Educating the Gifted and Talented

“People should be free to find or make for themselves the kinds of educational experience they want their children to have.” -John Holt-

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Talents need nurture and practice

I believe that everyone is born with talents that lie dormant. It is only in a nurturing and stimulating environment that they can rise to the surface. A child who has no continuous access to pencils and paints may enjoy drawing very much, but will not be able to practice enough to truly excel at it.

If the child does have the necessary tools, in addition to a great love for a particular interest, he will likely enjoy practicing it. It is probably no accident that gifted children, whose accomplishments are often far above the norm as compared to those of their age mates, actually do practice that talent a lot more. It's as if they are driven to do so and it often turns them into perfectionists.

So, if a lot or maybe all of it depends on strong interest and practice, it may be no wonder that among gifted children there's only a small percentage who manifest as geniuses or prodigies. As Joseph Joubert said "Genius begins great works; labor alone finishes them."

First posted on the Prufrock GT Blog - Apr 29, 2005.


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