Here are some ideas you may find useful to try at home ...
- Talk to your children as much as you can about what they are doing at school. Don’t give up when they say ‘nothing’.
- Leave newspapers, books and magazines lying around the house so that they can be read by your child in passing. Talk to them about current events and what is happening in the world.
- Try to read the same books and magazines as your child and then chat to them about them.
- Be seen reading at home yourself. It’s a brilliant way to relax.
- Try to give your children new experiences as and when you can: museums, sports, trips to different towns and cities, anywhere really!
- Watch films and television programmes together and then talk about what you have seen. Why did a character behave like that? What issues did the film raise? What might the director have wanted the audience to think about?
- Watch documentaries together and chat about the implications of them.
- Encourage your son or daughter to have hobbies: sport, music, Duke of Edinburgh, Scouts, etc. all look good on a university application and make for a more interesting adult.
- Make Sixth Form and higher education an assumption.
- Take your child to the theatre or to see a musical or a live band. Any experience like this gives them something extra to mention in a personal statement of university interview.
- Visit university towns and cities – the more comfortable your child feels about places away from home, the more likely they are to consider moving there to study.
This is never going to be an easy task! Try to support your child by including rewards for hard work and effort. Be aware that a lot of young people labelled G & T are very scared of failing: emphasise that their best is always enough.
- Try to provide an area at home where your child can work comfortably and undisturbed.
- Don’t assume that playing computer games is just a waste of time. It has been suggested that “game players are active problem solvers who do not see mistakes as errors, but as opportunities for improvement.”
- Resilience and confidence will take your child further than any other skills they have ...
- You are not alone! G & T children and young people can be emotionally volatile and quite challenging to adults. This is not unusual!
- Gifted or talented students can also be hypersensitive to criticism and suffer from feeling alone or as though no-one understands them. Try to reassure your child that you will always be there for them.
Across the country there are thousands of parents having the same arguments and worrying just as much.
- Try to have healthy meals and snacks in the cupboard / fridge.
- Get your child to ‘teach’ you something they are learning about.
- Encourage your child to take breaks from work – give them a treat.
- Keep up communication with your child’s teachers and tutor.
- Offer to help test your child when they prepare for exams. Be relaxed about it!
- Leave fruit and bottles of water lying round the house.
- Keep telling them that you love them – regardless of how they do at school.
- Ask for help and support from us if you need it.