Free Spirit Publishing 1.800.735.7323

The Cluster Grouping Handbook: A Schoolwide Model

How to Challenge Gifted Students and Improve Achievement for All
Revised and Updated


In today’s standards-driven era, how can teachers motivate and challenge gifted students and ensure that all students reach their potential? This book provides a compelling answer: the Schoolwide Cluster Grouping Model (SCGM). The authors explain how the model differs from grouping practices of the past, and they present a roadmap for implementing, sustaining, and evaluating schoolwide cluster grouping. Readers will find a wealth of teacher-tested classroom strategies along with detailed information on identifying gifted students for clusters, gaining support from parents, and providing ongoing professional development.

The new edition offers identification and placement guidance for a wide variety of student ages and populations. It directs special attention toward empowering gifted English language learners. It shows teachers how to use the Depth of Knowledge (DOK) framework to differentiate learning tasks, and it offers new ideas for integrating technology into both professional development and student learning. A comprehensive glossary, references, and resources explain terminology and recommend assessments, books, organizations, and websites to explore.

This revised and updated edition of The Cluster Grouping Handbook is an essential resource for administrators, gifted education program directors, and classroom teachers. It offers a guide for schools to create a workable, defensible gifted program; to simplify teachers’ jobs; and to maximize learning for all students. Digital content includes customizable forms from the book and a PDF presentation; a free PLC/Book Study Guide is also available.
Read More


Paperback $42.99 83566 Paperback 83566 $42.99

View where you can purchase the eBook.

ISBN: 978-1-63198-356-6
Audience: Administrators, gifted coordinators, teachers grades K–8
Trim Size: 8.5" x 11"
Page Count: 224
Digital Content: Includes customizable forms from the book and a PDF presentation for professional development
Praise for The Cluster Grouping Handbook: A Schoolwide Model

“Dedicated teachers work tirelessly to differentiate effectively for the increasingly diverse groups of students in their general education classrooms, but they often lack the expertise and the support it takes to meet the needs of gifted students. In this revised edition of The Cluster Grouping Handbook, Brulles and Winebrenner provide both! Compelling, research-based rationale for the Schoolwide Cluster Grouping Model (SCGM); specific, practical advice for implementing and maintaining high-quality cluster grouping services in a variety of settings; professional learning strategies, including a complete plan for creating a SCGM PLC; model communications with parents and other stakeholders; and much, much more—it’s all here! I consider The Cluster Grouping Handbook to be an indispensable guide for all teachers and leaders who care about meeting the needs of gifted learners in the regular classroom, the setting where most gifted students spend the majority of their time and where educators have the greatest opportunity to improve learning for all!”—Sally Krisel, director of Innovative and Advanced Programs, Hall County School, Gainesville, Georgia, and past president, National Association for Gifted Children
The Cluster Grouping Handbook is a must-read for anyone working with gifted education! This updated resource provides the necessary tips and tools for any school or district to engage in successful implementation of the Schoolwide Cluster Grouping Model. The authors define SCGM across multiple settings and scenarios, providing step-by-step guidance for both new and experienced coordinators responsible for identification and services for advanced learners. In addition to the many sample forms and reproducibles, this handbook offers language for communication and support with parents and teachers, as well as realistic teaching strategies for differentiation and personalized learning opportunities so all students are challenged.”—Michelle Swain, M.Ed., director, gifted and advanced academic services, Round Rock Independent School District
“The book is AWESOME! Brulles and Winebrenner hit another home run with their revised and updated Cluster Grouping Handbook. The structure of the book is well thought out, the content reader friendly, and the reproducible pages cover all the bases for program implementation. It is a practitioner's best friend, a guide for administrators, and a parent's hope for services that make a difference. The inclusive tone of the book also champions equity, excellence, and a commitment to do what's in the best interest of students. This resource is a professional development treasure for the field of gifted education.”—Dr. Jaime A. Castellano, professor, Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, FL 
  • 2020 NAGC Book of the Year

Related Resources

A guide to identifying gifted students and creating equity and inclusion within gifted programs.
Cluster Grouping Handbook PLC
Start Seeing and Serving Underserved Gifted Students
Teaching Gifted Kids 2018
Teacher's Guide to Flexible Grouping
Making Differentiation A Habit Updated Edition
Advancing Differentiation Revised and Updated Edition

Free Spirit’s monthly e-newsletter, Upbeat News, is full of practical tips, free downloads, and special offers. Sign up today!