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Hoagies' Blog Hop May 2014: The "G" Word "Gifted"

Hoagies' Gifted Education Page introduces our new Blog Hop!

What's a Blog Hop?  It's a chance for bloggers to get together and talk about a specific topic, and a chance for readers to hop around from blog to blog, getting different perspectives on that topic.  When my girls were preschoolers, I enjoyed hopping around the parenting blog hops. Today, we enjoy reading the homeschoolers' perspectives in the Gifted Homeschoolers Forum Blog Hops

This month, Hoagies' Gifted Education Page introduces our very own Blog Hop with our first topic: The "G" Word.  Bloggers from all corners of the gifted community--parents, teachers and counselors--join us to share their perspectives. 

The "G" Word.  Gifted.  What does it mean to you? What does it mean to others?  Is it good?  Is it bad? Should we use it?  Change it?  Read on to see what this month's Hoagies' Blog Hop bloggers think and feel! Thanks to all our bloggers for opening up this conversation. 

Join us next month for Hoagies' Gifted Blog Hop, Gifted @Play.  It's a great way to start your summer! If you'd like to join in our Hop, contact us at carolyn@hoagiesgifted.org.  Special thanks to Pamela S. Ryan for our new Blog Hop graphic!
 

On Dropping the G-Bomb: Twelve Confessions from a Gifted Advocate by Wenda Sheard, J.D. Ph.D. Thoughts on Life and Learning 
Confession #1. I'm uncomfortable using the g-word in public. Why? Because many people outside of gifted education circles react to the word in a negative fashion"...
 
I’m not ‘G’, I’m Gifted by Peter Lydon in GT Network Ireland
Gifted is a label and we should just get used to the fact. There screen-capture-21is nothing wrong with using that label. I certainly do not apologise for using it. I use it confidently when taking to not-so-sure parents and sceptical teachers alike. If we are uncertain about it, how can we convince others of it. “I’m gifted, you have a problem with that? Too bad”...
 
Air on the ‘G’ String by Tim Dracup, Gifted Phoenix
As I see it, there are three sets of issues with the ‘G’ word:
--Terminological – the term carries with it associations that make some advocates uncomfortable and predispose others to resist such advocacy.
--Definitional – there are many different ways to define the term and the subset of the population to which it can be applied; there is much disagreement about this, even amongst advocates.
--Labelling – the application of the term to individuals can have unintended negative consequences, for them and for others....
 
My Gifted Ambivalence by Lisa Rivero
When we decided to homeschool after our son’s second grade year, it was as much to escape the gifted label and traditional gifted education as it was to accommodate the needs that accompany giftedness...
 
Gifted Shmifted by Paula Prober, Your Rainforest Mind
Time to address the elephant. The one in the room. You know what I’m talkin’ about. I’m starting to hyperventilate. I really don’t want to do this. But it was going to come up sooner or later...
 
The Stickiness of the G-Word and the (2e) School Dance by Carolyn Fox, A 2E Fox Revived
The stickiness of the g-word and the (2e) school dance ...reminded me why it can be so awkward, difficult, and uncomfortable with a 2e child. It's that moment when you tend to avert your eyes and want to disappear.
 
Pull Over! by Braver than you believe
What if identifying a gifted child were as easy as identifying a police car speeding up behind you (even in those so-called stealth cars)? You know, with lights flashing and sirens blaring? I'm going out on a limb here to say IT IS...
 
Warning. May Contain Something We Don't Talk About by Chocky's Child
I was a gifted child. 'Officially' speaking, I mean. Under the definitions that were in vogue when I was a kid, which were mostly based on IQ, I was well above the cut off point for giftedness... And so I labelled myself. I labelled myself as 'Martian', and 'Larzadian' (an alien from the planet Larzadia when I read Mars was unlikely to support complex life). I labelled myself as 'Crazy' and 'Mad'. I labelled myself as 'Dangerous'. I labelled myself as a 'Perversion'. I labelled myself as 'Retarded'. And I labelled myself as 'Worthless' and 'Unloveable'. And 'Wrong.'
 
Why is the "gifted" label so threatening? by Gail Post in Gifted Challenges
Parents of gifted children, who harness the courage to advocate for appropriate educational services, must navigate a maze of criticism and skepticism from opponents who doubt the validity of the concept. Often met with blank stares at parent-teacher conferences, school board meetings, and parent groups, they feel alone and misunderstood. Not unlike their children: alone and misunderstood...
 
The G Word by Jo on Sprite's Site
“Why is Columbus Cheetah sitting on the chair in the Naughty Corner?” I asked Sprite. “Black Dog put him there” she replied. “He said Columbus was using naughty words and needed to sit in the corner and think about it. But I don’t know what he said that was naughty. He didn’t say the F word, or the S word, or the B word!”

“What did he say?” I asked...
 
'Genius' vs. 'Gifted' by Mrs. Warde, Sceleratus Classical Academy
Confession: I inwardly cringe when you call my child a "genius." I'm sure it's meant as a complement, but all I hear is "stop bragging about your kid." Maybe it's because growing up, the word "genius" was thrown around as an insult by the other kids...
 
The G-Word by Homeschooling Hatters
We all know "those" words. The F-word. The S-word. "He-double-hockey-sticks." There are as many different ones as their are families, and as there are creative ways to swear. What I didn't expect was to spend most of my adult life trying to skirt around one of my own...
 
The G-Word: giftedness in kids and adults by Christy's Houseful of Chaos
I have a confession to make. Despite being part of the gifted homeschooling forum blogging community, and now participating in a Hoagie's Gifted blog-hop, I've been hesitant about using that word "gifted," scared to claim it for fear of being found out as a fraud and/or criticized as elitist or egotistical...
 
And now for something completely different by Shulamit
Yes, every child is a gift. But no, not every child is gifted. Maybe it is the word, “gifted” that gets people tied up in knots. But decades of trying to find a better word, has not revealed that perfect term to explain what it means to be a gifted person. Oh, and no, it isn’t only children who are gifted....
 
Disjoint thoughts on the "G" word, prompted by a friend's blog by Josh Shaine
When I was previously teaching in the public schools, my principal, after observing class, wondered to me: "I get why you are good with the bright kids - it's why I hired you! But why are you good with the slow kids?!" I explained to him that I teach people, not subjects...
 
Giftedness and the Perpetual Struggle to Change the Label by Philobiblius
I have touched upon the label war off and on for many years, here and elsewhere. I strongly favor keeping the word we have for children of high potential: gifted. I do not say this because I like the word - I don't. Nor do I say it because I like labeling children - I don't. I say it because...
 
The Myth That Hurts Gifted Learners by The Grayson School
The myth that all children are gifted is a common one, which is why we suspect the response was so vehement. It’s not just this post; it’s a myth perpetuated by the first grade teacher, the Facebook friend from college, the well-meaning coworker. It doesn’t come from a bad place, but regardless of the intentions behind the sentiment, it remains the case that this attitude—all children are gifted—works to undermine and deny the very real struggles that gifted students and their families face...
 
Claiming my Gifted Identity by Jonica Hunter, guest blogger for Discover Your Awesome
When I first came across another person who also approached life with that same intensity, scope, and depth, I was excited in ways I had never before thought possible. Our lives collided in brilliant synergy, exploring new territory and building a connection unlike any I had known before. Early on, my new friend brought up the concept of extreme giftedness, and that I, too, should be included in that category. At first I was wary: Me? Extraordinarily gifted? Unthinkable...
 
Not Everyone is Gifted, Says Math (Ethics Agrees) Written by Jay (Jade) Piltser. Edited by Andy Cowan, in Discover Your Awesome
I can try to connect with those open to understanding how much the label “gifted” is needed to avoid causing unnecessary pain to kids and adults who are unable to find their tribe, due to several understandable, but detrimental beliefs.
bulletFirst, the belief that the label of “gifted” does not serve a purpose for those who do not build their identity around scholastic achievement. Often expressed as “I am not that smart and/or I hate school.”
bulletSecond, the belief that “everyone is gifted in something” and/or “giftedness is elitist.” These are attempts to make people feel a sense of desirable, but erroneous equality...
 
Gifted is Not Elitist by A Voracious Mind
I don't throw the G word around in public freely. We parents understand that though it, too, is a unique need it doesn't compare to what mainstream society thinks of as a special need. Special needs garner sympathy and regional support but gifted gets neglected and will always elicit envy amongst those that don't live with it daily...
 
‘G’ for Gifted is more than just a word! by Begabungs
For them “Normal” means the way they are, the way they think and create and the way they feel, understand and recognise the world around them. If you ask Gifted children what is “Giftedness”? and who is “Gifted”? Gifted means...
 
Separating individuals from the crowd by Suki Wessling in Avant Parenting
Before we had children, my husband and I thought that the G-word (“gifted”) was funny at best, elitist and misguided at worst. Then we had kids...
 
Gifted by Any Other Name... by Gift-Ed Connections
While I’ve always championed keeping the word gifted for mostly pragmatic reasons (it’s a nice short word, easy to search) it has made me think of what another option might be. So, even though it’s not May anymore… Vulnerable. Intense. Enigmatic. Lonely...
 

And a couple 'oldies' on this topic that are well worth reading...

The Norm Can Blow It Out Its Ear by Catherine Riordan, in Dazzled and Frazzled
Gifted children eventually grow up, but gifted is not a term which adults tend to use in reference to themselves. It comes with many negative connotations and is something people expect you to grow out of anyway. However, gifted is just a term used, usually in education, to refer to those at the upper end of the intelligence spectrum. It comes with various traits, not least of which are the overexcitabilities or intensity.

The problem is that we all compare ourselves and others to the norm. Those who fall to either side of the norm are at risk of being perceived as "abnormal" when, in fact, they are just different to the majority...
 
Welcome to Lake Woebegon, where 100% of children are in the top 2.5% by Carolyn K., in Hoagies' Nibbles and Bits
100% of children are in the top 2.5% of children. It sounds ridiculous when it is stated mathematically, but you hear it often in its common form: "All children are gifted." No matter how you say it, it is still nonsense.
Nonsense. Not sensible. Not true. And certainly not defensible...
 
Being Gifted is a Beautiful Mess by Madison Kimrey, in Functional Human Being
Today, I read a blog post... entitled, "Every Child Is Gifted and Talented. Every Single One."  Ms. Melton doesn't get it. Even though I'm what is classified as Profoundly Gifted, the word "genius" doesn't apply to me, yet she keeps throwing it around and showing her ignorance of special needs children...
 

Updated May 02, 2016


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