorite toys are helping your kid achieve in school and beyond.

“When kids are building with blocks and Legos they’re using spatial reasoning skills. These skills not only have a relationship to academics, but to the fields you might gravitate to, and where you’re going to excel,” says Amy Shelton, a cognitive psychologist and director of research at the Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth (CTY). ...Read more.

A sensor to help emergency vehicles measure the speed and depth of flood waters. A microorganism that can decompose BPA. A hydrogel injection that can help patients heal after a heart attack.
The students behind these innovative concepts were among those selected to receive the CTY Cogito Research Award, a prize given annually to middle and high school students from around the world who demonstrate initiative, creativity, and promise in their STEM research-project proposals. The 10 winning individuals and/or teams will each receive a $599 grant and guidance from a mentor to develop their ideas. Winners will submit a final report on the results of their research later this year....Read more.
Feb 2020