We have written about giftedness as a type of special education in the past. The “gifted” label is a potentially confusing one, so many myths spring up around giftedness. These myths often seem good, but often lead to a variety of issues for gifted children in reality. This week, we are debunking those myths and pointing out more realistic expectations. Read on to learn exactly which myths about giftedness we’ll be busting.

Gifted Students Can’t Get Bad Grades

There are a wide range of reasons that a gifted student receives bad grades. First and foremost, gifted students who are bored with a particular subject rapidly lose interest. As soon as  student loses interest, their work stops. This leads to the student studying less and doing less work, so their grades slip down. Additionally, many gifted students are forced to endure bullying and slights from other students. Those actions make them lose trust in the scholastic settings. Once the students lose trust, they develop an emotional disconnect that leads to disinterest and declining grades. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, gifted students can have a disability that impairs their giftedness from shining through.

A Gifted Student Is A Mentor For Other Students In The Classroom

Teachers who are not trained in working with gifted students often mistakenly believe that gifted students provide inspiration for other students in the classroom. While there are the purest intentions at play in that scenario, it turns out poorly for everyone.

The students supposedly looking up to the gifted student are ultimately left feeling “less than”. These feelings ultimately develop into resentment toward the gifted student. Simultaneously, the gifted student feel bored and disinterested in the class.

Gifted Students Are So High-Achieving That They Don’t Need Guidance

Gifted students sill need instruction, despite their independent and driven nature. Students need significant challenges in order to maintain an interest in school. Additionally, leaving students to their own devices leads to social isolation, which leads to possible mental health issues such as depression and anxiety. Finally, a lack of supervision leads to bad study and work habits. This develops into problems for gifted students, such as lack of study skills, disinterest, and poor time management.

Proper Gifted Education Requires Lots Of Resources

In reality, a gifted program only really needs two things.

  • The school district to acknowledge that there is a gifted population that needs a program.
  • A teacher with an education on how to work with gifted students.

After those two components are established, it is fairly easy to establish a gifted program. Gifted programs are limited in size by their nature, so the biggest challenge is encouraging school districts to keep them that way.