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    #44509 - 04/14/09 09:40 AM Creative passion over academic passion.
    quaz Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 02/14/08
    Posts: 37
    My 6 1/2 year old has been confirmed gifted by her school district. She has been lucky, and is in a self-contained classroom.

    While many kids on this board and gifted boards truly have that need to do very academic items, that has never been her passion.

    She ignored letters until she was 4. Over the course of the year, she has made occasional comments like she wishes school was on the weekends and she was home during the week, so school was less. She does fine in her class, is a few grades ahead, but the academic side is not her passion.

    Her passion has always been pretend, stories, ideas, drawing, etc. Her free time is taken up by these items.

    She has always been fascinated with drawing people. I saw a good art class I could sign her up for, and she was very excited about the concept, but when I tried to explain what the class would be about, she didn't want to take it. I figured as much, because her idea of what the class should be, versus what it was, I knew would differ highly.

    I guess where I am stuck is figuring out how to best advocate for my child, not in one particular classroom situation, but in life. Her is a very gifted child, but her passion just doesn't jive with schools, and I'm not ready to attempt any sort of homeschool.

    I feel we are getting to a point that I really need to advocate for 'something' very creative outside of school, that will let her really explore and use that side of her, and let others see that side of her. Drama classes I feel are out, because her articulation is still fairly poor. Art classes, she is reluctant with too much structure.

    I'm not sure I'm expressing myself well, but does anyone have a child like this? The reluctant academically very gifted, but utterly passionate creative? I really feel for the upcoming years ahead that creativeness will be very critical, but I just am not sure how to nurture her area best, when she is just 'eh' about school. I'm sort of at this 'lost' point.


    #44511 - 04/14/09 09:56 AM Re: Creative passion over academic passion. [Re: quaz]
    BWBShari Offline

    Registered: 10/24/08
    Posts: 1167
    Loc: NM
    What about private art classes? You could explain to the instructor your daughter's need to "follow her own idea" and ask for lessons that will allow for freedom rather than structure.

    If she likes to write, what about setting her up a blog for friends and family to post her work? There is another thread on here regarding kid friendly blogging. Buy her a journal to save her stories.

    Buy her a digital camera and teach her how to use it. Download a good photo program so that she can edit her photos. Photos can go on her blogsite to support her stories. Teach her to scrapbook her photos. Good scrapbookers are very creative. Build a puppet theater and show her how to make puppets. She can put on a big show for the family! Does she like music? Sign her up for lessons on the instrument of her choice.

    There are many sites on the web regarding different art forms. Explore a few together. My littles and I have done pounded copper art and cave paintings with lard and ashes. Make mud pies artistically!

    The most important thing is that you enjoy the project and each other!
    Mom to DS 10, DS 11, DS 13
    Ability doesn't make us, Choices do!

    #44514 - 04/14/09 10:07 AM Re: Creative passion over academic passion. [Re: quaz]
    Jamie B Offline

    Registered: 04/12/09
    Posts: 430
    Loc: Louisiana
    Does your school district have any types of art academies? What about a summer program at a college? My son isn't very creative so I haven't had to really look into anything artsy yet.

    #44515 - 04/14/09 10:16 AM Re: Creative passion over academic passion. [Re: quaz]
    no5no5 Offline

    Registered: 04/02/09
    Posts: 529
    I was also artistic as a child but HATED most art classes. I mean, come on, are they really going to force every child to draw the exact same thing in exactly the same way? Yuck.

    But when I was a bit older, I had some truly great art classes. The important thing, IMHO, is that they be taught by artists. Artists (should) understand that creativity is key. So they (should) introduce a topic/medium/technique and provide tips and critiques, but let all the students interpret however they like. I think that can be incredibly helpful for any artist, young or old. I think if you keep your eyes and ears open, you should be able to find a class (or organize a class) that will suit her. If she can handle it socially, a class for older kids or even adults might work.

    Oh, and I did drama class as a kid (with selective mutism) and I loved it. As I recall, it was more about motion, observation, and body awareness, than about speaking. We did a lot of miming-type work. I don't recall having to talk at all, actually, but I'm sure all classes are different.

    Most of all, I guess, I would say that if you keep her supplied with materials and time, and visit art museums whenever you get a chance, she will be absolutely fine. smile

    #44516 - 04/14/09 11:13 AM Re: Creative passion over academic passion. [Re: no5no5]
    Jen74 Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 01/21/09
    Posts: 44
    I don't have any specific advice for you, but I can empathize with your situation. My DD5 is in the 140 IQ range, but she has little interest in "academics." She is EXTREMELY verbal, but she doesn't care much about learning to read or working with numbers. She is, however, REALLY into science and thinks very scientifically. She can tell you in detail how pollination works, about insect life cycles, animal habitats, etc. We had her tested because we knew she wasn't "normal," but I wasn't ready to use the "gifted" label because she has no interest in traditional areas (such as early reading) usually associated with gifted children. There are days when I seriously wonder if she really is gifted (until she uses words like "probiscus" in regular conversation!), but I'm even more worried because she is not looking forward to starting kindergarten next year. We actually pulled her out of preschool this year because she was bored (although she's not an early reader, the "letter of the week" thing got old after about a month) - and she associates kindergarten with the same experience.

    For your daughter, I like the idea of private art classes with someone who can appreciate her uniqueness and talent - I bet it wouldn't be too difficult to find a professional artist willing to mentor her. People who are passionate about their talent often love to work with kids who are passionate about the same things. We're thinking of finding a local scientist (either archeologist or entomologist, as those are her current passions) who might be willing to show her a lab and talk about research. Good luck!

    #44518 - 04/14/09 12:24 PM Re: Creative passion over academic passion. [Re: Jen74]
    kimck Offline

    Registered: 09/20/07
    Posts: 1134
    I know some homeschoolers who've had great success and fun hiring college students majoring in art to give their kids private lessons.

    I can empathize a bit too. Neither of my kids is overly excited about academics even though it comes very easily to them. My daughter is only 4, but spent hours last week making Ukrainian Easter eggs and loves hands on projects, dancing, drama, costumes, and all of that. She is also suddenly very interested in science and history.

    My 2nd grade son's more interested in puzzles, games, programming, computers. And science as well. We're homeschooling and are well ahead of grade level. But don't work super hard on core academics.

    #44584 - 04/14/09 08:06 PM Re: Creative passion over academic passion. [Re: kimck]
    Arminius Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 03/01/09
    Posts: 14
    Loc: South Eastern United States
    Maybe the reason academics is so unexciting is the lack of challenge. Even in a classrom for gifted students, it is possible to get an "A", a gold star, a perfect score, is possible. In art, there is always room to improve. That can make it more interesting than academic work. Get her lessons. Elementary schools in my district sometimes offer after school programs in which kids get to choose a sort of extra elective tacked onto the end of the day. Some of the options involve things like drawing and painting and give the kids a fair amount of freedom to express themselves with some guidance to help them improve. After school programs tend to be fairly low cost, especially at public schools.

    Edited by Arminius (04/14/09 08:06 PM)

    #44590 - 04/14/09 08:50 PM Re: Creative passion over academic passion. [Re: Arminius]
    RobotMom Offline

    Registered: 02/25/09
    Posts: 604
    Loc: in a happier place
    I have a very similar situation with my DD6. She was early talking (and has never stopped eek ) and read early as well, but her interest and passion is definitely in imaginative play, drawing, creating elaborate 3-d scenes to go along with what ever play she and her toys are in. She is currently burning through the Magic treehouse series of books and is making the items that the characters in the books bring back home with them! (All miniature in size - the largest is a scroll about 4 inches wide and 10 inches long.)
    A friend has a similar child and has asked one of the local art teachers from the school district if she would be interested in giving our kids a summer "art camp". It owuld be just 2 or three kids, with lots of freedom to create as they like, with guidance from her. She has said she likes the idea, and is trying to fit it into her schedule.

    I agree with Arminius, that for my daughter she is not passionate about academics because it has not been hard enough to be interesting for her as of yet. (we're working on that for next year.)

    #44596 - 04/15/09 12:33 AM Re: Creative passion over academic passion. [Re: RobotMom]
    Raddy Offline

    Registered: 10/11/07
    Posts: 276
    Loc: UK
    My son is interested in art, particularly sculpture and modelling - so far outside the normal "crayoning and painting" that passes for art in schools to be seen as if he's from another planet.

    Our EP said that the creative arts were the future as more and more of the "usual" work was becoming globalised. I know how hard it is to motivate a creative to cover the 'bread and butter' subjects like maths and english. our son is 9 and he still kicks against any 'formal(ised)' education - but he has to do it, and he has to know that.

    We opted for a private school which we hoped would better cater for him, and so far it has worked out well, tho' it is early days. the problem in the UK is that the class sizes are generally so large, creative types can get left behind and seeen as bl**dy nuisances.

    The EP suggested local art groups for his art - but I ca't really see him sitting with a group of 30 - 40 somethings and being taken seriously.

    just sorry I can't be of any more help - but you're not alone.

    #45013 - 04/18/09 04:14 AM Re: Creative passion over academic passion. [Re: RobotMom]
    Ellipses Offline

    Registered: 02/22/09
    Posts: 407
    Loc: Colorado

    This is what DI (Destination Imagination) is all about - except that they write the scripts also.

    This is very much a gifted thing and hopefully, they never grow out of it. This is what they have that "normal" kids do not have. As they age, they incorporate more of their academic knowledge into their creativity through science inventions, computer websites, writing, etc.


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