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Benefits of Bibliotherapy for GT Kids

Bibliotherapy has been around since the early 1800’s and refers to using storytelling to help children cope with challenges they may face. It may either involve reading aloud to children or children reading stories on their own.

Gifted children encounter social as well as emotional challenges which are often ameliorated by reading books – where they can relate to characters like themselves and learn life lessons. Bibliotherapy can be used to address perfectionism, motivation, anxiety; and, in older students, impostor syndrome. It can guide gifted children by helping them navigate difficult life decisions, become more self-aware, develop empathy for others, and learn about moral values.

Bibliotherapy can easily be incorporated in the classroom through ‘story time’ or time designated for individual reading. It should be facilitated and guided by the teacher. Students should feel comfortable enough to share within a welcoming classroom environment. Students learn how to see books as therapeutic. Bibliotherapy at school should incorporate the original basis for this therapy – identify, catharsis, and insight (Shrodes).

What are some benefits of bibliotherapy for GT children of color & low-SES? Multicultural literature engages students who see themselves as characters in the books they read who are facing similar challenges to their own. They see perceived like-interests as a positive. “Mirror books promote … racial pride, self-efficacy, motivation, & coping strategies when faced w/challenges, including negative peer pressures & isolation in predominantly White gifted classes.” (D. ford)

What are some questions parents and teachers can pose after bibliotherapy? First and foremost, parents and teachers can explore with the child who they identified with in the story or book they read. Encourage them to explain why they feel this way about the characters. Questions used in bibliotherapy for gifted children can ask about how the story relates to gifted children and the idea of being ‘gifted’. What text evidence can they find to support its impact on the story? Gifted children should be asked to delineate the book’s message/plot; how characters met and overcame challenges; and do they agree with the author’s conclusions.

Parents can provide their children with a wide variety of books that center on their child’s interests and potential challenges they may face. Frequent trips to the library are a great way to spend quality time with their child. One of the best ways to use bibliotherapy at home is with bedtime stories … a quiet and comforting time between parent and child.

A Transcript of this chat may be found at Wakelet.

Global #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented  is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Thursdays at 8E/7C/6M/5P in the U.S. and Fridays at 2PM NZDT/Noon AEDT/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 Wakelet. Our Facebook Page provides information on the chat and news and information regarding the gifted community. Also, checkout our Pinterest Page and Playlist on YouTube.


Turning Theory into Practice #5 – What can bibliotherapy look like with gifted children?

The Unopened Gifted (slideshow)

Some of My Best Friends Are Books: Guiding Gifted Readers (3rd Edition) (book)

I Want to Read About Me: Engaging and Empowering Gifted Black Girls Using Multicultural Literature and Bibliotherapy

Bibliotherapy A Resource to Facilitate Emotional Healing and Growth

A Bibliotherapy Evaluation Tool: Grounding Counselors in the Therapeutic use of Literature (pdf)

Bibliotherapy: Overview and Implications for Counselors (pdf)

Psychological Well-being, Improved Self-confidence, and Social Capacity: Bibliotherapy from a User Perspective

Bibliotherapy: Helping Children Cope with Life’s Challenges

Book Lists for Gifted Learners

Literature and the Gifted in TEMPO (1991)

Top 10 Books for Gifted Children

Comparing the Use of Cinematherapy and Bibliotherapy to Teach Character Education: A Quasi-Experimental Study (pdf 2019)

Incorporating Bibliotherapy Into the Classroom: a Handbook for Educators (pdf)

Bibliotherapy Goldmine: Books on a Variety of Topics

Books for Beginning Bibliotherapy

Kids’ Books – Bibliotherapy (Pinterest)

Bibliotherapy Intervention Exposure and Level of Emotional Awareness among Students with Emotional and Behavioral Disorders (pdf)

The Effectiveness of Creative Bibliotherapy for Internalizing, Externalizing, and Prosocial Behaviors in Children: A Systematic Review

Rick Riordan Presents

NAGC: Bibliotherapy by the Campfire: Meeting the Social and Emotional Needs of Students through Picture Books (Parenting for High Potential June 2019 [membership required])

Photo courtesy of Pixabay CC0 Public Domain

Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.



Summer Reading for Gifted Kids & Adults

gtchat 05232017 Reading

The good ol’ summertime … traditionally a time to relax and oftentimes – read. The benefits of summer reading are numerous. For gifted kids, summer reading  can be a way to relax; time to explore their passions. It is a good time for these kids to assess what it means to be gifted and how to deal with associated feelings. It can also be a time to read the Classics which may not be covered during the school year. Summer reading for gifted adults can be a time to catch up on reading wish lists; a pastime during vacations.

Finding age-appropriate books for gifted readers is always a challenge. Asynchronous development can make it difficult when reading levels far surpass maturity levels. Check out the links below to make the task easier!

There are many great publishers who specialize on gifted issues. We’ve included links to many of them below.

A transcript of this chat can 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:


What America’s Most Prestigious Private Schools are Making Students Read this Summer 

The 3 Books Stanford is Asking Incoming Freshmen to Read over the Summer

TAGT Legacy Book Awards

Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge: “Happy Camper Take a Reading Adventure”

Collaborative Summer Library Program – 2017 Children’s Program: “Build a Better World”

Barnes & Noble: Summer Reading

Encouraging Summer Reading Free Printables

Summer Reading Challenge: Read in 100 Places

Oregon State University: 2017 Summer Reading Programs for Children & Adults

Association for Library Service to Children: 2017 Summer Reading Lists (Birth – 8) 

Rutgers University: 2017 Summer Reading Programs for Children & Adults

Carrollton, TX: Summer Reading Program 2017

iREAD by Design

Mensa for Kids: Excellence in Reading

Midway ISD: Book List for Elementary Gifted Students (pdf)

The Grayson School: Summer Reading for Gifted Readers

Davidson Institute: Reading Lists

Why Gifted Students Should Start Summer Clubs

Supporting Gifted Children through Bibliotherapy

Buckingham Browne & Nichols School: Upper School Summer Reading 2017 – 2018 (pdf)

Teacher’s Corner: Summer is Coming

Summer Reading: Book Edition for Adults

Perfectionism: A Practical Guide to Managing “Never Good Enough”

Book Lists for Gifted Learners

Locating Age-Appropriate Books for High Ability Learners

Finding Age-Appropriate Books for Gifted Readers

The Gifted Reader’s Bill of Rights (pdf)

Summer Learning Options Inspiration for Learning All Summer Long!

Hoagies’ Gifted: Reading Lists for Your Gifted Child

Cybraryman’s Summer Reading

Sync: Free Summer Audiobook Program for Teens 13+

12 Inspiring STEM Books for Girls

Philosophy for Kids: 40 Fun Questions That Help You Wonder about Everything! (Amazon)

The Philosophy of Tolkien: The Worldview Behind the Lord of the Rings (Amazon)

If This is a Gift, Can I Send it Back?: Surviving in the Land of the Gifted and Twice Exceptional (Amazon)


Great Potential Press

Prufrock Press

Royal Fireworks Press

Free Spirit Publishing 

Gifted Homeschoolers Forum Press

Tumblehome Learning

Photo courtesy of Pixabay  CC0 Public Domain

Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.

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