Gifted Children and the Detailed Mind

Charles H. Townes, physicist and Nobel Laureate, once noted, “If you think of intelligence as knowing a lot of things, of responding quickly and brightly, you can recognize that. But if you think of intelligence as someone who is creative, someone who can think new things and deeper thoughts, that’s not always easy to recognize.  People have different characteristics.” (2001)

Advocacy may be viewed as being able to communicate an understanding in such a way so that others may then provide help, assistance, support, etc. to individuals that will aid them in their success.  Advocacy may be viewed from a national, regional, state, local, and individual context. It is to the individual level that this paper is devoted.

Clearly, gifted children have a wide range of different characteristics despite a somewhat common assumption that gifted children are all the same. That is, gifted children are quick and able to understand all subject matter and excel in everything academic. Further, gifted children are assumed to be able to do so with ease and engage easily with their peers as well as their teachers.  These are children who are observed to raise their hands quickly in class, complete assigned subject matter rapidly and excel at projects, whether short term or long term. Such children thus become the standard by which many in the world begin to define the gifted child, and when another child presents himself in a manner that is contrary to this popular myth, confusion develops and questions arise.

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