The young gifted child: Potential and promise, an anthology.Smutny, J.F. (1998). The young gifted child gifted child
Child naturally endowed with a high degree of general mental ability or extraordinary ability in a specific domain. Although the designation of giftedness is largely a matter of administrative convenience, the best indications of giftedness are often those : Potential and promise, an anthology. Cresskill, NJ: Hampton Press, Inc. (582 pp. $35.00, paperback, ISBN ISBN
International Standard Book Number
ISBN International Standard Book Number
ISBN n abbr (= International Standard Book Number) → ISBN m 1-57273-108-7).
The editor of this collection, Dr. Joan F. Smutny, senses an urgent need for early intervention ear·ly intervention
n. Abbr. EI
A process of assessment and therapy provided to children, especially those younger than age 6, to facilitate normal cognitive and emotional development and to prevent developmental disability or delay. in the lives of young gifted children. She intends this volume to provide" a framework of understanding" for readers who "cherish [young gifted children] as students, patients, friends, sons, and daughters." The book's 48 experts in advocacy for talented young children fill this framework with 41 chapters as they address five aspects of intervention: identification, special populations, parenting, meeting social and emotional needs, and creating effective educational experiences. Thus, as an anthology, this collection of individual, professional narratives of recommended practices represents the scope of educational literature related to gifted young children. It allows readers to select chapters of greatest interest to them.
Some authors articulate the two major themes that characterize the volume more clearly than others. These themes are: 1) the necessity for teachers to learn how to recognize talent emerging in young children (e.g., Kingore's chapter), and 2) the necessity for teachers to be able to design and implement rich, practical, sensitive educational interventions (e.g., the Kitano & Perez, Shaklee, and Hanninen chapters). As Smutny indicates "early identification ... is essential to ... perceiving and meeting their needs" (p. 5), giving poignant emphasis to the volume's stated purpose.
Smutny is eminently qualified to collect and edit this anthology. She is founder and Director of the Center for Gifted at National-Louis University National-Louis University is a Chicago-based multi-campus institution with a strong history of preparing teachers and educational leaders. Currently operates campuses in Chicago, Elgin, Skokie, Lisle and Wheeling Illinois as well as in McLean, Virginia, Washington DC, Wisconsin, in Evanston, IL, a 1996 NAGC NAGC National Association for Gifted Children
NAGC National Association of Government Communicators
NAGC National Association of Government Contractors
NAGC National Art Gallery of China
NAGC North American Grappling Championships
NAGC National American Glass Club, Ltd. Distinguished Service Award recipient, author, and an enthusiastically received presenter at gifted conferences throughout the nation. The contributing authors are well known among gifted educators, although they are not all equally specialized in their focus on young gifted children. There are few surprises or break-through ideas as the authors have long been closely identified with the topics they developed for this volume. The volume's perspective is intensely educational, interwoven in·ter·weave
v. in·ter·wove , in·ter·wo·ven , inter·weav·ing, inter·weaves
1. To weave together.
2. To blend together; intermix.
v.intr. with the psychological needs of young gifted children. It is disturbingly Anglo-centric and unfortunately lacks a global perspective regarding young gifted children. Only a few chapters even allude to allude to
verb refer to, suggest, mention, speak of, imply, intimate, hint at, remark on, insinuate, touch upon see see, elude cultural diversity among young children in their titles, and then only as a subfocus.
Despite the breadth and depth of Smutny's expertise on this topic, it was disappointing that, as editor, she did not weave a more comprehensive tapestry--a bigger picture--from which readers might begin to construct a cohesive conceptual foundation for understanding benefits and problems of being young and potentially gifted. Smutny's introductions to each section concretely categorized cat·e·go·rize
tr.v. cat·e·go·rized, cat·e·go·riz·ing, cat·e·go·riz·es
To put into a category or categories; classify.
cat each contribution's major focus, then described the chapter. Some chapters overflowed in redundancy and a few were trivial in perspective. The editor neglected to offer conceptual guidance for understanding strengths and limitations of an author's recommendations.
Nevertheless, outstanding chapters illustrate strengths in the content. For example, within identification strategies and techniques, Clark's description of the early process of becoming gifted dovetails nicely with Gelbrich's chapter on research about gifted infants and then with Kingore's practical application of appropriate procedures for observing and identifying advanced potentials.
Special populations receive special attention. Tolan's chapter offers an insightful understanding of the lack of fit between schooling and the needs of highly gifted young children. Wingenbach describes the gifted-learning-disabled-child's need for an integrative education, while Kitano and Perez place critical emphasis on training teachers to become gifted observers, planners, and evaluators in order to ensure that their practice nurtures giftedness effectively.
Parents are provided rich ideas for keeping curiosity alive (e.g., chapters by Walker and Halsted), and on offering one's children "heart-stretching and mind-stretching literature" through frequent reading experiences in the Hildebrand chapter.
LeVine, Kitano and Meckstroth explain well how parents and teachers can help young gifted children reclaim their strengths, using intensities and overexcitabilities for growth rather than restricting those intensities in order to fit in with others. Hanninen and Hollingsworth clearly articulate design and implementation of effective preschool programs, giving a comprehensive view of needs and the fit that schools must design in response. Shaklee's chapter on educationally dynamic environments for young gifted children is a must read for all early childhood educators This article or section is in need of attention from an expert on the subject.
Please help recruit one or [ improve this article] yourself. See the talk page for details. , describing developmentally appropriate practice Developmentally appropriate practice (or DAP) is a perspective within early childhood education whereby a teacher or child caregiver nurtures a child's social/emotional, physical, and cognitive development by basing all practices and decisions on (1) theories of child development, (2) as centering on developmental possibilities rather than limitations!
As a former director of a special summer program for precocious pre·co·cious
Showing unusually early development or maturity.
pre·cocity , pre·co preschoolers, and now as a teacher trainer, I found Baum's chapter most intriguing in·trigue
a. A secret or underhand scheme; a plot.
b. The practice of or involvement in such schemes.
2. A clandestine love affair.
v. . She describes fostering talent development using picture books as the basis for imaginative curriculum that speaks to each child's unique interests and abilities. Baum provides an extended example for designing a picture book experience, and supplies a picture book bibliography connected to domains ranging from physics to psychology and on to history. A favorite author of mine, Mitsumaso Anno, appears frequently across those disciplines.
In a manner befitting be·fit·ting
Appropriate; suitable; proper.
Adj. 1. an anthology, this volume may best serve readers as a reference for review and/or exploration of possibilities, seeking out selections currently most personally relevant. It might also serve as supplementary reading rather than basic text in gifted education Gifted education is a broad term for special practices, procedures and theories used in the education of children who have been identified as gifted or talented. Programs providing such education are sometimes called Gifted and Talented Education (GATE) or graduate courses even though many chapters simply describe good practice for all early childhood educators (e.g., Sisk's). Despite the few limitations mentioned earlier, the anthology offers rich thinking about meeting and understanding the young gifted child's needs. Thank you, Joan Smutny, for your foresight in taking on this task in an innovative and inclusive fashion!
Reviewed by Patricia A. Haensly, Adjunct Faculty, Department of Psychology, Western Washington University Western Washington UniversityWWU or Western) is one of six state-funded, four-year universities of higher education in the U.S. state of Washington. It is located in Bellingham and offers bachelor's and master's degrees. , and a contributing Editor A contributing editor is a magazine job title that varies in responsibilities. Most often, a contributing editor is a freelancer who has proven ability and readership draw. of the Roeper Review.