A little about the Author…..
Hi Folks, I am Les. I am an Ex-Pat USAian living in Ireland. I am one of six gifted and twice exceptional siblings. I was born on the East Coast of the USA. I grew up in Mexico, where I did most of my schooling, and am also a fluent Spanish speaker. As well as attending the University of the Americas in Puebla, and studying Anthropology, I later also obtained a teaching certificate, and taught English as a Second language for many years, traveling internationally and extensively. I lived for a period of years in San Francisco California before subsequently moving to Ireland, marrying, and becoming a parent of gifted and 2E children.
This event prompted me to obtain first a Diploma in Special Needs, followed by a Post Grad equivalent Certificate in Gifted Education from UNISA. I have continued to work closely with and advocate for Gifted or Exceptionally Able Children as they are officially known in Ireland, for many years. This included running explorer clubs, some teacher training in education centres, and educational consultations to schools and government bodies. I served as one of the commissioned writers for the NCCA or National Council for Curriculum on the national ‘Guidelines for Teaching Exceptionally Able Students‘. I also worked as a SME for the NCTE or National Council for Technology in Education, providing links to populate an area of their Sciolnet site which is dedicated to Gifted/ Exceptionally able students. I served with the Irish Association For Gifted Children, for 14 years, in many capacities, at various times- including Newsletter Editor, Chairperson, Vice-Chair and Conference and Event organiser. The association, or the IAGC was unfortunately dissolved in recent years. Over the last few years I’ve spent some time, as a voted in volunteer, serving on the EC of the WCGTC or the World Council for Gifted and Talented Children.
I have lectured in gifted ed at both University Level in UCD, the University College of Dublin, as well as at National and International Conferences, such as ILSA, IATSE, CTYI as well as WCGTC in London and Vancouver, and The Wallace Symposium in Iowa. I was awarded a Templeton Fellow award through the Belin Blank Centre for Excellence in Iowa, with whom I still collaborate. Through continuous further study, I have completed the Post Grad Diploma out of Middlesex University, barely missing a Masters in Gifted Education due to unforseen familial complications. I was awarded the Post Grad Dip in Arts and Education in June 2011. I eventually plan on making a second attempt at completing a my Masters when time allows. Locally, when requested, I advocate and offer help and services as an educational consultant and advisor in the area of Gifted to schools, teachers and parents in Ireland.
Without a doubt, however, my most useful experiences have come from being a parent, through the sometimes devastating heartache and equally exquisite joy that this brings.
As an educator and a parent of gifted and 2E children I have accumulated a vast resource library of both reference and practical material, along with a healthy understanding of educational legislation (or lack of) and potentially helpful services in the area. It goes without saying that negotiating the rocky roads throughout their upbringing and educational placements, brought with it good understanding, and a hands on knowledge that comes only with living and bringing up children of this nature.
With this Blog I hope to share my experience, and continue to add to the understanding of this group of students, I can hopefully be a source of help and direction to those that choose to ask..
From small questions great answers sometimes come..
PS.. unfortunately, you may have to put up with alot of creative nonsense as well as I am occasionally given to write poetry and share some of my own creative odd stuff of that type!!!
Strength, Yours in Gifted