To understand how giftedness and physical energy are connected, stop picturing a fidgety kid interrupting the class. Instead imagine him deeply engrossed in his favorite activity.
‘Emotional Needs’ Articles
It’s so easy to assume gifted kids will be the academic leaders in a classroom. Beacons of light for the other kids to follow. Dina Brulles and Susan Winebrenner explain the problem…
The obvious benefit of gifted students’ increased sensitivity is that they learn faster, since they pick up on so much more. But this sensitivity also has a dark side: turning our kids into anxious worriers.
Multipotentiality is a fancy way of saying “good at many things.” It’s a defining trait of gifted kids, and you’ve probably seen it in action: a student writes beautifully, has mastered a musical instrument, excels in math, and still gets picked near the top in PE. Yet, this trait is one of the Eight Great Gripes of gifted kids.
What better way to learn about gifted students’ needs than by talking to gifted adults? Here’s a tour of some of the resources I found online.
They believe that only they are aware of their limitations, near misses, and potential for error. They attribute their success to luck, not ability. In an attempt to maintain an illusion of perfection, they avoid situations in which they might not be the best. This is called Impostor’s Syndrome.
Not only are they dealing with the usual trials of growing up, they are often doing it with an increased awareness of their faults, a frustration with being unable to do everything well, and a world that often doesn’t know what to do with them. Worse, they often lack the emotional tools to accompany their increased awareness.
Previously, we discussed using morality, multiple intelligences, and scholarly habits to analyze characters. Not only does this add deep layers to questioning, but (more importantly) it provides opportunities to discuss gifted students’ unique emotional needs. Personality types are another tool that serve these two needs.
In class, a child suddenly explodes at another for making a clicking pencil sound, a student shuts down for the day after making an error while presenting, a distant natural disaster effects children’s moods. As a teacher, this layer of complex sensitivity builds on your already difficult job of tracking academic progress. To be effective, you must also navigate this emotional minefield.
We start the year in language arts with the theme of courage. Here are three quotes I’ve used representing different viewpoints about courage, from Shakespeare, Churchill, and Mark Twain.