May 25, 2010


May 24, 2010

"When we all think alike, then no one is thinking."

--Walter Lippman

Dear Friends,

Please take a moment to read the following updates as we approach the end of the academic year and go our separate ways until the rentree!

FOR PARENTS: Three June webinars (see the 2 charts below) are coming up and they are likely to be of great interest to you on different levels, especially for those of you wanting to foster creativity at home, for those of you who are in the midst of exhausting the system trying to understand your gifted child’s puzzling issues, and for those of you struggling with twice exceptional (2E) kids (gifted children with learning or other issues). These recorded webinars, in power-point format, feature three highly respected experts in the gifted, educational, and mental professional community. They are well spoken, and one of the most interesting points each of them makes, regardless of the situation at hand, is not to overlook your child’s potential talents and not to take their areas of strengths for granted. Each webinar is information packed. Please note that there are morning and evening showings for each of the three webinars, so respond accordingly in the SUBJECT. Even though the month of June is full of many activities, I hope you’ll join me for the following presentations that will hopefully give you a leg-up on options and different perspectives you did not previously consider. The only trick is I need a minimum of 5 people to keep each presentation. Please send in your RSVP asap if you are available to join us. Please remember to update your membership so we can continue to purchase these kinds of webinars to enlighten ourselves and those around us. Membership is 30euros and it’s good for a year from the time you join. Email:


1. Gifted in France is in the middle of hosting its 3rd annual Paris Spelling Bee. We had 73 students from over 30 schools register for the preliminaries. They are heading to the finals on Sunday May 30th with 16 finalists in each group, which consists of children in CE2-CM2 and 6eme-4eme. We wish them luck. The event is only open to the contestants and their families.

2. Also, a reminder that on June 6th for kids 9+up there's a creativity workshop, which will combine words and visual arts: "Making Characters Jump off the Page" A Creativity Workshop for Kids 9+ with Cybèle Troyan and Cathy Altman Nocquet. Sunday June 6th 2-6pm (see end of page for details).

List of upcoming Webinars presentations by GiF, courtesy of SENG:




Developing Your Child’s Creative Thinking Ability: Strategies for Parents (and teachers),

with Dr. Joyce Juntune

Morning Presentation:

Thursday June 3rd : 10h00-12h00 RSVP by May 31st

10€ for non GiF members,

5€ for members

Evening Presentation:

Thursday June 3rd: 19h30-22h00. RSVP by May 31st

Navigating the Quest for Help: Understanding Your Gifted Child’s Puzzling Behavior,

with Dr. Steven Curtis

Morning Presentation:

Thursday June 10th 10h00-12h00. RSVP latest by June 6th.

10€ for non members,

5€ for members

Evening Presentation:

Thursday June 10th, 19h30-22h00. RSVP latest by June 6th.

The 2E Enigma: How Do I Know My Child is 2E -- and How Can I Best Support Him/Her?

With Susan Baum, Ph.D

Morning Presentation: Thursday June 17th: 10h00-12h00. RSVP latest by June 12th.

10€ for non members,

5€ for members

Thursday June 17h: 19h30-21h00. RSVP latest by June 12th.

IMPORTANT NOTE: please be sure to note the morning or evening presentation in your RSVP and reply by the given deadline so we know whether or not to hold the presentation for that day. We need a minimum of 5 people to proceed. The presentations are by a laptop hookup to a tv monitor. Since the handouts/slides to these presentations are numerous, I’m not sure if I can guarantee copies for everyone. We’ll see how it goes.

These Webinars are provided by SENG,

SENG is committed to sharing complex issues relating to the social and emotional needs of giftedness. Webinars reflect the opinions of their speakers and do not necessarily represent the philosophy of SENG. SENG invites your comments and discussion about these webinars.


Developing Your Child’s Creative Thinking Ability: Strategies for Parents

with Dr. Joyce Juntune

Creative and innovative thinking are valued as skills in the workplace. Creativity also provides an important and necessary outlet for gifted children. What can parents do to make the development of creativity a natural part of family life? Join creativity expert Dr. Juntune for ways to have fun as a family while fostering creative and innovative thinkers.

Joyce Juntune is a Lecturer in the Department of Educational Psychology at Texas A&M University. She teaches graduate level courses in gifted education and undergraduate courses in creativity.

Dr. Juntune was one of the developers of Project REACH – a staff development program for integrating creative thinking into content area classrooms, and served as its Director for 5 years. She bookmarkwas the Executive Director of the National Association for Gifted Children for ten years and the Executive Director of the American Creativity Association for six years.

She has traveled extensively across the United States and Canada providing training to thousands of teachers in over 500 school districts in the areas of creative thinking, instructional improvement, differentiated curriculum, creative problem solving, and gifted education. She has also provided training in creative thinking and problem solving to law firms, hospital and health care professionals, corporate managers, small business owners and managers, and members of the transportation industry.

Navigating the Quest for Help: Understanding Your Gifted Child's Puzzling Behavior with Dr. Steven Curtis

Parents of gifted children often struggle to understand how to best meet their son's or daughter's needs. When a gifted child has some type of puzzling behavior, or social or learning challenge, this struggle can intensify which can result in numerous visits with professionals and people in the know. This "quest for help" can be a very frustrating and exhausting experience.

In this webinar, Dr. Curtis will begin with a description of the pathway of the "quest for help" that so many parents of gifted children take. This will be followed with a presentation on the common characteristics of gifted children, how gifted children are identified, common controversies and myths, and how gifted children are often misunderstood and mislabeled as having something else. Participants will then learn about possible educational options and ways to create/implement a strength-based strategy of success. The goal of this webinar is to help parents better understand the needs of their child, know how and when to intervene, have a better understanding of whom to turn to for help, and feel more empowered to help their gifted child find success. It will also empower positive communication between parents and educators. By participating in this webinar, parents and caregivers will find that the quest for help is much less costly and more effective in the long run.

Dr. Steven Curtis is a Child Clinical Psychologist and Nationally Certified School Psychologist. He has worked in medical, school, and university settings for 25+ years. He was trained at Utah State University and at the University of Washington School of Medicine. He is the former Special Education Director at Seattle University and teaches part time at Antioch University. Dr. Curtis engages in private practice with Lifespan ( and specializes in helping gifted children with Behavioral, Social and Learning Challenges.

The 2E Enigma: How Do I Know My Child is 2E -- and How Can I Best Support Him/Her? With Susan Baum, Ph.D

An increasing number of gifted students experience learning disabilities, attention deficits or social and emotional issues. Simply addressing these difficulties without consideration of their advanced abilities is rarely effective. In this session we will:

Discuss the characteristics of 2E students including those gifted students with ADHD, learning disabilities, or Aspergers Syndrome.

Dispel the myths and misconceptions concerning their needs.

Introduce The Talent Centered Model for 2e Students, with specific strategies for helping parents and professionals meet the needs of these special youngsters.

Susan Baum, Ph.D. is co-director of the International Center for Talent Development and Director of the National Institute for 2E Research and Development at Bridges Educational Center for twice exceptional education. Professor Emeritus from The College of New Rochelle, Susan is an expert in twice exceptional education. An international consultant, Susan is published in the areas of twice exceptional students, primary-aged gifted students, and social and emotional factors affecting gifted students. She served on the Board of Directors of the National Association for Gifted Students and is past president and co- founder of the Association for the Education of Gifted Underachieving Students.

Creativity Workshop for Kids 9+up: "Making Characters Jump off the Page"
with Cybèle Troyan and Cathy Altman Nocquet

Sunday June 6th 2-6pm

RSVP: directly with Cathy Altman Nocquet 06 99 85 40 98 – For more information, visit

Kids in this four-hour workshop will use words and visual arts in concert to make fully developed characters, then deploy them in a variety of poems, scenes and stories. What is unique about the friendship between the Ninja palm reader and the rutabaga minstrel across the room? Why are the lioness and rocking chair characters rivals? Work with new friends on this fun and surprising project, then present your creations to parents at the end of the session.
Cost: 22 euros
10% discount for GIF members and for siblings
Location: near La Motte Picquet Grenelle metro

Finally, here’s an interview with Wenda Sheard by SENG regarding her speaking engagement with Gifted in France last February. Her topic was Gifted Third Culture Children.

Best regards,

Helen Sahin Connelly
President, Gifted in France

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