A Survival Guide for Parents & Educators of Gifted Children in Ireland
Everybody knows a bright child who works hard and is considered a high achiever in school. Typically these children are in the top 10 to 15% of intellectual ability; but what of the children who are in the top 5% category and above? It's this group that is sometimes referred to as gifted, talented or exceptionally able. These kids have enormous learning potential, but they stand out from their peers in three key areas; they learn faster, earlier and differently. In addition there is a growing population of children in Ireland with dual exceptionality, i.e. their intellectual ability is often in the top 2% but they also have learning difficulties or sometimes profound disabilities.
So, what does the future hold for Ireland's gifted kids and their families? Does an exceptionally bright child mean an exceptionally bright future? Not necessarily. Parenting in itself can be daunting but parenting a "gifted" child can be incredibly challenging. Unlike many other countries there are scant resources available in Ireland for exceptionally able kids; yet, there are estimated to be over 20,000 children who fit the profile of "giftedness" in this country. These kids often struggle in school, feel isolated and find it difficult to "fit" in with both their teachers and peers. This website has been developed by Irish parents of exceptionally able children, with the support of the Irish Association for Gifted Children, to help give other parents the information, support and encouragement to seek out the help they may need.
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Our web-site is not an expert site, it is run on a voluntary basis and as such is based on opinion and experience but we hope that it acts as a signpost for educational resources and other support services for Irish families with exceptionally able children.)
LOCAL PARENT SUPPORT GROUPS
If you have already set up or would like to establish a Local Parent Support Group for Parents of Gifted Children, please contact us with the details of your group and any upcoming events and we will include them here and on our News, Events & Reviews Page.
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Find a Support Group in Your Area:
At present we have parents in Carlow, Cavan, Cork, Longford, Limerick, and Galway on our Forum looking to hook up with other families in their area. Register with our forum to make contact.
The IAGC have more information about setting up your own local support group with details of those groups who have already registered with them. There's a great article offering advice in the Winter/Spring 08 IAGC Newsletter for those thinking of setting up either a formal or informal group and you can also download the Guidelines for Organising a Support Group by Dorothy Armstrong of the IAGC. Remember you can also join the IAGC's online forum to make contact with other parents.