Brains on Fire

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					             Brains on Fire
      So What’s a Parent to Do?
(or How to Fan the Flames Without Getting Burned!)

Fernette Eide M.D. & Brock Eide M.D. M.A.
           Eide Neurolearning Clinic
       GDC Giftedness                      But…

            • Reasons Well                • Likes to Argue!
            • Learns Rapidly              • Bored Easily
            • Extensive Vocabulary        • “Show-off”
            • Long Attention Span         • Transitions Poorly
            •Sensitive                    • Feelings Hurt Easily
            • Shows Compassion            • Worries, Takes All Problems
            • Perfectionistic             • Perfectionistic
            • Intense                     • Intense
            • Morally Sensitive           • Worries, Takes All Problems
            • Strong Curiosity            • Won’t Follow Lesson Plan
            • Perseverant Own Interests   • Won’t Follow Lesson Plan
            • High Degree of Energy       • High Degree of Energy
            • Prefers Older or Adults     • Doesn’t Like Peers
            • Wide Range of Interests     • Too Many Interests
            •Questions Authority          • Tends to Question Authority
            • Vivid Imagination           • Lives in Own Mind…


       Our Particular Gifted Thinkers
            Impersonal Knowledge
             Personal Experience
                                     Truth Beyond
Time            Subconscious          Perceptions
          Recombination & Creativity
           Temperment / Personality

  Multimodal Learning & Patterns
What Are the Personality Traits
     of Gifted Children?

  Myers Briggs Type Indicator

  Extrovert (E)     Introvert (I)

  Sensing    (S)    Intuitive (N)

  Thinking (T)      Feeling (F)

  Perceiving (P)    Judging (J)
                 Introversion & Extroversion

    Introversion                            Extroversion
• Gain energy in solitude                   • Gain energy from others
• Focus on inner thoughts                   • Focus on people & things
• Are reserved                              • Outgoing
• Mentally rehearse before speaking         • Think out loud
• Different at home & in public             • Similar home & public
• Avoid attention                           • Like attention
• Learn by observing                        • Learn by doing
• Uncomfortable with changes                • Adapt quickly
• Loyal to few close friends                • Makes lots friends easily
• Reflective                                • Impulsive
• Concentrate on one activity at a time     • Focus many ideas at once
• Fear humiliation, Quiet in large groups   • Risk takers
• May have poor eye contact                 • Good eye contact

                                                    Linda Krieger Silverman
Introverted (I)       Extroverted (E)

67% Gifted Students   77% General
                      53% Teachers
 Sensing (S)                  Intuition (N)

• “Seeing is Believing”   • Reality Beyond Perception
• World of Facts          • Patterns, Big Picture

64% Teachers                77% Gifted Students
                            91% Natl Merit Sch
 Thinking (T)           Feeling (F)

• Logic & Deduction      • Values
• Impersonal Meaning     • Personal Meaning

65% Men General        60% Teachers
                       83% Gifted Adolescents
                       65% Women General
Judgment (J)          Perception(P)

• Order & Structure   • Play
• Final Decisions     • Flexible & Spontaneous
• Deadlines           • Procrastination
• Plans               • Freedom
                      • Possibilities

65% Teachers          95% Creative Teens
                      86% Gifted Students
Personality Differences & Giftedness

• Our personality affects our perspective
• Clashes with people or situations –
   ? Due to personality differences

  Teachers                      National Merit Finalists
   ESFJ                                 INFP
       Personality Traits of Creativity

• Innovative & Creative: INFP Dominates
• 97% Artistic Students Preferred P Teachers
• ENFP Teachers Popular, But Don’t Stay in Teaching
• SJ’s (56% All Teachers) Are Most Likely Stay in Teaching

How Do ‘S’ Teachers Meet the Needs of N Gifted Kids?

             More N’s in Higher Education

              Fluidity      Combinatorial


 Impersonal       Complex      Outside of Time
    The Kids                                          Immature
“…he was quieter and more thoughtful: while the others played games,
he would stay close to his mother…”
    Play            In His Head
   “…neither the school nor the curriculum had appealed to him…he had
   spent most of his time ‘drawing fanciful designs, telling stories, and
   reciting imaginary descriptions to his comrades…”

                                                      Hidden Disability
     “I hated mathematics because I could not see.”

    “His hands were never still. He was always manipulating pieces
    of clay with his fingers…”      Odd Habits      Fidgety

    “I loved to read and I spent a lot of my time at the public library…
    one day I found a big book on the table. It was
    a book of engraved prints after the works of Michelangelo.
     Solitude                               Beauty
Auguste Rodin
          He recalled that he was “a troublesome boy” and his mother
          called him “a most difficult boy to manage.”
Distracted                                           Hyperactive
         “When not lost in thought, he was in constant motion, jumping
         up and down, leaping from chair to chair, rushing about, and
         falling and hurting himself. He seemed to have no sense of
         personal safety. His love of martial poetry was obsessive. He
         had a speech defect, and one miserable cold after another…”
 Speech Disorder                                   Obsessive
      “Constantly late for school, losing his books, and papers and various
      other things into which I need not enter– he is so regular in his
      irregularity in every way that I don’t know what to do.” (Principal)
 Twice Exceptional
     “Where my reason, imagination, or interest were not engaged, I
     would not or I could not learn…My teachers saw me at once
     backward and precocious, reading books beyond my years and
     yet at the bottom of the Form. They were offended. They had
     large resources of compulsion at their disposal, but I was stubborn.”
                Teachers Offended                   Question Authority
Winston Churchill
    “I feel everything very violently, with a physical violence.”
   She recalled teachers “treated their pupils as enemies” and
   everything taught was “of questionable value.” At school,
   children “lost all joy of life, and precocious feelings of distrust
   and indignation weighed upon their childhood.”
                        Questions Authority              Arrogant
Teachers felt her “independence was too well-developed” because
“she always had her own opinion, which she knew how to
defend.” When a short home economics teacher forbade her to
“look down” on her, she replied “the fact is I can’t do anything else!”
  “I never see what has been done; I only see what remain to be done.”
“I can’t believe geometry or algebra ever existed. I have completely
forgotten them…I have no schedule. I gets up sometimes at ten
o’clock sometimes at 4 or 5 (morning, not evening!). I read no serious
books, only harmless and absurd novels. In spite of the diploma…I
feel incredibly stupid. Sometimes I laugh…and I contemplate my
state of total stupidity with genuine satisfaction.”
     Knows How to Play
Marie Curie
He thought of himself as having a “slow mind.” Unlike his brother,
he needed to focus exclusively and deeply on one thing at a time.
   Slow Thinker           2E        Not a Multi-Tasker

His penmanship was terrible, and thoughts were run together
with grammatical errors, and he often wrote with an absence
of capitals and periods.
                           Dysgraphia, Grammatical Problems

“His dreamer’s spirit would not submit itself to the ordering of
the intellectual effort imposed by the school”…Also, he could
not “interrupt or modify the course of his reflections to suit
exterior circumstances.”
                            Dreamer      Problems with Transitions

“He was understood to be meditative, and was allowed to go off
on his own as well, to lose himself in beautiful surroundings.”

 Loner           Needs to Think         Loved Beauty & Nature
Pierre Curie
 The Families
           “He looked odd. His ears stuck out…”

      “He was often ill, prone to fits of uncontrollable
      weeping, and filled with a restless surging
      energy he could not contain. He was enrolled without
      success in one school after another and often
       found it difficult even to remain seated at his desk...”

  Hyperactive                                        School Failure

          “I wanted to run down to the beach in sun, rain,
          or fog and expend the pent-up physical energy
          that simply fermented within me. Today I would
          be labeled hyperactive.”
    “For example, I was chastised for not being able
    to remember what states border Nebraska…
    It was simply a matter of memorizing the names,
    nothing about the process of memorizing or any
    reason to memorize. Education without either
    meaning or excitement is impossible. I longed for
    the outdoors, leaving only a small part of my
    conscious self to pay attention to schoolwork.”

Reality Beyond Perceptions

   Love of Nature, Beauty
  The Parents

 “Abandoning the idea of conventional schooling when the boy
  was only 12, his gentle courtly father Charles poured all the
 love and energy he had into his only son. Arranging private
 tutoring in Algebra and Greek, and letting him roam for hours
 in the dunes and cliffs beyond the house...anywhere his
 boundless energy took him.”

Homeschool     Unflagging Belief in Child   Time to Wander
                           When They Were Sick…

“When I was twelve, I contracted measles and was put to bed
for two weeks…My father read to me when he came home from
the office…The spaces between the shade and the top of the
windows in my bedroom served as crude pinholes, and vague
images of the outer world were projected on the ceiling. When
anyone moved outside to the east, the highly diffuse image would
move along to the west above me…My father explained it and I then
grasped the theory of the camera lens and why the picture was
upside down on the film. He opened his Kodak Bullseye camera,
placed a piece of semitransparent paper where the film usually
resides, set the shutter on open, pressed the button, and voila-
a camera obscura!”

   Patterns             How                Why

                    Depth & Process
“My thirteenth year was dominated by two subjects:
the Panama-Pacific International Exposition (…it would be
my school that year)…and the beginning of serious study
of the piano. The world of music was an immediate contrast
to my undisciplined life and unsuccessful performance in school.”

Broad Exposure to Ideas        Music        Discipline

                      Beauty            Personal Expression

                               Multimodal Learning
   Ansel Adams

“The visualization of a photograph involves
the intuitive search for the meaning, shape,
form, texture, and projection of the image
format on the subject. The image forms in
the mind- is visualized-and another part of
the mind calculates the physical processes
involved in determining the exposure and
development of the image of the negative
and anticipates the qualities of the final print.
the creative artist is constantly roving the
worlds without, and creating new worlds
within” – Ansel Adams

Multimodal      Artist     Scientist     Thinking & Experiencing Deeply
“I often wonder at the strength and courage my father had in
taking me out of the traditional school situation and providing
me with these extraordinary learning experiences. I am certain
he established the positive direction of my life that otherwise,
given my native hyperactivity, could have been confused and
catastrophic. I trace who I am and the direction of my development
to those years of growing up in our house on the dunes, propelled
especially by an internal spark tenderly kept alive and glowing by
my father.”
Twice Exceptional

           • Mother had German measles during pregnancy
           • Painful swelling of the eyes
           • Saw lights, shadows, and colors only
           • Lost all sight at age of 4
                                             Family Culture
         His Family                        “The rest of my family
                                            all learned Braille…”
“An old Dutch proverb summed
up their philosophy- ‘I cannot             “…my parents
said the fool, and that is why             continuous commentary
he could not. Nothing was out              about the passing scenery
of reach; nothing Arie was                 as we walked, bicycled,
allowed to do was off limits to            or traveled by train. Clouds
me…”                                       colors, cows, cars-
   Explore                                 everything mundane or
                                           out of the ordinary – were
 “…my father had notched each
                                           mentioned, described,
 pencil in a distinctive pattern so
                                           and, when possible,
 I might still know which color went
                                           demonstrated. In this way,
 with which pencil. He cut letters and
                                           I could integrate the world
 numerals out of paper so that I could
                                           and let my imagination
 learn what Arie already knew…”
                                           fill in the blanks…”
             Accommodations              Other Routes of Learning
“Almost immediately I discovered the value of echoes for telling me
where I was …The information (of my other senses) …now meant
something my world was not black and hopeless,. It sparkled as it
did before, but now with sounds, odors, shapes, and textures…”

     Compensation               Sound              Smell      Touch

 “The three-dimensional architecture of a forest comes to life with the
 sound of every step, every breath of wind, every chirp of a cricket from
 the underbrush or song of a bird from high in the trees…There is a pleasing
 diversity of textures and shapes among leaves- the leathery, saw-toothed
 leaf of the oak, the wooly three-leaf of a red clover, the curled up young
 frond of a fern…”

    “At home, I developed a lasting taste for classical music.”
   Encouraging Hobbies

  “One day..I decided during lunch recess to start a collection of pressed
  plants…My father was only too pleased to join in the search for plants. I
  began to learn from him about leaf shapes, venation patterns, modes
  of branching, and flower characteristics…”

  “Soon I added bones to my collection…My mother would buy whole fish
  for dinner, so that I might extract the backbone…”
                                          Changing Interests
“I picked up huge valves of surf clams…more delicate than the clams I
remembered from the Netherlands…The books readily available on shells
did not satisfy my curiosity. I wanted to learn much more, and I hoped to
see and acquire many more specimens. Suspecting that the American
Museum of Natural History must have a substantial shell collection, I
wrote the museum to ask if someone there might be willing to identify
A few shells for me. The reply from William Old was enthusiastic.

        Fanning the Fire!

“Neither man took any particular notice of my blindness. In fact,
Coomans unabashedly encouraged me to study biology and to
subscribe to malacological journals…my mother patiently read
every article in the journals to me and I began to see..that scientists
disagreed with one another and that many earlier interpretations were
giving way to new ones…Science was approachable. Many of the
questions about shells did not yet have answers.

                                     Truth Beyond Perceptions

“School for the most part portrayed a very different view of science.
If there were interesting questions or principles to be explored, the
curriculum safely avoided them…”

 Princeton                                    Professor

  Yale                                      MacArthur Fellow

Fellow, AAAS                                Own Family

  Beginning without a Clear idea in Mind…
                                                Protect Free Time
    More Family Stories:                        Protect Dreams

“(her father)…told school officials that his children were not to be given
homework—six hours of school was more than enough. When Barbara
became interested in ice skating, her parents bought her the best skates
and skating outfit they could afford. Every good day Barbara was
allowed to go ice skating instead of going to school…”
   - Barbara McClintock, Nobel Prize Winning Geneticist

  “…the stomach pains returned, preventing him from attending first
  grade, and his mother decided to school him at home for the rest of
  the year…(his mother) read aloud from Ossian, Poe, Wordsworth,
  Longfellow, and Bryant, among other poets…”
     - Robert Frost, Poet Laureate

        Sharing Things You Love
        Age Doesn’t Matter
     Family Culture                             Sharing Passions

“…(her father) used every opportunity to supplement the poor program
in the official schools…after hours, he used the equipment at the
gymnasium to teach biology to his own children. He had a rare gift
of beautifully reading poetry as well as prose…even after his
youngest daughter left home to become a governess, he
worked advanced math problems with her by mail…in (their)
household, play was learning and learning was play…” -- Marie Curie
Marie’s brother Jozef would later recall: “Even when we were older,
we still turned to him with all the questions, as to an encyclopedia…”
                            Remarkable Kids, Remarkable Parents
 “Of his mother he wrote that she was ‘an inventor of the first order and
 would, I believe, have achieved great things had she not been so remote
 from modern life…She invented and constructed all kinds of tools and
 devices and wove the finest designs from thread that was spun by her.
 She even planted the seeds, raised the plants, and separated the fibers
 herself. She worked indefatigably, from break of day till late at night…”
         - Nikola Tesla
                                           Learn from Example
    Sharing                       Unconventional
    Passions                      Thinking

“His parents met while working on the Ferranti Mark I, the first
computer sold commercially. They taught him to think
unconventionally; he’d play games over the breakfast table with
imaginary numbers (what’s the square root of minus 4?). He made
pretend computers out of cardboard boxes and five-hole paper tape
and fell in love with electronics…”
“One day I came home from high school, I found my father working
on a speech..He was reading books on the brain, looking for clues
about how to make a computer intuitive, able to complete
connections like as the brain did. We discussed the point…but the
idea stayed with me…”
        - Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the World Wide Web

                               Sharing Questions
“…when she was 7 years old, she took her alarm clock to pieces to
find out how it worked. Unable to reassemble it, she took to pieces
the other 7 clocks she found in the house…her mother told her the
next time she should only take apart one of the clocks…”
        - Grace Hopper, leader designing COBOL, first woman to
           receive National Medal of Technology
                                      Respect for Initiative
“When I was about 6 years old, I was sick in bed for a few weeks with
a serious illness. My father brought a tape recorder home from the
university. At that time, tape recorders were gigantic. I could sit there
and make noises and tell stories and I could listen to things and play
them back. It became a form of entertainment. I started recording off
television, my favorite television shows, and listening to the sounds
back without seeing the picture. That led to a real interest in the use
of music and sound effects, how they were used to tell a story, how
they augmented the presentation…” – Ben Burtt, Sound Designer
Star Wars, Raiders, ET…
 The Fun & Play of It             Taking Play to Another Level
                                Different Path

“Fortunately for Pierre, his parents were quick to perceive
that he needed latitude in his education…Eugene had decided
to educate his sons at home…”

“They were imbued from an early age with a sense of awe. The
brothers learned the careful study of flora and fauna from their
father; they took long walks together out into the wilds
surrounding Paris and brought back specimens for him. On
summer vacations in the nearby country side, there were tramps
along the Seine, sometimes lasting days, interrupted by
swimming and diving…”
Time         Beauty           Close Observation
“Pierre’s quite irregular education gave him time to look, to
see everything around him with his own eyes, to form a complete
and intimate bond with things which he retained for the rest of
his life…”                   A Different World View
                   Highly Gifted Children

                     • Different
                     • Intense
                     • Perfectionistic
                     • Asynchrony & Twice Exceptionality
                     • Love Beauty
                     • May Be Hyperactive or Have Odd Habits
                     • Question Authority
                     • Obsessive
                     • May Have School Failure
                     • Strong Sense of Self
Schools prefer the Moderately Gifted & Studious to Creative & Talented
Behind Every Great Thinker, There is a Great…
• Great Gifted People, Great Gifted Parents
• Family Culture
• Share Their Passions
• Encourage Exploration & Independence
• Joint Search for The Truth Beyond Perceptions
• Search for Patterns, How, Why
• Time To Wander, Protect Free Time
• Broad Exposure to Ideas
• Multimodal Learning, Alternative Paths for 2E’s
• Share Questions
• Encourage Dreams and Hobbies, Understand Change
• Help Find Mentors & Opportunities
• Encourage Unconventional Thinking
• Individual Approach to Education
• Unflagging Belief in their Child
• Begin Without a Clear End in Mind…

                                  Fernette Eide M.D. and Brock Eide M.D. M.A.

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