Myth: Gifted Students are Happy, Popular, and Well Adjusted in School
This myth is attractive because, if true, it alleviates the need for school officials to recognize the existence of gifted children as a special population, thereby dismissing them from their responsibility to address the learning needs of gifted children. However, school leaders are well-advised to take a careful look at this special population of children. While many gifted students thrive in school and their community, some do not fare as well. Due to pressure from a number of sources including motivation and achievement issues, perfectionism, a lack of intellectual and interest peers, identification problems, and other stressors and difficulties, some gifted students experience emotional and social difficulties that require support from school personnel. Below is a list of resources addressing the myth that gifted students are happy, popular, and well adjusted in school, and its implications.
Gallagher, J. J. (1991). Programs for gifted students: Enlightened self-interest. Gifted Child Quarterly, 35 (4), 177-178.
Grobman, J. (2006). Underachievement in exceptionally gifted adolescents and young adults: A psychiatrist's view. Journal of Secondary Gifted Education, 17, 199-210.
Jackson, S. M., & Peterson, J. S. (2003). Depressive disorder in highly gifted adolescents. Journal for Secondary Gifted Education, 14, 175-186.
Mendaglio, S., & Peterson, J. S. (2007). Models of counseling gifted children, adolescents, and young adults. Waco, TX: Prufrock Press.
Neihart, M., Reis, S. M., Robinson. N. M., & Moon. S. M. (Eds.). (20002). The social and emotional development of gifted children: What do we know? Waco, TX: Prufrock Press.
Peterson, J. S. (2008). The essential guide to talking with gifted teens. Minneapolis: Free Spirit.
Peterson, J. S., & Ray, K. E. (2006). Bullying among the gifted: The subjective experience. Gifted Child Quarterly. 50, 252-269.
Peterson, J. S., & Rischar, H. (2000). Gifted and gay: A study of the adolescent experience. Gifted Child Quarterly, 44, 149-164.
VanTassel-Baska, J. L., Cross, T. R., & Olenchak, F. R. (Eds.). (2009). Social and emotional curriculum with gifted and talented students. Waco, TX: Prufrock Press.
Webb, J. R., Amend, E. R., Webb, N. E., Goerss, J., Beljan, P., & Olenchak, F. R. (2005). Misdiagnosis and dual diagnosis of gifted children and adults: ADHD, Bipolar, OCD, Asperger’s, Depression, and other disorders. Scottsdale, AZ: Great Potential Press.
Winner, E. (1996). Gifted children: myths and realities. New York: Basic Books.