25th GEC Anniversary Symposium
Education in China has increasingly being taken seriously and certainly in the world by the education sector, which is important and in fact an encouraging phenomenon. The Gifted Education Council was established in 1988. It has been promoting gifted education quietly which coincides with the 25th anniversary of the establishment of the association.
After numerous educational reforms in a quarter of a century, we are so grateful for professors from Mainland China, Taiwan and Hong Kong to come to express their comments so that we have the opportunity to know the latest reform and direction of gifted education.
The Gifted Education Council was founded in 1988. It is a non-profit charitable organisation. It aims to promote gifted education and training to nurture future leaders. GEC is the most historic training institution for the gifted & talented in Hong Kong. Over the past twenty-five years, GEC has co-organised large-scale events. It has set up the Hong Kong Mathematical Olympiad School, G.T. College (Primary and Secondary Sections). It has developed the Multiple Intelligences test and has published various books. It spares no effort to promote gifted education and has made a lot of contribution.
Mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan all stress the importance for training and educational development. Scholars from three places all have unique insights on education.
Prof. Jian-nong Shi
Prof. Jian-nong Shi is currently Professor at the Institute of Psychology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS).
He is a researcher in research fellow of cognition developmental psychology, a doctoral tutor, and President of the Asia-Pacific Federation on Giftedness (APFG). Prof. Shi’s research areas include gifted child psychology, intelligence and creative development and promotion, children's cognitive and social development, cross-cultural studies, etc. Prof. Shi’s numerous books include co-authored books such as Gifted Child Developmental Psychology and single-authored books, Gifted Children’s Path of Growth, Mathematics Enlightenment Around Children, Handbook of Creativity (translated), etc.
Prof. Lung-an Chen
Prof. Lung-an Chen is currently Professor of Shih Chien University, Professor at the Institute for Innovation & Development of Enterprises and the Institute of Family Education and Child Development.
He is the chairman of the Chinese Society for Innovation and an adjunct professor in a number of university research institutes. His research interests include creative development, teaching of creative thinking, child behavioural counseling, special education and gifted education-identification & assessment and so on. Prof. Chen’s major publications include the teaching of creative thinking (theory and practice), theory and application of intelligence education, creative family series, etc., a total of 104 books. Other papers include 380 articles and series, For the Children to Open a New Window audio book, Creative Thinking Series optical discs and 12 Golden Keys of Creativity-25 videos.
Prof. Rex Ip-fu Li
Prof. Rex Ip-fu Li is Visiting Professor in the Institute of Psychology at the Chinese Academy of Sciences and Founder of G.T. College
He is the founder of Hong Kong Mathematical Olympiad School and the Gifted Education Council. Prof. Li is committed to fostering gifted children and curriculum research. His publications include a Theory of Conceptual Intelligence: Thinking, Learning, Creativity and Giftedness, Education for 21st Century, Maximizing Potential: Lengthening and Strengthening Our Stride (Rex Li, Jimmy Chan, John Spinks Eds.) and other publications (co-authored) include Creative Teacher’s Manual, Children’s Mentors, Small Class Teaching Is Not a Dream, An International Perspective, Training the Gifted, etc.
Prof. Hon Wang
Prof. Hon Wang is currently Professor at South China Normal University, Deputy Director of the Ministry of Education for the’ National Training Plan’ Overseas Training Project Office.
She is a doctoral tutor, Executive Associate Dean of basic education training and of the Research Institute of South China Normal University and Deputy Director of Guangdong Provincial Primary and Secondary School Teachers’ Training Centre. Prof. Wang’s research areas include education economics, education finance, educational leadership and school development, and comparative education. Prof. Wang’s publications include 2001 China Education Development Report, Concise Education Economics Course, Education Finance Research, etc. She has published more than 50 academic papers, including more than 30 articles published in prestigious or core journals.
Several professors have been working hard in the education sector for a quarter of a century. How do they view their academic field?
Prof. Jian-nong Shi compared all aspects of Chinese gifted children’s cognition, memory, thinking, observation skills, personality characteristics and so on for his research. Clearly, China has now have established various forms of gifted education models. Prof. Shi has launched an in-depth investigation of the causes of gifted children, and gratifying results have been achieved. Many gifted Chinese graduate students have strong academic achievement.
Prof. Wang Hong opened up in a succinct manner by asking the audience a simple question: ‘Can gifted children’s teaching methods be applied to children of general intelligence? Do we need to rethink about traditional education in China? Why does the excellence of the United States education influence her deeply?’
A children’s mother in China would ask: ‘Were you good at school today?’
A children’s mother in the United States would ask: ‘What amazing things did you learn at school?’
A teacher in China teaches three-dimensional solids in a mere 5 minutes. An American teacher has to use three days to complete: painting from a three-dimensional perspective in nature, compare three-dimensional usage in games, three-dimensional concept to design products.
Prof. Chen-long An earnestly said: Education is to let people be him/herself. From the Chinese word of ‘me’, it reflects on the real meaning of education is to find oneself, being the true self. Prof. Chen’s presentation was full of wit and humor which let the audience have full of laughter.
Prof. Rex Ip-fu Li finally unraveled preliminary results of gifted education in Hong Kong: ‘Looking back 25 years ago, Hong Kong knew nothing about gifted education. With joint efforts from the community and the government on promotion, gifted education has been widely accepted and supported in society today. And there are signs of achievements. I hope that the future development can become more diversified and better’
In a quarter of a century, gifted education in Mainland China, Hong Kong and China all have their own directions. The accumulation of a certain amount of success is not easy. In the next 25 years, not only China as a great country’s stance is emerging but also shining internationally. In the foreseeable future, the education in Mainland China and Hong Kong must supplement one another. Mainland China and Hong Kong must seize the opportunity to develop their own strengths such as creative thinking, nurturing a child’s Multiple Intelligences to new heights.
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