TECA Insights | Vol. 90 | April 16, 2019
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Hi Folks,

Thank you to those of you who let me know the link to my opening post was not working. Sorry about that! The link has been fixed and I hope you enjoy the post. 


Spring can be a tricky time for families of twice exceptional kids. It’s the time of year when students are learning about their school options for the coming year. In some districts, kids go straight from one zoned to school to another. In others, or if your child is going off to college, there has been a stressful application process and, hopefully, if you are lucky, there are choices to make. In either case, it can be both an exciting and an anxiety-producing time. For families of twice exceptional kids, this time of year can be as stressful as it gets. Many families of 2e kids have no school options where they are confident their children will thrive. If parents are not careful, they can incorrectly assume their children’s difficulties in school are a condemnation of their parenting. To read the full post, visit TECA2e.org.
I hope you enjoyed the rest of the post and that you have a wonderful week!


Maratea Cantarella
TECA Executive Director
P.S. If you are not a regular subscriber of Insights and would like to get it every week, become a member of TECA today and get Insights for FREE! Go to TECA2e.org for details and options.

Free Webinar From Understood
Supporting Kids With ADHD in the Classroom

Monday, April 22 at 12:00 pm ET

For this expert chat, join Bob Cunningham, Ed.M., senior advisor on learning and attention issues for Understood. Find out how parents, teachers, and schools can work together to support kids with ADHD in the classroom.



Looking for books about ADHD, both nonfiction and fiction books?
Read on for 15 of the best.

I was diagnosed with ADHD in high school, along with another learning disorder, after a few very long years filled with missed homework assignments, teacher eye rolls, mystified parents, and a great deal of yelling and tears. To read more and to access the booklist go to BookRiot.


Fight, Flight, Freeze… or Fib?

What if your child’s lying is not evidence of a character flaw or disrespect? What if his fibs are actually a self-preservation strategy rooted in poor inhibition, emotional regulation, working memory, and attention — all hallmarks of ADHD? This is the premise behind a new theory that is giving caregivers and educators a new, neurological lens through which to view lies. Find out more at ADDitude.


Is attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) underdiagnosed among African American children?

The answer may hold implications for the well-being of thousands of African American and other minority youths. Just as importantly, the reasons behind the faulty diagnoses can reveal root problems that may stand between clinicians and accurate assessments. To read the full article visit BlackDoctor.Org.

What Medicare for All Could Mean for Chronic Illness, Disability and Mental Health

On Wednesday, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and 2020 presidential hopeful released a formalized outline of what his idea of health care reform would look like. He’s not the first to propose a new way of doing health care in the U.S. and as we head into the next big election, he certainly won’t be the last. Learn more from The Mighty.


When organizing and planning tasks, we employ executive functioning (EF), a set of mental skills put to use by most of us without much thought or intentional effort. Adult life requires an awful lot of EF — it’s how we get to the airport on time, how we buy a house or get projects done at work or chores done at home. EF in children, however, and particularly in gifted children, is a very different thing, and EF deficits and/or weaknesses can easily become a source of frustration for children as well as for teachers and parents. Read more about this from The Grayson School.


Autism and the Law, Part 1: How ‘Endrew’ Can Improve Future Educational Prospects

Individualized Education Plans must logically be approached and prepared with a constructive, creative and reasonably expansive mindset in order to meet a student’s needs, with more than “de minimus” progress in mind.

This article is the first of a four-part special series on autism, in honor and recognition of National Autism Awareness Month. Read Part 1 from The New Jersey Law Journal.

Click Here to Read Part 2

Dyslexia Advocates Have Major Concerns With A Proposed Overhaul Of The 2012 READ Act

 A new bill making its way through the state Capitol aims to better train teachers to help struggling readers. But advocates for children with dyslexia say the bill doesn’t go far enough to address the real problem and the most vulnerable students. Read more or listen to the full article from Colorado Pubic Radio.

Gifted, But Struggling to Read

BOURBONNAIS — School was in session on a March day, but 7-year-old Colin Bramer stayed home.

He was not sick. He was not skipping class. Rather, his mother, Kathy Bramer, was helping him with a reading exercise at the kitchen table. Read more at The Daily Journal.


I Didn’t Write This Column. I Spoke It.

The screenless internet could be amazing — or terrible.

A few months ago, I stumbled onto a new way of writing. I don’t mean an unusual literary or textual style; I mean a new physical method for the painstaking task of chiseling the formless geologic schists inside my brain into words and sentences crisp and coherent enough to please at least a few of my fellow human beings. Find the full article in The New York Times.


Growth Mindset: How to Normalize Mistake Making and Struggle in Class

Carol Dweck’s research on growth mindset has become essential knowledge in education circles. The Stanford psychologist found that children who understand that their brains are malleable and can change when working through challenging problems can do better in school. Now, many school districts are attempting to teach growth mindset to their students. At the core of this practice is the idea of “productive failure” (a concept Dr. Manu Kapur has been studying for over a decade)* and giving students the time and space to work through difficult problems. Another key idea is to praise the process and effort a child puts in, not the final product. Find out more from KQED.

The 10th Annual New York Times Summer Reading Contest: June 14-Aug. 23, 2019

Every year since 2010 we have invited teenagers around the world to add The New York Times to their summer reading lists and, so far, nearly 50,000 have.

At a time when teachers are looking for ways to offer students more “voice and choice,” we hope our open-ended contest can help: Every week, we ask participants to choose something in The Times that has sparked their interest, then tell us why. At the end of the week, judges from the Times newsroom pick favorite responses, and we publish them here. It’s as simple as that. Read the full feature in The New York Times.

Making SEL More Relevant to Teens
Three social and emotional learning activities that are designed to address high school students’ need for status and respect.

According to a 2018 survey, current and recent high school students don’t believe their schools have done enough to help them develop socially and emotionally, and most graduates don’t feel prepared for life after high school. Read the full article at Edutopia.

How Writing Down Specific Goals Can Empower Struggling Students

Why do you do what you do? What is the engine that keeps you up late at night or gets you going in the morning? Where is your happy place? What stands between you and your ultimate dream?

Heavy questions. One researcher believes that writing down the answers can be decisive for students.  Learn more from KQED.


Inequity Persists in Gifted Programs

The National Center for Research on Gifted Education (NCRGE) at the University of Connecticut, in Phase I of a rigorous research agenda, examined how academically-gifted students are identified and served in three states in order to provide systematic information for the field. The research team focused especially on the representation of historically underserved groups in gifted education.

NCER recently spoke with the Center’s Principal Investigator, Del Siegle, a nationally-recognized expert on gifted education. Read the interview from the Institute of Education Sciences.


Oppositional Defiance or Faulty Neuroception?

Over the years I have come to believe that oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) is not a label that should be used to describe young children. As a developmental psychologist, I view oppositional defiance as a child’s response to stress. Viewing children’s challenging behaviors on a continuum of stress and stress recovery reveals a whole new way to think about this stigmatizing disorder, as well as a new way to support children, informed by neuroscience. Read the full article from Dr. Mona Delahooke on Facebook.

The Truth About Fish Oil
Heart disease, depression, diabetes, memory loss. Omega-3 fish oil has been touted as a panacea. But what does the science say?

I recently learned from an eminent cardiologist that around half of all patients first report heart disease to their doctors by dropping dead. No conversation where the physician lays on a tender hand and whispers, “I’m a little worried about your triglycerides.” Just fibrillation followed by abrupt arrest. Boom. Finis. Learn more at Medium.

Green Time: A Natural Remedy for ADHD Symptoms

Can attention deficit symptoms be eased by alternative ADHD treatments like exercise? Research shows “green” time can lead to an increased ability to focus for both adults and children. Read the article from ADDitude.


Disability Hierarchy is Real and It’s
Holding Us Back

Ed Roberts, one of the founders of the Disability Rights Movement in the United States, was a man who understood the importance of unity within the disability community.

Ed Roberts knew that unless and until everyone across the disability spectrum – the deaf, blind, physically disabled, people with chronic and non-visible disabilities, the neuro-diverse, mentally ill, developmentally and intellectually disabled – could come together, we were going to go nowhere real fast. Find out more from Meriah Nichols.

Identity-First Language

At the Adult Services Subcommittee’s final meeting last Wednesday, much to do was made about semantic disagreements — “ASD individual” versus “individual with ASD,” and of course, the dreaded “person with autism” or “person who has autism” versus “autistic person.” These issues of semantics are hot button issues, and rightfully so. Continue reading at ASAN.


How to Give Kids Effective Instructions

The first step to harmony is teaching your child to listen and follow directions

One of the most important keys to minimizing problem behavior is making sure that kids are getting the message you’re trying to send. When it comes to parenting, sometimes the way instructions are given can be just as important as what you’re trying to communicate. Find out more from Child Mind Institute.

How to Stop Thinking Your Teen Is
‘Pushing Your Buttons’

Do clothes on the floor make you crazy? Experts say that the tension is often about the way the parent responds.

My 14-year-old daughter constantly abandons her coat on the floor and leaves half-eaten food in the living room and crumpled papers in the hall. I end up cleaning up after her, which I’ve repeatedly told her makes me upset.

She’s a smart, talented kid. So why does she keep pushing my buttons?

At some point, most parents feel as if their teenager is acting in ways to intentionally make them angry. But experts say that the interaction is often more about the way the parent responds than about the teenager’s behavior. Read more at The New York Times.

Scream-Less Parenting Is Possible With Behavioral Parent Training

One of the biggest challenges that parents of a child with attention deficit disorder (ADHD or ADD) face is managing and changing disruptive or inappropriate behaviors at home and in school. The best way to meet that challenge is through a behavioral parent training program (BPT), a well-studied and well-established first-line treatment plan for children with ADHD. Find the rest of this article at ADDitude.

The Child In Me …

… Sees the child in you.

Wait, no. I wasn’t calling you a child.

I was talking about how I get along well with children.

Well, maybe I was calling you a child. Read the entire blog post at Psych Central.

Productivity Hacks Don’t Work When You Have Mental Illness

But there are other strategies that can help you get things done

You’re sitting at your desk, unable to do anything but keep sitting as thoughts float like thick clouds through your brain. There’s a looming deadline ahead, but try as you might, you can’t bring yourself to pay attention to the computer screen in front of you. Everything feels dull and gray. Continue reading at Medium.


Katie Bouman: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

Katie Bouman, 29, is the researcher who led the creation of an algorithm that allowed scientists to capture images of a black hole or the very first time. The National Science Foundation revealed the never-before-seen picture on April 10, 2019. Find out more at Heavy.


An Independent Filmmaker Highlights Gifted Students of San Luis

An independent filmmaker from San Francisco traveled all the way to San Luis to answer one question; who gets to be gifted in America and why? Read the full article at KYMA.

As Game of Thrones returns for its final season, herpetologist Rachel Keeffe has answers to your pressing dragon-related questions.

If Daenerys’ dragons are as big as 747s, could they actually get off the ground? If dragons are cold-blooded, could they really go north of the wall? Could a herpetologist address highly fictional dragon scenarios using real science? Find out more from Futurity.

Chicago Has Become the Nerve Center of Competitive Pinball

Experience the thrill of multiball mayhem and the agony of a double drain.

DISCO JACKPOT,” the machine blares, as 2.8 ounces of steel fly through the dazzler. Chicago local Zachary Parks, 16, taps his sneakered foot anxiously, watching 48-year-old Jim Belsito rack up points on Deadpool. Continue reading at Atlas Obscura.

Thanks for joining us again this week. We hope you enjoyed this edition of TECA Insights. Please let us know what you think.  If you come across an article or resource that you think our community would  benefit from, please share it with us. We look forward to hearing from you!