Higher Percentage of Sensory Challenges with Gifted Children

With everything I post, some people may agree or not agree and I am ok with that. But in my opinion (and there is information to support this by others), there can be a correlation between being gifted and having sensory challenges. I do believe that many gifted children have intensities can also include the senses.

Unfortunately, I do think there is a social stigma about talking about “sensory processing disorder” and its direct correlation to other disorders. But it is getting to be a more common term in education and hopefully more accepted too. It can be debilitating but can also be minor and easily adapted for when it is understood.

Here are two articles about gifted children and sensory processing disorder. I would HIGHLY recommend any parent of gifted children read it. Your child might not exhibit these characteristics but I bet some other children around you do.  Always good to be an informed parent. 🙂

spdflogotransparent

davidson

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Sometimes I feel Like a Hypocrite

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Do you ever feel like this?? Not just in parenting but anything?

Well, I do…this weekend we made a decision to change the name of our school. I strongly believe that gifted children should not be ashamed of their gifts but taught about them. They are not better than anyone else but they are different.

Anyways- I could stand on that soapbox (and I have!) for awhile.

I cannot change that there is a social stigma against talking about or having your child be considered academically gifted.

Therefore, we are changing the name to “Wake Academy“.

Just wanted to make sure everyone knew! We will be busy the next few weeks changing everything over to the new name.

Inspiring…

The other day I was asked about teaching by a twenty-something friend. Professionally she is in the financial world but is looking for a career change. She mentioned that she has changed companies for different reasons- mainly because she didn’t feel challenged. After a few jobs she realized that it was fulfillment she was searching for in her job. And she asked me about teaching…

Through our conversation, I quickly realized how sad it made me when I realized that she had not be encouraged to pursue this – either from the media or from her family. I am sad because I cannot imagine a better job than teaching. Changing a child’s life, affecting how their attitudes about school, and just seeing them learn is so incredibly amazing. When I am not teaching, I feel a piece of myself missing. I told her how much I loved it and how I could not wait for the day I was able to get back in the classroom. I hope that my days as a teacher are considered inspiring either for students or others to enter this amazing profession.

Anyways- here is my second favorite TED Talks. Rita Pierson is SO inspiring.

Interesting Short Article about Benefits of Gifted Programs

I subscribe to a daily online gifted “newspaper” (that is what it looks like to me) and often find some great articles posted- Mr. Gelston Digest. Today, there was one about the power of gifted programs for students. Several great points were made but this one kinda stuck with me:

According to a recent report on high-achieving students, more than 7 in 10 teachers of these students surveyed noted that their brightest students were not challenged or given a chance to “thrive” in their classrooms. [1] Additionally, gifted students need gifted programming in many cases because the “general education program is not yet ready to meet the needs of gifted students” (p. 9) due to lack of general educators’ training in gifted education and the pressure classroom teachers face to raise the performance of their struggling students. [2] 

See more at: http://www.nagc.org/resources-publications/gifted-education-practices/why-are-gifted-programs-needed#sthash.szlCQH6O.dpuf

YEA!! More School Pics

In case you didn’t know… I am SUPER excited about our new location! I LOVE it (can you sense my emotions about this?!).

Here are a few more pictures… I am hoping to go by tomorrow and will get a few more.

The first picture is part of the common room. There is a small area with 6 bistro tables. Each table has 4 seats. Perfect for a class to eat here. It is also right near where the classrooms are located.

eating area

The two doors on either side of the front desk area lead to the hallway of classrooms. This front desk area is on one side of the common area and the eating area is directly across from it.

entry doors

Our Amazing Location- Part 1

I cannot be happier with the location for our school. It has double doors (double security!), three HUGE classrooms, common area, eating area, fenced playground on the woods and I LOVE it.

Here are a few pictures of the three classrooms. Each classroom has access to a bathroom inside the room, sink area, windows, and plenty of space!!

I will post some more pictures this weekend.

classroom1

classroom2

classroom2a classroom3 sink area

So HAPPY!!!

We have a location for the school! This has been the biggest obstacle and today we got the call that we have space. I cannot express the excitement that I feel right now to be one step closer to offering this opportunity to children. I love the space and feel that it is perfect for us!! Pictures to come…

Oh and my shirt today makes me laugh. The picture is terrible but it has been a long few days worrying about the location. I wanted it so badly that I think I have worried myself to insomnia! But I am so happy!!!!

selfie

New location:

107 Quade Dr
Cary, NC 27513

Why Puzzles?

I am often asked by parents of academically gifted children some ways to encourage, enrich, and play with their children. One easy way I have always recommended parents is the use of puzzles. They are a classic toy that has been used for thousands of years and there is a reason. I think they offer a fun way to teach many skills to children. Puzzles are also a toy the kids will always pull out (and easy for us to take on trips) and do it over and over.

playing with puzzle

I found a few articles about the benefits of puzzles. I think it is worth while for academically gifted parents to appreciate all the skills they do provide.

The Benefits of Puzzles in Early Childhood Development

10 Benefits of Puzzles for Children

On a side note- there are lots of companies that make puzzles. Our favorite is Melissa and Doug because they are durable and some are made in big floor size puzzles. One of our Melissa and Doug puzzles also incorporates pictures to find when you are all done. I believe there is a farm animal one like this:

melissa and doug puzzle

Help me! Tablet Recommendations for Kids!

What?! It is November?! The holidays are right around the corner. I always feel a little stressed trying to balance how much money we spend and getting quality toys.  This year we are trying to decide on whether to get a tablet or not for my oldest.  I have to say I was very intrigued the other day when this popped up when I logged into Amazon:

tablet for academically gifted

Yes- I did watch the product tour and of course wanted to buy it right away. The fact that it is guaranteed for 2 years is amazing for a parent. But I wanted to do some homework comparing tablets. The difficult part of researching is determining if the website has been endorsed by specific products and is biased.

I need some help from fellow parents… any recommendations? 

Here are a few links to 2 other websites that compare tablets for kids:

http://www.tabletpccomparison.net/tablets-for-kids

Top tablets for kids: Your essential guide

It’s official: You’re buying a tablet for the kids. Since you’ve done all your homework with parts one and two of this Kids and Tablets series, you know what’s in store for you when you turn your young ones

Check out this story on USATODAY.com: http://usat.ly/1jhieVj

Homework or No Homework?

standardized testing, academically gifted

OK- I have yet another confession… my opinion of homework has changed now that my son is school-age.

I used to think it was a great way to practice skills learned during the school day and projects were a family bonding time.

Nope- not any more. I am second guessing all the homework I assigned. Was it torture, review, parents completing it, or boring for students? I think a mix of all of these. After a long day of using their brains, students need a break. They need time to pursue outside interests, relax, time for family, or just to do nothing. Kids need to learn to do nothing (this is a topic for another blog post) or play. Many like to do sports or spend time with their family. Some even want to learn more math or read new books- but this is their time.

Everyone has an opinion about this topic- this is just mine.

I loved this article written for the Washington Post reviewing research on this topic. The author raises some fantastic points about the importance of homework (or lack of).

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/answer-sheet/wp/2012/11/26/homework-an-unnecessary-evil-surprising-findings-from-new-research/