Wholehearted Teaching of Gifted Young Women: Cultivating Courage, Connection, and Self-Care in Schools

Wholehearted Teaching of Gifted Young Women: Cultivating Courage, Connection, and Self-Care in Schools

by Kathryn Fishman-Weaver Ph.D.


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Wholehearted Teaching of Gifted Young Women explores the important role school communities play in supporting the social and emotional needs of high-achieving young women. Using a youth participatory action research model, this project follows 20 student researchers from high school through college. This longitudinal study leads to "Wholehearted Teaching," a new framework for cultivating courage, connection, and self-care in schools. Framed with personal stories and filled with practical suggestions, this book offers strategies for teachers, counselors, parents, and high-achieving young women as they navigate the precipice of youth and everything after.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781618218186
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Publication date: 12/01/2018
Pages: 220
Sales rank: 1,167,079
Product dimensions: 6.90(w) x 9.90(h) x 0.60(d)

About the Author

Kathryn Fishman-Weaver, Ph.D., is an educator, author, and advocate for student leadership. She has worked in special education, gifted education, language arts, and school administration, and is the author of "Wholehearted Teaching of Gifted Young Women."

Table of Contents

List of Figures x

Acknowledgments xi

Part I A Case for Affective Education 1

Chapter 1 The Masked Affective Crisis 3

"What Is Your Central Story?" 4

School Context 4

Discovering the Masked Affective Crisis 6

Why Women? 12

Giftedness: A Loaded Label 13

Academic Achievement 14

Crisis as a Call to Action 15

Wholehearted Living 17

Vulnerability and Storytelling 18

Self-Compassion and Perfectionism 19

Teacher as Researcher 19

Telling Our Story 20

A Note About Pronouns 22

Chapter 2 The Precipice 25

The Precipice: Navigating the Space Between High School and College 28

Overachievement Culture 29

Affective Development: A Brief Overview 31

Gifted Education and Affective Development 34

Intersectionality and Coming-of-Age 37

Theoretical Framework: Feminism 39

Youth Participatory Action Research 41

Part II Cultivating Courage, Connection, and Self-Care in Schools 43

Chapter 3 Courage 47

Naming Courage 48

Courage Is Contextualized by Power 51

The Importance of Safe Space in Schools 53

Courage Is Emotionally Charged 57

Precipice and the Possibility for Courage 61

The Ripple Effect of Practicing Courage 64

Chapter 4 Connection 69

Belonging 70

Relatedness 72

Closeness 73

The Momentum of Connection 75

High Stress, High Schools, and (Dis)Connection 77

Critical Listening, Compassion, and Communication 79

Connection Is Complicated 82

Mothers: Mentors and Critics 85

Connectedness as a Catalyst for Action 90

An Exercise in Hope 93

Chapter 5 Self-Care 95

Self-Care Stories From Barnwood High School 96

Self-Care Through Courage and Connection 99

Positive Self-image + Self-Efficacy = Preconditions for Self-Care 102

Rejection 103

Making College Decisions 104

Self-Doubt's Continued Grip 107

Confronting Self Doubt 108

Embodying Self-Care 111

Physical Strength 113

Weight and Balance 114

Managing Self-Care: Five Student Examples 117

Part III Wholehearted Teaching 121

Chapter 6 A Framework for Wholehearted Teaching 123

Limited ↔ Strong 127

What Does It Mean to Feel Strong? 128

Guarded ↔ Vulnerable 130

Privilege, Power, and Vulnerable Stories 131

Strength + Vulnerability = Courage 132

Low Achievement ↔ High Achievement 133

Self-Harm ↔ Self-Care 134

Self-Care + High Achievement = Healthy Striving 136

Vulnerability + High Achievement = Growth Mindset 137

Self-Care + Strength = Wellness 139

Connection: The Multiplier Across Wholehearted Teaching 140

A Multiplicity of "Right" Answers 142

Chapter 7 Implementing Wholehearted Teaching 145

Practice Courage, Connection, and Self-Care 146

Be an Active Listener 148

Encourage Student Leadership 150

Students as Researchers 150

Service Learning 151

Increase Opportunities for Play and Laughter 152

Leverage Community Expertise 153

Schedule Peer-Group Meetings 156

Integrate Self-Care Into Your Classroom Environment 157

Make Storytelling Part of Your School Community 157

Honor Nuance 160

Continued Support During the College Transition 161

A Message for Educators 162

Chapter 8 Coming Home 165

Healing 167

Keeping My Office Door Open 168

Humanizing Exiting 171

The Expansive Properties of Home 172

References 175

Methodology Appendix 185

About the Author 201

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Wholehearted Teaching of Gifted Young Women: Cultivating Courage, Connection, and Self-Care in Schools 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
YoungMensanBookParade 3 months ago
As a student I do not often read books designed for teachers, yet I am often asked what it is like to take academic courses several years ahead of my chronological age. So when this book – which discusses how to support advanced kids – came across my desk, I wondered what the issues looked like from a teacher’s perspective. Wholehearted Teaching of Gifted Young Women, by Kathryn Fishman-Weaver, Ph.D., is an educational text, but reads almost akin to an interesting novel. Dr. Fishman-Weaver incorporates the experiences of many young women and fashions them into a narrative that provides insight on how to cope with and overcome the challenges of being female and gifted. In what is described as ‘participatory action research,’ she takes the stories of several young women and follows them through high school and college. The lens through which you can experience their stories is insightful, and the effect is one that can help you navigate the social and emotional changes taking place in the later teenage years. If it is true that we learn by example, Dr. Fishman-Weaver’s effort to showcase different stories does help to provide guidance and real-world tools to advanced girls, especially teens and young adults. There is much discussion in the book on how and why it is important to consider the whole student, not just focus on academic achievement. Through examples, journal entries, and conversations along the way, the reader can learn a lot about how different social and emotional challenges can be addressed. It is a text that certainly lends itself to a classroom – the focus is for teachers, of course – but through its individual case studies it is a valuable compilation of knowledge on taking care of oneself and helping to prioritize one’s own character and growth that is helpful for students, too. Sometimes it is hard to put words to emotions or give context to the struggles in adolescence. Through its readable format which follows the stories of these young high-achieving females, the book provides helpful insight into navigating this often-difficult time and provides practical tools for both teachers and students alike. As a student, I give this book four stars; it is interesting and seems well-researched. However, if I were a teacher, I would probably give it five stars, because that is the audience for whom it is intended. It is relevant for older teens and young women, but not as relevant outside those demographics. Reviewed by Isabelle G., age 12, Mensa of Western Washington
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Truth be told, I finished reading this book several weeks ago and have not yet written a review because every time I began I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to adequately capture how enjoyable and helpful it was to read. In her first book, Dr. Fishman-Weaver captures everything that makes her such an inspiring educator and thought leader. She is literally bursting with heart, courage, and passion, all of which is transmitted through the book in a way that inspires you before you even really consider the tools and framework offered in the book. Dr. Fishman-Weaver builds from the ground up, starting by defining the elements and ideas she will work with and framing her thoughts through her educational lens and experiences as she constructs an overarching framework that helps us not only understand the crises that our gifted young students are experiencing but gives practical guidance and tools on how to empower them to identify, confront, embrace, and eventually tackle these challenges on their own. Perhaps the most remarkable thing about this book, though, is the incredible readability that it possesses for an educational text. Fishman-Weaver is a STORYTELLER and includes journal entries, essays, poems, and conversations from both herself and the young women she has worked with that gives this book the narrative drive of a novel. You will, without a doubt, recognize these women in your experiences and the experiences of your students. You will find yourself crying, laughing, and just plain rooting for Leslie, Faith, Elaine, Heidi, and others, and if you are anything like me, you will be sad when the book ends because you want to keep following their tremendous stories. When I finished this book I sat for a whole in quiet contemplation and appreciation for hope these women offer for the future of our country and our world.