Insights from SMPY's greatest former child prodigies: Drs. Terence ("Terry") Tao and Lenhard ("Lenny") Ng reflect on their talent development
If the academic needs of the most profoundly gifted students can be met through the use of existing educational practices, specialists in gifted education can assume that the educational needs of less able, but still academically talented, students can also be met by using some combination of these strategies as well. This paper illustrates the feasibility and effectiveness of utilizing an individualized educational approach with gifted students by highlighting the unique educational paths taken by two of the very ablest math prodigies identified by Dr. Julian Stanley through the Study of Mathematically Precocious Youth (SMPY) since its founding in 1971. Interviews with Dr. Terence ("Terry") Tao and Dr. Lenhard ("Lenny") Ng, now both highly successful mathematicians, are presented in their entirety, demonstrating that even among the very ablest, strategies can be tailored effectively to the characteristics of each student through a combination of creative planning and the cooperation of parents, educators, and mentors.
Muratori, MC; Stanley, JC; Ng, L; Ng, J; Gross, MUM; Tao, T; Tao, B
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