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  • Title: The TAG Project
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  • Title: TAGFAM: Introduction to TAGFAM
    Descriptive info: Text-only version of this site.. Welcome To Our Community!.. Everyone is not the same when it comes to intellectual ability.. We invite you to cherish that which makes you who you are.. We invite you to value your gifts, talents, and abilities!.. We welcome you to.. The TAG Project.. "Giftedness" with a positive outlook on life and living.. To learn more about our community and our mailing lists please click on one of the menu items to the left.. Last Updated:October 23, 2007.. TAGFAM Point of Contact: Kit Finn.. (director@tagfam.. org)..

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  • Title: TAGFAM FAQ
    Descriptive info: Frequently Asked Questions.. How did the TAGFAM support community.. come into being?.. The creation of this Internet-based support community is one of those "Field of Dreams" type stories -- we built it and *they* came.. Our mailing lists are part of a project at St.. John's University (SJU) in Jamaica, NY USA started by Dr.. Robert Zenhausern.. In late 1994, an invitation was extended to Valorie King to create and run a support mailing list hosted by SJU; the charter for the list was (and is).. "to serve as an online support community for talented and gifted individuals and their families -- TAGFAM.. ".. In March of 1995, the TAGFAM mailing list was announced via the New-List.. A support community was born.. Where did the structure for TAGFAM.. and the "support community" come from?.. Like children, the support group mailing lists didn't come with instruction books.. Each listowner was handed the task of establishing the culture for his or her mailing list.. Some of the support groups at SJU are primarily informational.. Others emphasize personal sharings.. All of these support group mailing lists are breaking new ground in the arena of "community building" -- using the Internet.. Who runs the mailing lists?.. Each mailing list at SJU has one or more volunteers who handle the day to day affairs of the list and the associated administrative tasks.. These volunteers are called "Listowners.. ".. The primary listowner for TAGFAM and the other TAG mailing lists is now Kit Finn.. We have been fortunate as well to have additional volunteers who assist in the "on stage" and behind the scenes administration of our mailing lists.. What's the "TAG Project?".. It gets confusing for folks, especially newcomers or those browsing our website, for us to refer to the group of five mailing lists and the support community using the same name -- TAGFAM.. "The TAG Project" refers to the five mailing lists and the structure underpinning them.. We'll just have to live with the confusion over the name "TAGFAM" relying upon context to figure out if the person is speaking about the mailing list itself or the support community which takes its name from the mailing list's name.. Who sets the posting guidelines and policies governing the mailing lists?.. For the TAG Project mailing lists, the primary listowner -- Kit Finn.. Other people are asked for their opinions and input but, "The Buck Stops Here" sign lives on Kit's computer monitor.. Are The Mailing Lists Archived?.. Yes.. Access, however, is restricted to subscribers only.. The TAGFAM archives are pruned periodically due to a chronic disk space shortage at our host site.. We archive almost 10 times the average amount of messages.. Thus, we consider ourselves fortunate to be permitted the online archival storage that we have been given to date.. Why Can't I Get A Subscriber List?.. Our subscriber list is restricted to owner-access only to prevent further abuses of it by commercial entities which siphon off EMail addresses and then sell them.. If you need an address for a specific individual please ask one of the listowners to provide it to you.. If you need to address the entire TAGFAM community (or one of our other mailing lists), send your message to the mailing list's submissions address.. Why Was My Message Rejected?.. Posting to our mailing lists is restricted to subscribers only to prevent SPAM attacks and similar abuses.. If you'd like to have a one-time announcement forwarded to our lists, please send it to the.. listowner.. for consideration.. If you're a subscriber and still have problems sending messages to the lists, please contact a listowner for assistance.. How many subscribers are served by.. the TAG Project Mailing Lists?.. TAGFAM grew at a steady pace, relying upon word of mouth, during its first year.. From the initial 30 subscribers, TAGFAM grew to 100 by the end of six months and finished off the year with nearly 200 subscribers.. TAGFAM's second year saw explosive growth as members recruited new members in their local area, handouts  ...   to grips with his or her emotional response to a situation it then becomes possible to hear and consider alternative points of view which allow one to consider various options and arrive at a plan or solution to the problem situation.. We share from our personal experience, encouraging our members to "take what you like and leave the rest," because this is not a "one size fits all" world.. Our mailing lists, archives, and website serve a global community by spreading the word about the unique developmental and educational needs of high IQ children.. We recognize our responsibility to this global community to provide solid facts and verifiable information -- not folktales, hear-say, or third-hand stories masquerading as "truth".. Our members who have access to research libraries or professional literature often function as researchers to the benefit of our community.. And, while we count among our members those whose careers are in the fields of education, medicine, and mental health, we relate to each other as "peers" in this community.. We seek to strike a balance between personal sharing and informative postings by acknowledging the importance of each individual's participation and presence in our community.. Electronic communications via the Internet change interpersonal communications and group dynamics in subtle ways which are often hard to detect.. It is unfortunate but true that small misunderstandings can easily become "all out war" due to the characteristics of the medium (missing nonverbal clues and other information regarding intent and emotion).. Thus, all of our mailing lists have a strong cultural prohibition against "flaming" and direct personal attacks.. We are an artificially polite society -- artificial because the listowners intervene as necessary to encourage courtesy, tolerance, and compliance with the posting guidelines which are the written expression of our defining principles.. Why were TAGMAX and TAGFORUM created?.. TAGMAX was created to host informative discussions about home education for intellectually gifted children, whether full-time or as an adjunct to regular schooling.. TAGFORUM hosts debates and more challenging discussions of the issues affecting gifted and talented individuals primarily focusing on public policy in the educational arena.. The creation of these two mailing lists has allowed the TAGFAM mailing list to focus once more upon the individual and the family in an emotionally supportive atmosphere.. What's the difference between TAGFAM and the two new mailing lists?.. Some parents choose to go outside the system and provide an appropriate education for their gifted children.. Others choose to use advocacy and lobbying within the political and legislative systems to achieve the same goal.. TAGMAX and TAGFORUM provide these parents with a venue which is conducive to indepth, "how to" discussions which are primarily technical and informative in nature.. Our goal is to create a "parent friendly" place where each group can gather together to discuss the nitty-gritty aspects of "do it yourself.. " The groups are not mutually exclusive and we expect to see a good deal of cross-fertilization between them.. What's happening with TAGKIDS and TAGTEENS?.. TAGTEENS is being run by the teens themselves.. TAGKIDS is a bit of an enigma.. Everyone loves to get EMail but not necessarily to write it.. Perhaps it's too much like schoolwork.. We're working on ways to encourage the children to write to the list more frequently.. We hope that the TAG Writing Project will jumpstart the TAGKIDS mailing list by providing "seed" topics.. What are the future plans for.. the TAGFAM community?.. It may well be that the online support community, TAGFAM, becomes or is replaced by a more formal national or international organization with officers and a governing board.. Or, it may remain as it is, an ad hoc organization which takes its form and substance from the energy and ethos of its listowners and the daily contributions of an ever changing membership.. The crystal balls on Val's desk reveal brilliant rainbows of light and not much else.. So, while this is indeed a good question, the answer is yet to be found.. Last Updated: 10/29/99.. This webpage is maintained by Kit Finn..

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  • Title: Site Map
    Descriptive info: Site Map.. Book Shelf.. Dimensions of Giftedness.. Education Options.. Growing Up.. Is My Child "Gifted?".. Social Life.. TAG Tales (Humor).. Web Sites.. Mailing List Info.. TAGFORUM.. TAGFAM.. TAGMAX.. TAGKIDS.. Subscription Info.. Policies and Participation Guidelines.. FAQ for TAGFAM.. MonTAGe: Our E-Journal.. About this site..

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  • Title: About Us
    Descriptive info: Our Mission.. Mission statement, vision, and strategy.. Copyright Info.. Passages from copyrighted materials are used by permission of the copyright holder or in accordance with the scholarly use provisions of the.. Doctrine of Fair Use.. for copyrighted materials.. With the exception of those passages, all other contents of this site are: Copyright (c) 1997-2001 by Kit Finn.. All rights reserved.. Questions about this site or requests for limited redistribution rights for materials from this site should be directed to:.. Kit Finn (kmfinn@wm.. edu).. One of the most frequent questions received is "can I put this into my group's newsletter?" Usually,  ...   appears along with the copyright block (see above).. For commercial or "for profit" usage, you must obtain written permission first.. Internet violations of copyrights are the bane of every author and publisher.. We've tried hard to make sure that we've properly attributed all materials used on this site.. If we've made a mistake, please let us know so that we can correct it.. We would also ask that, if you want to continue to see first rate information published on the web, then please do your part to respect the rights of the copyright holders.. Thank you.. Last Updated: 07/07/2001..

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  • Title: TAG Bookshelf
    Descriptive info: TAG Bookshelf.. A mind that is stretched to a new idea never returns to its original dimension.. -- Oliver Wendell Homes.. For Kids.. The Gifted Kid's Survival Guide (Gailbraith).. The Gifted Kid's Survival Guide II (Gailbraith Delisle).. The Gifted Kid's Survival Guide: Teen Handbook (Gailbraith Delisle).. Especially For Teens.. The Teenage Liberation Handbook (Llewellyn).. Real Lives (Llewellyn).. Growing Up Gifted (Barbara Clark).. Parenting.. Guiding the Gifted Child (Webb, Meckstroth, and Tolan).. The Difficult Child (Turecki).. Keys To Parenting The Gifted Child (Rimm).. Please Understand Me (Kiersey Bates) -- MBTI.. Teaching and Counseling Gifted Children.. Gifted Children (Winner).. Exceptionally Gifted  ...   Regular Classroom (Weinbrenner).. Managing The Social And Emotional Needs of the Gifted (Schmitz Gailbraith).. The Six Vital Ingredients of Self-Esteem (Youngs).. CTY Booklets.. Academic Acceleration: Knowing Your Options.. Identifying and Cultivating Talent in Preschool and Elementary Children.. Ability Grouping and Cooperative Learning.. Link to CTY Web Page.. Homeschooling.. Homeschool: Taking the First Step (Hendrickson).. How To Write Your Own Low-Cost/No-Cost Curriculum (Hendrickson).. Portfolio Assessment (De Fina).. Teaching Montessori In The Home: The Pre-School Years (Hainstock).. Teaching Montessori In The Home: The School Years (Hainstock).. The BEST Teacher Stuff (Johnson).. Integrating Instruction In Science (Forte Schurr).. Writing To Learn (Zinsser)..

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  • Title: Dimensions of Giftedness
    Descriptive info: Gifted children not only think differently from their peers, they also feel differently.. -- Linda Silverman.. [Gifted] is not a matter of degree but of a different quality of experiencing: vivid, absorbing, penetrating, encompassing, complex, commanding.. -- a way of being quiveringly alive.. --M.. Piechowski.. In the ordinary elementary school situation, children of IQ 140 waste half their time.. Those above IQ 170 waste practically all their time.. With little to do, how can these children develop powers of sustained effort, respect for the task, or habits of steady work?.. -- L.. Hollingworth.. From Exceptionally Gifted Children by Miraca Gross.. It would be simplistic to define intellectual giftedness solely in terms of IQ scores; nonetheless the intelligence quotient is a useful index of the relationship (and in the case of the gifted child, the discrepancy) between mental age and chronological age.. A moderately gifted 9-year-old with a mental age of 12 and thus an IQ of approximately 133 is 'out-of-synch' by a matter of three years before he has even passed through elementary school; however, his exceptionally gifted age-mate with a mental age of 15 and an IQ of approximately 167 looks across a chasm of six years from the age at which he is capable of reasoning to the grade level in which he is likely to be placed on the basis of his chronological age.. The IQ can assist us to understand the fundamental differences in mental processing between moderately gifted and extremely gifted students.. Giftedness is a greater awareness, a greater sensitivity, and a greater ability to understand and transform perceptions into intellectual and emotional experiences.. Annemarie Roper.. From ERIC Digest E476.. Giftedness The Gifted: What's It All About?.. Giftedness is that precious endowment of potentially outstanding abilities which allows a person to interact with the environment with remarkably high levels of achievement and creativity.. Talented tends to be used when referring to a particular strength or ability of a person.. Thought should be given to whether the talent is truly a gift or is, rather, an ability that has become a highly developed skill through practice.. While all children have relative strengths and weaknesses, some children have extreme strengths in one or more areas.. Extreme giftedness creates a special educational need, just as does retardation or learning disability.. -- Ellen Winner in Gifted Children.. Intelligence, IQ, and IQ Tests.. Intellect is defined by Webster's as the ability to reason or understand.. Intellect, the ability, arises from our genetic inheritance.. In other words, nature plays the greatest role in determining what our intellect or ability to reason will be.. Intelligence may be defined as mental quickness and mental flexibility.. Intelligence is the behavior that arises from a person's intellectual abilities.. We measure a person's intelligence in order to make a value judgement about the quality of person's intellect, less or more, fast or slow.. The term giftedness  ...   more individuals in the 160+ range than would be predicted by the Normal Distribution upon which the numbers below are based.. 85 Lower normal 100 Upper normal 115 Bright 130+ Gifted (about 1 in 40) 135+ Highly gifted (about 1 in 1,000) 145+ Exceptionally or Profoundly gifted (about 1 in 100,000 to 1 in 1,000,000).. At an IQ of 130, the intellectually gifted child is as different, in intellectual abilities, from the average child (IQ 85-115), as a child whose IQ is 70.. The profoundly gifted child of IQ 190 [no longer a possible score] differs from moderately gifted classmates of IQ 130 to the same degree that the latter differ from intellectually handicapped children of IQ 70.. (Miraca Gross in Exceptionally Gifted Children, page 9).. The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function.. -- F.. Scott Fitzgerald.. Intelligence Tests.. There are many different tests which are used to assess mental abilities.. The two most commonly used with gifted children are the WISC-III and the Stanford-Binet.. The Stanford-Binet has a higher range and is the test of choice for highly gifted children.. Scores on the WISC-III of 135 or above may be artificially low since the test itself has a maximum of 150; the child may max-out one or more subtests which clips the scores at an artificially low level.. Neither of the current tests, i.. e.. the WISC-IV and the Stanford-Binet Revision V, is an appropriate assessment instrument for children whose true IQ is above 130.. Due to the nature of these tests and how they are constructed it is quite likely that scores will be underestimated significantly for the gifted child.. There is a growing body of literature, both reviews and research reports, which are bringing this problem to light.. Reality is, however, that you take what you can get and right now, the WISC-IV and the Stanford-Binet Revision V are the only tests that the majority of school psychologists are trained and willing to administer.. When choosing a psychologist or other professional to administer an IQ test, parents should insure that the tester is familiar with the characteristic behaviors of gifted children.. Otherwise, the test results may reflect the test administrators' expectations, e.. looking for a learning disability, rather than the child's abilities.. Common problems include starting too low on subtests having variable starting points and interpreting the child's demeanor as oppositional rather than inquisitive.. Schools may choose to use other tests in their screening processes for admission to TAG programs.. Parents should remember that schools choose tests that meet their specific program goals -- i.. identification of which children meet the school's criteria for inclusion in a TAG program.. School selection criteria do not necessarily conform to accepted definitions of intellectual giftedness.. Last Updated: October 22, 2007..

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  • Title: Educational Options
    Descriptive info: Getting Your Child An Appropriate Education.. Eighty percent of life is just showing up.. -- Woody Allen.. Almost every parent of a gifted child has his or her own personal story of going through hell to get an appropriate education for the intellectually gifted child.. It's even worse when a child becomes a behavior problem and the school refuses to make any changes until the child shapes-up.. Most of us agree that education should offer more challenge for a child than merely showing up for twelve years.. But, convincing the schools of this? At times it seems impossible.. From Exceptionally Gifted Children.. by Miraca Gross:.. It is surprising that very highly gifted children do not rebel more frequently against the inappropriate educational provision which is generally made for them.. Studies have repeatedly found that the great majority of highly gifted students are required to work, in class, at levels several years below their tested achievement.. Underachievement may be imposed on the exceptionally gifted child through the constraints of an inappropriate and undemanding educational program or, as often happens, the child may deliberately underachieve in an attempt to seek peer-group acceptance.. [page 21].. Loyalty to a petrified opinion never yet broke a chain or freed a human soul.. -- Mark Twain.. Which Option?.. Different people advocate different approaches to solving the problem of obtaining a developmentally appropriate education for the gifted child.. Some believe strongly in confronting the school and insisting upon changes at that level.. Others believe that the best approach is to join an advocacy group and work together within a school district or at the state or federal levels to obtain changes for intellectually gifted children as a group.. Still others believe that the best approach is to take their child's education into their own hands whether through.. homeschooling.. or by otherwise providing a stimulating learning environment outside of regular classroom.. There is no one best solution.. Each child and each family has different needs and different resources available to them.. The best solution to the problem of gifted education is to provide for a variety of diverse programs and approaches to learning then choosing the ones that meet the needs of each specific child while not exceeding available resources.. The most important aspect of getting your child an appropriate education is to work according to your strengths (you, the parent).. If you are good at negotiations, then that may be the best approach for you.. If the thought of teacher-parent conferences or meeting with the principal of your child's school is enough to make you upset and angry, then perhaps another solution, such as going outside the public schools or homeschooling is the answer for you.. But, whatever you do, the key is to work for an environment both at home and at school that meets the child's need.. Stella Chess, a child psychiatrist, puts it this way, the environment must change to fit the child.. Goodness of fit is everything!!!.. It is, in fact, nothing short of a miracle that the modern methods of instruction have not entirely strangled the holy curiosity of inquiry.. -- Albert Einstein.. Alternatives and Options.. At times, it seems like a hopeless battle.. Though the reasons may vary, the effect is the same.. The programs that provide a developmentally appropriate education to gifted children are vanishing.. There may be times when your options are limited to obtaining changes in the current classroom.. If so, gifting the classroom teacher with a copy of Susan Winebrenner's Teaching Gifted Kids in the Regular Classroom may help to smooth the way.. It's easier to secure changes in the classroom environment if the teacher has a reference book to show to the school's administrators.. Susan Winebrenner's extensive classroom experience gives her suggestions added weight with teachers and administrators.. Classroom Options.. Ms.. Winebrenner offers twelve guidelines for teaching intellectually gifted students in the regular classroom:.. Pre-test to find out what they already know.. Give credit for material already mastered.. Do not give assignments or have students repeat work just because it's there.. Offer alternatives to drill and practice or grade level materials that are more challenging (i.. more abstract or complex).. Build projects or assignments around the student's interests.. Allow students to buy back time via pre-testing and be flexible in how they use it.. Allow students to learn at a faster pace than their age-mates.. Use discovery learning techniques in preference to lectures and other teacher dominated methods.. Trust students to learn in nontraditional ways and forms.. Assist students in finding others like themselves for social interaction.. Do not judge social maturity by what is observed between the gifted child and his age-mates.. Keep students interested by giving them a wide variety of choices.. Give students lots of experience in planning, goal setting, and self-evaluation.. Options beyond the classroom:.. Academic Acceleration (grade skipping).. Flexible pacing allowing completion of multiple grade levels in a given  ...   shifts to handwriting and producing written work on demand.. Schools revolve around written work.. Most teachers still use worksheets as the majority of their classroom instruction and base their student assessments upon those worksheets.. Hand-eye coordination and motor-planning skills rarely develop precociously, to the levels required for legible handwriting, especially in gifted children.. As a result, the gifted child's handwriting skills will not keep pace with the school's expectations for written work at the child's actual math or reading level.. Placements in higher level reading or math groups (i.. two or three grade levels up) become problematic because the child cannot execute the required written assignments and the teacher now has a problem child -- one who cannot do the work.. When handwriting skills are not on a par with mathematical or verbal skills the gifted child will usually be given remedial handwriting assignments instead of dispensations and alternative forms of teacher-assessment of the child's work (e.. oral quizzing) that would allow the child to continue working above grade-level.. School teachers frequently ask students to recopy or repeat work because their handwriting does not meet with the teacher's approval.. Parents are often asked to supervise extra handwriting practice at home in the evenings in the form of additional worksheets for material which the child has already mastered.. Not only is the child being penalized at school for not having physical skills to match his intellectual abilities but now the boring work comes home with him and eats up what precious little time he had to relax, destress, and actually learn something new.. Bored beyond his frustration level, unable to escape even at home, the child develops behavior problems and loss of motivation -- the stage is set for creating yet another under-achieving gifted student who gets the you're broken message loud and clear.. Why place a child into a setting which is going to ask of him what his body is not yet able to do? Yes, there are children who are ready for school at age four or five and they do well.. But, there are also children who do not begin their formal schooling until age seven or eight.. They do equally well, achieving on-grade level in academic subjects within six months.. In those two additional years of being allowed to follow their own interests, children who do not enter school early use their natural curiosity and love of learning to progress even farther on their own.. There's a book titled School Can Wait.. If you're considering early entry to elementary school for your gifted child, please read it.. If your child is truly ready for formal academic work -- try teaching him yourself for the one hour a day of instruction that the average child receives in a typical classroom.. If you work and have your child in daycare that one hour a day can become your quality time together.. It is not because things are difficult that we do not dare; it is because we do not dare that they are difficult.. -- Seneca.. Early Entrance to College.. Early entrance to college, as early as age 9 or 10, is a reasonable solution for the profoundly gifted child.. For the highly gifted child, early entrance could be considered between ages 14 - 16.. Most colleges and universities have admissions policies which allow students to apply for early entrance, without a high school diploma, after age 16.. There are a few schools which have early entrance programs designed specifically for gifted teens (some as early as age 12) which provide extra supervision including mandatory study halls and house parents.. These schools offer early entrance programs for students prior to age 16:.. Simon's Rock, College of Bard.. Mary Baldwin College.. California State University, Los Angeles (CSULA).. University of Washington.. Entering college prior to receiving your high school diploma is an option that seems to works well.. So much so that many states have standard procedures and provisions for issuing a high school diploma upon successful completion of the freshman year of college (provided that certain additional requirements are met).. Many states and local school districts have policies which allow high school students to concurrently enroll in a local community college or university.. If you are considering early entry to college then it behooves you to start researching financial aid and scholarship opportunities as soon as possible.. The PSAT/NMSQT, the National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Exam, is typically taken in the fall of the Junior year of high school.. If you're going to enter college early -- make arrangements to take that exam early! Some parents have reported that they encountered a Catch-22 situation with full-time early college enrollment and scholarship awards.. Entering college full-time, before you've gone through the scholarship application process may make you ineligible for some awards.. Be careful.. Ask questions, many questions, of the admissions officer at the college where you are considering enrolling..

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  • Title: Child Development
    Descriptive info: Growing Up Gifted Normal.. Normal is a setting on a clothes washer.. Anonymous.. Normality is an ideal fiction.. It doesn't exist.. It is something we seek after all our lives.. Sigmund Freud.. Normality is characterized by strength of character, the capacity to deal with conflicting emotions, the ability to experience pleasure without conflict and the ability to love.. Melanie Klein.. Are Gifted Kids Ever Normal?.. Normality is the ability to learn by experience, to be flexible, and to adapt to a changing environment.. Laurence Kubie.. Normality is the ability to achieve insight into one's self, an ability that is never fully accomplished.. R.. E.. Money-Kryle.. Many of the concerns that parents express on our TAG mailing lists are about child development issues.. We want and need reassurance that our children are developing normally, that things really are going to work out OK.. We look at other people's children and often find that our gifted child isn't like other people's children.. We read parenting books and attend seminars and classes only to find out that our child isn't at all like the children being discussed.. Sometimes, it hits closer to home.. Our child's teachers or a relative, possibly even our spouse, declares that this child has PROBLEMS because the child's behavior does not conform to the adult's notion of normal behavior for a child of that age.. Sometimes, we ourselves, are the ones who observe our child's behaviors and find ourselves wondering if there isn't something wrong with a child who doesn't act or react like other children his age.. At times, outsiders conspire to pressure the parent or the child or both conform to a more normal (expected) behavior model.. Parents are told to stop treating the child like an adult and children are told to act your age and stop trying to pass as an adult.. In extreme cases, emotional blackmail may be used to try and persuade a parent, usually the mother, that the child must be taught (forced) to act like other children, i.. act according to someone else's interpretations or authoritative definitions of the types of behaviors considered normal for a given age.. The Importance of Life Experience In Child Development.. To have the intelligence of an adult and the emotions of a child combined in a childish body is to encounter certain difficulties.. It follows that (after babyhood) the younger the child, the greater the difficulties, and the adjustment becomes easier with every additional year of age.. The years between four and nine are probably the most likely to be beset with the problems mentioned.. S.. Hollingworth in.. Mental Hygiene.. , vol 15(1), 1931.. It is important that parents and other adults interacting with gifted children remember that intellect is just one aspect of the child's development.. The child's past behavior is the most reliable predictor of future behavior.. Parenting decisions must take into account not just the child's intellectual development but also the development of impulse control, moral judgement, and social skills.. The development of these is controlled by how much life experience the child has -- type, quality, frequency of experiences.. Advanced or precocious verbal abilities are not sufficient indicators of reasoning abilities, emotional maturity, or moral judgement.. We frequently hear of very young children whose parents, believing the child to be more mature than the child's behavior indicates, punish the child for misbehaving.. Or, children whose parents grant age inappropriate privileges such as starting the car or using a lawn mower or other power tool.. These parents are unaware of the normal disparity that arises between the gifted child's intellectual precociousness and the child's psychological maturity in areas regarding judgement.. Gifted children, because of their advanced verbal abilities, are often able to repeat, paraphrase, and then explain safety procedures or problem resolution strategies back to the adult instructing the child.. Yet, when the child is in the situation requiring those procedures or strategies he.. is not able to follow those procedures.. Thus, discipline, privileges, and rewards.. must be appropriate to the child's developmental levels.. across the board and include due consideration of the child's developmental maturity in those areas of behavior and judgement which.. depend upon life experience.. Asynchrony In Developmental Stages Of Childhood.. Normal childhood behavior is that which conforms to the expectations of the majority in a given society or culture at a given point in time.. The definition of abnormal behavior arises from what the majority of adults consider inappropriate in form, frequency, or intensity.. The criteria for such judgements are often nebulous and often arise out of the prejudices and biases of the adults.. -- Melvin Lewis.. Some researchers believe that the developmental stages  ...   affects and influences how a child acts, reacts, and relates to his environment and the people, places, and things in it.. Temperament factors are rated on sliding scales (continuums) rather than as yes/no or on/off conditions.. Scores for the majority of children lie somewhere towards the middle of each scale rather than at the extremes.. Though there are many different combinations of factors and thus many different temperaments possible, three specific clusters of temperament factors have been identified by researchers Alexander Thomas and Stella Chess in their thirty year study of children from birth through early adolescence (The New York Longitudinal Study -- NYLS).. These clusters, called temperamental styles, are labeled easy, slow to warm-up, and difficult.. Easy children are a joy to raise and teach.. The slow to warm-up child seems shy at first but eventually joins in and enjoys life.. The difficult child is so labeled because raising and teaching this child is a difficult challenge for any adult and more so for those who are fixed in their ways or unwilling to change and adapt.. Dimensions of Temperament.. These are the temperament factors whose existence as stable characteristics from birth was established by the multifactoral NYLS study.. Activity Level (sedentary to whirling dervish ).. Rhythmicity (regularity and predictability of bodily functions like hunger, sleep, bowel movements).. Reaction to new situations, people, objects (approaches or runs away).. Adaptability to change (quick, slow, needs repeated exposure).. Intensity of reactions (mild to extreme; regardless of situation).. High Intensity children react strongly (scream, temper tantrum) regardless of the situation.. Low Intensity children react mildly -- e.. whimpers instead of screams even when in intense pain from an earache.. Threshold of responsiveness (intensity of stimulation required to get a response).. Different threshold possible for each sense: taste, touch, hearing, eyesight, smell.. Low touch -- can't stand seams in socks, tags in clothes, etc.. Low sight -- can't stand bright lights.. Low hearing -- can't stand loud noise or certain frequencies.. Quality of Mood -- predominantly positive, neutral, or negative.. Distractibility -- high to low.. Attention Span Persistance.. Attention Span -- how long the child stays on a self-selected task.. Persistance -- how hard child tries to continue a self-selected task inspite of obstacles or interruptions.. We value low persistance in toddlers because it means we can easily distract them from an electric outlet.. Yet, we criticize the same child in school for not staying on task.. Children who are highly distractible and low attention span (and/or persistence) may be misidentified as having attention deficit disorder.. Their brain is not malfunctioning; this is just their normal temperamental style -- difficult as it may be for parents and teachers to cope with.. ADD, on the other hand, is a neurological disorder that is diagnosed by medical professionals and treated with medications.. One of the greatest tragies in the life of a gifted child with ADD may well be having to use 100% of his giftedness just to concentrate or stay on task since his performance levels are often just high enough to keep him from being identified as having a learning difference requiring accomodations or assistance in school.. Temperamental Clusters.. Easy -- this child is a joy to have around.. It's easy to assume that his or her intellectual needs are being met in school because he or she just naturally goes with the flow and doesn't complain or ask for harder work.. Positive Mood.. Regular Biological Rhythms.. Adaptable (easily adjusts to new teachers, classrooms, etc.. ).. Low Intensity (hardly ever complains).. Positive Approach to Novelty (jumps right in).. Difficult -- parents may not think of this child as difficult until he or she hits the school years and the complaints start coming home from the teacher.. Negative Mood.. Irregular Biological Rhythms.. Slow to adapt (needs repeated exposures to new people, places, or things).. Intense Reactions (loud, vocal protests).. Negative Response to Novelty (hangs back, refuses to participate or try something new).. Slow to Warm-Up -- the child who hates school at the beginning of every school year but by December is happily participating in class.. Goes through adjustment period every school year or with each new change in his/her environment.. Negative Response to New Stimuli.. Mild to moderate intensity.. Gradual adaptation after repeated exposure.. Other: not every child fits into one of these clusters.. Temperament plays less of a role in determining a child's behavior as he/she grows older and the personality is more fully developed.. Temperament is part of one's personality as are: motivation, goals and ideals, and cognitive competencies (intellectual abilities, skills talents).. Specific behavior patterns develop from the interaction between a child's personality and his/her environment..

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