The Gifted Child Institute, held at Roeper June 18-22, 1956, led to a plan that encompassed the identification of gifted children, a discussion of the meaning of learning, and the organizing principles of the curriculum. The participants were interesting in developing motivation (how to nurture a love of learning) and self-awareness (how to have a healthy emotional balance). The curriculum was summarized overall as a study of “people and their problems.” It was a broad approach, studying cultures around the world through their myths, technology, and aesthetics using writing, experimentation, critical thinking, and hands-on projects. The explicit goal was to understand the complexity of the world and to find a means of contributing to its betterment. Attention was paid to heightening awareness of gifted girls and expanding their social and professional options, as well as ensuring that students of all races and ethnicities would be identified and admitted to the school.
After the Institute, the Proceedings were collected and printed, thanks to the generous assistance of the Birmingham (MI) Public School district, and made available to anyone who was interested.