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Hoagies' Gifted Blog Hops

Hoagies' Gifted Education Page introduces our new Blog Hops!

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 our girls were preschoolers, we enjoyed hopping around the parenting blog hops. And now, we enjoy Hoagies' very own Blog Hops!

Are you a blog author who wants to join our Blog Hop?  It's easy!  E-mail us at HoagiesGifted.org. We'll add you to our Blog Hop group, where you'll find everything you need to know.  Hop in with us, and join us for our 2019-2020 Blog Hops!

Join our Blog Hop Authors team, and help decide future topics!

Thoughts from the Mental Trenches. Thoughts from the Depths. What makes you a healthy gifted person? What helps when you're not feeling mentally healthy? How about for your kids? Do they struggle with anxiety, depression, high-functioning autism, or other mental difference? What techniques help them maintain an even keel?

What helps you know that you're just as gifted, just as whole, when your mind is giving you grief?

Parenting Considerations. Concerns, worries, joys, thoughts... Any and all. Considerations, whether you're considering parenting your kids, parenting your elderly parents - we're the sandwich generation, grand-parenting - a delicate dance.

What parenting considerations are on your mind this month? 

The Power of Belonging. We are all individuals, but we are all part of something bigger than ourselves.  Whether it's a family, a class, a school, a neighborhood, a state, country or civilization, belonging to something bigger than ourselves is an important part of our being.  But what if you don't feel you belong to anything?  Or you feel safe at home in your family, but feel so different from the rest of the kids in your classroom that you don't fit in?  What's the value of belonging?  What's the benefit of finding others "just like you?"  How does the Power of Belonging affect gifted children and adults?

Special Populations in Gifted Education. 2e Gifted. LGBTQ Gifted. Late Blooming Gifted. Learn more about these special gifted populations! Gifted is a severe minority population, consisting of between 2.5% and 10% of the population, depending on which definition you subscribe to. Gifted individuals are often marginalized, said to "have too much" or to "need nothing."

But what if your child (or you) are a minority of a minority, a twice exceptional gifted child, a gifted late bloomer, or a gifted LGBTQ individual? Each of these is a marginalized population, and minor subset of an already marginalized minority population. 

How can we help?

Parenting iGen, the video game generation. What does iGen entail for kids and parents? What's the same? What's different? How can we "step up" our parenting game as we parent (or grandparent) the iGen generation? What does the research say?  (Which generation did the research, anyway?)

Role models, at every age and stage. Who are your role models? Who might make a good role model? Why, or why not? Why do we need role models anyway? If we don't have good role models, will we automatically pick bad ones?

Who are your role models?

Perfectionism. What is it? What does it look like? What can we do about it, as parents? As perfectionists? Or is it a good thing?

Perfection?  Is this a goal, or something to avoid at all costs? Will it challenge you or stifle you?

How can we help others who struggle with perfectionism?  Our kids?  Come to think of it, how can we help ourselves first?

Underachievers. Who are they? How do you identify them, or are you misidentifying them? What does underachievement mean to you?  Is it the gifted child who refuses to achieve in school? Is it the child who writes amazing stories, perhaps books, but refuses to write his 5-paragraph essay homework? Is it the gifted adult who never got a college degree?  The lawyer, a member of the bar, respected in their practice, who chooses to stay home and raise their children?

Once defined, what can you do as the parent of an underachiever?  As the underachiever yourself? Read these great blogs to understand underachievement, and perhaps to find a few ideas, a few suggestions, a tidbit that will change the tide.

Just the Facts. There are blogs and other opinions, whether in national newspapers or in some mother-turned-blogger's unofficial proclamation. Everyone has an opinion about giftedness, gifted education, gifted as a term, and everything else about giftedness. But what do we really KNOW about giftedness? What does the research say?

Find out here! Research citations included.

Utopian Fantasies. What does your Utopian Fantasy look like?  Would you be alone? In a community?  Would there be books? music? nature? cities? huge intricate libraries?? Or would it be the life you live today?

Does it look like something you read in a book, or something purely from your imagination?  Is it close to your reality, or a million miles away?

What is your Wonderful World?

Relationships. Gifted relationship issues can occur in any and every generation. Are you struggling with gifted sibling problems? Parent / child relationship issues? How about parent/child issues, when both are adults and one is now a gifted elder? Gifted in-law issues? They really do mean well. And often the most difficult relationships, gifted co-parent issues. There are so many relationships in our lives. How can we do better with our gifted relationships?

Things I wish I knew back then. Join those of us who've been around the block for a while, to learn what we wished we'd known!  Wish you'd done something differently?  Glad you did something you did?  Not sure what would have been better, but you'd love to arrive at today in a different set of circumstances? 

Hindsight isn't always 20/20, but it certainly doesn't hurt!

Gifted Adults. That's what all those gifted kids grow up to be!  But what does it mean to you? When does it matter? College? Early Adulthood? Family years? Middle-age? Elder years?

How does it feel to be a Gifted Adult? Do you feel alone? How do you find other GAs? Does it matter?  

Beyond Academics. What else do we need to teach them, other than academics... at every age! Going to school?  Going to college?  Can they do their own laundry? Balance their checking account? Can they advocate for themselves with teachers and professors? Do they know how to handle a credit card? There will be plenty of offers, and plenty of kids get into trouble with their first venture into personal credit.

What else do they need to learn?  And how can we teach them??

Sweet Dreams. Do your gifted kids struggle with getting to sleep? Staying asleep? Does your infant or toddler spend more hours awake than you do? Many parents find that gifted kids sleep far less than their same-age counterparts. And yet, a few gifted parents report their kids sleep more than average, and seem to require more hours of sleep than the nighttime allows. Any of these issues can make us feel alone, and often make us feel exhausted! What's worked?

And what about Gifted Adults' sleep? Join us to read lots more sleepy ideas!

The Misdiagnosis Initiative. Founded by SENG, the Misdiagnosis Initiative reduces the risk of medical misdiagnosis of gifted individuals, whether a twice-exceptional child whose giftedness is overlooked due to their disability - or vice versa.

Is your child "just" gifted, or twice exceptional? Does the diagnosis he's received make sense with the boy you see every day? Does the lack of a diagnosis make sense with the girl you love and live with? Gifted kids can be misdiagnosed. Some are diagnosed as having learning differences such as ADHD or High Functioning Autism, but are really just gifted, or bored and gifted kids. Others are not diagnosed, when they struggle with Executive Functioning (EF), social skills or other learning challenges.

Ages & Stages, Redux. Two years ago, we discussed many of the stages; today we discuss a few more. Gifted kids give us a run for our money, no matter how old they are, or what stage they're in...this week. Whether you're dealing with the toddler "little lawyer" who doesn't miss a trick, or the high schooler looking towards dual enrollment, middle-age however you define it, or gifted elders, the Ages and Stages of giftedness are never boring.

Creativity and Productivity. Gifted individuals frequently need to move beyond the rules. We play a game (or we play at life) with normal rules once, and then the rules need to be changed, expanded, adapted because they have this need to be part of the process, never just accepting what they're given. It's when they have choices A, B, & C and instead have to come up with option D mixed with a bit of F, since simply accepting or going along with someone else's point of view would be unthinkable. What does Gifted Creativity and Productivity mean to you?

Philosophical/Spiritual Anxiety. Asynchronous development means many gifted kids understand the finality of death and the afterlife before they're emotionally ready to handle it. It means the news is devastating because our kids (and us, as adults!) are understanding too much and struggling with the weight of the world. Gifted kids are often unwilling to believe in mythical creatures - Santa Claus, the tooth fairy, the Easter Bunny, and others. As adults, Philosophical or Spiritual Anxiety may lead us to spiritual quests, seeking spiritual communities, and suffering / enjoying spiritual sensitivity. What does Philosophical/Spiritual Anxiety mean to you?

Gifted Elder Issues. Sometimes called the "sandwich generation," gifted adults often find themselves dealing with their gifted kids' issues on one hand, and their gifted parents' issues on the other... eldercare, retirement communities, and lots more. Or perhaps you *are* a Gifted Elder, dealing with medical, residential, and other issues facing gifted elders? How do you deal with Gifted Elder Issues? What unique options are available to you?

Balancing Boredom and Burnout. Gifted kids need variety and challenge, but they need "down time," too. How does your family balance that fine line between too many activities and not enough? Is there a magic formula that works for you? How about in the classroom? How do you, as a teacher, advise gifted kids to slow down and "smell the roses," rather than fill thier days with Academic Team, school play, choir, band, orchestra, sports, ...?

Traveling with Gifted Kids. Traveling with kids is always interesting.  Traveling with gifted and intense kids can be even more... interesting. Where to go? How to integrate with other families? How to deal with OverExcitabilities while traveling, theirs and yours? 

Overthinking. The gifted girl who "fails" the school's IQ screener, because she over-analyzes the multiple-choice questions. The gifted boy who focuses on the "letter of the law" in each of the teacher's assignments, and then gets in trouble with the teacher for not following the "spirit" of the assignments. The gifted child who cannot get started on a long-term project because he can think of all the time and energy and complicated steps that might need to be taken, and cannot begin because of it. What can you do if you find yourself, or your kids, overthinking? How can you get away from it?

Multipotentiality. Gifted kids often have multiple strengths, and find themselves pressured to succeed in more than one area.  The gifted child may be as talented at writing as at math, or may be as focused on the sciences as on history.  But schools and colleges often expect kids to "settle down" and select one area of achievement.  What do we do when our kids (or we) want to achieve in more than one (or two) area?

Educational Options. From public school to private school, homeschool to unschooling, distance learning to mentors and tutors, there are nearly as many educational options as there are gifted children. And that's good news! When we're in the throes of an educational misfit, it's sometimes difficult to see what our options might be. Join us this month to discuss many of the options that have worked for other kids, and the combinations and alternatives that can help YOUR gifted child!

Executive Function (EF) Skills. We all want 'em, but who's got 'em? How did we grow them? And how can we shared them with our gifted, organizationally challenged gifted kids?? Join the Hoagies' Gifted Blog Hop team for lots of great ideas, whether your gifted child is a preschooler or a post-schooler (a.k.a. adult). You can always improve Executive Function Skills!

Child Activists - Supporting Gifted Idealist Children! You know the child who runs a bake sale to save the tigers, or the child who collects PCs and refurbishes them to donate to low-income families, or the child who raises money to provide solar chargers to remote villages in other countries... How do we support our budding idealists? How do we guide them, and take there concerns for real? This is the best gift we can give them!

Emotional Intelligence. To some of us, this means everything, the all-encompassing social/emotional development of the gifted individual.  To others, it means nothing except an excuse schools use to decline to educate our gifted children, ignoring their academic needs as an aside. What does Emotional Intelligence mean to you?  Read this month's blogs and I'm certain you'll find one or many that resonate with you.

Grade Acceleration / Early Kindergarten / Early College. What is grade acceleration? Is it "skipping" or simply aligning the child's learning and social levels with the curriculum and classmates? From Early Kindergarten through Early College, what forms of Grade Acceleration have been proven effective, in research and in practice? And what are the negative sides to grade acceleration? No change in placement is without risk. Learn more here!

Community. What does community mean to you?  How have you found community for your gifted kids?  For yourself?  Why is community so important? What are the characteristics of a good community?  Join our community, and we'll help you find yours!

Gifted social issues, including friendships, bullying, understanding introverts, finding intellectual peers, and anything else you imagine concerning the social issues surrounding giftedness at every age...

All things Science! Summer is a great time for playing around with science. What are your favorite approaches to hands-on science? Curriculum? Enrichment? Reading? STEM? STEAM? Robotics? Let's talk science!

The Mysteries of the Brain. From brain research to perfect pitch, from identification to sensory integration, from soulmates to our gifted kids, there are so many things we just don't know or don't understand about the gifted brain... you could fill a brain with them!  Visit and read about a few of the Mysteries surrounding and contained in the gifted brain...

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...

April's blog hop is on Forming Gifted Groups, for young and old, for parents and individuals...so many questions along the way. Why do we need them?  How do we form them?  How can we maintain them, and keep them positive and forward-thinking?  Gifted support groups.  They ARE all their cracked up to be!  What gifted groups would YOU like to be a part of?

Don't miss our March Math-ness! Math. The subject that excites or strikes fear, engaging our imagination or making our eyes glaze over.  Join us this month for a smorgasbord of Math, from our favorite curriculum and enrichment sources, to our most challenging math moments. Math phobia to Math frenzy, this month has something for YOU!

Other Achievement: when your child doesn't achieve where you hope.  Call it underachievement.  Or non-scholastic achievement.  Or scholastic non-achievement. What is a parent or teacher to do when the gifted child they know and love isn't accomplishing in school what we know they can? And other achievement isn't just about gifted kids... what about gifted adults?  Gifted elders?  We all achieve, but it's not always what others are expecting!

Surviving the Holidays with a House Full of Gifted Folks! The holidays bring school breaks and family time, and we love the hours spent with our friends and relatives and all the kids.  But sometimes... those large gatherings in small spaces bring along stress. 

And while this was written for the holidays, these great hints will serve you as well in your family picnics, celebrations, and holidays, no matter what time of year they occur!

Ages & Stages of Giftedness. Giftedness looks unique across the lifespan, yet most of what you find on the subject addresses the K-12 school years. But are we any less gifted as toddlers? As adults? As parents? As senior citizens? Giftedness affects every part of our human development. Join us to explore those ages and stages!

How and When to Ask For Help. So many things happen with our kids, our students, older family members, and even ourselves, that make us think, "Is this normal?" Good question!  When should we ask for help, and when should we just "let it ride..."  And how and where and to whom should we, could we, ask for help? 

As a teacher, when should we ask for help with the education of the gifted kids in our class?  As a parent, how can we ask for help when our previously sparkle-in-their-eyes child slowly comes home from school sullen-and-withdrawn, commenting about "never learning again"?  Our gifted teens... that's another time when both parents and teachers find themselves scratching their heads wondering "Is this normal?" or "Should I be worried?" There are so many times and reasons to ask for help with the gifted...

OverExcitabilities. Dabrowski called them over-stimulabilities, and now we call them OverExcitabilities, or OEs, for short. They're that over-reaction that gifted folks often have, in one or more of the 5 areas Dabrowski identified: psychomotor, sensual, imaginational, intellectual and emotional. How do these OverExcitabilities affect your life as a gifted person? Your kids' lives? Your life as the parent of a gifted child? How can we help our kids understand and appreciate their own OverExcitabilities while still living comfortably in the world around them?

Gifted 101. We were all beginners at one time or another, whether as parents discovering our kids' giftedness, or as adults discovering our own giftedness.. We welcome you to the gifted community with the advice we wish we'd heard during those first days, weeks, months and years! What do you know now that you wish you knew then?

What's the best (and worst) advice you received?

Gifted Relationships. How does giftedness affect our kids relationships, with their peers and teachers, with their siblings, with their parents and grandparents? Do gifted kids prefer real life or online relationships? Why?

And how does our giftedness affect our relationships? More than we'd like to admit!

The Gift of Free Time. Do our gifted kids get enough free time? What do they spend their free time doing? Are our lives too organized and regimented these days? How can we give our kids more of the gift of free time?

Our lives, and our kids' lives, are more scheduled today than ever.  School, after-school activities, organized sports, even daycare hours are regimented into subjects, with little time for play.  Whatever happened to summers full of free time?  Read and find out!

2e kids. Twice Exceptional. Dually Identified. No matter what you call them, gifted kids with another struggle are more than twice the challenge; they're more like challenge squared. Can you imagine a gifted mind, trapped inside a body that doesn't conform to the expectations of school, family, or society?  As challenging as this might be for parents and teachers, the biggest challenge may be internal to the 2e child herself!

How can you identify the 2e child? What flavors of 2e kids are there? How does the 2e child fare in traditional school? In homeschooling? What challenges face 2e adults? Recommendations? What tips and tricks help the 2e child, their parents, teachers, and other professionals, to accomplish all that they are capable of without frustration and struggle?

Anxiety.  It's real.  It can be debilitating. How can we deal with it?  How can we help our kids deal?

Research tells us that gifted kids and adults are no more likely to struggle with these difficulties than other kids and adults. Some suggest that giftedness protects from Anxiety, while others suggest that it can create excess anxiety. What are the symptoms and side-effects of gifted anxiety in your life?

Acceleration: It's not just about speeding up!

According to A Nation Deceived, there are at least 13 kinds of academic Acceleration, from early entrance (to kindergarten, middle school, high school or college), subject or full grade acceleration, compacting, mentors, and lots more. The last 100+ years of research tells the same story: acceleration of gifted students is a good thing. The worst result research reports is that some forms of acceleration aren't bad.  The best result includes positive growth for the academic and social/emotional well-being of the gifted child.

What does Acceleration mean to you? Good or bad? Were you accelerated as a child? Were your children accelerated? How does it affect the teenage years? ...adulthood? Welcome to the world of gifted acceleration!

We'll start this year's Hoagies' Gifted Blog Hop with a tough topic... Testing.  Testing means so many things. In this era of annual testing, it means those public school achievement tests that take weeks and months away from our kids' instructional year, much to the dismay of kids, parents, teachers, administrators... just about everyone.  But with gifted kids, testing can also mean high-stakes IQ tests that do, or don't, qualify our kids for the "gifted" program or school... whether it suits our kids or not. 

To homeschooling parents, testing may bring up feelings of it being unnecessary. Homeschoolers already meet their kids instructional needs, so why test at all?  Then there are our 2e kids, to whom testing can mean the difference between diagnosis and folks understanding and supporting them, or folks calling them "lazy" or "unmotivated."  Testing is a loaded topic!

How can we "do" the holidays without the kids' chorus of "Give me, give me"?  How can we ignore the ads and the stores and the constant bombardment that the less we spend, the less we love our loved ones?  What options are there for our gifted families? Holiday Gifts without the Buy-Buy-Buy helps us find our way, in many ways...

Before we head into this year's holiday season, let's talk about Gifted Self-Care.  Whether it's caring for our selves, or teaching self-care to our kids, we all need to spend a little time taking care of me, myself and I. Care for yourself might simply be a cup of coffee or a chocolate bar all by yourself, a massage, a good book, or date night with your spouse (and without the kids). For our kids, we might teach them deep breathing, meditation or even escaping a stressful situation, when possible.  And we always want them to know that we, like them, need to take care of ourselves!

Fall brings school, and school brings Gifted Advocacy.  We find ourselves advocating for our gifted children in many places.  We may be in school, talking to the teacher and administrators.  We may be in the community, signing up for a camp or afterschool program.  We may be advocating with our pastor or our neighbor, in the grocery store line or at the soccer game. We may even find ourselves advocating for ourselves, as gifted adults.  Gifted advocacy comes in many colors and flavors... where do you find yourself advocating?

Gifted, How? The different faces of giftedness. The creatively gifted, the math gifted, the chess kid, the twice exceptional child (also known as 2e, dually identified, or gifted & learning disabled), the introvert and the extravert, the writer, the comic book author, the programmer, the easy-going and the anxious. All gifted kids (and adults) don't all look alike!  What does the face of giftedness look like to you? 

Friendship. One word that has many meanings. For most kids, friends are those they play with.  But for the gifted child, friendship is often far more than that. Gifted friendships can be more complex, more deep, and more difficult to find. Visit our August 2014 blog hop, where we take on Gifted Friendships, charting the waters and traveling the seas as they affect gifted children and adults!

For July 2014, we turn our attention to Summer Reading. Summer reading means so much more than a reading list sent home from school.  It might mean "mind candy" reading, just to escape from the summer heat.  Or it might mean non-fiction reading, and hopefully spending time doing the things you learn. For some kids, summer reading, like school-year reading, is still a struggle; gifted kids may have these struggles too, and we can support and help them.  Reading should be fun for everyone... and with graphic novels and books on tape in our modern repertoire, it can be!

In June 2014, just in time for summer, we Hop on Gifted @Play. What does "play" mean to gifted kids?  What kinds of play are best? Indoors or outdoors?  Structured or free-play?  Creative play using tools such as Lego, Kapla or Zome?  Exploring nature through geocaching, or exploring gravity through old-fashioned playground equipment?  What kinds of play are favorites of gifted kids, teens and adults?  What kinds of play can gifted families do together? Play is important to us ALL!

In May 2014, Hoagies' Gifted Education Page introduced 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 over two dozen Hoagies' Blog Hop bloggers think and feel! Thanks to all our bloggers for opening up this conversation. 

If you'd like to join in our Hop, contact us at carolyn@hoagiesgifted.org.  Special thanks to Pamela S. Ryan for our great Blog Hop graphics!

Follow @HoagiesGifted on Twitter, Hoagies' Gifted Education Page fan page on Facebook, or Carolyn K. on LinkedIn. Now on Google+! Different than Hoagies' Page updates, this feed includes timely short articles and links for kids, and brain research and gifted education features for adults and kids!

 

Updated June 01, 2019


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