Sat 20.09.2014 - 10:30-11:15 - Plečnik 4

Extra-Curricular Enriched Program for Gifted Students Individual Projects in Informatics and Robotics  Paper  Presentation  Video

Presenter: Jasna Cvetković - Lay

Chair: Taisir Subhi Yamin

This presentation consists of three parts. The first part gives a short overview of a general context of social values which enable or disable gifted individuals to progress and focus towards a socially positive direction, as well as those that support the development of important personality traits. There are two sides of the digital age – a progressive one and a problematic one. Probably there is no country, including Croatia, which has been spared of the cybercrime or dangerous games of “unguided” computer geniuses (“hacking”). Also, we give two examples of the absurdity in the formal education system: gifted second or third graders are not allowed to participate in official IT competitions because they are regarded as being too young, and the points achieved in IT competitions are not added to the points necessary for entering higher levels of education. In the same time, we have the incredible results that Croatian gifted students have been achieving for years on all national IT competitions and international IT Olympics.

In the second part, a few most important advantages of the interaction between a gifted child and a computer will be provided from the point of view of development psychology. The indicators of professionally applied research carried out on the population of young informaticians are presented, implying that formal education system is not supportive enough for their special educational needs, which has induced us to initiate an extra-curricular enriched programme for gifted students.

The third part shows the goals of extra-curricular enriched programme in our centre, together with an overview of workshop activities with gifted students in informatics and robotics. Tutors particularly encourage the creativity in gifted child’s individual programming projects. This will be presented through a power-point presentation of individual projects on constructing and programming objects in 3D space of virtual reality of a world net. Individual children projects on the programming of Lego educational sets - Lego WeDo and Lego Mindstorms - will be presented in the second enclosed presentation. With high-quality tutors, gifted first and second graders (age 6 - 8) acquire complex concepts and create programmes through programming with Lego Mindstorms EV3 system at a considerably higher level than the expected one.