Honorable Educator: <br />Dr. Donald Treffinger<br />University of Buffalo, Advanced Graduate Certificate: Gifted Education—Online <br />September 2011<br />Presented by Andrea Yawman<br />
A rock is something stable, firm and dependable. <br />Treffinger’s work spans 50+ years.<br />His work builds on others before him.<br />A rock can act as a foundation.<br />Treffinger is referenced numerous times in other researchers’ work.<br />Prolific author and collaborator.<br />A rock can yield untold riches and beauty.<br />Creativity is one of Treffinger’s main focuses. Creative minds can yield untold riches and beauty.<br />Why a rock?<br />
Dr. Treffinger’s Background:Stepping Stones on His Career Path<br />Background<br />
Stepping Stones on Dr. Treffinger’s Career Path<br />Born March 9, 1941<br />Attended public schools in Buffalo, NY<br />BS in Sociology, 1961 from Buffalo State College<br />MS, PhD in Educational Psychology from Cornell University<br />Taught at the elementary, junior high and university levels<br />Professor at Purdue University, University of Kansas and Buffalo State College<br />Currently president of the Center for Creative Learning, Inc. in Sarasota, Florida<br />
Notable Accomplishments:Gemstones of Dr. Treffinger’s Career<br />
Gemstones of Career<br />Distinguished Service Award, NAGC—1984<br />E. Paul Torrance Creativity Award, NAGC—1995<br />Risorgimento Award for contribution to creativity, Destination ImagiNation—2005<br />Creativity Research Award, World Council on Gifted and Talented Children—2005<br />Honorary Doctor of Laws degree, University of Winnipeg—2009 <br />At the 2011 NAGC annual convention, The Legacy Series will tape “The Creative Voice of Don Treffinger.” The Legacy Series creates a permanent record in image and voice of individuals who have dedicated themselves to most able learners.<br />
Presence in the Field<br />Dr. Treffinger is known in the field for:<br />Assessing and nurturing creativity<br />Creative Problem Solving<br />Talent Development, specifically the Levels of Service Approach<br />He has authored or co-authored 60 books and monographs; written or co-written more than 350 articles<br />Member of the Gifted Child Quarterly Editorial Advisory Board<br />
Historical Significance:contributions to many layers of research<br />
1. Assessing and Nurturing Creativity<br />Creativity must be nurtured to help people deal with change; it’s a “must have” 21st century skill.<br />Non-debatable: we can teach people to be creative.<br />Old question: How creative are you? <br />New question: How are you creative?<br />Other new questions: <br />What works best for whom, under what conditions?<br />How do we differentiate?<br />How do we personalize?<br />There is no “one way” to assess creativity<br />
2. Creative Problem Solving<br />Developed in 1950’s by Alex Osborn<br />Has changed from linear/sequential steps into a flexible/dynamic process<br />This flexibility has helped to expand the power of CPS; start the process where you need to; revisit parts of the process<br />
Creative problem solving continued<br />1. UNDERSTAND THE PROBLEM/OPPORTUNITY/CHALLENGE<br />Mess Finding<br />look for many messes and articulate a broad, brief, beneficial goal, then choose which mess to work on<br />Data Finding<br />look at the mess from many points of view using sources of data; decide what part of data demonstrates the heart of the mess<br />Problem Finding<br />invite ideas free of criteria; then find a way to best state the problem: “How might we do something to achieve our goal?”<br />2. GENERATE IDEAS<br />Idea Finding<br />invite varied, unusual, unique possibilities; then choose ideas that seem to have the most appeal<br />3. PREPARING FOR ACTION<br />Solution Finding<br />make good ideas into the best solutions using specific criteria: Cost, Acceptance, Resources, Time, Space<br />Acceptance Finding<br />create a plan of action to bridge solutions to actions<br />
3. Talent Development<br />Level of Service Approach<br />An inclusive approach, recognizing that significant talent can be missed when gifted programs rely on cut-off scores <br />
How His Research Tweaked my Brain:Discovering Riches in the Research<br />
Discovering Riches in the Research<br />Creativity<br /><ul><li>Previously I thought of people as being creative or not.
We can teach creativity—powerful notion!</li></ul>2. Creative Problem Solving<br /><ul><li>Powerful, dynamic
Can be used in so many situations: school, business, home, relationships
A crucial life skill—let’s teach this instead of busy work and test prep!</li></ul>3. Talent Development<br /><ul><li>This speaks to my inner conviction that as teachers we need to bring out the best in everyone—the struggling student, the on-grade-level student, the gifted student.
Treffinger’s Level of Services Approach addresses the dilemma of using a cut-off test score for inclusion in gifted programs.
The Level of Services Approach also embodies Dr. Callard-Szulgit’s quote, “What works for gifted, works for all;” all students are part of the model.</li></li></ul><li>What would I like to see Dr. Treffinger do next?<br />
It’s time to form an educational system that makes sense for all children. Let’s create a system where all children actually learn as deeply and fully as possible.<br />Put together a “dream team” to mesh their ideas and create a Symposium by Skype<br />This “dream team” would reach out to lawmakers and policymakers across the country<br />Possible team members and their roles:<br />Dr. Treffinger: What is really important for the 21st century? Creativity!<br />Carol Tomlinson: Differentiation is a must for all classrooms; what would this look like and how can we make it happen?<br />Ellen Winner: Advocate for the gifted and for elevating the level of instruction for all<br />A Testing Expert: Describe what tests can and cannot do; why our focus needs to change<br />An Economic Guru: Let’s make decisions that truly support learning and show how proper decisions can save money; let’s choose to allocate our money so that it supports LEARNING; do not distribute just to certain states/districts that can jump through the current hoops <br />The Dream for the Future<br />
Davis, G.A., Rimm, S. B., Siegle, D. (2011). Education of the Gifted and Talented, 6th edition. Boston: Pearson.<br />Dr. Donald J. Treffinger: Introduction to Creative Problem Solving [video]. (1993) (Available from GCT Inc., PO Box 6448, Mobile AL 36660-0448)<br />Green, N. (June 2009). An Interview with Dr. Don Treffinger: More Than Cupcakes: Supporting Your Child’s Creative Potential. Retrieved from http://www.nagc.org/php_june09/web/Interview_files/Interview.pdf<br />Henshon, S.E., (March 22, 2006). Creative exploration: an interview with Don Treffinger. Retrieved from http://www.thefreelibrary.com/Creative+exploration%3A+an+interview+with+Don+Treffinger<br />Treffinger, D. J., ed. (2004). Creativity and Giftedness. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press. <br />Treffinger, D. J. Talents and Gifts: The Levels of Service (LoS) Approach. Retrieved from http://creativelearning.com/talent-development/about-los.html<br />Treffinger, D. J. (August 23, 2011). The Exciting New Challenge of Talents. Retrieved from http://creativelearning.com/component/easyblog/entry/the-exciting-new-challenge-of-talents.html<br />Resources<br />