Cassie, a gifted musician. Socio-cultural and educational perspectives related to the development of musical understanding in gifted adolescents
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This qualitative study focuses on the intrinsic value of musical understanding and how it is influenced by sociocultural and educational factors shaping the development of a gifted adolescent. Using Gross's (1993) model of case studies of exceptionally gifted children, the student was identified for her innate abilities, and studied using the Maker (1982) model within a context of cultural and social values, support from significant others, and motivation. The complex interplay of these factors have been discussed in a case study by Ho and Chong (2008) where the need for further studies on the development of musical gifts were identified, particularly within a specific cultural context. In this study, the subject demonstrated a deep musical understanding using the skills of critical thinking and problem solving in performance, and the ability to synthesise musical ideas in analysis tasks. Her socio-cultural environment influenced the development of skills such as written and oral communication, creativity, self-direction, leadership, adaptability, responsibility and global awareness. These skills have been identified in a survey of researchers, curriculum specialists, administrators and teachers in the Harvard Education Letter (Waiser, 2008) as being necessary for the 21st Century. This case study suggests ways in which these skills may be infused within classroom music practices.
Australian Journal of Music Education
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Creative Arts, Media and Communication Curriculum and Pedagogy