2E Kids Are Like A Split in Bowling
Twice Exceptional (2E) kids are gifted children with a learning challenge.
This can be a gifted child with Asperger’s, ADHD, Dyslexia or some other learning challenge. They are amazing children! They are brilliant but also especially vulnerable.
They are vulnerable because their strengths and their weaknesses often interfere with the accurate identification of their needs. This can lead to children having problems in developing to their fullest potential. They often fall through the crack because they are often identified for only one area of need; either their gifted talents or their learning challenges.Sometimes they are never identified for any support.
A 2e child identified for only for gifted services can feel inadequate and stupid compared to their typical gifted classmates. They often miss out on remedial services which can bring up the areas in which they need support because they are too smart in other areas to qualify for supportive services. They can struggle with self-esteem and school success because they aren’t provided the services they need.
Other 2e kids receive remedial services but their gifts and talents may be overlooked. They may struggle with organizational skills that interfere with their ability to turn in assignments or they may have fine motor struggles resulting in lower effort put into assignments. Schools can see these struggles and not make a recommendation for gifted services. If this happens the child is not further developing his gifted mind which can dim the bright light of intrinsic learning.
Other 2e kids can be disqualified from both gifted or remedial services. Their strengths mask their weaknesses and their weakness deflate their scores enough that they do not qualify for gifted services. In a regular classroom, high teacher-student ratios and high teacher curriculum demands make it more difficult for teachers to individualize for the complex learning needs of 2e kids.
Like a split in bowling, if you bowl it down the middle, you miss the important pins on both sides; the child’s gifts and talents and the areas in which the child struggles. If you bowl towards one pin straight on, you miss all the child can be, by avoiding the child’s strengths or areas needing support.
It is only by picking up both outlier pins that the maximum potential for a 2E child can be reached.