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When Lazy Doesn’t Make Sense

Sep 13, 2018 at 04:30 PM (GMT-08:00) Pacific Time (US & Canada); Tijuana

Executive functioning challenges are often a key factor in the success or failure of our twice-exceptional population. This workshop focuses on the gifted or highly creative child and the divergent thinking styles that affect their thinking processes and executive skills. These low achieving students have come to believe that they are “Lazy” or impostors because of their difficulty initiating tasks; staying focused; and completing even self-initiated projects; all symptoms of executive functioning difficulties rather than ability. Though their production results may be similar to other students with LDs or executive skill dysfunction, the factors inhibiting their success may be quite different. The road to intervention requires alternate perspectives of their journey and their barriers to self-advocacy. Researchers stress that executive function is a better predictor of academic success than IQ. Dr. Martha Denckla further asserts that difficulties with executive functions can become “production disabilities.” Teachers often misinterpret the behaviors of highly verbal gifted students with poor executive skills and rarely offer specialized assistance, especially if they test within state norms. Yet these are often students destined to become depressed, drop out, and never reach their full potential as young adults. An integrated model will be presented which takes into account the research from noted professionals in the special education, and educational therapy communities, along with the various environmental, social-emotional, and intense experiences of our gifted and talented population. With audience participation, we will discuss various routes to scaffolding and intervention which prepare these children to confidently encounter progressively challenging educational demands and to encourage students to develop autonomous, lifelong learning strategies.