For more than four decades researchers have been interested in learning what happens to gifted students who drop out of high school. Estimates of the number of gifted learners who drop out differ widely, and a figure of 20 percent is often repeated despite the fact that there is little evidence to support it. Recent studies suggest that anywhere from 1 in 50 up to 1 in 200 academically gifted students fails to complete high school, depending on the criteria used to determine giftedness. Although … [Read more...] about What about Gifted Students Who Drop Out?
Social & Emotional
Imagine the thoughts of fifth-grade students preparing to enter middle school. What sorts of questions are forming in their minds? What fears make their hearts race and palms sweat? Plenty! The student may be asking: What is middle school like? Will I get lost? Will I be challenged? Will classes be fun and interesting? Will I like my teachers? Will they like me? Will I make friends? Why do I need a locker? Will I get trampled when I move through the hallways? What do I wear? What happens if I … [Read more...] about Growing a Middle Schooler
Gifted children often talk a lot. Their early vocabulary astounds their audiences and attracts amazed praise. The frequent and extraordinary approval reinforces their verbal skills and, by classical conditioning, causes them to feel intelligent while they’re talking. It’s no wonder they’re often so willing to share their knowledge—sometimes nonstop—with parents, classmates, teachers, and almost anyone who is willing to listen. The confident verbosity of gifted children convinces parents that … [Read more...] about Listening For What Gifted Children Don’t Say
A parent calls a bullying hotline because her eighth-grade daughter, who is bright and makes good grades at her school, is being singled out for taunts and hurtful rumors by a group of ninth-grade girls. Recently it’s gone beyond just words, and the girls are becoming more physically aggressive—following her after school and shoving her “by accident” in the halls. The girls have even thrown rocks at the mother’s car as she pulled out of the school parking lot. Her daughter has been at home for … [Read more...] about Parents: An Integral Part of School Safety
Wendy Skinner’s account of raising her two highly gifted children, Ben and Jillian, in Infinity & Zebra Stripes: Life with Gifted Children (Great Potential, 2007) will be familiar to those parents confronted with similar circumstances. Skinner’s experiences working with teachers and school administrators are documented throughout this text … [Read more...] about Infinity and Zebra Stripes
Despite the onslaught of computer and video games designed to exercise spatial cognition, three hand-held manipulative puzzles remain popular: Rubik’s Cube, by Winning Moves, celebrating its twenty-fifth anniversary this year; the Retro Bedlam Cube, by Bedlam Puzzles, Ltd.; and Thinkfun’s modern rendition of the ancient Gordian’s Knot. … [Read more...] about Cubing It
Being in a school environment that does not understand, support, or value giftedness is frustrating for many gifted children and teens. Recently, you may have seen a story in the news about a 12-year-old boy attending college in California. News media across the country reported on this impressive child and his need and desire to attend college at a young age. Some journalists presented the positive aspects of this child and his abilities, but others poked fun at him and made negative comments. … [Read more...] about What Do You Say to Gifted Children?
For family fun, try an ingenious brain game. Three excellent choices are Cranium: The Family Fun Game,by Cranium, Inc., The Whole Brain Game, by Creative Mind Games, and Evolution, by Platypus Games. … [Read more...] about Let the Games Begin
Research conducted over the past two decades has established that bullying leads to violence and mental health problems—for bullies, victims, bully victims (those who are both bullies and victims), and even bystanders. Bullies are more likely to land in jail, victims experience lowered self-esteem and academic underachievement, and witnesses feel increased anxiety. Three categories of bullying have been identified: physical, verbal, and psychological, with the latter being the most difficult to … [Read more...] about The Bully Stops Here
Ever offer your children money, gifts, or special privileges for every "A" they bring home on their report card? If you do, you're not alone. Across the nation parents are rewarding their children for good grades in a variety of ways—iPods, video games, concert tickets, and even cars! But some believe such incentives take away the intrinsic value of learning. … [Read more...] about Rewarding Kids for Good Grades