Higher Learning Potential
At CWLC we define High Learning Potential (HLP) as those:
- Who have been identified as academically more able at school.
- Who have the potential to achieve through a wide range of abilities in academic subjects, sport, the arts and leadership.
All children, whether gifted, bright, average or below average, deserve the chance to lead happy and satisfying lives. HLP children have a great thirst for knowledge and it is vital that this need is recognised as early as possible so that parents and teachers can give them plenty of opportunities to develop their natural ability in order for their confidence and enthusiasm to flourish.
At CWLC we try to meet the needs of all of its students.
Recognising a Child with High Learning Potential A child with HLP may present the following traits:
- Extensive vocabulary, early or avid reader
Typically child self-taught to read (but not all – especially dual or multiple exceptional children)
- Keen powers of observation, vivid imagination
Connects concepts in an unusual and unexpected way
- Sense of humour
May be mature beyond years, odd or inappropriate
- Compulsive communicator
If you won’t listen, they will talk to someone else
- Inability to sit still
Fidgeting, fiddling, a master of origami and tinkering
- Ability to multi-task
The sort that never looks as if they are paying attention, but then gets high marks in tests
- Poor handwriting
Classic case of the hand not being able to keep up with the brain
- Leader rather than follower
Hates to be one of the crowd – would rather be by themselves than “a sheep”
- Does well in tests but class work less impressive
Bright children tend to have excellent memories (although a poor short-term memory is a common issue)
- Questions everything
Including the teacher, awkward questions a speciality!
- Unusual hobbies or interests
May have a vast and detailed knowledge of something unexpected, or a wide range of interests
- Hates to lose or be wrong
May refuse to take part rather than risk failure
- Difficulty in making or maintaining friendships
Potential friendship group is smaller
Identification at CWLC
At CWLC students with HLP are identified using Cognitive Ability Tests (CAT) on entry in year 7. These tests assess verbal, non-verbal and quantitative skills. They, along with other subject assessments, help develop a picture of individuals at CWLC. Students with a score of 120+ (100 considered the average) in all disciplines would be expected to perform at a high level in academic subjects.
As a school we support students with HLP by:
- Monitoring and tracking progress of identified students, working closely with departments and subject leaders.
- Teachers differentiate tasks so there is appropriate challenge.
- Extra-curricular opportunities are offered.
- Individual mentoring will take place at key points.
- A focus on opportunities post 16.
Supporting students with High Learning Potential
Children develop skills at different rates. It is important that they have the opportunity to flourish confidently. Your role is to manage the stresses and pressures they face. You can support this by:
- Encouraging them to read widely.
- Developing their extra-curricular experiences.
- Providing opportunities that develop and broaden interest and strengths.
- Balance your child’s opportunities and experiences so that they can become well rounded, confident individuals.