On Friday two eminent scholars in the field will be speaking on critical topics that are rarely discussed. If you’ve never heard Piechowski or Peterson speak, you don’t want to miss these!
Friday, 10 a.m.–11:15 a.m.
Presenter: Michael M. Piechowski
Studies of gifted children and youth reveal inner potentials for profound empathy, spiritual awareness, transcendence of emotionally annihilating childhoods, and experience of non-ordinary realities. Some children spontaneously discover techniques of entering transcendent states. This session will review case material showing dimensions of experience that go beyond ordinary reality. The comparison of spiritual giftedness with other kinds of giftedness will show that spiritual giftedness should not be looked upon as another talent because it produces no artifact that can take on existence independent of the person the way a piece of music or painting can.
Michael M. Piechowski is a senior fellow of the Institute for Educational Advancement and professor emeritus at Northland College in Ashland, Wisc. He has studied and written extensively on the developmental potential of the gifted as well as on spiritual giftedness. He also authored ‘Mellow Out’ They Say. If I Only Could, and co-edited Living with Intensity with Susan Daniels.
The Field – and The UnWhole Child
Presenter: Jean Peterson, PhD
Prevailing dogma emphasizes high motivation for academic excellence. Invested adults celebrate achievements or despair over underachievement while researchers attempt to quantify contributing factors. Exploration of vulnerabilities, life experiences, concerns, and developmental challenges are rare. Good intentions narrow identification criteria, conceptualizations, programming, research landscape, advocacy, and administrative agendas. A lack of interest in developmental complexities of both high achievers and underachievers leaves little overt support for individuals experiencing and parenting “the burden side” of giftedness.
Purdue professor Jean Peterson, PhD, has focused her research and clinical work on social and emotional development of gifted youth. Among her many writing accomplishments (100 books, invited chapters, and articles) are Gifted at Risk: Poetic Profiles and Essential Guide to Talking with Gifted Teens. Her first career was in classroom teaching and gifted education.