This page is dedicated to our exceptionally able teenagers. We know you are the same as other teenagers in most respects. But, by definition, you are also different. What we would like to do is develop it a place where you can access everything you need, relevant to both your "teenage-ness" and to your giftedness, so that the gifted youth of Ireland can form a network of support for each other. We would like this to be an interactive experience with some of you taking over to run things like a magazine. Here's a chance for you to exercise your creativity! Please email any ideas or suggestions to: firstname.lastname@example.org
What is Adolescence?
Adolescence is the final phase of development of a child into an adult and involves some major changes and transformations.
When you are a small child, your parents are in complete control (well, they like to think they are, anyway). They not only buy all your food and clothes, they also choose them. They make all the big decisions in your life like where you go to school, what time you go to bed, when you can play with your friends, what you can watch on TV etc. If you step out of line, they can discipline you. And generally, you tend to believe the same things as they do and agree with their opinions and values. For a brief time, you think they are great!
As an adult, you will have to be completely self sufficient. You will need to be able to make your own choices and decisions without relying on your parents to bail you out when you make a mistake. You will have to make your own money, be able to wash your own clothes, feed yourself, get yourself to work on time and eventually to care for a partner and children of your own. You will need to have figured out who you are and developed your own set of values and beliefs upon which you base your life.
In the transformation from child to adult, several changes take place.
These changes don’t happen overnight. Some of them happen slowly and take over ten years to complete. During this time, it is common for teenagers to feel stressed and anxious, to have difficulty with their peers and with their families, to feel confused, insecure and as if no one really understands.Now, if that doesn’t seem enough, let’s throw in “gifted”. What exactly does that mean anyway? There are many definitions. One is a person who has exceptional ability in one or more areas such as mathematical, verbal, spatial awareness, musical or artistic ability. (Exceptional generally means in the top 5% of the population.) Another is having an IQ of 130 or more, i.e. the top 2% of scorers on an intelligence test. Whatever definition you choose, there are approximately 23,000 exceptionally able or gifted pupils within the Irish educational system. In practical terms, it means you are likely to:
You won’t recognise all of these qualities in yourself, but if you are gifted, I bet you recognise quite a few. As a child you may already have felt different and slightly out of sync with your peers. Now in adolescence, when being the same and fitting in seems so important, being different is more difficult. All teenagers will have struggles and difficulties as they progress through adolescence. As a gifted teen you may find these struggles harder.
Giftedkids hopes to provide you with information and support to help you on your way.
“I don't like labels full stop. Why would I want to be different? Sometimes it's best just to keep your head down and get on with things in your own way. Maybe teachers have expectations because of my ability but I certainly don't."
Disclaimer: This is not an expert site, it is run on a voluntary basis and as such is based on opinion and experience but we hope that it acts as a signpost for educational resources and other support services for Irish families with exceptionally able children. By using this website you accept that any dependence by you on such information, opinion or advice is at your own risk.