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 Understanding Social Emotional Needs of Gifted Learners Intensity, Overexcitabilities, and Perfectionism By Michelle Miller

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Presentation on theme: " Understanding Social Emotional Needs of Gifted Learners Intensity, Overexcitabilities, and Perfectionism By Michelle Miller"— Presentation transcript:

1  Understanding Social Emotional Needs of Gifted Learners Intensity, Overexcitabilities, and Perfectionism By Michelle Miller

2  Intensity The gifted experience

3 Intensity  Experience  Physicality  Affect  Thought  Imaginings

4 Quote from a gifted and intense adolescent “We are not “normal” and we know it. It can be fun sometimes but not funny always. We tend to be much more sensitive than other people. Multiple meanings, innuendos, and self- consciousness plague us. Intensive self-analysis, self-criticism, and the inability to recognize that we have limits make us despondent. In fact, most times our self-searching leaves us more discombobbled than we were at the outset.”

5  Overexcitabilities Definition and Management Strategies

6 Kazimierz Dabrowski Theory of Emotional Development Theory of Positive Disintegration Overexcitabilities

7 Positive Disintegration Evolution of advanced human development

8 Overexcitabilities Expanded awareness and a heightened capacity to respond to stimuli of various types

9 The Five Overexcitabilities PsychomotorSensualImaginational IntellectualEmotional

10 Psychomotor OE  Surplus of energy  Rapid speech  Enthusiasm  Impulsivity  Competitiveness  Misdiagnosed as ADHD

11 Suggested Strategies for Managing Psychomotor OE For Teachers  Provide time for spontaneity and open-ended, free-wheeling activities.  Allow students freedom to move  Assign action-related tasks  Set clear goals with clear action-oriented means to achieving them For Students  When faced with sitting for an extended time, find a way to get rid of excess energy. Run up and down stairs, jump up and down, etc.  Find outlets that do not distract others. Tap a straw or pipe cleaner instead of a pencil, stand up, bob knees, squeeze clay  Exercise vigorously daily  Write racing thoughts on sticky notes or a keep a journal

12 Sensual OE  Sensory pleasure: sight, sound, taste, touch, smell  Appreciation of artistic beauty  Overeating  Overindulgence  Needing to be the “center of attention”

13 Suggested Strategies for Managing Sensual OE For Teachers  Use color and artistic representations during instruction  Provide opportunities for students to “be in the limelight”  Notice overindulgence and discuss healthier options For Students  Create time to dwell in a sensual, soothing environment  Visit museums, jewelry stores, gardens or music performances  Carry a favorite texture, dab a small amount of scent on your wrist, wear a favorite color  Keep a journal to describe intense sensory experiences

14 Intellectual OE  Probing questions/curiosity  Problem solving  Concentration  Metacognition  Analytical thinking  Introspection

15 Suggested Strategies for Managing Intellectual OE For Teachers  Model how to find the answers to questions  Encourage the passion to analyze, synthesize, and seek understanding  Help students act on their intellectualized principles  Teach tolerance.  Provide resources for projects and problem solving For Students  Find puzzles and games that challenge you.  Find people with similar interests.  Join a debate team, math club, science club, or academic competition  Conduct experiments  Read non-fiction

16 Imaginational OE  Free play of imagination  Dramatization  Use of image and metaphor  Creativity  Elaborate dreams and fantasies  Vivid visual recall

17 Suggested Strategies for Managing Imaginational OE For Teachers  Help students differentiate between their imagination and the real world by having them place a stop sign in their mental videotape, or write down or draw the factual account before they embellish it  Encourage use of imagination to learn and solve problems  Invite creative suggestions or interpretations during class For Students  Write about the great stories in your head.  Find appropriate times to daydream: On the bus, walking home from school, etc.  Use your imagination to help solve problems.  Express yourself: Draw, dance, write poems, etc.

18 Emotional OE  Intense emotions  Physical expression of emotion  Compassion and empathy  Inhibition  Self-evaluation/self- judgment  Fears, guilt, anxiety  Strong attachments to others  Strong affective memory

19 Suggested Strategies for Managing Emotional OE For Teachers  Accept all feelings, regardless of intensity  Teach how to anticipate and prepare for emotional and physical responses  Remain calm  Be aware of emotional triggers  Be sympathetic For Students  Give words to complexity and depth of an emotion  Learn how to anticipate your emotions  Find outlets for your emotions: Writing, talking with friends and family, exercise, etc.  Embrace the intensity of your emotions

20  Perfectionism Definitions and Management

21 Perfectionism as Pursuit of Excellence Healthy Perfectionism  Drives high effort and accomplishment  Gives students pleasure from concentrated effort  Allows students to adjust their work level as the situation requires

22 Maladaptive or “Neurotic” Perfectionism Maladaptive Perfectionism  Prohibits students from appreciating their competency or the adequacy of work  Causes stress and anxiety  Can result in underachievement

23 Characteristics of Neurotic Perfectionism  Stay up all night working then turn it in late  Get sick over grades  Cheat  Sweaty palms and accelerated heart rate before tests  Compulsively compare scores with others  Procrastinate  Work alone  Argue about test scores  Avoid new experiences  Are overly precise  Feel dissatisfied or guilty about good work

24 Managing Perfectionism  Praise effort not the end result  Help students set SMART goals  Discuss and model mistakes  Share stories of successful people  Help students identify fears  Teach to manage work with calendars and timelines  Teach Yoga, breathing, and relaxation

25 References Daniels, Susan, and Michael M. Piechowski. Living with intensity: understanding the sensitivity, excitability, and emotional development of gifted children, adolescents, and adults. Scottsdale, AZ: Great Potential Press, 2009. Print. Davis, Gary A., and Sylvia B. Rimm. Education of the gifted and talented. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, 1985. Print. Elliott, Miriam, Jan Goldberg, and Caroline Price. Perfectionism: what's bad about being too good?. [Rev. and updated ed. Minneapolis, MN: Free Spirit Pub., 1999. Print. Mendaglio, Sal. Dabrowski's theory of positive disintegration. Scottsdale, AZ: Great Potential Press, 2008. Print. Rimm, Sylvia B.. Underachievment Syndrome: Causes and Cures. 6th print. ed. Watertown WI: Apple Publ, 1990. Print. Silverman, Linda Kreger, and Leland Baska. Counseling the gifted and talented. Denver, CO: Love Pub. Co., 1993. Print. "The ‘Over-Excitable Gifted’: Managing Talent and Five Forms of Excitability." Jobs, Career and Recruitment Platform. Connecting Recruiters and Job Seekers. Find Recruiting Jobs.. N.p., n.d. Web. 5 Jan. 2013. excitability/. g. excitability/

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