April 29, 2015

What Motivates Gifted Kids?

What motivates gifted kids? According to Whitney and Hirsch, "Gifted kids can and do learn everywhere; The trick is to maintain their motivation to learn in school." Gifted underachievement happens for a variety of reasons, including the child's need to fit in with their peers and the lack of stimulation on school.

In our SENG Parent Support Group, we discussed what are some ways to create a supportive climate for motivation and how to help children learn how to set and achieve attainable goals. Below are some resources we shared with the group.

Last Updated 4/29/2015. Let us know if these links are broken!

From Around the Web

Davidson Institute
A big list of articles and books about underachievement and motivation.

The Association for the Education of Underachieving Students

What Can Teachers and Parents Do To Help Underachievers?
by Carolyn Coil, EdD.


Goal-Setting Resources

Teaching Grit: Social and Emotional Truth
An article on Angela Duckworth’s research

The Science of Goals
an article by Vanessa van Edwards and a goal-setting worksheet.

What is Executive Function?

Executive Function is the set of mental skills that work together to manage how we think, including working memory, task flexibility and problem-solving. Most of these skills are organized in the frontal lobes of our brains (Wikipedia).

Sometimes gifted children may have some difficulties developing the ability to retain and organize information and these are frequently misdiagnosed as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADD), a learning disorder or both. Here are some resources to help you learn more executive function and approaches to help resolve executive function issues.

Last Updated April 29, 2015. Let us know a link is broken!


  • Seth Perler’s Executive Function Cheat Sheet. A former teacher now turned educational consultant, Seth helps students and adults address executive function issues. He has struggled with executive function issues himself and his recommendations are based on how he learned to overcome it and what has worked with his students. Based in Boulder. 

Book Lists 

  • Cognitive Connections Resource List. A team of two speech and language pathologists who specialize in treating cognitive and speech-language issues put together this book list on executive function. Based in Massachusetts.

April 22, 2015

POSTPONED: Center for Bright Kids Seminar

Please note that tonight's program  Center for Bright Kids Seminar at Acres Green Elementary School has been postponed until early next fall. We apologize for the late notice!

Click here if you would like to be notified when this event has been rescheduled.

April 13, 2015

Is My Child Gifted?

If you have a 6-9 year old child that you suspect may be gifted, early spring is a good time to consider independently testing your child for giftedness. Testing results can be used in discussions with school administrators to discuss academic programming for your child.

Identifying whether or not your child is gifted can be a complex process. Most gifted researchers suggest that the identification process be based on more than just scores on IQ tests and academic performance. A comprehensive view of the child includes well-documented behaviors from multiple viewpoints, portfolio reviews and more.

Here are some resources to help you start your research. Please let us know if these links need to be updated. This list was last updated on May 11, 2015.


 A Place to Start: Is My Child Gifted? by the Davidson Institute states that testing is "most reliable and most predictive between the ages of six and nine years old." The article goes on to discuss the different types of intelligence tests, how to find a professional to evaluate your child and how to prepare your child for the test.

Tips on Identifying 2E Students by SENG discusses how to identify twice exceptional (2E) students, gifted students who may also have learning disabilities. This article shares tips on alternate ways to evaluate a potential gifted students outside of traditional standardized tests.

High Achiever, Gifted Learner and Creative Thinker - Use this handy chart to determine what kind of advanced learner your child might be. This provides a good place to start learning about your child's special abilities.


Colorado Psychologists Who Perform GT Tests - This list of testing services primarily focuses on the Denver area. As of 2015, the cost for independent IQ and Academic testing runs between $400-$500 per child.

Castle Rock IQ Testing - If you prefer to get tested locally, contact Envision Counseling Clinic in downtown Castle Rock.

Western Academic Talent Search (WATS) - The program is sponsored by the Center For Bright Kids, a regional talent center in the Rocky Mountain area. Students in grades 3-9 have the opportunity take the SAT, ACT and EXPLORE tests and use the results for academic and college planning, as well as supporting evidence for identifying gifted students.

DCSD Gifted Identification Process

DCSD Identification Summary (PDF) - Douglas County School District (DCSD) uses a dynamic and ongoing process to identifying gifted students. Use this PDF document to help build the body of evidence to support identifying and advocating for your advanced learners.

Kingore Observation Inventory - In addition to tests, DCSD has developed a Parent Rating Scale based on the Kingore Observation Inventory (KOI) to capture parent observations. To build your body of evidence, use this inventory to assess and record specific examples of your child exhibiting these behaviors.

Other Resources

Is Your Child Gifted? Hosted by the Gifted Development Center in Westminster, Colorado, this page includes an online quiz to determine whether or not your child might be gifted. The Center offers a comprehensive list of assessments for potentially gifted and 2E students.

Hoagies' Identification of Giftedness - This page on the Hoagies website provides a long list of research and additional places to learn about the challenges of identification and how to navigate the identification process.