“Gifted and Talented” is a term that applies to children who have been identified as being “gifted” in one or more areas. The areas of “giftedness” addressed in state definition: Intellectually Gifted, Academically Gifted, Specific academic areas, Leadership, Performing/Visual Arts, Creatively Gifted. Children are gifted when their ability in these areas (or area) is significantly above the norm for their age. The state mandates identification and services for gifted & talented education. The state also provides guidance or guidelines for the process of identifying gifted & talented students. The state of Indiana has gone to using the term “high ability” almost exclusively instead of “gifted”. The terms are intended to be mostly synonymous though the phrase “high ability” may be a bit more broad. Youth identified as “gifted and talented” youth special academic and social/emotional needs and may need parents and school counselors to advocate for these needs.
See also High Ability.
- It is difficult to estimate the absolute number of gifted children in the U.S. and the world because the calculation is dependent on the number of areas, or domains, being measured and the method used to identify gifted children.
- Many consider children who are in the top 10 percent in relation to a national and/or local norm to be a good guide for identification and services.
- It is important to note that not all gifted children look or act alike. Giftedness exists in every demographic group and personality type.
- Highly intelligent children may require more attention to help foster their gift.
- Research suggests gifted and talented students may share common personality characteristics (i.e., perfectionism, sensitivity, idealism), which may lead to detachment, isolation from their peers or having difficulty with self-regulation (Yoo & Moon, 2006).
- Within the comprehensive school counseling program, school counselors create an environment in which the academic, career and social/emotional development of all students, including gifted and talented students, is fostered (Colangelo & Davis, 2003).
- The school counselor advocates for the inclusion of, and the participation in, activities that effectively address the academic, career and social/emotional needs of gifted and talented students.
- School counselors assist in promoting understanding and awareness of the unique issues that may affect gifted and talented students including:
- Meeting expectations
- Stress management
- Dropping out
- Difficulty in peer relationships
- Gifted youth have distinct cognitive and social features.
- Cognitive traits that may signal giftedness: very observant, extremely curious, prone to having intense interests, highly passionate about interests, having an excellent memory, long attention span, excellent reasoning skills and well-developed powers of abstraction, conceptualization, and synthesis, the ability to quickly and easily see relationships between ideas, objects or facts, fluent and flexible thinking, elaborate and original thinking, excellent problem-solving skills, ability to learn concepts quickly and with less practice and repetition than their peers need. Possessing an unusual or vivid imagination.
- Social and emotional traits that may signal giftedness: developing interests in philosophical and social issues, very sensitive (both emotionally and physically), exhibiting deep concern about fairness and injustice, tendencies to be perfectionistic, energetic and have a well-developed, if not quirky, sense of humor, are intrinsically motivated, relate well to parents, teachers, and other adults, but question authority out of curiosity or when they believe an injustice has occurred.
- Gifted children tend to have asynchronous development, meaning they may be mentally very astute but emotionally react to situations like a child their age, or even younger, would.
- Language traits that may signal giftedness: extensive vocabularies, may read earlier than their peers. Even if they read at the standard age, they tend to read rapidly and widely. They also love to ask “what if” questions.
- The gifted child enjoys learning new things.
- National Association of Gifted Children- Indiana
- Indiana Association for the Gifted
- The School Counselor and Gifted and Talented Student Programs (ASCA position statement)
- Counseling Gifted Students (slideshow)
- Parent Guide to High Ability Education and Advocacy
- Gifted or High Ability?
- Hoagies’ Gifted Education Page (see section on “Counseling the Gifted”)
- Supporting Emotional Needs of the Gifted (SENG)
- Davidson Institute (supporting profoundly gifted young people ages 18 and under)
- Gifted Kids
- Common Traits and Characteristics of Gifted Children
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