Ten Things NOT to Say to Your Gifted Child: One Family's Perspective

Ten Things NOT to Say to Your Gifted Child: One Family's Perspective

by Nancy N. Heilbronner


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781935067030
Publisher: Great Potential Press, Inc.
Publication date: 08/01/2011
Pages: 194
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.60(d)

About the Author

Nancy Heilbronner is an Associate Professor at Mercy College, where she is working to develop an Ed.D. program in Educational Leadership. Prior to this, she was an Assistant Professor at Western Connecticut State University, where she taught and advised doctoral-level students in such courses as leadership, statistics, research, creativity, and talent development.

A former gifted and science teacher, Dr. Heilbronner researches and publishes frequently on topics related to gifted and science education. She provides professional development and speaks with parent groups nationwide and is active in service to the community and university. She currently serves as on the Board of the Connecticut Association for the Gifted (CAG).

Table of Contents




Where’s the Instruction Manual?

Rapids Ahead

Your Canoeing Guide

Three Principles

Principle 1. Surround your child with unconditional love and a secure environment

Principle 2. Respect the uniqueness that is within each child

Principle 3. Identify and nurture your child’s talents

Research and Resources

Afterword by Jen

Chapter 1. You’re So Smart...We Love You! The Problem with Equating Being Smart with Being Loved

Afterword by Sarah

Chapter 2. You’re Gifted; This Should Be Easy for You! Dealing with Underachievement in Gifted Children

Afterword by Josh

Chapter 3. Don’t Be Silly! There’s Nothing to Be Afraid Of! Fear and Anxiety in Gifted Children

Afterword by Jen

Chapter 4. Do It Because I Said So! Dealing with Gifted Children’s Challenges to Authority

Challenges to Authority

Afterword by Sarah

Chapter 5. Why Don’t You Make More Friends? Understanding Socialization in Gifted Children

Afterword by Jen

Chapter 6. No More Questions! Dealing with Gifted Children’s Insatiable Need to Know

Chapter 7. If You Don’t Get Your Grades Up, No More Dance Lessons! Motivating Your Gifted Child through Selective Achievement

Afterword by Josh

Chapter 8. Don’t You Want to Be an Astronaut? Providing Career Guidance by Helping Your Children Recognize Their Interests and Abilities

Afterword by Jen

Chapter 9. If It’s Too Hard, Then Quit! Encouraging Persistence in Your Gifted Child

Afterword by Sarah

Chapter 10. Can’t You Color Inside the Lines? Nurturing Your Gifted Child’s Creativity

Afterword by Josh

Afterword by the Author: What Does It All Mean?

Appendix: Resources




About the Author

List of Tables and Figures

Figure 1. Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs

Table 1.1. Parenting Strategies to Develop Mastery Learning in Gifted Children

Table 2.1. Parenting Strategies to Deal with Underachievement in Gifted Children

Table 3.1. Parenting Strategies to Deal with Fears and Anxieties in Gifted Children

Figure 4.1. Problem-Solver Contract

Figure 4.2. Brainstorming

Table 4.1. Parenting Strategies for Communicating with Gifted Children

Table 5.1. Parenting Strategies to Help Gifted Children with Socialization

Table 6.1. Search Engines for Children

Table 6.2. Checklist for Evaluating Websites

Table 6.3. Parenting Strategies to Deal with Gifted Children’s Constant Questioning

Table 7.1. Parenting Strategies to Deal with Selective Achievement in Gifted Children

Table 8.1. Parenting Strategies to Provide Career Guidance to Gifted Children

Table 9.1. Parenting Strategies to Develop Persistence in Gifted Children

Table 10.1. Parenting Strategies to Identify and Develop Your Gifted Children’s Creativity

What People are Saying About This

Dale Stuart

One of the best practical guides for raising gifted children, combining the charm, richness and humor of personal family experiences with a gifted educator's practical knowledge. It could be titled Gifted Children: The Missing Instruction Manual. (Dale Stuart, Ph.D., Clinical Psychologist, San Diego, CA)

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Ten Things NOT to Say to Your Gifted Child: One Family's Perspective 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Readerwoman on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I am (was?!) the parent of a gifted child in the 80's. That child now grown up has a gifted child of her own. I loved the multiplicity of voices in this - the book is written by Dr. Nancy Heilbronner and her three children, now adults looking back on their childhood. Reading this, I realize I did a pretty darned good job with my kids, including the one that wasn't classified as "gifted." AND I learned a lot to share with my daughter, struggling to raise an ADHD gifted child with extreme emotional swings. Whether you are a grandparent, parent or just related somehow to a gifted child, this is the book for you - the grown-kids' perspective will be invaluable. Heilbronner is a bit over the top in taking credit for her superior parenting in creating such talented and educated kids though; I feel that not enough credit was given to the kids' innate senses of who they were and who they wanted to be.
athometarheel on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Having 2 gifted children, I really related to this book. The author made several great observations that gifted children can possess that I have criticized my children for. I am much more aware of the differences that exist in these children and the author's advice helped me be more aware of my actions and what I say to my children. This is a very valuable book for parents of gifted children.
AnnieHidalgo on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
As someone who was a gifted child, and who has a gifted daughter now myself, I was very anxious to read this book. The author does touch on a few issues I have experienced over the years. The first is that, if you are used to life being achievement-based, as it is in school, what do you do when you get out of school and there is no clear path - when it becomes apparent that achievement as an adult isn't so clear-cut? The second issue is that it's hard to decide what you want to do when you grow up when many, many things interest you and all the adults around you have been telling you for years that you're so smart you can be anything you want to be.The end-of-chapter anecdotes provide hopeful evidence that some people, at least, do eventually get through it. I would have liked to have seen more concrete advice as to what her children did to overcome these situations, but this is, after all, primarily a book for dealing with your gifted child, not a primer for gifted adults, so I can't really complain. It was nice to know others had been there. I found the section on how to know whether you should let your child quit an activity most helpful with my own daughter. And when I read the story about how the author and her husband tended to go overboard whenever their children expressed an interest in a particular activity, I thought of how I probably do the same with my daughter, probably because I'm hoping she'll pick something early on and avoid the indecisive foundering I mentioned earlier.There was also a handy list of resources in the back. This book probably isn't the last word on the subject, it was interesting learning how one family coped with issues similar to those experienced by my own family.
SciTrailsandTricks on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
As an educator, I've found that there are many books out there with methodology on how to help students who are struggling due to impairments (mentally, physically, etc). What I found refreshing about Ten Things is that it discusses a different type of student: the ones who teachers might assume are doing perfectly fine on their own, so no need to fuss.I received my advance copy this afternoon and have devoured through the first three chapters. While I was hesitant on the fact that the author claims to be a gifted person who has raised three gifted children (now adults), their personal stories of living with these special talents reminds us that they too are humans with trials and tribulations. I've enjoyed a peek into their lives through personal stories and also it is interested (and rewarding) to see that these gifted children (some who had some difficult issues-- like anxiety or poor time management) have succeed in life.A great book for parents who have a gifted child and need some guidance on how to help them through certain issues that may pop up and great for teachers who are wondering how to help the gifted child succeed in all areas of their lives. I can't wait to continue reading through the wisdom and wit of this Heilbronner family.As an update: I have since finished the book and enjoyed all of the chapters! While I am not a parent of a gifted child, I did have my own gifts for learning growing up, so this book helped me to see my childhood in a new light. I am happy it provides me with useful tips to provide parents who are wondering how to help their gifted child as well.
ladytaluka on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I don't think my kids are gifted, I just saw this book listed as a giveaway and it sounded interesting. I'm glad I won it because a lot of the ideas apply to parenting in general.The chapter on introverts/extroverts really struck home with me (ex. thinking your child needs tons of friends when introverts are usually fine with just 1 or 2). And I also liked the chapter on creative children, since I have one of those.Overall, a good read.
harmonyartmom on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This was a gifted book that hit the target! I love that it is written from personal experience AND includes the child's view of growing up gifted. The insight and the practical tips were presented in a way that I found myself agreeing with as I read each page. This book will be a great help to families who have been blessed with gifted children and as a homeschooling mom who has lived through some trialsome times and said just about all the ten things listed in this book, I am going to be better equipped to respond the next time a situation comes up in our family. Sidenote: two of my children sat and read this book and found it interesting and encouraging.
immaculatechaos on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I really felt like this book was written so that the author could brag about how great of a mom she was how "gifted" everyone in her family is. It was hard for me to take the advice she gave seriously because it was always between an annoying story about her superior parenting skills and followed by an afterward written by the child she used as illustration. Oh, and I have to mention that if she got frustrated or lost her cool in the story, she made sure to explain how rarely that happened. Must be nice to be so gifted that you are able to obtain all that education and have the time and money to raise kids That was just how she was able to get them to talk about how successful they are as adults due to their mom's recognition and knowledge of gifted children. By the way their are three of them. One went to Harvard, one went to Yale, and one went to an art school in New York.
onetiredmom on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Parenting a gifted child isn't easy and there hasn't been much guidance for parents of gifted children, not that I've seen anyway. Maybe there should be more education offered for parents when it is discovered that a child is gifted. This book was a quick easy read but had many ideas for dealing with issues that frequently arise when parenting a bright child. Some of the characteristics I hadn't connected with giftedness, I just thought that my children were particularly argumentative and had anxieties! So, from that aspect, and in many other ways, I found the book to be practical and informative. I even found that I understand myself a little better which was an unexpected bonus. It may be useful to let your children who are old enough to read it. My 13 year old son saw the book on the kitchen table and, when I caught him reading it, quipped, "I am learning all kinds of things about myself!". It is written in a familiar format if you have ever watched David Letterman. The author has chosen 10 things that parents of gifted children may have said at one time or another to their children and includes anecdotes from her experiences parenting 3 gifted children. She also includes tables with well-ordered and succinct advise. At the end of each chapter, one of her now grown children added commentary that related to that particular chapter.There were a few minor things that I did not find helpful, most notably the advice in chapter 4 (Do it because I said so!) on limiting choices for young children. If I offered a choice between the red and the blue dress, my child invariably wanted the pink dress that she had grown out of but I hadn't yet gleaned from her closet. Either that or the lady bug costume from last Halloween. I found the mantra "choose your battles" much more helpful. And yes, she wore that lady bug costume to preschool many times! I read one review that recommended adding a chapter on getting your gifted child to accept help. I heartily agree with that one and would add that a chapter is needed on helping a gifted child feel good about herself without alienating those around her because of her bragging about her intellect, a current challenge in our house.
bluelotus28 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I was super excited to read this book. As a child with the "gifted" label in the 80's, my parents had no guides to help them understand some of the issues or challenges in raising children with vastly different talents and needs. As a mother now with two gifted children, I have access to a great deal of information and research on gifted children. However, THIS book has really resonated with me. I appreciate that it has the perspectives of both children as well as the parents included. Too often, the childs' voice is forgotten. Reading this book has helped me understand not only issues I faces as a child, as well as challenges that I am facing myself in raising two very different and challenging children.
GamecockGirl on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I found this book to be helpful both in dealing with my own children (who were identified as gifted in elementary school) as well as useful in dealing with my students (I teach high school). Like many other reviewers, I found that I gleaned much more information from reading the "children's perspective" than I thought I would. Growing up as a "gifted child" in the late 80's and 90's, I wish that many of my teachers would have had this book to read.
MomsChoiceAwards More than 1 year ago
Ten Things NOT to Say to Your Gifted Child is a recipient of the prestigious Mom's Choice Award. The Mom's Choice Awards honors excellence in family-friendly media, products and services. An esteemed panel of judges includes education, media and other experts as well as parents, children, librarians, performing artists, producers, medical and business professionals, authors, scientists and others. A sampling of the panel members includes: Dr. Twila C. Liggett, ten-time Emmy-winner, professor and founder of PBS's Reading Rainbow; Julie Aigner-Clark, Creator of Baby Einstein and The Safe Side Project; Jodee Blanco, and New York Times best-selling Author; LeAnn Thieman, motivational speaker and coauthor of seven Chicken Soup For The Soul books. Parents and educators look for the Mom's Choice Awards seal in selecting quality materials and products for children and families.
sangreal More than 1 year ago
When I started this book, I was hoping for some insight into what to look for in a child, partly to determine whether testing for giftedness was something that should be done. The toddler son of a close friend displayed behaviors which to me, hinted at more than average intelligence, but I knew little or nothing about the nature of giftedness, and was seeking a starting point. I felt that a family perspective was just what I was looking for. Heilbronner offered that, and much more. The author, herself gifted and the mother of three gifted children, is also qualified in the teaching of gifted children. Additionally, she has furthered her education in the field. Her ability to link her parenting experiences to her academic knowledge gives the book depth and offers a unique viewpoint. There are many things to appreciate in this book. The first of which is the clear, concise writing that both Heilbronner and her children use to get their message across. It makes for an easy, understandable read, which is critical to someone newly navigating the waters of possible giftedness. The tone of the book is friendly and appealing - definitely reflecting the coaching and guiding methodology of a mother/teacher. While demonstrating that each child is different - clearly illustrated by the stories from her children - the author gives good guidelines on how to recognize and interpret behaviors in gifted children. She also provides workable strategies for how to deal with these behaviors, always to the benefit of the child. It is worth noting that many of these behaviors and resultant strategies are applicable to children who are not necessarily gifted, as well. The format of the book is also very appealing. Each of the major points are allocated a chapter of their own, which makes it easy for the reader to pinpoint behaviors that maybe relevant to them. When I was finished with the book, I passed it on to my friend, and advised her to read the introduction, and then skip directly to Chapter 5 before she read anything else. It's easy to think that Chapter 5 was written precisely for her son. This particular format also makes the book relevant to persons with varying degrees of knowledge about giftedness in children, from the complete novice like me, to someone with more widespread understanding, searching for more information on a particular topic. The differing perspectives of the author's children, who provide anecdotal evidence of the main points in each chapter, add to the appeal of the book in several ways. First, they provide an opportunity to see the strategies in action, as it were, as well as to see the results on the child in question. Secondly, the input from the children add a richness to the book that lifts it way above what might have been merely a textbook type offering on gifted children. Overall, I truly enjoyed the book, and felt that I learnt a lot from it. I was excited to pass it on to my friend, and I'm looking forward to the benefits to her and her son. I would recommend this book to anyone who has an interest in understanding gifted children and how best to help them achieve their fullest potential. However, I would also recommend it to anyone who is looking for workable strategies to deal with certain behaviors in any child. There is also a great list of references at the end of the book to provide additional information on the subject.