What are some positive ways to connect with the gifted community on social media? Take time to help new members on a platform – recommend people to follow on Twitter and welcome new group members on Facebook. Be sure you understand the intent of a tweet before responding. When you respond to tweets, be thoughtful, meaningful, and respectful. Share and retweet good news about the GT community, your students, and your child’s school/GT program.
Social networking has an effect on the way children are educated both at school and outside of it. There are both negative and positive effects to social media use by GT students. Although a way of life for most, some of these students are more at ease with face-to-face interaction. Adults need to be cognizant of individual needs. Isolation due to geography or contact with intellectual peers is a real concern for many GT students and social media can bridge the gap by bringing students together online.
How do we leverage social media as a pedagogical tool in the GT classroom? Teachers and admins can share information/success stories quickly on platforms like Twitter. Twitter is a great way to stay in touch with busy parents by using a dedicated hashtag. Twitter is a great platform for providing global feedback to students on their projects/assignments, for students to ask questions of experts, and to showcase student work on a broader stage. Facebook is constantly updating tools for student use including dedicated class pages, ways to post about upcoming events, and Facebook Live for broadcasting. Class blogs provide students a platform on which to share and archive for future use writing assignments with the ability to receive assessment and feedback through a comment section.
Integrating social media into school culture can become a powerful tool for connecting with faculty, parents, and the local community in real time in ways that were not available in the past. School admins can share school news on social networks, hold online meetings with parents, and provide professional development on gifted education for faculty and staff.
Social media platforms can provide useful networking for students seeking jobs/internships; finding mentors; collaborating on international projects; promoting personal/school success stories. They are already an intricate part of students’ lives outside of school. Connecting students with intellectual peers beyond their local schools is a logical step in creating community.
Meeting in real life can act as a validation of friendships and professional relationships begun online. It can enable further collaboration on community building by extending existing personal and professional networks. Within the gifted community, conferences are an important way of connecting with people you meet online. Tweetups can provide social context to relationships and serve to create a sense of community. 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 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 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.
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: firstname.lastname@example.org
Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.
Parenting and specifically parenting gifted children has changed dramatically over the past several decades due to the resources and camaraderie afforded by social media. Online groups provide a sense of community for parents of gifted kids who were once separated both geographically as well as socially. Today parents don’t have to make the journey alone. In recent years, parents have also benefited by learning about ways to get together in real life at conferences and regional meetups that were once unknown. Parents can also access much needed information and advice on their own schedule. The convenience of online resources available 24/7 cannot be overlooked.
Parenting is often based on one’s own life experiences, but the challenges of life in today’s world can be very different than they were a generation ago. Parents should seek out current advice whenever possible. The role of asynchronous development can’t be minimized when dealing with life’s big transitions. It differentiates the experiences most gifted children face when transitioning to new educational experiences and meeting life’s milestones. Parents should build a strong emotional bond with their gifted children early in life and consider themselves as partners in the transition process. Each child is an individual with unique attributes and challenges which play a role in that process.
What steps can parents take if they suspect their child is twice-exceptional? A twice-exceptional child will exhibit both abilities and disabilities; strengths and weaknesses at the same time. It is easy for even professionals to misdiagnose these kids. Parents should seek help from those familiar with giftedness. Understanding the needs of twice-exceptional children is a necessary step toward being successful in life. Parents are the first and best advocates. Knowledge about twice-exceptionalism is a powerful tool. Twice-exceptionality is a challenge, but not a roadblock. Once accommodated, 2e kids can lead productive and successful lives. Being proactive in diagnosis and seeking help is the first step.
When should parents seek professional help regarding their gifted child? When that behavior impacts their lives in any significant way, parents should at the least consider a professional diagnosis. When children enter the school system, parents are often guided to seek professional help regarding concerns they might not see in a home setting. If parents see sudden changes in behavior, a decline in school work, or issues with interpersonal relationships between their child and others; they should seek professional intervention.
What should a parent who is experiencing difficulty getting educational services for their gifted child do? Although it shouldn’t be the case, parents often find themselves on the opposite side of educational priorities from their child’s school personnel. It’s important to document everything in writing. Know that the school will be doing the same. It may not seem fair, but parents need to keep their cool when advocating on behalf of their child. Patience can be beneficial in getting the best educational placement as well as serving as a role model for their child. There are many factors – positive and negative – weighed by a school district in providing services to an identified gifted child. Parents need to be aware of the school’s philosophy on GT education and the availability of resources.
Being the parent of a gifted child has its ups and downs, but things really do eventually work out. The ‘little lawyer’ in elementary school turned defiant teen in high school will one day be your best friend. Networking with other parents of gifted children is a great way to save your sanity, know that you aren’t alone, and provide for ‘strength in numbers’ when working with schools to provide the highest quality of education for your 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 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 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.
Crushing Tall Poppies (blog)
Image courtesy of Unsplash
Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad
For the past 5 years, Global #gtchat Powered by TAGT has had the support of the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented. This has enabled #gtchat to grow and flourish not only on Twitter, but to encompass an expanded web presence on Storify, Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube and a weekly post on the blog.
With the Internet now an integral part of our lives, the choices to connect with like-minded people are ever-increasing. Many teachers have gravitated toward Twitter due to the expansive number of available educational chats (300+), ease of use, brevity of interactions, development of PLNs and the information about opportunities to connect offline at conferences and edCamps. A simple 30 minute daily commitment can provide a wealth of resources and contacts.
A unique opportunity also exists for parents as participants in #gtchat as it is one of a very few Twitter chats that addresses the needs of both parents and teachers. Topics covered each week include a wide array of interests concerning the gifted community. Guests includes academics, psychologists, authors and leaders in the community. Twitter also provides a way for parents to connect both online and offline. Global #gtchat has arranged TweetUps at the international, national, and state level.
It was exciting to introduce our new #gtchat Advisory Board! You can connect with them on Twitter: Tracy Fisher @antraasa Ginger Lewman @GingerLewman Jeffrey Farley @FarleyJeffrey Jo Freitag @jofrei Heather Vaughn @msheathervaughn and Angie French @teachagiftedkid .
Thank you, also, to Mr. Jerry Blumengarten ( @cybraryman1) who was one of the original advisors of #gtchat from the beginning and a frequent contributor to #gtchat.
On a personal note: As I begin my 6th year as moderator of Global #gtchat Powered by TAGT, I look forward to facilitating the conversation for many more years to come. My contact information is listed below and I welcome your suggestions for topics, guests, and resources. A transcript of this chat can be found on our Storify page.
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 14.00 NZDT/12.00 AEDT/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.
WISGIFT List-Serv (Wisconsin Gifted for advocates, educators, parents, and other supporters of gifted education)
Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.
From time to time, I am asked, “How do I join your chat on Twitter?” Since we were off last week, I thought this would be a good time to explain the chat process.
Each Friday at 7E/6C/5M/4P, people get together on Twitter to chat about all things related to the gifted community using the hashtag #gtchat. To join the conversation, you need to have a Twitter account and it cannot be designated as ‘private’. If you feel the need to protect your tweets (only followers can see what you tweet), consider opening a second account under a pseudonym just to chat.
You can participate in a chat directly on Twitter by searching the hashtag #gtchat and then choosing the ‘Live’ tab on the search results page. You may want to Save your search to use for future reference. (Hint: Follow #gtchat’s official Twitter account @gtchatmod to see tweets concerning chat times and topics.) It is important to know that you must remember to add the hashtag #gtchat to each of your tweets so that they will be visible to the rest of the people at the chat. As the chat progresses, you will have to Refresh your screen to see available new tweets.
An alternate way to join our chat is to use a 3rd party app such as Tweetchat or Twubs. These apps add the hashtag to your tweets automatically and also only display the tweets using the hashtag during the chat. Most participants, including the moderator, use Tweetchat. To use this app, sign into your Twitter account; open a second tab in your browser and go to Tweetchat.com; enter the hashtag ‘#gtchat’ on the opening screen; utilize the ‘Authorize App’ function; you will be redirected to the #gtchat tweet stream. Once there, you can tweet, retweet, reply and favorite tweets just like on Twitter. (Hint: If you are familiar with apps such as Tweetdeck or Hootsuite, you may use either of these as well.)
It’s as simple as that! So, what have you been waiting for? Join us on Fridays for #gtchat on Twitter. National and International chat times are listed below. It you miss a chat, you can always access the transcript at Storify and I post a short summary with links from the chat here at this blog every week. Take a look around the blog to see what you have been missing! For more general information about chatting on Twitter, check out the links below. (Thanks to Jerry Blumengarten @cybraryman1 for the links. Jerry also was instrumental in helping #gtchat get started!)
Global #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented and sponsored by GiftedandTalented.com is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Fridays at 7E/6C/5M/4P in the U.S., Midnight in the UK and Saturdays 11 AM NZST/9 AM AEST 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 new Pinterest Page and Playlist on YouTube.
How to Take Part in or Moderate a Chat on Twitter from Cybraryman
Twitter from Cybraryman
Twitter for Beginners from Cybraryman