Gifted People and Rabbit Holes
In your family, how often does one seemingly simple question lead to an in-depth investigation to some arcane area of knowledge? What is it about gifted people that drives them to pursue a line of thought beyond the practical? What may seem like a waste of time, may actually be a valuable intellectual exploration.
But when does it turn from a engaging pursuit into a distraction? GHF Bloggers share their experiences with diving down the rabbit holes of curiosity, and discuss the fascinating, challenging, and humorous paths they’ve discovered.
8 Budget-Friendly Ways to Support Your Child’s Passion (And Every Single Rabbit Hole, Too)~ Not So Formulaic (Ginny Kochis)
Rabbit holes and their preceding passions can be crazy-making, but they are beautiful opportunities, too. Fortunately, you can support your child’s interests without losing your mind or your wallet. It just helps to know where to look.
Gifted Rabbit Hole or Autistic Special Interest? ~ Wibbly Wobbly, Neuro-UNlogical Stuff (Anya Warde)
“My initial answer is if society values the topic you’re intensely interested in, it’s a gifted trait. If your interest is unpalatable to the common man, it’s a special interest. But I’m not sure that answer is entirely accurate or helpful, so I wanted to explore this question a little bit more.”
“Hello Down There”~ Free Learning (Julie Schneider)
These days homeschooling itself is my rabbit hole.
Is it obsessing or just overthinking?~ Gail Post (Gifted Challenges)
Many gifted children and adults are overthinkers. They can debate an idea, concept, or theory, dissect the meaning of a sentence, and critique a casual comment like nobody’s business. But when does gifted overthinking morph into obsessiveness? How does deep, meaningful thinking transition from something that absorbs and amuses a busy mind into worry, self-recrimination and sleepless nights?
Let them soar. ~ School for Peculiar Children (Elena Porter)
In September, going off script and embracing rabbit holes led us to a discussion about thermal soaring habits of birds like falcons, hawks and buzzards. In order to stay afloat longer, they employ a counter-intuitive strategy: instead of climbing a thermal by spiraling in one direction, they constantly change the angle and direction based on the condition within and around the spiral.
This seems like a perfect metaphor for our schooling style: purpose, general direction and goals, flexibility and decision making in the moment.
Let’s Go Look it Up: Words to Live By ~ Homeschooling 2e (Mary Paul)
The more I learn about my kids, the more I realize about myself. My son’s endless questions stem from my own curiosity – that same curiosity that won’t even let me sleep at times.
MAAR ~ Laughing at Chaos (Jen Merrill)
I love tumbling down rabbit holes, I love learning what is out there. But hooboy, it is long past time for a reset.
The Cat Fell Down the Rabbit Hole~ Exceeds Expectations Learning (Madeline Goodwin)
The old saying goes, curiosity killed the cat – but satisfaction brought it back. Perhaps the cat was curious about the rabbit hole, looked down it, and fell; but, curiosity satisfied, was able to climb back out again. The cat may also have followed another rabbit hole, or perhaps a whole string of them. They do tend to form a maze.
Resources for Understanding Giftedness
Giftedness is not just test scores or academic achievement. It’s not all difficulties, either. Jokes about duct tape and soundproof closets aside, it can be helpful to understand what your child is feeling, how they are developing, and what they were thinking when they asked that unusual question or performed that dangerous experiment alone out in the shed (and how do you explain the damage to your neighbors?). After all, not all children are gifted and all gifted children do not learn alike. These kids are asynchronous, intense, and endlessly fascinating to live with. Sometimes their giftedness may be easy to communicate to others in the community, but sometimes it’s hidden by twice exceptional (2e) issues or by the expanded complexity of race and culture (Gifted Cubed). Having a gifted or 2e teenager can add a whole new layer of complication to parenting. Additional resources here give some perspective to those of us raising such children and reassure us that we are not alone.
Don’t miss these topical books from GHF Press:
A concise guidebook for parents considering their educational choices, Making the Choice discusses how to balance the emotional and academic needs of gifted and 2e children, their parents, and their families. In Making the Choice, Corin Barsily Goodwin, Executive Director of Gifted Homeschoolers Forum, and Mika Gustavson, MFT, demystify and de-mythify some of the perceived barriers to homeschooling and other alternatives. For those families wondering if alternative education is an option they should consider, Making the Choice offers ideas, guidance, and encouragement to fully evaluate the option.
by Jen Merrill
When is life like a prize fight, a garden, and a quiz show, all hurtling down the road on an office chair, wrapped in song? When you’re living in the land of the gifted and twice exceptional. Jen Merrill, author of the Laughing at Chaos blog, brings laughter, tears, and honesty to her latest book by GHF Press,If This is a Gift, Can I Send it Back?: Surviving in the Land of the Gifted and Twice Exceptional. Join Jen on her journey through discovery, understanding, and acceptance, as she copes with the challenges that only the gifted and twice exceptional can create. So, pull up a chair, pour a glass of wine, and start reading. You’ll swear Jen’s written about you!
GHF also offers resources for understanding your gifted/2e child’s social needs and finding community for yourself and for your child. Check out our online classes, where kids make friends and gain mentors. Dear GHF also answers questions about
FREE Downloadable Brochures:
The Healthcare Providers’ Guide to Gifted Children
The Educators’ Guide to Gifted Children
Twice Exceptional—Smart Kids with Learning Differences
Gifted Cubed — The Expanded Complexity of Race & Culture
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