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Giftedness refers to an individual’s natural ability to outstand in aptitude that may be located in more than a single domain like creativity, physical, social, intellectual or perceptual, that places the individual in the top 10% of the age peers.

The talent, on the other hand, is the excellent competence or performance in more than one field of human activities placing the individual in the top 10% of the age peers from that field.

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Based on the Gagné’s 2000 Differentiated Model of Giftedness Talent (DMGT), the Gifted and Talented Student’s Policy has been based. It describes the gifts and talents an individual can have along with the catalysts that can impact the process of development. An individual’s gifts can be turned into talents when appropriate developmental processes are provided.

According to Gangé’s model:

1. Young gifted individuals have the perspective in developing capacities for an enhanced level of competencies and talents in more than one field.

2. The magnitude to which young gifted individuals are capable of developing their potentials depending on various factors that include the teaching and support received from their mentors.

3. Most of the young gifted individuals possess gifted potentials right from the very early age which, with proper guidance and support, can become a talent in the respective specialized field.

4. Depending on the natural abilities and environmental encouragements like experiences, young gifted individuals may develop their talents accordingly as it is not always possible to forecast in which field they may develop their talents into.

Gifts are generally divided into two categories: mental gifts that include the creativity, perceptual, social and intellectual; physical gifts include the ability to heightened motor control and muscular power.

Talents are considered in the fields of technical, arts, business operations, science, and technology, administration/sales, academics, social services, athletics, games and sports.

Gifts of an individual can be developed into talents when proper developmental procedures are provided (Subotnik et al., 2011). These developmental processes are designed to cultivate and develop the gifts into talents and include six main elements:

1. Enhanced syllabus and training programs

2. Rich and challenging goal excellence

3. Selective access benchmarks

4. Regular and systemic practice

5. Regular assessment of the progress

6. Tailored enhanced pacing

The gifted individuals show unique characteristics, such as:

1. They are idealistic and perfectionist

2. They sometimes experience heightened sensitivity towards their and others expectations

3. They are asynchronous

4. Some of them are sequential learners, while some others are spatial learners

5. They are good problem solvers

6. They think abstractly with high complexity because of which they sometimes need help with test-taking skills and concrete study

7. Some of the gifted students outshine their peers in the school and they consider any other grade less than ‘A’ as a failure.

Gifted underachievers are those individuals who possess a wide difference between performance and potential, that is, their gifts have not efficiently developed into talents. Gagné’s Differentiated Model of Giftedness and Talents (DMGT) suggested the possible reasons as to why underachievement can happen. If the developmental procedures or catalysts are ineffective, weak, missing or unable to meet the individual’s needs, over the duration of time, then their gifts will fail to develop into talents and results in underachievement.

Identification of a gifted underachiever depends on identification of the giftedness. Usually, carers and parents are capable of recognizing the giftedness in their children and the individuals (Dai, 2010). To confirm this, complete checklists and IQ tests can be done. Gifted underachievers exist in every community and can be found in culturally diverse populations.

Identification of the gifted underachievers can be done by measuring the difference between their ability and performances. The individual’s performance can be evaluated by utilizing various standardized tests (Al-Shabatat, 2013). The schools need to ensure that the literacy level, cultural background, age and other such related characteristics of the individual has been considered while selecting the necessary tests. The resulting differences in those tests can be used for confirming the underachievement of the gifted individual. In addition to all these, gifted students with specific learning trouble may underperform in the tests and other usual reliable measures. Careful observations made by parents and teachers are an essential component in determining the giftedness.

A very useful way of understanding the behavior, needs, and feelings of the gifted individuals have been developed by Neihart and Betts (, 2017). They have developed six different “Profiles of the Gifted and Talented”. Out of these, five of the profiles are principally useful in understanding the gifted underachievers.

Some gifted underachievers share common attitudinal and motivational characteristics. They sometimes lack the motivation of achieving anything and would need intervention strategies that would enable the identification of their giftedness.

The most frequent and consistent characteristic found among the gifted underachievers is their low self-esteem.  These students are incapable of believing that they can accomplish what is expected of them by their teachers and families, or what they should be expecting from themselves (Renzulli, 2011). It is considered that this sense of low self-esteem may be directly linked to the pressures of being “gifted”.

Individuals performances which are prominently lacking in potential can sometimes be very frustrating and challenging for the parents, carers or teachers. Although it may seem that reversing the long-lasting pattern of underachievement is difficult, there are certain strategies and models which are proven to be successful (Dai et al., 2011). These models usually involve collaboration between the individual’s family and the school while implementing a series of steps. It also needs patience, dedication, and support from the carers, teachers, parents and other related professionals.

Since gifted students comprise around 10% of the school population, it is essential for the teachers to design a compact curriculum that provides an environment with enriched activities that are stimulating and fulfills the emotional, physical, social and cognitive needs of the gifted individuals (Persson, 2012). The curriculum must be designed in such a way that it provides a depth, pace, and rate of learning. The curriculum must be flexible and student-centred by engaging the gifted individuals in the decision-making of the process which would give them the opportunity for learning on how responsibility is taken, for their own learning.

The gifted individuals can be assigned to individual projects based on their ability, to encourage their creativity and original thinking. They must be instructed to work on skills that they do not know of. The teacher must teach them how to access information for research that would help them in later stages of life (Mandelman et al., 2010). It is the responsibility of the teacher to encourage the gifted individuals to advance as quickly as possible by them. They must be encouraged to work in a group along with other students and must be encouraged to actively participate in the activities of the group.

The gifted individuals can also be encouraged to participate in extra-curricular activities such as debate teams (Kaufman et al., 2012). Because gifted individuals often tend to be natural leaders, it is essential to invite and encourage them to utilize their skills and talents in manners that are beneficial to them rather than being disruptive. Gifted individuals also tend to have competitive nature. Therefore encouraging them to participate in fun activities and competitions like science fairs, spelling bees and other such similar competitions can be very productive for them.

Plenty of opportunities must be provided so that the gifted students get to interact with average students and engage them together in social activities. Providing the gifted individuals with proper guide and care, they can develop their gifts into talents that would help them to overcome all the future challenges that may have to come across.

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a chronic and mental condition. It mostly affects children of the age group six to twelve but it can affect the adults also. ADHD causes problems like lack of focus in children, hyperactivity or uncontrollable behavior and attention deficiency. The people suffering from attention deficiency have problems in focusing on a particular task for a long period of time. They tend to lose focus and attention and get impulsive.

The three presentation types of ADHD are:

1. Inattentiveness

2. Hyperactivity

3. Impulsiveness

Inattention means lack of attention and focus. The people do not pay attention and become careless in performing their tasks, organizing activities and do not follow instructions. They are distracted and forget things very often (Qiu et al.2011). Hyperactivity signifies over-activity and uncontrollable behavior. The people suffering from hyperactivity fidget a lot, talk all the time and do the unrequited activity. Impulsiveness means acting without thinking. The people who are impulsive lack patience; they answer before their turn comes and interrupts in between conversation. The lack of patience makes them emotional and sentimental at times (Parisi et al.2010). They react instinctively and become hyperactive. They do not think about the social surroundings before reacting or behaving in a certain manner.

The causes of ADHD can be genes and heredity. The children can have the problem of ADHD because it has been passed on to them through their family genes. If the child’s brain development is slow then they will have a problem in understanding the things and be less active compared to the kids who do not have ADHD. Some children have differences in the brain chemistry which form complex circuits in the brains of children and prevents them from focusing. Epilepsy and injuries in the brain also trigger ADHD in the brains of children (Haas et al.2011). Environmental factors sometimes also lead to ADHD among the children. The other causes or factors that lead to ADHD are – premature birth of the child, brain injury caused in the womb or in the initial years of child growth and consuming alcohol and drugs during the pregnancy period. The weight of the child during the birth is also a reason for ADHD. Low child weight can be one of the causes of ADHD. The ADHD symptoms should be identified by the parents so that the children can be cured of it soon.

The characteristics of ADHD are defined by three criteria: inattentiveness, hyperactivity, and impulsiveness. The child lacks focus and attention while performing his tasks and assignments. He becomes restless and does careless mistakes. The child becomes restless and is unable to plan activities and events. The children do not think before reacting or expressing themselves and can even get into trouble because of this. The children do not think about the environment they are in and react violently which becomes uncontrollable (Grizenko & Zadorozny, 2012). They even start interrupting conversations because they lack patience and cannot wait for their turn to speak. Children even have problems in learning and writing as their memory does not retain the information. ADHD has a close relationship with the learning abilities of children as it hampers the brain development process of the children.

The teachers and educators who want to impart education to the children suffering from ADHD should adopt a three faced strategy. They should identify the needs of the children and their behavioral attributes (Daley & Birchwood, 2010). The teacher should identify the behavior of the child and notice when he is inattentive, impulsive or hyperactive. After observing the child’s behavior the educator should devise teaching methods according to the needs and understanding of the child. After figuring out academic tools, the educator integrates these academic tools with the academic curriculum to provide the correct information and guide the child in the class. The three faced strategy to be adopted is as follows:

A. The educator should conduct an evaluation regarding the needs and wants of the child by taking into account his strengths and weaknesses. The teacher can do so by forming a multidisciplinary team which will guide the child into the right direction. The educator should also take help from the child’s parents and observe the child’s behavior in the formal and informal environment (Mattison, & Mayes, 2012). The child’s strengths and weaknesses should be kept in mind before forming the academic plan. The plan should be well suited to the needs of the child.

B. The educator should select an appropriate educational practice to impart education. The educational practice should suit the educational and behavioral needs of the child (Yang et al. 2011). The education plan should be made considering the child’ age, strength, weakness, capabilities and aptitude.

C. The children’s program should be integrated with the individualized educational plan to provide the child with the correct education and guidance (Tomasi & Volkow, 2012). The child diagnosed with the ADHD problem should be treated with special care so that they can cope up with the other children.

The children suffering from ADHD have problems in a social behavior because the children are sometimes not able to adjust to their surroundings. They are unable to mingle with people as they are hyperactive and impulsive by nature. At times their behavior is out of control because of which other people stay a little away from them. The children who are diagnosed with the ADHD problem become very sentimental and emotional at times. Their impulsiveness is very evident in their behavior (S.O., 2011). They want to be heard first and cannot wait for a long time. They lack patience because of which they become emotional and react instinctively. The academic curriculum for these children has to be well designed because these children need special care and attention. Based on their strengths and weakness their curriculum should be designed which suits their needs, behaviors, and aptitude.

The educator must introduce to the children about what he wants them to learn from the particular lesson that is being taught to them. The teacher should inform the ADHD students well in advance about the lesson that is going to be taught. He should also ask the students to revise the previous lessons regularly so that their focus level and attention span increases. The students should be informed about their curriculum so that they have an idea about what they are going to study. The educator should also tell the students about the behavior they are expected to exhibit. They should know how to behave with their peers and teachers in a particular environment. The teachers should also provide the students with the education material that will be needed by them for their curriculum (Daley & Birchwood, 2010). It is the responsibility of the teacher to provide the students with study materials and not leave it to the students to arrange for it. The means of imparting knowledge, for example, the instructions, class teachings and activities should be simplified so that the students are able to understand and comprehend the instructions well. The classes need to be more interactive and fun to grab the attention of the children. The educators should try to increase the attention span of the students so that they can focus better. The education to be imparted should be such that it instills patience in the students. The behavior of the children needs to be monitored and accordingly, the activities should be formed so that their behaviors can be regulated. The hyperactivity needs to be curbed down so that the children’s behavior is regulated.



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(, 2017). Dr. George Betts and Dr. Maureen Neihart Share Revised Profiles of Gifted « Retrieved 21 March 2017, from