Investing in gifted education will in the long run benefit all parties concerned: 

  1. Children – Gifted children have advanced learning needs. When the regular curriculum fails to meet these needs, gifted children often become bored and may engage in disruptive behaviours, under-achieve, or absent themselves frequently. Some may develop socioemotional or adjustment problems. A disenchanted, disruptive gifted child presents challenges to the teacher – we have had cases of gifted children repeatedly misbehaving and disturbing the classroom. In other cases, parents may transfer the child to a school where his/her needs will be better met. Taking steps to meet the needs of gifted children may improve their academic performance as well as their school adjustment. 
  2. Teachers – Gifted children who are bored often withdraw academically, producing incomplete work and shoddy notes and under-performing on exams. In the absence of suitable challenges, they may engage in negative behaviours. Teachers will benefit from a schoolwide mechanism to manage gifted children. 
  3. Schools – A schoolwide gifted education programme allows gifted children to explore areas of interest in a hands-on, challenging environment. Often, this leads to renewed interest in school, a decreased frequency or intensity of behaviour problems stemming from boredom, and may even translate to better performance in subjects outside the child’s interest. As well, a schoolwide gifted education programme lets teachers identify gifts in children who may not excel on tests, but who have other important abilities. In short, a gifted education programme may lead to better-adjusted, better-performing students. 
  4. The Nation – At an estimate of 13 million, gifted children constitute a vast human resource for India. Within the current scenario, many of these children from disadvantaged backgrounds may never be identified. Gifted children from affluent families may be chanelled into a narrow range of career opportunities, or, worse, may choose to go abroad where there are more opportunities for them to explore their areas of interest. It is crucial that we act as a nation to identify and nurture our gifted children: to help them to develop their potential and channel it in ways that benefit society.

Children meet at the ALC for 3-5 hours during weekends. They are exposed to a broad curricular framework in multiple disciplines, and learn about topics in Science, Technology, Mathematics, Engineering, Design and Humanities. They are also introduced to tools for advanced problem solving, and work on a project of their choice. Activities at ALC are aimed to develop deeper competence, and to help children discover career paths leading them to expertise in their areas of interest. Children get to learn alongside other highly self-motivated students from various schools and discuss big ideas in different subject areas. Special events (including residential workshops) are also held at NIAS, and children are treated to exclusive interactions inside departments at IISc, guest lectures, etc.

There is currently no fee to join the Advanced Learning Centres. We are grateful to the schools, individuals and organizations supporting the programme.

This is a continuous programme extending from Std. 5th onwards, up to Std. 10th.