This is a professional development blog. We'll be discussing books we read as a group. Our discussions will be focused on gifted children.
I believe it's important to learn about the emotion intensities of the gifted students because " looking at how these specific characteristics impacts them" can help you as a teacher " figure out the best ways to mediate the more negative aspects of living with such intensity. When a teacher has more knowledge, they can help " develop that into its best potential , to help it become the passion people need to find fulfillment in their lives." To let them know " that these intense emotions as are not bad, they are just one aspect of their personalities."
I agree with Sarah Chu because we are with the students most of the days of the year. In large part, we have a huge impact on their emotional development.
Yes, Sarah Chu :) totally agree that we need to teach gifted children that their emotions are not bad, just part of their personalities. I loved when Fonseca wrote about GT kids and their disdain for "group work." Group work definitely seems to trigger the emotional intensity- whether it is the frustration of the social aspect, or just the frustration with the lack of intensiveness by the regular classroom students. I don't think I have ever seen a GT child that enjoys a group project.
Totally agree Ladies. If we can figure out what triggers their emotional intensity then we can have an incredible learning environment for that child. It's almost like giving them a choice board of activities to complete the project/group assignment. They truly get to pick their own level of frustration--if that should occur. Group projects for GT kids in the regular classroom triggers emotional intensity for all kids involved.
I agree with you ladies. We do need to teach G/T children that their emotions are not bad. They are just a part of their genetic make-up. I can understand why G/T students get frustrated with group work. Usually they can get the job done themselves and often times their way of solving problems is on a different level from their peers. G/T kids are so intense. It can be positive in some situations, but can work against them in others.
I think it's important to learn about the emotional intensities of all students, including our gifted students. The more we are prepared for our students, the better prepared we are when our students need our help. As Fonseca mentions in Chapter ! about our assumptions of gifted students, we assume that gifted children are above average in everything, including handling their emotions. I am interested in learning Fonseca's strategies for helping gifted students.
I agree with Judy B-song, the better prepared we are at helping all of our students the more successful year they will have.
I also agree with Judy B-song because their is this thought that GT students do not lack in any areas when truthfully they do. They lack when it comes to certain emotions and strategies for reactions to these emotions.
In response to Judy B-song post on June 30th, i agree with you..If we can meet the emotional needs of our gifted students, they we are helping them become well-rounded students. often times i focus on meeting the academic needs and forget the rest.
Well said Judy B-Song! We all experience emotional intensity at times and need the support and the tools to help our students, our friends, ourselves when these times arise.
In response to Judy B-song: This book is a such a good reminder to us all that the gifted students are not gifted in everything. Shame on us for forgetting that idea is not even humanly possible. As I read the definition of emotional intensity on pages 26 and 27, it was like a frying pan hitting me in the head! "Emotional intensity also can color the way the child interacts at school related to his own perceptions of success in the school setting. If the child is a higher achiever, school is a fun place, despite some of the difficulties his own over excitability may bring. If, on the other hand, the child underachieves, school turns into a reminder of the imperfections he possess - confirmation of his incorrect belief that his failures in school mean he is not gifted at all." This blew my socks off. It's not that complicated of a concept, but it is the first time I've every made the connection.
The better we can communicate with parents who don't understand emotional intensity!
Response to Sarah Chu:I like that you talked about helping students with intense emotions are not bad. What suggestions do you for an activity for the class to deal with intense emotions? Maybe something for boys? girls?I believe that it is important to learn about the emotions intensities of gifted students because Fonseca (2010) states that 'one of the most misunderstood aspects of personality has to do with the way a person interacts with others." p. 45 With internal chemical changes to adolescent bodies, for instance, and then throw in a brilliant brain, educators need to understand that a gifted student can be their worst critique to themselves. I have noticed GT students talk themselves out of confidence for what they truly comprehension what was expected. I have noticed GT battle themselves with perfectionism of a project and lead with little regard of other because internally they need the project just so. The way a GT student interacts internally can have great effects of peer relationships as well.Fonseca, C. (2010). Emotional Intensity in Gifted Students Helping Kids Cope With Explosive Feelings.. Naperville: Sourcebooks.
I think it is important to be knowledgeable about the emotional intensities of gift students so we can differentiate for their needs. On pg. 39, it talks about the expectations of a classroom such as, "sit quietly in class, to only speak when spoken to, or to stay on topic when participating in classroom discussions.." can be exceptionally difficult for gifted students. We need to adapt our classroom so they are successful.
I believe it is extremely important to learn about the emotion intensities of gifted students because this is a way to help them better react to those emotions as well as our own reactions to some of these emotions which may not be typically "normal." It is important for us to know so that we may relay these emotions to the parents as well. We can work together to support the child in both settings. As on page 67, collaborating with the school and parents develop a common language for the child.
It is important to learn about the emotional intensities of gifted students because often times I assume they are "mini adults" since they are so advanced academically with their thinking. I often forget that they are experiencing some of the same emotions as their peers who are not gifted. And just like their peers, sometimes they don't know how to express their feelings or they may think that the emotions they are experiencing are "not" normal. I need to remember they are gifted kids with "regular/not gifted" emotions
In response to Helen: l appreciate the point you made about assuming they are "mini adults" because of their academic advancement. You helped me to visualize something I do as well.
I like what Fonseca says on page 48, that emotional intensity is not necessarily a bad thing and that it is often the passion people need to find fulfillment in their lives. She also mentions that we must not deal with emotional intensity in a punitive manner nor negate the child's feelings; either of these reactions can "cause more harm than good".
I agree with you Mrs. Becky Stephenson. As we say in the counselor world, "Feelings are not bad. It is how we deal with them that is important." After reading this book I think we will all do a better job helping our g/t students deal with their emotions.
I believe it is important to learn about the emotional intensities of gifted students because it's up to us as the educators, and the parents to learn different strategies and methods to teach our gifted students how to live with and cope with their intensity, and to not view it as something that is bad.
I agree with Lucy Davis (July 2, 2014) that we need to learn different strategies & methods to give our gifted students tools to use to cope with their intensity. We can also help parents who have a gifted child with strategies and methods they can try at home. Some parents may not be aware that a gifted child can have emotional intensities.
I totally agree with Lucy Davis 7-2-14. We have to help these kids learn to manage these emotions.
I agree with Lucy. It is up to us as educators to not only educate the GT student but to also keep the parents informed of the different strategies and coping mechanisms for the remarkable students.
WOW...I totally agree with Mrs. Timmreck, group work is hard for GT students. They become easily frustrated with typical learner because they just don't see things the same way or can't agree on the same way to solve the problem.I think what Helen Roberts said is so true...we do view GT kiddos many times like Mini adults and forget that their emotions are way below are far more fragile than their academic levels. Trying to meet them on every level is a goal every teacher strives for...I am hoping that this book will shed some light on these issues that we faces as teachers every day!
I love the quote on page 32. "It is important to remember that being intense is not a bad thing. When developed into its best potential, it becomes the passion people need to find fulfillment in their lives." Recognizing emotional intensity in gifted children is vital in embracing and supporting these young people. We need to support them as they learn how to react in small group, large group, and one-on-one interactions. Their reaction is what is often misunderstood.
I love that Dana said that is it "vital in embracing" these students. This is the support they need and this word fulfills the emotional side of what teachers aim to provide.
I'm so hoping that Mrs. Machen will be embracing my son and all his emotional intensity this fall!
Great quote D. Machen! - being intense is not a bad thing. - supporting these young minds is vital and teaching them how to react in certain situations is imperative.
"The emotional characteristics often leave gifted children unavailable for learning in the classroom, as they wrestle with their ever-fluctuating internal emotional states." (14% on Kindle) This statement helps explain why it is so important to understand a gifted child's emotional intensities. These kids can be their own worst enemy. Without our knowledge, we cannot help them break through this barrier and reach their academic potential.
Response to Mrs. Demeris: a child might be so emotionally wrapped up in something completely different that he is unable to focus on anything in the classroom.
I think it is important to learn about the emotional characteristics of all of our students, including gifted students, so we can better understand and relate to them. In order to teach them, we need to connect with and understand them and form relationships. Just like we do with our peers.
I think it is important to learn about the emotional characteristics of all of our students so we can understand what makes them tick. It also helps in making connections with students so we know how to teach them. Once we establish those bonds, there tends to be nothing a student won't do for a teacher.
I think that Judy hit the nail on the head when she said that we need to identify the emotional intensity for all of our students in order to help them achieve their potential.
When you have a GT student turn into a weeping puddle b/c something didn't go as planned, it is a big wake up that you need figure out what makes them tick so you can help them avoid repeating the same situation. Page 38 talks about the intense and erratic mood swings and the physical symptoms that can be a part of their giftedness.
On p. 11 when the author is discussing Emily, “The intensity of her emotions is extreme, and it does mimic a mood disorder. However, differentiating between a mood disorder and the normal intensity of behavior….not always considered.”How serious if we miss the mark especially in cases like this example! Understanding and then learning to differentiate between mood disorders and intense behavior is very important. Since in part the diagnosis of a mood disorder lies with medical personnel, we can at least be very careful how we “label”or interpret behavior.
Understanding the emotional intensity of gifted students helps me rationalize why some talented kids do not succeed. It lends me ideas for helping to prevent student frustration. Throughout the section on introverts and extroverts, Fonseca mentions that the students and often their parents (and teachers) do not recognize the need for social interaction as a way of rejuvenation. Or in the converse the need for solitude. If I can recognize these personality traits in my students I can better help them avoid frustration and thus succeed.
I wish I would have read this book 3 years ago. I think I would have saved a parent from her own emotional intensity of worrying about her son's GT emotional intensity. She wanted him diagnosed with a mood disorder. Now, I am not a physician, but reading this book makes me think that it is just who he is. Some information from the first part of the book helped me draw this conclusion; resistant to take risks, strong need to understand the world, overly critical of himself and absolutely no risk taking!! I am finding this book quite interesting and very insightful--to thinks I didn't do very well in the past, to improving my future.
Because a student's emotional state will often mask their true capability. Any student whose emotional needs are not met will not necessarily have the resources to work to the best of their ability in a classroom. Without their emotional needs being met, therefore, their academic needs cannot be met, and therefore they will not be successful. It's a domino effect.
It is important to understand a GT students emotional characteristics to understand how they interact with the world. This will assist parents and teachers to avoid inhibiting educational, social and emotional performance.
Understanding the emotional characteristics of a gifted student is imperative to truly understanding how to effectively teach this population. If a student's emotions are intense and have a tendency to encompass that child's thoughts and actions, it prevents him or her from learning properly or, more importantly, feeling safe in the educational environment. Sometimes students can even "shut down" when frustrated or angry, and learning techniques to help these students cope with their emotions will help them create both emotional and educational solutions in the long run.
I think it is important to be aware so that we can will know how to approach them from an education standpoint and more importantly misdiagnose them or immediately refer them for testing. Anytime we are made aware of a student's particular situation we are then responsible to act on that students behalf.
It is important to be aware of G/T students, and all student's emotional intensity in order to better mentor, teach, and initiate a positive classroom environment. So often, I think of gifted students as more mature emotionally because they can be as articulate (or more so!) as an adult person. However, in their emotional development, they are still very much teenagers--and some may even be emotionally immature.