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Creating a Culture of Kindness for Gifted Kids

gtchat 01182018 Kindness

Kindness is treating others as you would like to be treated; making someone else want to associate with you because they feel better about themselves when they are around you. It is taking into consideration everything you say and do as to bring out the best in others; always asking yourself how will your actions affect other people’s feelings.

It is important to promote kindness in the lives of gifted kids. Gifted children do not always experience kindness in their lives; it can be a forgotten soft-skill deemed unimportant in their striving for academic success. They too often experience bullying or thoughtless comments about the expectations of the gifted label. They may ignore this at first, but eventually respond in negative or unkind ways.

What strategies can teachers use to encourage students to demonstrate kindness? Being kind – modeling kindness in the classroom – considering it before speaking or taking action in any situation is a good way to encourage students to be kind to fellow classmates. Creating opportunities for students to be kind to others is an important strategy all teachers can use in their classrooms.

We can prevent negative behaviors such as peer cruelty in schools and classrooms.  Classroom teachers can create a culture within their classrooms which is responsive to student voice; having students be responsible for setting personal goals and plans to follow through to meet those goals. Teaching empathy and using character-based discipline will go a long way to creating an atmosphere in which peer cruelty is not acceptable.

There are some characteristics of gifted kids which affect their ability to display kindness in all situations. They are no different than other kids in that they each have unique personalities; some may embrace expressing kindness in their interactions with age mates/peers and others may not. Gifted children who are twice-exceptional can sometimes struggle with understanding what kindness is or how to express it. It is important to recognize this and take steps to teach/model kindness in their daily lives.

What role can parents play in creating a culture of kindness? Parents are a child’s first and foremost role model. Gifted children can be difficult to parent. Patience and kindness should be exhibited from the very beginning. Just like teachers, parents can create opportunities for gifted kids to express kindness to others at home starting with family members and even family pets. By extension, encourage them to show kindness to their friends as well. 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 Thursdays at 8E/7C/6M/5P in the U.S. and Fridays at 2 PM NZST/Noon 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 and information regarding the gifted community. Also, checkout our Pinterest Page and Playlist on YouTube.

Head Shot 2014-07-14  About the authorLisa 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:


Cybraryman’s Character Education Random Acts of Kindness Page

Cybraryman’s Gratitude Page

Cybraryman’s Empathy Page

4 Ways to Nurture Kindness

Preventing Peer Cruelty and Promoting Kindness (pdf)

An Ethic of Excellence: Building a Culture of Craftsmanship with Students (Amazon)

Coping Skills for Anxious Times

UnSelfie: Why Empathetic Kids Succeed in Our All-About-Me World (Amazon)

100 Fun Ways to Help Kids Practice Kindness

Helping Strangers Tied to Higher Self-Esteem in Teens

Empathy: How Families Lead with Gratitude and Kindness

Teaching Guides for Good Character

Empathy’s Importance in the Curriculum (pdf – pg. 13)

How a Bad Mood Affects Empathy in Your Brain

Cybraryman’s Kindness Page

How to Raise a Sweet Son in an Era of Angry Men

How this Mom Turned her Late Husband’s Birthday into her Favorite Day of the Year

Photo courtesy of Pixabay  CC0 Public Domain

Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.

The Homework Dilemma

People from 6 countries and 13 states joined together to discuss the problems with homework. New faces continue to join each week and we always welcome those who prefer to simply lurk and learn. Congratulations was extended to longtime chat participant, Leslie Graves (@LesLinks) who was recently elected president of the World Council for Gifted and Talented Children. She will take office in August at their World Conference in Louisville, Kentucky.

A consensus was reached by hour’s end that homework should be meaningful, an extension of learning in the classroom and not be graded. Cybraryman introduced a bit of levity into the chat with one of his homework jokes, “Why did the student eat his homework?” Answer* to follow later in this post. A full transcript may be found here.

Participants also discussed the ‘flipped classroom’, strategies to help children with their homework and the best places to find resources for homework help.

At the end of chat, it was announced that March 22nd will be a very special chat as we celebrate our first year of support by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented. Not only have they provided excellent support to the moderator, but have helped to spread the word about chat through their website, weekly member’s eNewsletter, and by giving voice to #gtchat throughout their annual conference. Look for an all star line-up of guests that day as we chat about the value of Twitter chats. Please join us at 7PM EDT/6PM CDT. Also, note that the U.S. has already changed to Daylight Savings Time. Check your location’s time here.


Sprite on the Subject of Homework” from @jofrei

Cybraryman’s Homework Help Page

Cybraryman’s The Homework Debate Page

How to do Homework Without Throwing Up from Free Spirit Publishing

Ending the Homework Hassle (ebook)

Homework Without Tears (Amazon)

The Big Book of Parenting Solutions (Borba)

Homework: New Research Suggests It May Be an Unnecessary Evil

Is The Nightly Homework Battle Worth It? (NPR)

BJ Pinchbeck’s Homework Helper

Scholastic’s Homework Hub

Homework: The Good and the Bad from @SENG_Gifted

Getting Organized – Homework Steps from Sprite’s Site @jofrei

Homework Takes a Hit

Five Hallmarks of Good Homework

Livebinders: Flipping the Classroom

Flip Your Classroom through Reverse Instruction 

The Flipped Classroom Engages Students and Challenges Teachers

Why I Bothered to Flip My Classroom from @TheHeadKnuckle

8 Crucial Resources for Flipped Classrooms from @edudemic

Salman Kahn: Let’s Used Video to Reinvent Education (TED Talk – video)

Rethinking Teaching and Time with the Flipped Classroom


* Because his teacher said it was a piece of cake!



#gtchat: When Parents Push Too Hard

“People push so hard for grades. More focus should be on learning, curiosity, and exploring passions; not pushing for A’s.” ~ Krissy Venosdale, elementary teacher of gifted children

On November 16, 2012, #gtchatters discussed the topic, “When Parents Push Too Hard”. The transcript can be found at Storify. Links presented during the chat can be found below.

Participants from 21 states and 5 countries helped to make this a very exciting chat. Questions posed considered whether parents of gifted children can push them too hard and if they do push; why? Of special interest were reports of parents in NYC schools hiring tutors and academic coaches for their preschoolers in hopes of getting them into the city’s limited spaces in the gifted and talented program.


Bright NYC Kids: Gifted & Talented Mock Tests

New York Family: Special Parents Seminar on Gifted Education

NYC Parents Struggling with Difficult New Gifted & Talented Test for Their Children

Michele Borba: Gifted Children: Are We pushing too hard?

How Hard Should We Push Our Child at School?

Kids Are Worth It! : Giving Your Kids the Gift of Inner Discipline

What’s the Point of School?” Guy Claxton (video)

101 Success Secrets for Gifted Kids by Christine Fonseca

From Cybraryman1 “Team Claco

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