Gifted and Talented Educators Recognized for Contribution to Research for Gifted and Talented Low-Income Students

Dr. Ann Robinson celebrates the graduation of Dr. Monica Meadows with her daughters.

A gifted and talented education professor and alumnus have been honored for their part in a book that discusses how to identify and help gifted and talented students from low-income households.

Dr. Ann Robinson, director of the Jodie Mahony Center for Gifted Education at UA Little Rock, and Dr. Monica Meadows, a two-time UA Little Rock graduate who is a gifted and talented facilitator for Pulaski County Special School District, wrote a book chapter in the 2020 book “Unlocking Potential: Identifying and Serving Gifted Students from Low-Income Households,” edited by Tamra Stambaugh and Paula Olszewski-Kubilius.

The National Association for Gifted Children selected the book for the 2021 Book of the Year Award in the Scholar Category.

The NAGC Book of the Year award was created to recognize excellence in books published in gifted and talented education. Meanwhile, the Scholar Category recognizes books that offer an advanced understanding of contemporary research on gifted persons and gifted education.

“The book as a whole talks about unlocking the potential of gifted and talented students from low-income backgrounds,” Meadows said. “The goal of the book deals with evidence-based identification practices, tools, and strategies for finding low-income gifted students and how to support their needs. It’s looking for kids who are often overlooked in the identification process for gifted and talented students.”

The NAGC Publications Committee oversees the annual Book of the Year Awards, and every book that is submitted is reviewed by several members who bring expertise to a specific area: scholar, practitioner, or parent/caregiver. All of the winners will be recognized during the National Association for Gifted Children ceremony in November.

“These outstanding publications exemplify NAGC’s commitment to promoting research-based books that aim to develop all our gifted and talented children. Trustworthy and comprehensive books such as these will greatly benefit our parents, teachers, and communities as they work diligently to meet the growing needs of their gifted learners,” said Lauri Kirsch, NAGC Board President.

Dr. Monica Meadows presents her research on gifted and talented research at a conference.
Dr. Monica Meadows presents her research on gifted and talented research at a conference.

Meadows’ and Robinson’s chapter in the book offers educators and parents instructional strategies to identify and motivate gifted students in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) fields.

“The chapter Dr. Robinson and I wrote includes instructional strategies for low-income students in the STEM fields,” Meadows said. “We incorporated a lot of examples from evidence-based programs that have data to back them up for kids from low-income households. The STEM fields offer a great way to spot kids that have exceptional abilities, especially kids whose talents may get overlooked in the core subjects.”

A first-generation college graduate, Meadows holds a Bachelor of Science in Education degree from the University of Central Arkansas. Additionally, she earned a Master of Education degree in gifted and talented education and a Doctorate of Education in educational administration and supervision with an emphasis in gifted and talented education from UA Little Rock.

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