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The average child - Page 4

post #61 of 220
Just subbing to this thread, interesting discussion.

I'm the ordinary child of a gifted parent (I think my dad's on the autism spectrum and doesn't know it) and would totally agree that life really can be harder for folks dealing with extreeme intellegence issues and that these folks do have special learning and social needs. I think it's like the rest of us are wearing sunglasses and he's not. If my fater is a typical example, life is much more intense for gifted folks and they realy have a hard time filtering out much of what the rest of us overlook.

Also to the OP, I'm pretty sure that my dd1 is a bright but "ordinary" learner. Frankly, after seeing how my dad has struggled in life I'm quite grateful.
post #62 of 220
Quote:
Originally Posted by Citymomx3
People get annoyed when parents talk about their gifted children, but it's just as much of a challenge as having a learning disabled child.
This is something I've heard a lot over the years. It's obviously not always that way, but I've heard (and seen) some pretty poignant stories.

I think a lot of the problem might be the word used - "gifted." I'm not even remotely suggesting people should try to change the terminology at this point - but it does, unfortunately, tend to imply an extra value on those who have that particular sort of mental organization. Maybe there would be more empathy if some other word had been used all these years - something that implies merely a different mental configuration rather than a superior one. We do, after all, highly value intelligence - it's vital to our very survival - and there's often some kind of natural reaction when people are presented with the image of someone's child having been given a special "gift" of intelligence that others didn't get. Unless it's someone who's seen as somewhat removed from our own lives - like Einstein, for instance. There's not so much reaction when people speak of someone being musically gifted, or artistically gifted, mathematically gifted, or athletically gifted - but those things are smaller categories that aren't important to so many people.

I knew a mom who was reactive about the word in spite of the fact that one of her kids was clearly "gifted" - she balked when people mentioned it, and said, "Aren't all of our kids gifted?!" It was actually the social and athletic gifts of her other kids she was more willing to honor, whereas that more intellectually gifted one was expected to just fit in.

And then there's the added problem of there being too many parents who do indeed think of it that way. When I've tried to defend people who feel the need to speak of their "gifted" children, friends have told me I might feel differently if I could hear the way this one or that brags on and on at park day about her "gifted" child. And some of that might be a matter of perception too. I'll bet that in some of those cases, a mom is truly just expressing the frustrations she's having in meeting her child's needs, and looking for ideas or support, whereas in some cases, there actually is bragging going on. And the level of security of the person hearing the story is going to color her own perception of what's really going on.

- Lillian
post #63 of 220
It would be nice if we could celebrate who we are and who are children are no matter where they fall on the spectrum without feeling the need to tear down someone else in the process.

Quote:
Originally Posted by LeftField
[T]he gifted label has been horribly misused by well-to-do, competitive parents who want their bright non-gifted children to get the best treatment in school. Those are the people that many of us find so annoying and those are also the people that make it difficult to get truly academically gifted children the differentiation they need, because they dilute the gifted programs and turn them into a status symbol instead of the special needs programs that they are supposed to be. It seems like we all hear "gifted" so much and I think that's because the term has been co-opted for something entirely different, which is a real shame.
Absolutely. This is where I find Deborah Ruf's Levels of Giftedness to be particularly handy. Since first reading this page, I've read her book, and while I still have a few beefs about her criteria, the book talks much more about behaviour and other non-academic characteristics and I view it more favorably.

Most "gifted" kids are moderately gifted, and, if in school, these children would do fine in a regular but challenging classroom situation. Thanks to Terman, these are the happy healthies that most people probably think of when they think of when they hear "gifted." They're quite likely to do well in school and I'll wager take up the vast majority of G&T slots in local schools. Maybe "gifted" is a good word for these kids. They are much more likely to be successful in their chosen fields that are children who are more "gifted."

There is a tremendous difference between PG, EG and HG kids (Levels 3, 4 and 5) and moderately gifted children. For those with kids in schools, in many districts trying to get academic accomodations as resource friendly as acceleration can be next to impossible. You should read some of the stories on GT-Families. Can you imagine doing high school level math at home and being forced to complete Gr. 1 or 2 worksheets during school? Being held back because your handwriting? Or because you academics peers would got through puberty earlier, or get their driver's licenses earlier? Or having a child with behavioral problems due to boredom and being told they can't accelerate because they aren't mature enough? In our case, we live two blocks from school housing the gifted-gifted program, but they won't admit kids until they are Gr. 1 age. No exceptions. I'm committed to homeschooling anyway, but come on; DD1 froths at the bit now to do math and science. By the time she'll be school age, she'll be working well above elementary level.
post #64 of 220
Quote:
Originally Posted by natashaccat
I'm the ordinary child of a gifted parent (I think my dad's on the autism spectrum and doesn't know it) and would totally agree that life really can be harder for folks dealing with extreeme intellegence issues and that these folks do have special learning and social needs. I think it's like the rest of us are wearing sunglasses and he's not. If my fater is a typical example, life is much more intense for gifted folks and they realy have a hard time filtering out much of what the rest of us overlook.
What an interesting way to put it!

Now: imagine being three years old and not having that filter. It's a totally offensive notion to parents of such children that ignoring it or just loving them will make their differences less noticeable or less difficult to deal with.
post #65 of 220
Quote:
Originally Posted by NoHiddenFees
It Most "gifted" kids are moderately gifted, and, if in school, these children would do fine in a regular but challenging classroom situation. Thanks to Terman, these are the happy healthies that most people probably think of when they think of when they hear "gifted." They're quite likely to do well in school and I'll wager take up the vast majority of G&T slots in local schools. Maybe "gifted" is a good word for these kids. They are much more likely to be successful in their chosen fields that are children who are more "gifted."
I think this is the type of "gifted" child I was, and the type of "gifted" child I pretty much expect my children to be. If we did PS, I'd totally expect my kids to be in "gifted" or "advanced" programs. But I don't think it's much more than just being really bright and having a home environment that allows that to shine. I absolutely don't compare this level of giftedness to the types of giftedness I read about on this board. I really do believe there are significant challenges associated with raising an honest-to-goodness high IQ child. And I'm profoundly grateful that I don't have those children or those challenges, because I fear I wouldn't be up to the task. On the other hand, I do sometimes feel like my children are the anomoly in the homeschooling world for just being average bright kids.
post #66 of 220
I think there are a couple different definitions of "gifted" being conflated here. One, the concept of high intelligence, and two, the general sense of being talented. Almost everyone has talents and "gifts" in that sense, but not everyone is intellectually gifted. No value judgment there, just a statement of fact. Not everyone is a natural athlete, not everyone can draw in perfect perspective, not everyone can invent original recipes that taste good.

I see the difference between talents and giftedness thusly: A person can learn the rules of a sport or art and--even if they don't have a natural ability for it--with a certain amount of work they can learn to imitate or approximate a talent for it, even if it's a really crappy approximation. Exhibit A: The "art" you see on motel walls.

However, intellectual giftedness cannot be approximated. You have it or you don't, and although you can abuse your brain and get "dumber," you can never get any smarter than you already are. I believe THAT is why the subject is so touchy. It goes against our ingrained societal belief that if you just work hard then you can get better at anything and do anything you want. Well, you can work all you want at getting smarter and it will never happen. The most you can possibly do is train your brain to work a little more efficiently within the limits of your natural intelligence. Sadly, this last notion is what seems to drive the majority of the "gifted and talented" programs in our school systems, which does little but mess up people's perception of giftedness and produce a lot of miserable busy-worked stressed-out kids.

I do agree with some others here who have said the label is being overused--you are absolutely correct. See the end of my last paragraph. However, I do think there is value in the label for those kids who really need it. If nothing else it lets parents connect with each other. I know I found it to be a huge help when I discovered there were other kids like mine and some who were even more "out there"! The sense of relief was enormous. If I hadn't had a "label" to type into google I never would have found that support.

I guess it can be hard to understand that just being smarter can be any kind of a burden or special need. I mean, wouldn't we all love to be able to think a little more clearly or remember better or whatever? And it doesn't seem very important, does it, how smart a person is, as long as they are content. But that's the thing with a truly gifted child--they are often NOT content because their brains are racing this way and that and all around in ways most of us literally cannot imagine. They get overloaded with stuff most of us don't even think about. For instance, when my son was around 5 he was reading an astronomy book and broke down in tears for half the night because "the universe is so big we'll NEVER learn everything about it." Another example: A few months ago we were talking and my son said how he was doing something differently (at a different time) than the other kids in his Y class did it. I tried to sympathize and said "I know, we all feel different sometimes." He replied, "I don't feel different sometimes, I feel different ALL THE TIME."

Those are the kinds of comments that send parents looking for support. It's not all about when a kid learns to read or whatever, although very early milestones can be a shock to a parent who hoped (like most parents) for nothing more than a healthy baby. Giftedness does have its own set of symptoms and challenges--it's not an imaginary thing cooked up by overambitious parents. Honestly, I never even thought about "giftedness" or about how smart my kids would be. I guess if anything I assumed they'd be a little above average like most of my family, but it's not something I pondered. It took me a long time to come to grips with the fact of my son's high intelligence and how it wasn't something that would resolve itself without attention. Comments about him being "weird" "freaky" "scary" etc did NOT help.

Sorry to hijack, but I'm just trying to address a few of the comments I've read on this thread and hopefully help some people to understand why support for gifted children and their parents can be necessary, even in a homeschooling environment.
post #67 of 220
Quote:
Originally Posted by eilonwy
And that's why parents of gifted children need their own places to discuss their children, why there are books specifically aimed at homeschoolers with gifted children, etc, etc, and so forth. You are not at all alone in this view, especially when it comes to highly/profoundly gifted children. Every now and then, it's nice for a parent to be able to discuss their child and the things that their child needs/does without hearing about how "freaky" they are, or how "all children are gifted, yours are just weird," or any of the other decidedly unhelpful things which parents feel it's perfectly acceptable to say about/to gifted children.
As I said in my post about this, it was how the girl was defined by memorizing these lists that I found freaky. There was something manic about it. And maybe it was just a product of it being on tv.

There was a little boy in ds's preschool this year, who at just under 3yo, could not only read and write, but could REALLY read and write. To the point where I watched him writing poetry in chalk on the cement outside. I didn't think he was freaky. He obviously gifted, and like others mentioned, asynchronous in his development. He had a difficult time socially, crying and shaking when kids would sing happy birthday, etc. But he was a great little kid and I didn't find him freaky at all.

And I never said there shouldn't be support forums for parents of gifted children. I think everyone should have a support system in place. I'm glad there are ones for parents of adopted children, parents of multiples, parents of disabled children, parents of gifted children. I would never argue that those forums shouldn't be in place.

I was just saying that I was not comfortable with that Oprah show. Like I said, it was obvious from the interaction between the parent and child that the parent was totally wrapped up in this, coached and tested the little girl, and that the little girl's entire existence was defined by her ability to rattle off these lists.
post #68 of 220
Quote:
Originally Posted by hsmamato2
You know, I still, after doing lots of reading on the subject,and talking to a lot of folks about it on both sides of the question,believe it's mainly a label that people use to set themselves/their kids apart from the rest of the population. I don't honestly see giftedness as creating certain traits, but I do see certain personality types,and types of learners, exhibit many of the same traits. Do you see what I mean?
I don't mean to put anyone down,and I'm sorry if I have-this is my opinion only,of course,and I have been wrong many times before.
I truly think there are a few,a very few among us who are so 'gifted' that they truly live and learn in a different category than most of us. But I also think the term gifted is now overrused,and misused in too many ways, sort of like I believe the ADD diagnosis is way overused,etc.
This is from someone who comes from a family who "thinks differently" than a lot of people we know... IQ testing was a big part of all of our early school intervention(ed?) lives,and I guess maybe I have a bit of a touchy spot when it comes to labeling. Gifted people,as in academically, don't need labels in a homeschool setting any more than a slower academic learner does, they just need the love and time only a parent can give them to flourish...
Ok, I said before I'm a VERY slow learner when it comes to staying on topic...

First, ditto lckrause... who I think more eloquently stated what I've tried to say in this thread.

I do agree with the above, in that I do think the label is overused. I do think there are parents out there that see it as a 'status' symbol, and I do think there are those parents that sit and front-load their kids or drill them, or whatever, and try to 'push' their kids into gifted classes.

The part I disagree with are some of the traits, which doesn't mean other people don't have those traits. There is a difference, though, which is hard to explain unless experienced. My youngest.... she has a STRONG personality. She is INTENSE, she is persistent, she locks on one idea and refuses to let go of that idea... to the point that when she was little she'd scream indefinitely without being able to be consoled until she got what she wanted.... tantrums by 6 months. This is definitely personality.

With my oldest... it's different. The child was bawling at books when she was barely two... b/c a dog ate someone's flower, or b/c a pumpkin was carved. Highly empathetic... yes, that definitely can be a personality trait. Many people share it... but when coupled with a number of other items... For me one of the most enlightening things I read was about dabrowski's overexcitabilities, which really is more an extreme reaction to certain items. These can affect anyone, but there is an increase of these in folks that are 'gifted'... and 4/5 fit dd to a tee.....especially the sensual, imaginational and emotional... where she is always, always in overdrive on.

http://www.stephanietolan.com/dabrowskis.htm


With my dd, if I homeschool her for other than preschool years, would I get testing done to simply get the label. Nope. No need... but it has helped me to research the area to get a handle on some of the non-academic things I've seen with her. Dd has NO interest in academics, though, at this point. So, it will actually be interesting to see if 4 years down the road, my speculation that she is gifted based on the characteristics I see, actually pans out. Then I'll have at least a complete test case for you on characteristics/gifted.

As ya said, though, everyone has different opinions. I'm not 'offended' by your opinion, b/c that is yours. My opinion is simply based on what I've seen with my children, and members of my family that have been 'gifted'. That is mine.

It's what makes everything go 'round... and things would be quite boring if we all had the same opinion on everything. ;-)

Tammy
post #69 of 220
Quote:
Originally Posted by oceanbaby
As I said in my post about this, it was how the girl was defined by memorizing these lists that I found freaky. There was something manic about it. And maybe it was just a product of it being on tv.

...

I was just saying that I was not comfortable with that Oprah show. Like I said, it was obvious from the interaction between the parent and child that the parent was totally wrapped up in this, coached and tested the little girl, and that the little girl's entire existence was defined by her ability to rattle off these lists.
I'm not sure how obvious it could be; unless I'm much mistaken, Oprah's only an hour long, and I doubt that the entire hour was dedicated to this particular child. Sure, she could have been one of those children who is coerced into performing for a crowd, but what you're describing could easily be a very gifted child who is completely and singularly obsessed with memorizing lists, and who happened to have been given interesting lists by her parents.

I suppose you should know where I'm coming from. My own son can identify all 50 states by shape alone, and can rattle off all sorts of (seemingly) useless information about them. One of my nieces can recite the names of all of the presidents in a sing-songy voice, and tell you their terms of office because she memorized them off of a placemat. She sounds very manic and strange when she does this; it's simply her affect. I memorized the Greek alphabet when I was very young, for no reason other than that it was right there in the front of a dictionary that I found. Honestly, if someone offered me several hundred dollars to let my kid stand on a stage and recite all fifty states, and if he was amenable to such a thing, I'd be hard pressed to say no.
post #70 of 220
"As I said in my post about this, it was how the girl was defined by memorizing these lists that I found freaky. There was something manic about it."

My son loved to memorize. As a preschooler he memorized all sorts of stuff totally on his own. It probably looked more "freaky" to other people than it really was. Sometimes people think this sort of thing must prove parental pushing or freakitude of some sort because they are imaging the hours or work it may take for their child to do such a thing. The president memorization happened here without my even being aware he'd discovered that section of the encyclopedia. Some kids can memorize information after a couple of readings.

And, I agree with other posters that there are some unkind sentiments being expressed. I'd never in a million years say to someone "how sad for you that you have a typical child, I'm so glad I don't." Why is it appropriate to express similar comments about gifted kids?
post #71 of 220
Quote:
I guess it can be hard to understand that just being smarter can be any kind of a burden or special need. I mean, wouldn't we all love to be able to think a little more clearly or remember better or whatever? And it doesn't seem very important, does it, how smart a person is, as long as they are content. But that's the thing with a truly gifted child--they are often NOT content because their brains are racing this way and that and all around in ways most of us literally cannot imagine. They get overloaded with stuff most of us don't even think about. For instance, when my son was around 5 he was reading an astronomy book and broke down in tears for half the night because "the universe is so big we'll NEVER learn everything about it."
This is exactly how I felt as a child, and still do to this day. I especially related to your son's comment about the universe. I distinctly remembering avoiding reading about the universe because my head swirled with the enormity of it. My head would start to hurt. My mind is always racing, always has been, and it is one of my greatest challenges. I have been with my dh for 15 years, and it has taken me almost that long to stop getting annoyed with him because he doesn't think like I do. When presented with a problem/challenge/situation, my mind floods with possibilities. I can't even describe it - it's just like all of a sudden my head expands and I'm thinking about every option simultaneously. And I would get irritated at my dh because he hadn't thought of something. I "see" math, I "see" how to spell words (not that you would always know it by the way I type on these boards, LOL). I have never been able to use a planner because everything sticks in my head. And other people in my life became kind of dependent on me because of this. I become the one everyone calls, I become the one for all the math questions, everyone wants me to help them write their essay/resume/website, whatever. It made me resentful as a child and it still does. School was a challenge because I would try to hide that I already knew what the teacher was talking about, and I would hesitate to ask questions that expanded on the subject matter because I didn't want to "show off." So I am no way arguing against the challenges of being gifted. (By the way, it seems that one "cure" for this has been having kids. I have become much more ditzy in the past 5 years. : )

And how was it obvious on the Oprah show? Well, if I remember correctly, this particular show was all about this one child. And she had made the rounds to other talk shows as well, I remember Jay Leno in particular. It was like she was this show dog that was being paraded around. And while she was reciting her lists the camera would pan to the parents and you could see them mouthing the lists along with her. And the mom even talked about the flashcard system they used. No, I don't know the family, and as I always say, I could be totally wrong. But that was my hit on it.

But I feel like I'm being trapped into bashing this poor family more than I want to. I just wanted to clarify that what I felt was freaky was not her knowledge per se, but the way it seemed to totally define not only her, but her parents as well.
post #72 of 220
Quote:
Originally Posted by Roar
"As I said in my post about this, it was how the girl was defined by memorizing these lists that I found freaky. There was something manic about it."

My son loved to memorize. As a preschooler he memorized all sorts of stuff totally on his own. It probably looked more "freaky" to other people than it really was. Sometimes people think this sort of thing must prove parental pushing or freakitude of some sort because they are imaging the hours or work it may take for their child to do such a thing. The president memorization happened here without my even being aware he'd discovered that section of the encyclopedia. Some kids can memorize information after a couple of readings.

And, I agree with other posters that there are some unkind sentiments being expressed. I'd never in a million years say to someone "how sad for you that you have a typical child, I'm so glad I don't." Why is it appropriate to express similar comments about gifted kids?
Oh geez, I regret I even shared my opinion that is now being taken so out of context. Why is it appropriate for people to say they feel sorry for me because my children are all boys? Why do people say they feel sorry for me because I only have a 2 bedroom house? I don't know, because they do. But it's like you're saying two different things - you want appreciation for the unique struggles you go through, but you don't want anyone to feel glad they don't have to go through the same struggle?

And let me say again, you're all talking to the wrong person here. You're preaching to the choir - save the energy for someone who actually disagrees with you. Yes, I found the little girl on Oprah freaky, for the reasons I have already mentioned 2 or 3 times. You can all keep jumping on me trying to prove that this means that I think gifted children are freaky, but you've got the wrong person. Hell, I think it's freaky when a parent says "Show Aunt so and so how you dance," and the child stops what they're doing and does it. That freaks me out, so you can imagine why I had a strong reaction to the Oprah show.

And btw, Oprah doesn't pay to be on her show, so there was no money to motivate the parents to put their kids on there.

And I have to say that within the homeschooling community, I think there very well may need to be an "average child" support group. I've barely started, but I can already feel the pressure to produce super kids.
post #73 of 220
Quote:
Originally Posted by oceanbaby
Oh geez, I regret I even shared my opinion that is now being taken so out of context. Why is it appropriate for people to say they feel sorry for me because my children are all boys? Why do people say they feel sorry for me because I only have a 2 bedroom house? I don't know, because they do. But it's like you're saying two different things - you want appreciation for the unique struggles you go through, but you don't want anyone to feel glad they don't have to go through the same struggle?.
It is inappropriate that people make those comments and it seems like learning from that to avoid making similar comments to others would be good.

It reminds me of something many of us as homeschoolers probably encounter. People say "oh you homeschool, I could NEVER do that". It is said in a tone like "eating feces, I could NEVER do that". People may not mean to be rude when they say this, but still it can very impolite.

Quote:
Originally Posted by oceanbaby
You can all keep jumping on me trying to prove that this means that I think gifted children are freaky, but you've got the wrong person. Hell, I think it's freaky when a parent says "Show Aunt so and so how you dance," and the child stops what they're doing and does it. That freaks me out, so you can imagine why I had a strong reaction to the Oprah show.
I don't care for performance of tricks especially when suggested by parents. I also don't care though to hear children who have unusual abilities called freaks. It isn't kind.
post #74 of 220
Quote:
Originally Posted by Roar
It is inappropriate that people make those comments and it seems like learning from that to avoid making similar comments to others would be good.

It reminds me of something many of us as homeschoolers probably encounter. People say "oh you homeschool, I could NEVER do that". It is said in a tone like "eating feces, I could NEVER do that". People may not mean to be rude when they say this, but still it can very impolite.



I don't care for performance of tricks especially when suggested by parents. I also don't care though to hear children who have unusual abilities called freaks. It isn't kind.
Okay, last time. I WASN'T CALLING THE GIRL A FREAK. I WAS SAYING THAT I FOUND IT FREAKY THAT IT SEEMED LIKE SHE WAS BEING DEFINED BY HER ABILITY TO RATTLE OFF LISTS. (Be sure to quote my entire statement, not just the first line when you come back to try to refute this.) I stand by that opinion, and I don't see anything unkind about it.
post #75 of 220
Quote:
Originally Posted by Roar
IIt reminds me of something many of us as homeschoolers probably encounter. People say "oh you homeschool, I could NEVER do that". It is said in a tone like "eating feces, I could NEVER do that". People may not mean to be rude when they say this, but still it can very impolite.
I've never thought of those kind of remarks as rude - I've thought of them as forthright self-deprecation, meaning:
"Oh! You're bright and talented and knowledgable enough to do all that for your children? Wow! I could never!"
or
"Oh! You're patient and open-hearted enough to be able to be with your kids all day and still enjoy them? Wow! I'm sure not like that... I'm just glad to be able to send them off to school every day and let someone else handle all that..."


- Lillian
post #76 of 220
Oceanbaby Some of did get what you were saying. I remember only too well how frustrated I used to get over being shown off in one way or another by my parents. To be put on national TV to perform would have been pretty strange stuff.

Here - have a little of this: Happy Happy, Joy Joy!

- Lillian
post #77 of 220
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lillian J


I've never thought of those kind of remarks as rude - I've thought of them as forthright self-deprecation, meaning:
"Oh! You're bright and talented and knowledgable enough to do all that for your children? Wow! I could never!"
or
"Oh! You're patient and open-hearted enough to be able to be with your kids all day and still enjoy them? Wow! I'm sure not like that... I'm just glad to be able to send them off to school every day and let someone else handle all that..."


- Lillian
I agree. When comments like "I could never homeschool" are made to me - I take it as a compliment.
post #78 of 220
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lillian J
Oceanbaby Some of did get what you were saying. I remember only too well how frustrated I used to get over being shown off in one way or another by my parents. To be put on national TV to perform would have been pretty strange stuff.

Here - have a little of this: Happy Happy, Joy Joy!

- Lillian
: Sniff. Thank you.
post #79 of 220
Huh. Here Oceanbaby, I'll attract the fire for you for a little while... All I'm going to say is that I observe these things:

Parents of the gifted tend to spend an inordinate amount of time creating criterial and protocol to distinguish the children from "average" children; and then, among themselves. They frequently complain when the low-gifted children might integrate amongst the high-gifted in my city; because that might mean letting in the nonwhites, nonaffluent, non-supergifted. I've read and been on gifted lists, and there are a lot of putdowns and comparisons to the pitiable yet privileged "average" child (I thought there was something wrong with these children who didn't know their ABCs yet, and oh, then I remembered that my son was gifted! How will my son ever survive among the savages?) and discussions/contests regarding milestones and challenges and how early Max did this. My baby shook the doctor's hand and introduced himself fully upon being born, he was so gifted!

Much of the intellectual giftedness criteria are based upon IQ scoring and supposed innate intelligence. I think much of the IQ phenomenon has been greatly called into question (remember the debates over The Bell Curve? Would I want to associate myself with this? how about Stephen Jay Gould's The Mismeasure of Man and the rather thorough debunking of IQ as a tool for the white upper-middle class to reinforce power and intelligence for the white upper-middle class?)

Attempts to discuss the labelling, testing, and complaints of unfairness of worksheets/grade-level/categorization appropriate schooling is shut down by other gifted parents as either sour grapes or "not really understanding" or not being a team player. You can't challenge the gifted official lines and pity party. You can't argue for change on a the structural level, instead of school/grade/homework assignment. For example, I don't have a problem with her doing 2nd grade worksheets- I have a problem with worksheets; I don't have a problem with her being with "average" children - I have a problem with the whole categorization of slow vs. average vs. gifted vs. super-hyper-duper-cheetah, as it leads to tracking and sorting and name-calling. If you had a good teacher in a supportive school, they could differentiate based on the child and do project-oriented work that wouldn't require sorting. But this isn't an option, partially due to hypervigilant parental desires for segregation and achievement and challenge' and making sure all the kids pass NCLB requirements and the testing...I was disappointed. I thought parents would want to buck the system a little, do some free thinking, question the system. Um. Nope.

I really don't think one can compare "academically gifted" children to developmentally delayed children as needing equal services. I think there's a huge difference, and it's offensive. I've heard the suicide statistics, and that high-IQ children are so different as to be socially challenged. But there's a big difference between not ever learning to get dressed or feed oneself or being able to write one's own name vs. not being "challenged in physics sufficiently" or having a hard time making friends. I'm sorry. I just think it's really different. There are challenges with every child. And some kids are just weird, and test "average," and not academically gifted. But they don't get a label to make it OK, or a support group.And their parents find a way to cope too.

Mm. Ok, well, that's my Treason 'O' the Day. I imagine it wil be received so very well.
post #80 of 220
Well, I guess it all comes down to tone and intent. Some people can say "Homeschooling? I could NEVER do that." and mean it in a "you're weird for doing that" way, while others are definitely trying to compliment you. I've found some can even mean a mixture of both, LOL.

Oceanbaby, if it's any consolation I can see where you're coming from with the Oprah thing. I admit I took exception to your initial "freak" comment, but now that you've explained it I understand better what you are saying. Possibly the girl on the show was gifted AND her mom is a stage mom... it happens! It's hard for me to judge, not having seen the show, however. And like eilonwy I can't say I'd turn down a couple thousand for one of my kids to "show off," as long as the kids were cool with it. We're pretty broke.
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