Growing Up Gifted

I love this post so much! It just goes to show that while gifted children are often thought of as, well, super humans, we aren’t. We deal with a ton of problems and sometimes it can all feel too much. But this also shows that we don’t have time for that. Don’t be ashamed of being smart and imperfect; because aren’t we all?

Purveyor of Inconsistencies

I am gifted. I have never been exactly fond of the term, but it’s what I am. I was identified early. Sometime between my second and third birthdays, I taught myself to read. According to my parents – who surely would have been called gifted too, had giftedness been more topical in their schooldays – this is when they knew they would have their hands full.

There was a ‘Gifted and Talented’ program at my school. Students were meant to be nominated and assessed in Year 3, but I joined it in Year 2. Three times a week I’d slip out the back of class and join the older Smart Kids for Enrichment classes. I remember learning Braille, studying Renaissance art and dissecting an eyeball. I remember my mainstream classes being very dull. I inevitably finished my work early, so I kept books on my desk so I’d have something…

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This is one of the best tables I’ve seen to this point. (Thanks Pinterest!) I really want to blog about all of these things, so I think I’d like to use this almost as a “curriculum”. If anybody wants to see one before the other, comment and leave suggestions!

Advocacy and the Gifted Teenager

Love this. As a gifted teen, I struggled with this even in a gifted program. Now, as a homeschooler, I still question the point of some of the things we learn. However, I’m also more apt to complete assignments at my own pace and in a more creative manner. Depending on the child, a wider ability to complete assignments and projects the way the child/teen wants can result in an even better window into improved education. So thumbs up for creativity!

Institute for Educational Advancement's Blog

By Min-Ling Li

Min-Ling is IEA’s Apprenticeship Program Coordinator. She joined IEA after teaching high school mathematics in Los Angeles. Her dedication to supporting high-potential students is rooted in her own experiences as a student who struggled to find outlets that nurtured her intellectual and social dispositions.

Amelia is a 10th grader who attends a small private school in Northern California. She enjoys singing and dancing, as well as reading about the universe and diving into the intricacies of supernovae. Amelia is self-motivated but often finds that her school and the courses offered do not satisfy her curiosity in the arts, math, and sciences. The content to learn within her school is often shallow, and completing assignments of knowledge-gathering is baffling to her, as she can find the answer with taps on a keyboard and Wikipedia. She despises memorization. Amelia is respectful. With that said, she follows her enthusiastic and…

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The Daisy Charter: The Magna Carta of Gifted Children

This is my Charter. My Daisy Charter. Why daisies?  Because sometimes gifted children get overlooked, kicked under the bus so to speak. They are labeled (there’s that word again) as “just hyperactive”, “socially incompetent”, “emotional”, “overly sensitive”, and more. Seriously, I could go on and on and on. Daisies are the small flowers of the world. The ones that tend to just pop up randomly and in small little bunches. They’re flowers, but not many care about them because they wilt easily, they aren’t pretty enough, they attract some bees. Well, daisies just so happen to be a lovely flower; one of my favorites. Because they aren’t  random, you can find them anywhere and in large groups too. They only wilt without water, they have tough little stems and hardy leaves. They’re cute and can brighten up a big bouquet with just a couple. And all flowers attract bees. So I guess what I’m saying is yeah, gifted kids come with some stingers; quirky habits, little irritants, stuff that sets them off. And yeah, gifted children aren’t overly abundant, but there are enough and the number is growing. Maybe they aren’t the Picasso’s, the Mozart’s, the Jimmy Choo of the world. But they are pretty dang smart and loving and beautifully different. They can get pretty hard to deal with sometimes and they can seem too sensitive and incapable. But give them support and love and they blossom. Try to understand them, and you will be appreciated. Don’t fool with them, they will grow. This is my Daisy Charter.

I want love and support and understanding. In return, I will give you intelligence and fun facts until twelve o’ clock on that long car ride home from grandma’s.

I want to be considered normal because different is normal and indifference shouldn’t be normal. In return, I will give you quirky habits you will love and jokes so overthought they’ll make memories aplenty.

I want the right to be looked up to, not looked down on. In return, I will give you a bright smile and happy laugh.

I want the right to be a perfectionist even when you consider it ridiculous because nobody is perfect. In return, I’ll give you a hard worker, loyal and ready to do what she does best anytime.

I want the right to inspire others to get past what others consider a disability and do better than before. In return, I will never give up, even when I’m past the point of no return.

I want the right to be considered just another child. In return, I will give you a big hug every time I am happy and you have helped me, even if I didn’t understand the first time.

I want the right to have education specialized just for me. In return, I will give you my all, I will pore over books and learn all the things you teach me and more.

I want the right to not be labelled, but to be accepted. In return, I will not be who or what I am labelled but I will be me.

I want the right to be emotional, to be sensitive, to be hyper. In return, I will give you energy and fun and confusion and love and a learning experience, for both of us.

I want the right to be a daisy in a field of roses, the so called different in a pot of so called normal. In return, I will show you how different can be good and normal is just an ideal.

-From all the Daisies

P.S. This document is subject to changes because I am gifted and can sometimes be unpredictable.

Yeah, gifted children are unpredictable. Something can be going so right and then BOOM, meltdown. That’s ok. Your child can be having the best day ever and then BOOM, tears of frustration because her sock is on wrong. That’s ok. That essay looks so fantastic and it’s sure to win first prize then BOOM it’s horrible, everything written seems stupid because you forgot citations. That’s ok. BOOM. BOOM. It’s constant. It will get better. But try to understand, not WHAT I, you, he, she, is feeling someway. Try WHY. We don’t know WHAT all the time. But we know WHY. Getting to know these quirks and irritants and habits can help to minimize them, to deal with them. And to understand them. And understanding and support is all we need and want. We don’t want labels when we know we are something. Gifted isn’t what we are. We are gifted. And that’s ok.