Twice-exceptionality and learning myths

There are many misconceptions regarding expectations for a child who is gifted. Some commonly accepted myths are 1) gifted students are not at risk if they are really gifted, they can get by on their own; 2) giftedness can be easily measured by intelligence tests and tests of achievement; 3) good teaching is all that is needed to teach any student; 4) or you really learn something when you teach it, and it never hurts students to review what they have already learned (Clark, 2008). These misconceptions would make the learning experience difficult for the learner with an exceptionality of gifted giftedness and increasingly more difficult for a learner who is gifted and has a learning disability. It is because of these misconceptions that teachers enter the educational environment, ill-equipped and ill-prepared to face the challenges of having a twice-exceptional child (G/LD) within their classroom. This is what ultimately hinders their development. The question remains as to what practices can be implemented to increase their potential for success?

Clark, B. (2008). Gifted Education and Talent Development: Myths and Misconceptions. Retrieved November 22, 2010, from

Current practices such as differential and adaptive learning strategies are more conducive to the elementary school environment as it requires more time for observations and preferably an established teacher/student relationship. Given that middle school teachers generally have a student base of more than 100 students, and spend approximately 40 – 50 minutes with student daily, adhering to these guidelines are more difficult. Does anyone have any suggestions as to what practices would be better suited for middle school students?

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