Parenting and stress are like peanut butter and jelly they just go together! When you toss in the stress and challenge of a gifted child in that mix, it will grow just a little bit more. Studies have shown that gifted children have a heightened sensitivity to their environment, events, ideas and expectations that revolve around them. When they strive for unrealistic expectations it can cause a stress overload.
A few of those stressors can be too many extracurricular activities such as: sports, clubs, etc. Children don’t always know what is best for them so it is your responsibility as the parent to make sure they are not overextending themselves in this area.
One of the key stresses that affect all children is self-esteem. At middle school into the high school years, they just want to fit in. They don’t want to be distinguished as “different” from their fellow classmates. When a child’s self-esteem begins to deteriorate their concentration falters, they become even more sensitive to criticism, and they begin to perform less, and become devastated when they do fail.
It is of the essence that the child has a stable and secure support system, who can do anything from getting payday cash advance to hold their hand. This will help them cope with their intellectual, social, and emotional needs through the stages of adolescence. They need to be helped in understanding their gifts, but also understanding the similarities and differences that they have with other students. This needs to come from someone educated on this, not their peers who will use it to their advantage as hurtful.
The gifted child will cope a lot healthier if they are able to wrap their minds around accepting their abilities, talents, and limits. Again, they are normal children besides their accelerated mind capabilities; they still need help in developing social skills to use in life.
Ultimately, the journey is one of figuring out the difference between the pursuits of excellence versus the pursuit of perfection.
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As more and more attention is focused on keeping students up to par and not leaving any behind, we seem to be leaving some behind where they might be otherwise. Gifted children often slide through only accomplishing a portion of what they are capable of doing.
Recognizing the Gifted
As students start in kindergarten or maybe first grade, they move along learning new things, adapting to the new environment of being in traditional schools and learning how to get along with others their own age. They are often caught up in the newness of the experience that they stay focused on one thing or another. As they progress on to other grades changes occur. Teachers need to be trained to differentiate the gifted bored student from the students who are behind. Some students are out ahead, getting done with the assignments in record time, and doing them correctly. Other students fall behind, not being able to pay attention, not understanding the material etc. Unfortunately, several from both groups become bored and begin causing problems in the classroom.
Faster? More? Deeper?
It is a great thing to see gifted programs being established where hopefully students can give some expression to their gift for academic achievement. Just because a student is a gifted learner doesn’t necessarily mean they have more time or have more patience for more work. To some students it appears like punishment. Gifted students need to be able to explore more deeply, see more applications to what they are learning and be able to receive answers to the more difficult questions they come up with during the learning process.
Researchers have been studying the life of a gifted child for many years, they are interested in what motivates them to learn and how their mental health is affected by their gifted abilities. Motivation for learning in gifted children have been linked to a variety of internal and external factors. General interest and personal satisfaction are typical internal factors for motivational learning. Some external motivations for learning is the desire to please teachers or peers, and making
high grades to impress parents. Researchers study the motivational style of gifted children to identify the different types of learning motivation, and how their success or failure is connected to neurophysiological and behavioral reactions.
The general characteristics of gifted children are learning abilities that are quicker, broader, and deeper than most children in their age group. The gifted child has excellent reasoning ability and an extensive vocabulary. They are also creative, curious, and have and exceptional memory. The intelligence level of gifted children are significantly higher than their peers, evidence of their gifted abilities are usually detected during the early stages of development. Scientist believe the environment is a major factor in the nurture of gifted children or advanced intelligence.
While gifted abilities are usually identified during early development stages, giftedness may not be noticed until the child enters pre-school. It is not uncommon to find an uneven distribution of intellect in gifted children. For example, a gifted child can have excellent abilities in logic problem solving, but they may have a difficult time spelling simple words. Gifted children have a heightened sense of awareness that can make them appear to be somewhat overly sensitive. There are many different kinds of gifted abilities, each one offers unique features and developmental advantages. Some common types of gifted abilities include musical or artistic talent, and intellectual giftedness.
Mommy is an affectionate term for a female parent that is primarily used by infants and small children. This is a universal word with children of all ethnic backgrounds. Any woman who is responsible for the care and upbringing of minor children until they become an adult is a Mommy. Whether you conceived and gave birth, are a foster parent, decided to adopt a child, or raising maternal grandchildren, Mommy is an endearing term that is often the first spoken word of a child who is just learning to talk. A gifted child may start to talk a lot sooner than other children in their age group.
Gifted students often posses many of the same characteristics and general traits. Some common traits for gifted students include mastering early reading skills, self-motivation, independent thinking skills, and exceptional skills in music, art, drama, or language. If class assignments are too simple or not challenging enough, gifted students may become bored or disruptive. Some signs of boredom in gifted students include quick and sloppy work assignments, forgotten homework, and incomplete projects. Gifted students also challenges authority, expects perfection from themselves and others, does not like working in groups, and do not handle constructive criticism very well.
Older children are usually a lot more comfortable with their gifted abilities than young kids who have not recognized their full potential. While the stress of having a special child can be overwhelming for parents and siblings, you can have a normal family life once you understand the needs of your special child. Encouraging a child to master academic skills and helping them to fulfill their dreams is a gift they will cherish for a lifetime. Encouraging a child to make good grades and become a caring member of the community is one of the best things you can do to help them become responsible adults.
A gifted child may show their abilities in a variety of different ways. Children with gifted abilities are more sensitive than most of their peers. Many times their heightened abilities make them seem a little too sensitive. They are naturally inquisitive, and with their exceptional memory they can process and retain large amounts of information. Some other qualities of gifted children are the abilities to quickly conquer new subjects, extraordinary skills in mathematics and science, and they are usually the first to finish class assignments. They also demonstrate strong and consistent academic achievements.
Gifted children begin to show an interest many things at a very young age. Their curious interest in projects that present a challenge motivates them to keep trying new things. Gifted students are usually involved in a large number of school or community activities. The gifted child is a highly motivated independent thinker who often expresses original and unique opinions. Children who are gifted apply high level thinking skills for evaluation, analysis, and synthesis. They are able to make connections that are missed by other students, and they prefer the unusual approach for solving problems. These students actively debate real life issues and current events, and have a strong feeling for justice and equality.
While a large number of characteristics are positive, gifted children also display some negative behaviors. Many times gifted children are absent-minded when it comes to practical details, and they can be extremely critical of themselves, as well as others. Activities must completely hold their interest or they will soon become resistant or bored, and the project will be left unfinished. Gifted students can be impatient in class and strongly resist repetitive memorization activities. The life of a gifted child is exciting and challenging, The best thing a parent can do is try to understand their frustrations and offer encouragement whenever possible.
Who knows a child better than its own parents? When the realization that you may have a gifted child occurs, it can be a mixed bag of emotions. Typically it is first realized at home before the child even enters the academic world.
The child is full of wonder and excitement to learn. They soak up any form of information, they can remember explicit details, and have an extensive vocabulary before they even enter kindergarten.
As a teacher, they can identify a gifted student due to how quickly the child picks up on the lessons being taught. They also generally pass their peers when it comes to classroom tasks. It is up to the teacher and the parents to collectively come together and get the child tested to in fact determine their gifts.
If the next step is determining that fact, a trained psychologist or other profession can evaluate the child through interviews, feedback from teacher and parents, and testing. Some of those tests can include: IQ tests, behavior checklists, and reading assessments. Once all of these are completed, the professional will sit with the parents and come up with options and recommendations for the child such as an accelerated learning program or grade advancement.
Other options that may be available are a different learning environment such as private schools or enrichment programs. If the child is school age, it is important as a parent to sit them down and get their feelings on how to proceed. It is key to allow them to have a say so in what happens. It is one thing to want to see them succeed, but that will not happen if the child is miserable in their current setting.
This is why evaluation with a professional may be vital. As a parent you need to be educated on the challenges your child will face, and how best to deal with them when they arise.
When it comes to parenting a gifted child, it is a challenging experience, but when the parent encounters it they should embrace it. It is imperative for parents to be educated on the characteristics of a gifted child so they can be there for the child, and dispel any myths that surround the title of ”gifted”.
As the parent of a gifted child you probably saw signs very early on. The child has a love of books, they love to learn and discover and so on. Having a gifted child is part nature and part nurture, and will grow day by day with love and support.
When you have a gifted child, it not only affects the child, but also the entire family. It is helpful to seek out other families that have gifted children for advice on how to handle different situations. This is a good way to share ideas with each other. It is also helpful to read as much as you can on ways to parent a gifted child. Knowledge is always powerful.
It is also important to respect the ideas and opinions of the child. It is vital to be sensitive to their needs, fears, and concerns. Generally, gifted children have intense emotions, and the fact that needs to be repeated to them is that the title gifted does not define all of who they are.
They need to know they are still a normal child, and that they will make mistakes and fight with their siblings. Keep the lines of communication open at all times. Know what is going on in your child’s life such as friends at school, and friends after school. Make sure to make the gifted child’s siblings know they are just as cherished as the gifted child. Lastly, make sure the rules are clear, reasonable, and nonnegotiable for all the children in the family including the gifted child. This will go far with not showing any favoritism.
Teaching gifted children can be challenging, but it can also be very rewarding. It is important as an educator to stay open-minded, and have the ability to try new things to keep a gifted child stimulated mentally. There are professionals out there who will help alter a curriculum to meet the needs of each individual gifted child.
It is essential to keep the gifted child challenged, and excited to learn. In this arena, as a teacher, they are looking to you for guidance. Their needs will differ significantly from their peers. What may be a suitable curriculum for the average child will not work for a child that is advanced in their learning. It is helpful advice to research the different ways to get passed, and accomplish these particular obstacles.
While in the classroom it becomes difficult for a gifted child to sit and wait for their peers to catch up. When this happens boredom and frustration begin to set in, which in turn can lead to them losing interest in schooling. It is helpful to allow them to work at their own pace on more challenging material once offered to them.
Some changes are a good thing. It is good to raise the bar where the child is concerned, and journaling can help them to express and expand on a chosen topic or their feelings in general. It is also critical, as an educator, to be aware of how your attitude and actions can come off to each child, gifted or not.
The difference that can be made in these children’s lives should be the focal point. Keep in close communication with the parents. Get them involved, because most of the time they are more than willing to be included. Listen to what they have to say because they know their child best. Ultimately, the goal is the same: the drive to help the child learn and to succeed.
As a parent of a gifted child it is imperative to be their biggest advocator. There are limited programs available to a gifted child, so who better to fight for them but their parents?
Not all educational institutions are equipped to properly teach a gifted child. Unfortunately, for the gifted child, some educators believe since they are advanced they can muddle through it without any guidance. There are some schools that are resorting to putting all the gifted students in one classroom, which in turn leads to further alienation from their peers.
As a parent, always stay informed on your child’s progress, scholastically, and emotionally. Trust your instincts when it comes to what is best for them. Another word of advice is to try and not create issues if there are none, but also don’t allow others to create them either.
Some educators and parents are under the impression that the gifted child needs to be overloaded with many assignments to keep them challenged, and that is a misconception. That can lead to discouragement and the sense of being overwhelmed. Always ask questions when it comes to your child.
One of those questions may be is the staff properly trained to adequately teach your gifted child? Do you know what the school policy on gifted children is? What do they offer? What types of enrichment programs are available for your child to participate in, if any?
Lastly, always try to involve your child in the decisions that are being made. Keep a positive attitude, because children sense frustration and stress. Seek out parents who also have gifted children, and have been through this process for ideas and advice on how they handled it. Another idea is to have one on one meetings with teachers consistently. It also is also a good plan of action to have an IEP (Individualized Education Plan) in place as a starting and reflecting point.
Parenting is full of challenges. With all children, including gifted children, parents face a multitude of obstacles when it comes to the different personalities and parenting. Each child develops at a different rate emotionally, physically, and intellectually, which leads to figuring out what is the best way for each individual.
Many times with a gifted child, the adults expect them to be, well adults mentally. That is a definite misconception, which can lead to frustration for the parent as well as the child. It is shown that the gifted child will go through the stages of morality development at a faster pace than their peers, but they still are not mentally able to process as an adult mind would.
Teachers and parents need to keep themselves informed in regards to, not only the academic needs, but also the social and emotional needs of the gifted child. It becomes a coordinated effort by the family, school and supplemental programs to support and encourage the child. It is helpful to try to create a peer group for the gifted child made up of children with common interests and abilities. This will help with keeping the gifted child from going into isolation.
Another challenge that is generally faced with having a gifted child is perfectionism. Any child, gifted or not, can battle with this, but it seems to be more prevalent in gifted children. Many times they feel the pressure of the expectation for them to excel because they’re labeled a gifted child. There is healthy perfectionism, but it can turn unhealthy rather quickly if triggered continuously by family, friends, school and so on. The child may begin to self-sabotage to get the desired failure results. The pressure that they put on themselves will only continue to grow, and become an obsession if not caught early on.
It is crucial to be aware of any and all changes in your child, gifted or not. Try to stay consistent with no special treatment for the gifted child or those around them.