Embedding Night of the Notables© in Major Curriculum Theories
Type II skill enhancements
Type III: investigations into eminence: outcomes
© G. Smith 1997
Three major concepts in this study:
Discovery learning stages:
3. symbolic representations and experiences
- identify symbols of fame. power, wealth, leadership
- establish criteria to rate the famous
- devise a fictional interview with a deceased eminent person
- compose a portfolio on an eminent person.
- devise a personal career path for yourself
- define the goals that would fully realise your particular talents.
- The characteristics of giftedness that lead to eminence in life.
- The methods by which individuals reached eminence.
- The function of temperament and emotions along the path to eminence.
- The effects of eminence and fame on selected individuals.
- Modifying the effects of rejection, illness, trauma and hurt in the lives of high achievers.
- The conditions one can control to optimise one's path to eminence.
- The factors hindering someone along the path to eminence.
- The changes produced in individuals as a result of achieving eminence.
- The value of preferring certain gifts that lead to eminence in selected cultures.
observing, classifying, measuring, arranging in chronological order, generalising, evaluating achievements, judging historians' assessments of achievements, identifying causes and influences on achieving eminence.
interviewing, note-taking, Internet searching, interpreting raw data, assessing anecdotal details, separating fact and fiction, combining data from many sources, reporting on research, writing an annotated Report of Research.
- - Critical Thinking Skills
- dealing with conflicting accounts, preferring primary sources, hypothesising for missing data, recognising bias, recognising when facts are adequate and correct.
- - Problem Solving
- selecting reliable evidence, assessing opinions, matching evidence, clarifying historical dilemmas, meeting requirements of the genre selected for Report.
- Creative Thinking Skills
- Fluency: generating and reconciling multiple sources
- Flexibility: making connections; seeing relativities, ranking views
- Originality: imagining historical scenarios, devising apt title for report
- Elaboration: drawing new conclusions, making personally relevant applications, defining criteria for eminence.
- Risk Taking: embarking on a more complex assessment task, face the challenge of adult inquirers, self assessment, become the Notable for one hour.
- Evaluate the criteria for nomination to the Booker Award, Nobel Prizes, etc.
- Plot one person's path to eminence.
- Hypothesise about domains for eminence in the 21st century.
- Perform as an eminent person for one hour in Night of the Notables.
- Present a biography of the chosen eminent person.
- Reveal an as-yet unseen achievement by the chosen Notable.
- Develop a promotional brief or video or media event for a chosen Notable.
- Plot your own path to eminence on a ladder: aims, goals, achievements, vocational path.
The study of eminence in the Night of the Notables program is differentiated for gifted by selecting several options from these activities in these four categories:
- beyond mere summarising
- more substantial report of research
- more complex content
- synthesised data
- sorts fictions from facts
- beyond narrative - categorised by given Headings
- prominence given to contemporary opinions
- inclusion of own evaluative statements
- hypotheses: Fictional Scenario exercise
What are characteristics of eminent people? (Hints: gifted, persistent, mentored, trained, opportunistic/grasped situations to their advantage, right for their times, offered gifted valued in their times & society, recognised early, could cope with being different, could perform on cue, creative, uninhibited, psychologically stable, etc.)
ANALOGY Eminence is a flowering of personality. But roses grow among thorns.
ORGANISED RANDOM SEARCH How do people get into Who's Who lists?
SKILLS OF SEARCH List and review the writings and achievements of one notable person.
TOLERANCE OF AMBIGUITY
Pretend you are XXX in a real situation. How would you act? How did he or she in fact act there?
CHANGE List changes people made to your discoveries/inventions/life story/achievement.
ADJUSTMENT TO DEVELOPMENT What failures, rejections did you overcome in your path to eminence?
STUDY CREATIVE PROCESS
EXAMPLE OF HABIT "1% inspiration"
EVALUATE SITUATIONS Imagine and report how your famous person rated his or her own successes.
Study a gallery of paintings by your notable artist to judge why history includes him in an artistic Period correctly.
Describe the tone of a major speech your notable gave (e.g., the Gettysburg Address, "I have a dream", acceptance of Nobel Prize, etc.
A moral dilemma to open discussion about seeking eminence
Dr Marc Bannerman had run up so many debts he knew he could not borrow any more. His bank manager's call just now on this matter stiffened his resolve to do something soon. But he would have to bend his principles. If only a rich widow ...
Marc had a lot to lose though. He was bright and famous already. He had easily gained straight A's at school and the University Medal in his last year at medical school. He was widely liked and respected. He had friends he could call on. He had a lot more to enjoy.
Marc now faced a crucial dilemma and he felt quite unprepared for it. He envied others who could skip through the minefields of life with so much ease. They got by without harming others or their own integrity so why couldn't he? His professional reputation was his claim to fame and his cover too, he mused.
It all happened quite suddenly really. The opportunity he only dreamed of now presented itself. He could pay off the debts and get the bastards off his back at the same time. This was indeed a once in a life time opportunity - he could relieve her pain (and this was the crux of it) and get her inheritance. No one would know - the professional bodies seldom tried a leading surgeon and he had friends there anyway. He must take this chance! He'd keep his name and his fame and get no blame.
It happened so easily really - it was an ordinary day in the wards and as luck would have it, his last round ended with Mrs Ainsworth. The matron would be tired and preoccupied at meal time. He could just raised the dose to 100 ml. and Mrs Ainsworth would sleep soundly all afternoon and never wake again. His problems would be solved. Life offered these little breaks and who was he to refuse Lady Luck?