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COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL Every Classroom Is Diverse Imagine you are the teacher of an early childhood classroom in which every child in the group is exceptionally bright. What topics or materials do you think the children would find most meaningful and engaging? How would you pace the curriculum? Even though every child in this imaginary class- room is exceptionally bright, it’s difficult to answer these questions without getting to know the children first. The diversity of personalities, interests, behaviors, and learning styles among exceptionally bright children is just as varied as the diversity among all children. Characteristics of Exceptionally Bright Young Children Some exceptionally bright children are easy to spot. They may tell us directly, “I know that already!” Or they may demonstrate, through their actions and words, that they have knowledge and skills beyond those of most of the other children. For example, when you read a picture book about a rainy day and ask the class, “Where does rain come from?” One child shouts out, “From evaporation!” This is no doubt an exceptionally bright child who not only 7 COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL C hap ter 1 Characteristics of Exceptionally Bright Children