Feeling Thankful

We have had a very fun and exciting couple of months with new students, guest speakers, music class, karate, our Compassion Experience field trip and more! We continue to be so proud of our students and are very grateful to our teachers and our parent group for their incredible dedication and involvement. Thank you! We are looking forward to more good times and growth in our community this spring

Round of Applause for Dr. Dan Peters: Reflections From Our Director Dr. Lisa Reid

11238977_799612906801233_5871396417890965556_o

Dr. Dan Peters and Dr. Lisa Reid

Creating a school program was something I considered for quite some time, but had recognized I could not effectively accomplish on my own. When I met Dr. Dan Peters of Summit Center, I realized that his approach and expertise would be the perfect fit and huge asset to any program that I hoped to create.

What made him different from any other person in the field?

In addition to being knowledgeable, experienced and invested in supporting the needs of gifted and twice-exceptional children and their families, he is startlingly humble and approachable. In addition, he has been on the other side of the table as a parent of gifted children whose pathways in education needed to be adjusted.

He has shared that this experience changed his perspective toward the way in which he approaches his career, and that is apparent in his work. He gets it.

When Dr. Peters visits our school, he takes the time to review the plans and progress of all of our students, and he works with them directly. During his last visit, Dr. Peters met with our students to discuss their experiences with anxiety and to ask where the Worry Monster (a term he coined and wrote a book about) was present in their lives. Anxiety is the most common theme that exists amongst 2e students, so to learn coping mechanisms in dealing with these stressors is an important part of their curriculum. As we watched Dr. Peters interact with the students, we witnessed his great ability to relate to them. By sharing his personal experience, and integrating heart and humor into what are traditionally difficult topics for children to communicate about, he was able to successfully reach them at their level. The students connected with the different scenarios that Dr. Peters presented and were able to see that they are not alone in their fears and that their fears are not insurmountable.

Although dealing with anxiety can be a lifelong battle, mindfulness regarding the realities that surround it makes a tremendous difference. It was exciting to see our young students begin to recognize these realities. It was wonderful to facilitate the easing of their often unspoken concerns that sometimes leave them unavailable for learning, or, more importantly, to fully experience their lives.

Additionally, our staff and teaching team were able to listen and benefit from the discourse that occurred between Dr. Peters and the students because, young and old, we all have a Worry Monster somewhere in our lives.

SENG Model Parent Group Starts in September – You Are Not Alone!

RDS is pleased to announce our fall SENG Model Parent Group will hold its first session on September 17th, 2015 at 6:30pm. The group will run for 8-10 weeks. Out of respect for the nature of the group, please only register if you are available to attend every week. Cost for the series is $120 and space is limited to 16 participants. You can register here.

Our Founder Lisa Reid answers some questions for parents about these groups below:

Why are these groups important for parents of gifted kids?

I receive calls from parents every day who are frustrated, heartbroken and confused. Giftedness is so misunderstood by not only the general population, but also by many professionals. People assume that to be gifted is a blessing, when in fact it often brings a host of challenges ranging from intensities and emotional challenges to underachievement. Given the lack of awareness of the nature of many gifted, and especially 2e children, parents are often left feeling very alone. This is in addition to managing the challenges associated with raising a child with special needs. I can provide all of the resources and advice in the world but it is not the same as hearing someone else tell your story and relating to it. Parents share their experiences and they learn from one another. It is a huge relief for them to be able to feel as though they have a community that “gets it”, is supportive and nonjudgmental, and can provide hope and guidance through common experiences. The bonding and growth that occurs in the group is a beautiful and inspiring thing to see.

What are some activities that take place in a typical group?

Each week, parents read a chapter from A Parents Guide to Gifted Children. In addition, they receive “homework” that consists of one new parenting approach that they will try during the week. At the beginning of each session, parents have an opportunity to share and reflect upon the impact of the approach. In addition, they reflect upon the reading, which includes some key points for discussion. Some topics include but are not limited to, Characteristics of Gifted Children, Motivation, Friendships, Communication and Teaching Self-Management. As facilitators, we guide the conversation, but we are not present to lecture or give advice. These are group-initiated discussions.

How can peer camaraderie and community benefit parents of gifted kids?

The most important and repeated testimony we see is “I don’t feel as alone now.” People make friends, learn about themselves and their children and gain a new and positive perspective toward the way in which their child is experiencing life.

What do parents learn in these groups? Give me some concrete examples.

-Myths about Gifted Children

-Understanding neuropsychological profiles and learning styles

-Communication strategies (active listening, separating behaviors from feelings, understanding how our beliefs impact our behavior, encouragement)

-Learning how to start where the child is and recognize their needs. Develop an understanding of the root of behavior and lacking motivation.

-Positive communication – dealing with perfectionism

-Managing negative self-talk and modeling positive behavior

-Managing idealism and depression

-The difference between discipline and punishment

-How to set limits (setting limits because you care)

-Consistency

-Creating clear expectations

-Understanding asynchronous development

-How to be a strong advocate for your child as opposed to being a pushy parent

-Caring for yourself as a parent

Anything else to add?

The transformation that occurs within groups as they come to know, trust and learn from one another is truly incredible.

SAVE THE DATE AND RSVP FOR OUR GRAND OPENING!

grand-opening

We invite you to attend our

GRAND OPENING

Family Social/Information Session & Parent Education Presentation

Thursday, May 21 6:30-8:00

151 Kalmus Drive, Suite H9A

Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Seating is limited. Please RSVP by May 14th to

Lisa@reidday.org to reserve your space.

Dan-Peters-headshot-900-199x300

We are honored to welcome

Dan Peters, PhD

who will share his presentation

Characteristics of Gifted Children