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Paperback Infinity and Zebra Stripes: Life with Gifted Children Book

ISBN: 0910707812

ISBN13: 9780910707817

Infinity and Zebra Stripes: Life with Gifted Children

All children deserve an appropriate educational challenge but frustrating barriers and unexpected surprises often prevent this from happening. This is why parents need to speak up and effectively... This description may be from another edition of this product.


Format: Paperback

Condition: Good

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Customer Reviews

3 ratings

A book for someone who wants to understand your child better

This book stands out from others on the subject for several reasons. For one thing, there are two very different children, who are both highly gifted, but in different ways and with contrasting personalities. Many articles focus around one child, so the reader begins to associate that "type" with giftedness. This book shows that giftedness is not tied to a certain personality. And in fact, one child is a girl, and the other a boy, which to me is also important, as gifted girls are more likely to be overlooked or undereducated in comparison to gifted boys. (Skinner was determined not to let her daughter's potential go to waste.) Another important characteristic of this book is that it is readable for a layperson and told from the heart of a mother. The length is fairly short, the style is conversational, and there are no national statistics or those otherwise omnipresent lists of characteristics. My mother - generally a non-reader - picked up this book and after reading it could finally see through the behavioral and anxiety issues we have always had with my son. In fact, I credit this book with making her want to get to know her grandson and to be as proud of him as I am, and for that I'm so grateful. Finally, this book is not a kvetch about where public schools fail, nor does it claim to be a how-to book. Skinner simply tells about what worked and what didn't work in their dialog with the school district during both kids' early educational years. Parents may pick up a few tips about maneuvering to find a schooling solution for their child, and educators and other family members gain a better understanding about why this is so important.

Infinity and Zebra Stripes

"Infinity & Zebra Stripes: Life with Gifted Children" by Wendy Skinner is a must read for teachers, parents of gifted learners and school counselors. Skinner's book lets us walk in the shoes of the parents of two highly gifted children as they celebrate and support their children's intellectual and emotional growth in public school settings. Parents, educators, and counselors will enjoy Infinity & Zebra Stripes for its candor, insight and humor.

a captivating account of life with highly gifted kids

Infinity and Zebra Stripes is a very personal account of a family's struggle to find an appropriate educational situation for their two exceptionally gifted children. Mom Wendy Skinner shares her parenting joys and challenges with a candid and often humorous delivery. Topics touched on include intelligence and achievement testing, perfectionism, the reluctant writer, depression and anxiety, sensitivities, intense interests, and social relationships. The writing is very honest and gifted anecdotes ring true. Seven year old Ben's exploration of the concept of infinity is a wonderful illustration of the profound thoughts that can occupy gifted young minds. Jillian's conversations on God and Santa Claus show extremely high levels of curiosity and inference. A particularly poignant section concerns Wendy's reaction upon hearing that her young son is way beyond the gifted threshold. The professional test administrator discloses where Ben falls on the gifted spectrum, and Wendy reacts physically. She relates, " My eyes and breath were caught and frozen by this statement. It was as if I had a sudden shock. I was aware of a solid thumping beneath my ribs." Many parents of highly to profoundly gifted children seem to share this feeling of panic, with thoughts spinning off into worries about how the child will ever be educated, make friends, or find a compatible mate. Statistics put children like the Skinners in the top tenth of one percent, which means it's very unlikely they will encounter a true peer in their classroom or their neighborhood. It's no wonder that some parents describe coming to terms with the label of highly gifted plus as similar to working through the stages of grief. Children this gifted do indeed have special needs. Skinner's open manner and focus on educational teamwork eventually lead to successful full grade acceleration for son Ben and daughter Jillian. Parents currently struggling with advocacy for their own gifted learners may find Skinner's example encouraging and informative. Her emphasis seems to be on polite persistence and an assumption that teachers and administrators share the common goal of finding the best situation for each individual student. The book ends with an up-to-date list of terrific parent resources. Highly recommended!
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