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Home of the Ruf Estimates
of Gifted Online Assessment
November 2011
In This Issue
Homeschooled Character in Fiction
Next Global Conferences on Gifted Education
Online Accelerated Classes
Too Much Praise?
Yahoo Kids
Keeping Up With Dr. Ruf

Besides her years of expertise as an educational consultant, Dr. Ruf also is well established as a national and international speaker on all issues of giftedness.  


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Dr. Ruf will conduct a workshop on How to Encourage Your Gifted Child to Listen to Parents and Teachers in Westwood, CA, November 22.  Click here for more information.   


Next week is Thanksgiving. Dr. Ruf is traveling to the Los Angeles area to spend the holiday with family. While there, she will be conducting a workshop hosted by Dr. Barbara Klein. The topic is How to Encourage Your Gifted Child to Listen to Parents and Teachers, and there is still time to register. For more information, click here.  


We also would like to announce that as of next month, the Educational Options Newsletter and the TalentIgniter Newsletter will be merging into one monthly newsletter. We felt our readers were missing out on a lot of great information if they were subscribing to only one of the newsletters, and therefore decided to make this change.


We wish you all safe travels and warm homes this holiday weekend!




Kathy Hara, Editor




Howling Vowels cover Homeschooled Character in Fiction


When our friend Leslie Schultz was first homeschooling her daughter, Julia, she said she could not find any realistic fiction for kids where at least one of the characters is homeschooled. Although that has changed over the past five or six years, she decided to write a book of her own. The result, launched this week, is The Howling Vowels, published by Do Life Right, Inc. and illustrated by Heather Newman.


The story centers around Alexa Stevens, a 10-year-old homeschooler who has moved with her family from New York City to Sundog, Minnesota. Her growing circle of friends include Eduardo, Isabelle, Otto and Ursula.  


Read more about this book on Schultz's web page   and at Homeschool Literature



Next Global Conferences on Gifted Education


This year's last two Global Virtual Meetings for Gifted Education in Second Life are scheduled for November 19 and December 17. These events, which are offered free of charge, are sponsored by the Bavarian Center for Gifted and Talented Children.


On Saturday, November 19, the topic will be  "Understanding giftedness according to Dabrowski: no G&T without personality development." The invited speakers are Truus van der Kaaij and Frank de Mink.


On Saturday, December 17, Michael Shaughnessy will be the featured speaker. Dr. Shaughnessy is currently Professor in Educational Studies at Eastern New Mexico University and is a Consulting Editor for Gifted Education International and Educational Psychology Review. In addition, he writes for www.educationnews.org and the International Journal of Theory and Research in Education.


Go to the Bavarian Center's web page for information on the schedule and how to sign up for these virtual meetings.


 Virtual Global Mtg



 Online Accelerated Classes


The G3 of Online G3  stands for Guinevere's Gifted Group. This was a writing class at a homeschool co-op taught by Jaime Smith in which she used a Prufrock Press program called King Arthur's Academy: Descriptive and Narrative Writing Exercises. Eventually the co-op evolved into an online literature group, which evolved into Online G3.


Online G3 believes that gifted children need to advance through curricula at an accelerated pace but in ways that encourage their critical thinking and creative expression, and they provide a program that they believe will meet those needs. They also offer online peer interaction through monitored discussion boards and live webinars.


All courses include a weekly live webinar component, and are therefore date specific. Spring seminar begins January 30.

Too Much Praise?


As Jenny Anderson states in her article in the New York Times, "the real world doesn't praise [anyone] for getting dressed in the morning." The article, Too Much Praise is No Good for Toddlers, looks at the recent study results from Stanford researcher Carol Dweck. The discussion looks at the difference between types of praise - "you are smart" vs. "you really tried hard" - and how this affects children as they grow older.  


This is an interesting article to read. Even more fun are the many comments from readers, who offer many other viewpoints to the discussion.

Yahoo Kids Yahoo Kids



My first impression of the Yahoo Kids website is that it is very commercial, advertising movies and video games for purchase. And while that may be true, there is also much on the site that will fascinate kids and lead them to learning more about myriad topics.


For example:You have 3300 debens to spend on burial preparations. Select a tomb, mummification options, and more to learn about the ancient Eyptians' burial rites. This entry then leads the reader to EternityTravel.com, which looks like fun to me!


There are many more items on this site, too. Kids can send free ecards to their friends, they can submit their own punch lines to jokes, they can "Ask Earl" such questions as how many bones are in a giraffe's neck, and even get homework help.


There is also a parents section that offers a blog and movie/TV reviews that you are sure to find helpful. In addition, there is an entry about online safety, Teaching Children About Online Risks.



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TalentIgniter invites you to browse the many features offered on its website, including the following:


Keys ebook cover
Keys to Successfully Raising the Gifted Child

You know your child is gifted. But how does that impact day-to-day life and your role as a parent?

Written by Deborah L. Ruf, Ph.D., and Larry A. Kuusisto, Ph.D., this ebook is for parents who are new to the idea that their children might be intellectually advanced or gifted. The book addresses important parenting issues, including what to actually tell your child about his or her giftedness, how schools approach learning differences, best ways to provide emotional support, sibling rivalry, and more.

The book delivers lots of provocative information that will lead to hours of good discussion, debate, and further investigation and research by group or class participants studying the gifted and talented.

The book is available for purchase at www.TalentIgniter.com/products.

5 Levels of Gifted

5 Levels cover5 Levels of Gifted: School Issues and Educational Options (2005) (formerly titled Losing Our Minds: Gifted Children Left Behind). 5 Levels of Gifted, published by Great Potential Press, combines four years of data gathering from 50 families with nearly 30 years of research and experience in the field of giftedness, individual differences, and high intelligence. The book is aimed primarily at parents and vividly describes the upper 10 to 15 percent of the intellectual continuum in human beings from birth to adulthood as manifested in their behaviors, thoughts, accomplishments, and test scores. She introduces the concept of Levels of Giftedness and makes it very clear how many factors contribute to a person's intellectual levels and achievement.