Category Archives: Identification

How to Recognize a Gifted Child

gtchat 05092017 Recognize

Recognizing giftedness in a child often depends on how one defines ‘gifted’ and whether you are considering it educationally or psychologically. Terms such as ‘precocious’ – having developed certain abilities or proclivities at an earlier age than usual – or unusual qualities such as being hyper-attentive to adult conversations may signal giftedness.

Although an almost universal measure of entrance to gifted programs by schools, IQ scores are not the sole indicator of giftedness; and parents and teachers may rely on them too much. IQ scores serve as part of the identification process, but don’t tell the whole story. Too many schools approach IQ scores like their zero-tolerance policies; score one point below the 130 cutoff and services are denied.

It is well accepted within the gifted community that a student can be gifted and exhibit learning differences at the same time. However, this may come as a surprise to school personnel who are not familiar with the concept of twice-exceptional children.

In recent years, it has become glaringly apparent that we must do a better job at identifying low-ses, minority, and ELL students for gifted programs. The NAGC’s new campaign reminds us, ‘Giftedness Knows no Boundaries’. Universal screenings are absolutely necessary; no exceptions. Gifted identification needs to be de-mythologized and the ‘whole child’ must be supported.

Gifted students can be geniuses at going undercover … aloof, disinterested, unengaged, or oppositional. Though they may excel in elementary school, they will go into hiding in later years to avoid bullying or to ‘fit in’.

It is important that all stakeholders in gifted education be able to recognize a gifted child; regardless of achievement, age, socio-economic status, native language, or minority status. A transcript of this and all #gtchats may be found at Storify.

Global #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented  is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Tuesdays at 8E/7C/6M/5P in the U.S. and Wednesdays at Noon NZST/10 AM AEST/1 AM UK  to discuss current topics in the gifted community and meet experts in the field. Transcripts of our weekly chats can be found at Storify. Our Facebook Page provides information on the chat and news & information regarding the gifted community. Also, checkout our Pinterest Page and Playlist on YouTube.

Head Shot 2014-07-14  About the author: Lisa Conrad is the Moderator of Global #gtchat Powered        by TAGT and Social Media Manager of the Global #gtchat Community. She is a longtime  advocate for gifted children and also blogs at  Gifted Parenting Support. Lisa can be contacted at: gtchatmod@gmail.com

Links:

Gifted Homeschoolers Forum: Defining Giftedness

Perceptions Mired in Mythology

Remarks at the Washington State Legislature Senate Early Learning & K-12 Education Committee (pdf)

Giftedness Knows No Boundaries (website)

See Me! (YouTube :15)

Why Gifted May Not be What You Think: Michelle Barmazel at TEDxHGSE (TED Talk 6:50)

Is Your Child Gifted? What to Look for and Why You Should Know

Is My Child Gifted?

UK: Just What is Gifted & Talented?

Giftedness Defined

Intellectual Giftedness https://goo.gl/ZKX1ZC

What is Highly Gifted?  Exceptionally Gifted?  Profoundly Gifted?  & What Does It Mean? 

In Pictures: How To Tell If Your Child’s Gifted Gifted Development Center: Is Your Child Gifted? (Quiz)

Characteristics of Giftedness Scale (pdf  checklist)

How to Identify Gifted Students in Your Classroom

11 Early Signs Your Kid Will Be Smart

How to Determine if Your Child is Gifted

Sprite’s Site: 2E Is

Sprite’s Site: Beginning the Journey – Gifted 101

Cybraryman’s Gifted Identification

Photo courtesy of Pixabay   CC0 Public Domain 

Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad

Creating Learning Environments that Invite Play

gtchat 05022017 Play

Play-based learning is how children learn about the world and develop life skills through play and gifted children are no different in their need for play. Children develop cognitive and social skills by playing with other children; both age-mates and intellectual peers. Play helps children mature emotionally and gain the self-confidence to try new experiences. Gifted children may experience asynchronous development and productive play can help ease transitions in many cases.

Play is essential to developing imagination, creativity, dexterity, and physical strength. It is important for healthy brain and neurological development and  allows children to express feelings about their life. Play during early childhood engages a child to interact with their environment. Adults who interact with gifted children know how important play is to their development.

Not all play is created equal; children can play alone, play along-side others without interaction, or play by imitating another playmate. As children begin to play with others, they start to engage and learn cooperation and collaboration. Gifted children should be given the freedom to choose which type of play they are most comfortable with; even when it may be to have alone time.

A rich play environment for children will incorporate choices; what, when and where to play. It will provide opportunities for kids to invent and extend their own play. Rich play environments incorporates varied places to play; inside or outside, local or away. The experiences do not need to be costly choices. Many times a trip to a park or hiking trail will provide an enriching experience for a curious mind.

Teachers can direct play be providing resources for play; such as art materials, legos, or ipads. Elementary teachers often create various ‘stations’ from which children can choose activities; like Daily 5. Teachers can offer students mentoring opportunities when appropriate to the activity.

Can the idea of ‘play’ have relevance at the secondary level? Although it may not be thought of as ‘play’ per se; secondary students need time to follow their passions. They often complain about the strict regimen of high school; they need to experience periods of choice. Adulthood is about choices; high school students need to experience how to make and accept consequences of their choices.

Gifted children thrive when allowed to create their own learning experiences and these often begin as play. Many of our greatest success stories begin through the simple act of playing. The transcript of this chat may be found at Storify.

 

Global #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented  is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Tuesdays at 8E/7C/6M/5P in the U.S. and Wednesdays at Noon NZST/10 AM AEST/1 AM UK  to discuss current topics in the gifted community and meet experts in the field. Transcripts of our weekly chats can be found at Storify. Our Facebook Page provides information on the chat and news & information regarding the gifted community. Also, checkout our Pinterest Page and Playlist on YouTube.

Head Shot 2014-07-14  About the author: Lisa Conrad is the Moderator of Global #gtchat Powered        by TAGT and Social Media Manager of the Global #gtchat Community. She is a longtime  advocate for gifted children and also blogs at  Gifted Parenting Support. Lisa can be contacted at: gtchatmod@gmail.com

Links:

Play Hints at Who We Are

Play and Children’s Learning in the Classroom

The Role of Play in Learning

What is the Teacher’s Role in Supporting Play in Early Childhood Classrooms?

Learning and Developing through Play (pdf)

The Cognitive Benefits of Play: Effects on the Learning Brain

Einstein Never Used Flashcards How Children Learn & Why They Need to Play More/ Memorize Less (Amazon)

Play in Education: The Role and Importance of Creative Learning 

Learning through Play

Balancing Child-Directed and Teacher-Directed Approaches

Why Kids Need to Play J

Different Types of Play

The Importance of Play in Promoting Healthy Child Development

How to Enhance Intuitive Science Knowledge in Infants and Toddlers (Amazon)

AUS: Play Based Learning (pdf)

Sprite’s Site: Gifted @ Play: Calculate Your Leisure Profile

Jake Labazzi Playing Anthropology (YouTube 4:35)

How to Recognize, Support and Teach Musically Gifted Kids

Joey Alexander – Giant Steps (In-Studio Performance) (YouTube 10:36)

Batik’s Brain Pickings: Why I am Using PBL to Design Professional Development (Knows and Need to Knows List)

LEGO® and the Gifted Visual-Spatial Child

Learning to Play at Nerd Camp

Ditch the Worksheets, Become a Picasso, a Kindergartener, and a Gifted@play! 

Gifted Children Need the Gift of Play

Learning through Play

The Games Our Children Play

Photo courtesy of Pixabay  CC0 Public Domain

Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad

Coloring Outside the Lines – Growing Up Gifted

gtchat 04252017 Coloring

Growing up gifted has often been viewed through the elementary school prism that everyone should ‘stay within the lines’ when coloring, but a gifted child may want to do anything but … they yearn to color outside those lines! They march to their own drummer.

So … this begs the question … do societal attitudes affect the decision made by parents or an individual to forego confirming potential giftedness? Parents often make decisions based on prior personal experience; wanting to shield their children from negative experiences. Older gifted children want to ‘fit in’ and may attempt to avoid identification as gifted. There are also many gifted students who will not care about societal attitudes and go on to create their own path.

Being identified as gifted as a very young child can affect age-peer relations. Unfortunately, some kids can be cruel. Gifted kids may be singled out for being different. When young gifted kids are bullied for their ability, they may seek out older intellectual peers.

Negative aspects of identification include adults having unrealistic expectations concerning a child’s abilities and putting pressure on them to achieve. Gifted children are the subjects of many myths; adults and teachers may not understand apparent inconsistencies in ability and behaviors.

There are positive effects of being identified as gifted. Identification can be the basis for accommodations and interventions in gifted individual education plans. It allows for exploration of possibilities in areas where a gifted child can achieve their passions.

Is giftedness something that continues across the lifespan? Gifted children grow up to be gifted adults and this shouldn’t be based solely on achievement. The role of environment cannot be minimized; it’s effect must be understood. Many people do not realize they are gifted until adulthood.

Being identified as gifted as a child can affect how someone parents their own children. Many parents base their parenting style on how they responded to being considered gifted or not. Those who were identified as gifted may have a better understanding of what it means for their child.

It is important for adults who work with gifted children to fully understand the nature of giftedness and to not have expectations based on myths or incorrect information. A transcript of this chat may be found at Storify.

Global #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented  is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Tuesdays at 8E/7C/6M/5P in the U.S. and Wednesdays at Noon NZST/10 AM AEST/1 AM UK  to discuss current topics in the gifted community and meet experts in the field. Transcripts of our weekly chats can be found at Storify. Our Facebook Page provides information on the chat and news & information regarding the gifted community. Also, checkout our Pinterest Page and Playlist on YouTube.

Head Shot 2014-07-14  About the author: Lisa Conrad is the Moderator of Global #gtchat Powered        by TAGT and Social Media Manager of the Global #gtchat Community. She is a longtime  advocate for gifted children and also blogs at  Gifted Parenting Support. Lisa can be contacted at: gtchatmod@gmail.com

 

Links:

Creating Contexts for Individualized Learning in Early Childhood Education (pdf)

Gifted Children Have Special Needs, Too

Development of “out of the box” Thinking in Young Children

Raising Children Who Are as Good as They Are Smart

AUS: Recognition of Giftedness in Early Years of School Perspectives of Teachers, Parents & Children (pdf)

Giftedness Across the Lifespan: Do Gifted Children = Gifted Adults?

Giftedness Across a Lifespan

Bright Adults (Great Potential Press)

Off the Charts! Asynchrony and the Gifted Child (pdf, preview)

Many Faces of Gifted (pdf, PP)

The Two-Edged Sword of Compensation: How the Gifted Cope with Learning Disabilities (pdf)

Embracing Our Exceptionalities, Eccentricities & Sensitivities

Can I Just be Not Gifted for a Little 

Photo courtesy of Pixabay    CC0 Public Domain

Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.

What is Twice Exceptional?

gtchat 07192016 Twice Exceptional

 

Twice-exceptional (2E) children are students identified as gifted, but with subtle or pronounced learning disabilities. It is a determination that can lead to frustration and lack of self-confidence. Although often defined as a disability first in most school districts, it is important to consider strengths over deficits when accommodating twice-exceptional students. Their full potential cannot be realized if their potential is never acknowledged. It is incumbent on educators to recognize that the very nature of twice-exceptionality allows for one condition to mask the other and prevent appropriate intervention. How many students are languishing in special education programs while their intellect and talents are ignored?

2E kids can show strength in many areas and yet have difficulty with organizational skills or task completion. Often, there are stark discrepancies between verbal and written work; but extraordinary task commitment when presented with something which interests them. This useful list of characteristics (pdf) provided by Jo Freitag  of Gifted Resources in Australia is long. However, as Tracy Fisher points out that when identifying 2E, “You expect to see ANYTHING and nothing. It’s not as simple as to provide a list of characteristics … GT kids can mask issues.” An interesting point made by Ruth Lyons, Adjunct Professor and Gifted and Talented Coordinator from Maine, is that “2E students test well on aptitude tests but may not perform well on achievement; this discrepancy speaks to unique abilities.”

Educators and administrators of gifted programs need to be educated about twice-exceptionality. As with most aspects of gifted education, this area of study is rarely covered in undergraduate education programs. Parents can present details of work and play habits in and out of school; documenting strengths as well as deficits. They can also share information, articles, and websites that deal with 2E kids with their child’s teacher. Check out the links below!

At this point in our chat, the discussion begged the question ~ Why do most professionals in the field of education prioritize deficits before strengths? Our participants said it best:

“Because we focus on raising the bar instead of raising the tide … ” Ruth Lyons

“Simply many are not trained to look at assets.” Meridian Learning

“Deficits are easier to see and federally mandated with an IEP. We still have this mentality that we can “fix” kids.” Alexandra Clough

It’s easy to see deficits first and federal mandates prioritize assistance in these areas through funding. Education policy is focused on bringing up the bottom; as with gifted, little attention is paid to excellence.

It is important to address exceptionalities together when developing an education plan. Opposing exceptionalities depend on accommodation and challenge to achieve the best possible outcomes. Failure to address both abilities and disabilities simultaneously can lead to frustration and even mental health issues.

Twice-exceptional children face social-emotional challenges. Many can understand social cues and context, but lack skills to engage in relationships with age-peers. Facing emotional setbacks, learning how to be resilient, and believing in their own abilities are all challenges for them. As Cassandra Figueroa, an educator in San Antonio, TX told us, ” With 2E you have complementary and contrary behaviors between the two exceptionalities, so it can be tricky to navigate.”

How can twice-exceptional students best be supported? 2E kids need to feel understood, be provided a caring environment, and encouraged to develop in areas of strength. A strong home-school support system rooted in understanding the basic needs of 2E students will strengthen their resolve. Educators should facilitate each student’s self-awareness and understanding of their own strengths with the introduction of role models and the assistance of mentors. A transcript of this chat may be found at Storify.

gtchat-logo-new bannner

Global #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented  is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Tuesdays at 8E/7C/6M/5P in the U.S. and Wednesdays at Noon (12.00) NZST/10.00 AEST/1.00 UK  to discuss current topics in the gifted community and meet experts in the field. Transcripts of our weekly chats can be found at Storify. Our Facebook Page provides information on the chat and news & information regarding the gifted community. Also, checkout our Pinterest Page and Playlist on YouTube.

Head Shot 2014-07-14  About the author: Lisa Conrad is the Moderator of Global #gtchat Powered        by TAGT and Social Media Manager of the Global #gtchat Community. She is a longtime  advocate for gifted children and also blogs at  Gifted Parenting Support. Lisa can be contacted at: gtchatmod@gmail.com

 

Links:

Connecticut Association for the Gifted – Twice Exceptional

Council for Exceptional Children

Gifted But Learning Disabled: A Puzzling Paradox (PDF 1990)

NAGC White Paper: Twice Exceptionality (PDF)

Resources for Gifted Children with Special Needs

The Twice Exceptional Dilemma (PDF)

Top 10 Pieces of Advice for Parents of Uniquely Gifted Children

Twice-Exceptional Students Gifted Students with Disabilities Level 1: An Introductory Resource Book (PDF)

Uniquely Gifted: Identifying and Meeting the Needs of the Twice-Exceptional Student (Amazon)

Wrights Law

Parenting Twice-Exceptional Children through Frustration to Success (pdf)

Improving Outcomes for 2E Children (pdf)

What It Means to Be 2E

The Exceptionality of Being Twice-Exceptional (pdf)

Twice Exceptional (2e) Child (YouTube 14:58)

Focus on Twice Exceptionality from TAGT Gifted Plus Division (pdf)

Sprite’s Site: 2E is

Sprite’s Site: What Make’s Them 2E

gtchat Freitag What Makes Them 2E

Picture Courtesy of Jo Freitag

Sprite’s Site: Pleading the Pink Slipper

Sprite’s Site: Purple Riding Boots

Sprite’s Site: New Shoes

Sprite’s Site: Flocks and Shoes

gtchat Freitag Flocks and Shoes

Picture Courtesy of Jo Freitag

Sprite’s Site: White Poodle, Black Poodle

Sprite’s Site: Stories of the OEs

#gtchat Blog: Mentoring Gifted Learners

To Be Gifted and Learning Disabled: Strategies for Helping Bright Students with LD, ADHD and More (Amazon)

Girl Battling Dyslexia Named National Self-Advocate in Special Education

Twice-Exceptional Newsletter

Hoagies Gifted: Twice-Exceptional = Exceptional Squared!

Gifted Homeschoolers Forum – Resources: Twice-Exceptional (2e)

School for Twice Exceptional Students to Open in CT

Cybraryman’s Twice Exceptional Children Page

Photo courtesy of Pixabay  CC0 Public Domain Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.

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