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Hoagies' Blog Hop: Gifted in Pop Culture

Giftedness in popular culture, positive & negative. Why are your favorite role models? Least favorite? Resources? What would you rather see?

From Good Will Hunting to Meet the Robinsons, Doogie Howser to Scorpion, gifted individuals have appeared in pop culture in many ways over the years.  Some gifties are stereotypical, like Sheldon Cooper in The Big Bang Theory, while others are more down to earth or "real."  Who are your favorites?  Who haven't you discovered yet?  Join us on a tour of Pop Culture, with a "gifted" lens...

Don't miss our previous Blog Hops, including Blog Hop: The "G" Word and Blog Hop: Summer Reading

If you'd like to read all our past Blog Hops or join our next Blog Hop, visit Blog Hops for all our past and future topics.  Special thanks to Pamela S. Ryan for our striking Blog Hop graphics!

 
Giftedness in the Media by Adventures of Hahn Academy
Sadly, the portrayal of gifted individuals in popular media is not always correct or positive. Rather, the media tends to reinforce stereotypes and send the message that the highly gifted are not normal. Gifted individuals or geniuses in pop culture have an unbelievably high IQ, exaggerated behavior or personality traits, elicit conversation, interests in obscure topics, rattle off statistics and calculations, play chess, read thick books, seem blunt and insensitive, some level of arrogance, emotionally detached, logical-minded, etc… The media’s insistence on reinforcing stereotypes is not helping how the gifted are perceived by others. Instead, people are sometimes describing gifted children based on which TV character they think the child is more like...
 
Picture Books for Gifted Children by Caitlin Fitzpatrick Curley, My Little Poppies
I love it when I stumble upon a book that speaks to me. It is a wonderful feeling when you step into a book that feels like home. These books feel like old friends, safe and comfortable. As a bibliophile and homeschooling mom, I want my children to experience this phenomenon.

Gifted children are outliers. They think outside of that proverbial box. They are unique and all too often misunderstood.

There is a safety in books that can be life-altering in the early years. The right book can make you feel whole, understood, valued...
 
Einstein, the Big Bang, and Scorpion by Linda Wallin, Living with Geniuses
Just because a person has a high IQ, they do not necessarily lack social graces. There can be some difficulties adjusting to others, as a friend told me twenty years ago. Her son’s IQ approached 190, and he would complete assignments that did not fulfill the teacher’s requirements. She would patiently explain to him why he should change it, and he would patiently explain to her why it had to be done his way...
 
Everything I needed to know about being a smart kid, I learned from 80's movies by Jen, repurposed genealogy
3. Get a mentor to guide you

Maybe your mentor can artfully sculpt a bonsai tree and catch flies with chopsticks like Mr. Miyagi. Maybe he invented a time machine like Doc Brown. Your mentor needs have the intellect and ability to guide you through challenges....
 
"G" in Popular Culture ~ or ~ How to Be a Gifted Elder by Joy Navan, ongiftedelders
Now I am an elder.  I thought when I retired, I was supposed to quilt, and travel occasionally. I thought I would be leaving everything else that defined me behind - wife, mother, professional. What a surprise! I am still gifted as an elder and must find my way in this strange new world. Thankfully, there are role models like my mentor, Annemarie Roeper, and others who teach us how to be a gifted elder...
 
Profiling the Gifted in Popular Culture by Gift-Ed Connections
From Sheldon to Rachel, Matilda to Ender, we are enthralled with gifted characters. We are fascinated by the complexity of their thoughts, their unique and amazing abilities, their unusual reactions to situations, their character flaws and how they overcome difficulties. Do they serve us well as we seek to understand more and educate about giftedness? As with any caricature as characters often tend to be, storylines can highlight some qualities of the gifted experience but ultimately fail in capturing the unique qualities...
 
Gogglebox by Jo on Sprite's Site
What messages are being given to television viewers about giftedness and gifted people?
Are the depictions accurate? Do they make viewers like and feel empathy with gifted people?
What are the consequences if they do not?...
 
Gogglebox 2 continues where Gogglebox leaves off
“I believe it also depends on perspective” said Intellectual. “Things can look very different when viewed from a different angle. And that is true of the TV audiences too. How they understand and interpret what they see will depend on their background and viewpoint. And how people act toward gifted people after viewing will also differ.”
 
Using Pop Culture References to Explain Giftedness by Lisa on Raising Wizards
Sometimes it's hard to explain what giftedness really is, and how it makes children feel. Luckily, a good example can really pave the way for a great discussion. Here, we've compiled all of our favorite posts that use pop culture references to describe elements of giftedness. Feel free to steal some ideas next time you need to explain giftedness to someone!...
 
Gilmore Girls and Two Faces of Giftedness by Institute for Educational Advancement
...re-watching a favorite episode, it hit me that one thing I have never seen addressed is the giftedness of two of the characters and the contrasts in how it is manifested.

Rory is a teenager who would be considered “gifted” by most traditional definitions of the word. She craves knowledge and grasps concepts easily. As her grandfather put it, “This girl could name the state capitals at 3, recite the periodic table at 4, (and) discuss Schopenhauer's influence on Nietzsche when she was 10.” Rory clearly has an advanced ability....
 
Gifted in Pop Culture: Role Models Required by Carolyn K., Hoagies' Nibbles and Bits
One thing our kids want and need to watch and read are stories where they find others "like them." Other gifted kids, passionate about real-world issues. Other gifted kids, with strong interests and sometimes stronger fears. Other gifted kids who work hard and play hard. Gifted kids, as all kids, need books and movies with role models who they can identify with. They need to know they are Not Alone!
 
It's Been a While... by Chocky's Child
Chocky was a science fiction novel by John Wyndham, and it was adapted into a TV series in the mid 1980s, when I was a child. I like the book and the original series, but two subsequent follow up series - Chocky's Children and Chocky's Challenge spoke to me more, because of the presence of one character in particular. Her name was Albertine - and she'd named after Albert Einstein. Albertine was only a kid - a girl of about 13, I think - and she was a genius...
 

Gifted Characters In Korean And Japanese Dramas by Elgarmummy
The Korean Wave, known as Hallyu, has been sweeping Asia and the rest of the world in terms of entertainment for years, and there is no sign of abating. With East Asian countries placing strong emphasis on academics and other areas such as music, it is no wonder that some of the lead characters in dramas are gifted...
 
Giftedness Magnified by Ann Grahl, Supporting Gifted Learners
Think of the pop stars we’ve witnessed go from America’s darlings to targets for trolls and critics alike.

As a gifted young adult friend recently observed, “You think it’s tough growing up gifted. Just imagine growing up gifted under a magnifying glass.”

Popular gifted performers of all stripes face challenges similar to those that less-well-known gifted young people face....

 
If you'd like to read all our past Blog Hops or join our next Blog Hop, visit Blog Hops for our past and future topics.  Special thanks to Pamela S. Ryan for our striking Blog Hop graphics!

Updated September 01, 2016


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