Sparky: When ‘Gifted’ Isn’t a Gift – GeekDad

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Sparky: When ‘Gifted’ Isn’t a Gift – GeekDad.

I really appreciate this post. For some time now, I’ve been preaching the message that we need to stop using the term “gifted” when referring to people with unusually high ability and/or potential.


  1. Thinking differently doesn’t make anyone superior to anyone else.
  2. Kids are not meant to be status symbols for their parents or for their teachers.
  3. What about the 90-something percent of people that we don’t christen “gifted”? What should we call them? The Not-Gifted? Not OK.
  4. High ability people have their own set of problems. It’s not all breezing through school and finding everything “easy.”
  5. We have enough problems appreciating individual differences in this country. Do we really want to build yet another fence?

Rant over (for now).

Enter semi facetious solution. 

We change the term “gifted and talented” to “cognitively deviant.” It’s descriptive, has a nice acronym (CD), and does not sound like a status symbol. So far, I’m having trouble getting people to join my cause, but I’m not giving up hope! Will you join my cause? #CDforthewin #stopwordabuse

Kay Shurtleff

Kay Shurtleff

Although my day job is educational consultant for GT/Advanced Academics and ELAR, I also spend ridiculous amounts of down time drinking tea and reading, blogging, tweeting, and playing with language. Writing is a natural outlet, mode of thinking, form of entertainment, and illuminator for me. I'm working on a PhD in gifted education right now, and I appreciate having this forum in which to kick around ideas. Thanks for stopping by G/T-time!

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