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Gifted Educator and Parent Library

Starting a gifted resource library?  Whether buying for yourself, your gifted advocacy group, or your school, which titles should you purchase?  And why? Here's the short list...

If you can only purchase one book, for teachers and administrators, make it this one!

Being Gifted in School: An Introduction to Development, Guidance, And Teaching Recommended by Laurence J. Coleman & Tracy L. Cross (or from Amazon)
For educators, includes definitions and models of giftedness; identification of the gifted; teaching methods and best practices; creativity; counseling and guidance; administrative arrangements; and program prototypes and evaluation...

Further introduction to gifted education, with tons of research citations (and it's FREE!)

Free and priceless - everyone should have and read!
A Nation Deceived: How Schools Hold Back America’s Brightest Students Recommended The Templeton National Report on Acceleration
Acceleration is a powerful educational ally, but it’s a strategy that requires participation of parents as well as sensitivity to individual needs and circumstances. For that reason, this report is designed not only to persuade readers of the value of acceleration, but also to help schools administer acceleration programs effectively....
Also read the National Association of Gifted Children (NAGC) reply Acceleration in Schools: A Call to Action

Introduction to gifted education, for parents and educators

A Parent's Guide to Gifted Children Recommended by James T. Webb, Janet L. Gore, Edward R. Amend & Arlene R. DeVries
Raising a gifted child is both a joy and a challenge...  guides parents through all the phases and possibilities of the gifted child, including underachievement, sensitivities, twice exceptionalities, friendships, siblings, schools, identification, and much more!
 
Raising a Gifted Child: A Parenting Success Handbook Recommended by Carol Fertig (or from Amazon)
A menu of strategies, resources, organizations, tips, and suggestions for parents to find optimal learning opportunities for their kids, covering the gamut of talent areas, including academics, the arts, technology, creativity, music, and thinking skills. Focused on empowering parents by giving them the tools needed to ensure that their gifted kids are happy and successful both in and out of school...
 
Being Smart about Gifted Education: A Guidebook for Educators and Parents Recommended by Dona J. Matthews and Joanne F. Foster
Practical strategies for the education of exceptionally high ability (a.k.a. gifted) children.  After addressing all the questions, debates and arguments about nature vs. nurture, elitism, testing, creativity, and more... all that's left is to serve the child's educational needs! Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca

An oldie but goodie...

Guiding the Gifted Child: A Practical Source for Parents and Teachers Recommended by James T. Webb, Elizabeth A. Meckstroth, Stephanie S. Tolan
The original gifted parents' manual, be sure to read it... if you can get your hands on a copy. Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca

Introduction to gifted testing, for parents AND teachers

Parent's Guide to IQ Testing and Gifted Education Recommended by David Palmer or Kindle edition
Great introduction to IQ testing and gifted children.  Answers your questions, from Why test? to What do the scores mean? and What about scores of twice exceptional children?  Every parent entering the gifted education world should read this book.  Read An Interview with David Palmer: About I.Q. And Parents Understanding of Intelligence

Overview of the state of gifted education

Genius Denied: How to Stop Wasting Our Brightest Young Minds Recommended by Jan and Bob Davidson, with Laura Vanderkam
The Davidsons offer an absorbing look at how our nation is neglecting children of exceptional intelligence. They make a compelling case for re-approaching giftedness as a potential disability (to give more attention to gifted kids) and an even stronger argument for parents, teachers and citizens to consider the potential loss to American society in the costliest imaginable terms.  For excerpts and review, visit Genius Denied.  Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca

Comprehensive texts for gifted educators...

Academic Acceleration of Gifted Children Recommended edited by Southern and Jones
A comprehensive textbook on acceleration, with chapters on early acceptance to kindergarten or to college, affective development of acceleration of gifted students, identification of good candidates.  Also available from Amazon.co.uk
 
Being Gifted in School: An Introduction to Development, Guidance, And Teaching Recommended by Laurence J. Coleman & Tracy L. Cross
For educators, includes definitions and models of giftedness; identification of the gifted; teaching methods and best practices; creativity; counseling and guidance; administrative arrangements; and program prototypes and evaluation... (or from Amazon)
 
Handbook of Gifted Education by Nicholas Colangelo and Gary A. Davis, editors
This book is a must-have for teachers, administrators and parents of the gifted. The diversity of articles includes all the hot topics of gifted education written by some of the best known experts in the field. This book is especially good for the serious reader who has some background in gifted.  Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca
 
Programs and Services for Secondary Gifted Students: A Guide to Recommended Practices Recommended by Felicia A. Dixon (or from Amazon)
A reference for service and program options for practitioners, administrators, and coordinators; a companion to the more in-depth The Handbook of Secondary Gifted Education Recommended (or from Amazon).  Part I: the gifted adolescent's cognitive social and emotional dimensions, including suggestions for academic, personal/social, and career exploration best practices; Part II: programmatic offerings such as AP and IB, distance learning, magnet and other special schools, study abroad, and early entrance to college options; Part III: a view of optimal future directions—taking into account obstacles to change in today’s high schools...

Great resources for counselors and psychologists...

Counseling Gifted and Talented Children: A Guide for Teachers, Counselors, and Parents Recommended by Roberta M. Milgram
Gives counselors, classroom teachers, gifted education specialists, and parents an understanding of the academic and social-personal needs of gifted and talented students, awareness of ways that they themselves may help these children, and an introduction to the available guidance strategies and materials... Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca
 
Counseling the Gifted and Talented Recommended by Linda Kreger Silverman
A great resource for understanding the many and complex needs of gifted children... Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca
 

Education and Curriculum...

Teaching Gifted Kids in Today's Classroom: Strategies and Techniques Every Teacher Can Use Recommended by Susan Winebrenner
Updated third edition for a new generation of teachers and classrooms. An excellent guide to modifying curriculum for gifted elementary and middle school students in the regular classroom
 
The Cluster Grouping Handbook: How to Challenge Gifted Students and Improve Achievement for All Recommended by Susan Winebrenner and Dina Brulles
In today’s standards-driven era, how can teachers motivate and challenge gifted learners and ensure that all students reach their potential? This book provides a compelling answer: the Schoolwide Cluster Grouping Model (SCGM).  Find a wealth of teacher-tested classroom strategies along with detailed information on identifying students for clusters, gaining support from parents, and providing ongoing professional development. Special attention toward empowering gifted English language learners. CD-ROM features all of the reproducible forms plus a PowerPoint presentation...
 
Content Based Curriculum for High Ability Learners by Joyce VanTassel-Baska and Catherine Little
Written by recognized gifted curriculum leader VanTassel-Baska and her associates at the Center for Gifted Education at the College of William and Mary, this award-winning service publication of the National Association for Gifted Children illustrates award-winning curriculum units in language arts, social studies and science...  Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca
 
The Handbook of Secondary Gifted Education Recommended by Felicia A. Dixon and Sidney Moon (or from Amazon)
An in-depth, research-based look at ways schools and classrooms can support the development of gifted adolescents.  Each chapter is written by leading scholars and researchers in the field, including Nicholas Colangelo, Susan Assouline, Sally Reis, Donna Ford, Joyce VanTassel-Baska, Carolyn Callahan, more...

Strategies for Differentiating Instruction: best practices for the classroom Recommended by Julia L. Roberts & Tracy F. Inman (or from Amazon)
Most comprehensive and most practical text on the theory and practical considerations involved in helping gifted students excel... 

Exceptionally or profoundly gifted children?  Read this book!

Exceptionally Gifted Children Recommended by Miraca Gross
If you have an exceptionally gifted child, Read This Book! A fascinating study of a small group of exceptionally gifted (IQ>160) children, Gross follows these children over 20 years, and includes extensive details about their interests, family background, progress through school, and social and emotional as well as academic status. Gross shows that when these children are not allowed to learn at an appropriate pace and level it places them at serious risk.  Also available from from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca

Grade acceleration: should we, or shouldn't we?

Iowa Acceleration Scale Manual; A Guide for Whole-Grade Acceleration (Amazon or Barnes & Noble) Recommended by Susan G. Assouline, Nicholas Colangelo, Ann Lupkowski-Shoplik, Jonathan Lipscomb, Leslie Forstadt
For schools or parents, the Iowa Acceleration Scale provides a systematic and thorough approach to considering and implementing academic acceleration for gifted and talented students in grades K-8; read Hoagies' detailed review.  Also available from Amazon.co.uk or
 
Free and priceless - everyone should have and read!
A Nation Deceived: How Schools Hold Back America’s Brightest Students Recommended The Templeton National Report on Acceleration
Acceleration is a powerful educational ally, but it’s a strategy that requires participation of parents as well as sensitivity to individual needs and circumstances. For that reason, this report is designed not only to persuade readers of the value of acceleration, but also to help schools administer acceleration programs effectively... Now available in 8 languages! Click for Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Russian, and Spanish. (requires Adobe Reader)  Also read the National Association of Gifted Children (NAGC) reply Acceleration in Schools: A Call to Action

Gifted and minority...

Bright, Talented, and Black: A Guide for Families of African American Gifted Learners by Joy Lawson Davis Recommended
What does it really mean to be gifted and African American in the U.S. today? What do parents and teachers of gifted black students need to know to help students explore their potential, thrive in school and life. Easy to read, full of great insight for every reader, regardless of race...

The social / emotional aspects of gifted children

Living With Intensity: Understanding the Sensitivity, Excitability, and the Emotional Development of Gifted Children, Adolescents, and Adults Recommended by Susan Daniels & Michael M. Piechowski
Do you know an intense gifted child?  You must read this book!  An easy-to-read volume for parents, teachers, psychologists, everyone dealing with the gifted child, that explains the inexplicable, and guides us all in guiding the growth and development of our gifted children...
 
Emotional Intensity in Gifted Students: Helping Kids Cope With Explosive Feelings Recommended Christine Fonseca (or from Amazon)
Easy-to-read, using real-world examples through case studies and role-plays that show parents and teachers how to interact with gifted children in a way that teaches them how to recognize, monitor, and adjust their behavior. Worksheets, tip sheets, and checklists are included to help parents, teachers, and the students themselves learn to cope with the explosive feelings that often accompany giftedness. Specific strategies for stress management, underperformance in school, perfectionism, and social anxiety make this a must-read for anyone wishing to make a positive lasting impact on the lives of gifted children...
 
On the Social and Emotional Lives of Gifted Children by Tracy Cross (or from Amazon)
Fourth edition of  Tracy Cross' classic research and observations... what we know, and what we don't know about the social and emotional issues facing gifted children
 
Talk with Teens About What Matters to Them: Ready-to-Use Discussions on Stress, Identity, Feelings, Relationships, Family, and the Future Recommended by Jean Sunde Peterson
All young people need a safe, supportive place to “just talk” with caring peers and an attentive adult. Talk with Teens has been tested with thousands of teens in many kinds of schools, community centers, churches, and workshops. Its guided discussions are proven ways to reach out to young people and address their social and emotional needs. Teens gain self-awareness and self-esteem, practice problem-solving and goal-setting, feel more in control of their lives, and learn that they have much in common with one another—they are not alone.

Elementary and middle school math enrichment, extraordinaire!

Challenge Math Recommended by Edward Zaccaro
"Math is often taught as all scales and no music. This book contains the music!" I couldn't have said it better myself - tons of fun problems...
bullet Challenge Math For the Elementary and Middle School Student for the upper elementary and middle school student Recommended  Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca and Prufrock Press
bullet Primary Grade Challenge Math Recommended for the younger elementary student  Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca
bullet Real World Algebra: Understanding the Power of Mathematics Recommended  Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca
bullet The Ten Things All Future Mathematicians and Scientists Must Know (But are Rarely Taught)  Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca
bullet Becoming a Problem Solving Genius: A Handbook of Math Strategies
bullet Scammed by Statistics Recommended

Language arts is key, here's the key to excellent L.A. instruction!

Michael Clay Thompson Language Arts Curriculum Recommended by Michael Clay Thompson, from Royal Fireworks Press
I don't know how to explain Michael Clay Thompson's curriculum, except to say... gifted students, no matter where their gifts lie, need this curriculum.  I had the honor of hearing Michael speak about his Grammar Voyage and The Magic Lens grammar curricula and Practice Sentence student workbook series... and I was enthralled.  Please know, I am a math-y and a computer geek - I do not do language arts, if I can help it.  But this curriculum made grammar interesting to me!  Word Within The Word offers middle and secondary level, vocabulary-building curriculum that is like no other.  Sentence Island, Paragraph Town and Essay Voyage form the elementary writing curriculum.  And there's much more... investigate all the Michael Clay Thompson Language Arts Curriculum  For videos of Michael Clay Thompson's presentations, and to see why this math-geek is so excited by his curriculum, view Michael Clay Thompson Videos. And read Cathy Duffy reviews... Michael Clay Thompson Language Arts

Every parent and teacher of readers should have this book... that's all of us!

Some of My Best Friends Are Books: Guiding Gifted Readers from Preschool to High School Recommended by Judith Wynn Halsted
Roeper Review says "...should be on the shelf of every school library, whether that school offers gifted programming or not."  Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca

Parents and gifted adolescents, these are must-read!

Smart Teens' Guide to Living with Intensity: How to Get More Out of Life and Learning Recommended by Lisa Rivero
A guide for pre-teens and teens who are a little more... more intense, more creative, more interesting, and yes, sometimes even called "more difficult."  A teen's perspective into growing up as a gifted teen today.  And the guidebook for the parents, A Parent's Guide to Gifted Teens: Living with Intense and Creative Adolescents Recommended

Guides for the kids, elementary school, middle school and teen

101 Success Secrets for Gifted Kids: The Ultimate Handbook Recommended by Christine Fonseca (or from Amazon)
A must-read for gifted kids ages 8 to 12 who want to find success in school and life. If you know gifted kids, they will love the 101 awesome secrets, tips, and tricks included in this book!
 
The Gifted Kids' Survival Guide (For Ages 10 and Under) Recommended by Judy Galbraith Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca
 
The Gifted Teen Survival Guide: Smart, Sharp, and Ready for (Almost) Anything Recommended by Judy Galbraith and Jim Delisle (or from Barnes & Noble)
Updated 4th version is better than ever, keeping the best themes from the older versions but in a readable new format, and including lots of new stuff, too.  The ultimate guide for teens includes "discover virtual learning, find a cure for the common college, learn the value of mistakes, manage expectations and embrace your passions!"
 

For those families who are (or will ever consider) homeschooling their gifted children... and teachers will gain a great deal from this book, too!

Creative Home Schooling: A Resource Guide for Smart Families Recommended by Lisa Rivero
This terrific book is for homeschooling parents and more - there is information for schooling parents, school teachers, gifted teachers, and more, on gifted children, learning styles, internet resources, and so much more!

For gifted adults: Many of us discover our own giftedness during our struggles raising and educating our gifted kids...

Gifted Grownups: The Mixed Blessings of Extraordinary Potential Recommended by Marylou Kelly Streznewski
Examine old and new research on the nature of intelligence and other gifts and explore ways gifted people hide their talents; includes interviews with a highly diverse collection of 100 gifted adults. An excellent book for every gifted adult, or adult with gifted children... Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca

When you need a laugh...

Raisin' Brains Recommended by Karen L.J. Isaacson
A humorous look inside the home of 5 very gifted children... from the mom's point of view.  Prepare to have your funny bone thoroughly tickled!

Thorough introduction to twice exceptional gifted children, plus extra on Asperger's and more...  Parents should have at least one of these; schools should have all three!

Misdiagnosis And Dual Diagnoses Of Gifted Children And Adults: ADHD, Bipolar, OCD, Asperger's, Depression, And Other Disorders Recommended by James T. Webb, Edward R. Amend, Nadia E. Webb, Jean Goerss, Paul Beljan, F. Richard Olenchak, and Sharon Lind
Physicians, psychologist, and counselors are unaware of characteristics of gifted children and adults that mimic pathological diagnoses. Six nationally prominent health care professionals describe ways parents and professionals can distinguish between gifted behaviors and pathological behaviors...  Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca
 
The Mislabeled Child: How Understanding Your Child's Unique Learning Style Can Open the Door to Success Recommended by Brock Eide and Fernette Eide
Misapplied labels can be devastating; properly diagnosed labels can change a child's life.  The Eides can help professionals and parents alike, to find the proper labels, as well as learning tools, exercises, and therapies that help children with similar labels.  Each chapter covers a unique learning challenge: Visual Problems, Attention Problems, Autism and Autism-like Disorders, and more...
 
Different Minds: Gifted Children With AD/HD, Asperger Syndrome, and other Learning Deficits Recommended by Deirdre V. Lovecky
Recognizing the different levels and kinds of giftedness, Lovecky provides insight into the challenges and benefits specific to gifted children with various learning difficulties.  Guides parents and professionals through diagnosis and advises on how best to nurture individual needs, positive behavior and relationships at home and at school...  Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca

For gifted kids with specific LDs...

Asperger's: What Does It Mean to Me? Recommended by Catherine Faherty
The book most requested by parents and teachers. Written by a leading therapist, this workbook is a must-have for the person with high functioning autism or Asperger's Syndrome. Includes chapters to help explain their world.  Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca
 
Developing Talents: Careers for Individuals with Asperger Syndrome and High-Functioning Autism Recommended by Temple Grandin and Kate Duffy
Society loses out if individuals with autism spectrum disorders are not involved in the world of work, or make other kinds of contributions to society.  This book takes readers -- those on the autism spectrum and their family members, teachers, counselors -- through the career planning process...  Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca
 
In the Mind's Eye: Visual Thinkers, Gifted People With Dyslexia and Other Learning Difficulties, Computer Images and the Ironies of Creativity Recommended by Thomas G. West
This book has strong implications for anyone who has ever considered autism, dyslexia, or learning difficulties to be horrible things that must be stamped out. It shows that the apparent "weakness" and "lack of ability" in some areas can really be an aspect of a major (but often unrecognized) area of strength...  Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca
 
The Out-Of-Sync Child: Recognizing and Coping With Sensory Integration Dysfunction Recommended by Carol Stock Kranowitz
Do you know a child who plays too rough, is uncoordinated, hates being touched, is ultra-sensitive (or unusually insensitive) to noise or sensations of heat and cold?  Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca
 
Raising Your Spirited Child: A Guide for Parents Whose Child Is More Intense, Sensitive, Perceptive, Persistent, and Energetic Recommended by Mary Sheedy Kurcinka
If you have an exceptionally spirited child, this book is written for you.  Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca
Now Also available Raising Your Spirited Child Workbook.  Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca
 
When the Brain Can't Hear: Unraveling the Mystery of Auditory Processing Disorder Recommended by Teri James Bellis
Auditory Processing Disorder (APD) occurs when the brain cannot process or understand correctly the sounds the ears hear, even though the ears might be functioning properly. It is rarely recognized, often misdiagnosed, and poorly understood, yet the effects can be devastating...  Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca

What next?

College is Yours in 600 Words or Less: The Roeper School College Handbook Recommended by Patrick O'Connor
A quick but complete guide that leads you through the maze of college selection with the simple, revolutionary idea that students already have great lives-- what they now need is a college where they can live that great life, and learn more about themselves and the world...
 
College Planning for Gifted Students: Choosing And Getting into the Right College Recommended by Sandra L. Berger
Everything you need to know and do, starting in 7th and stepping right through 12th grade, to plan for college for your gifted student.  Why don't the school counselors tell us this?!  Timelines, checklists, and more
 
Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About Colleges Recommended by Loren Pope
Thinking about college? Looking for the 'right' college for yourself, or your child? This book is for you! Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca
 
Cool Colleges: For the Hyper-Intelligent, Self-Directed, Late Blooming, and Just Plain Different Recommended by Donald Asher
Thinking about college? Looking for the 'right' college for yourself, or your child? This book is for you!  Also available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.ca

 
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Last updated October 03, 2014

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