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Developing Talent in Young People Paperback – January 12, 1985


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 572 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books (January 12, 1985)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 034531509X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345315090
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.5 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #113,945 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

All in all, it is a very interesting and informative book.
bill greene
About the best you can say is that certain factors are correlated with being an expert, but correlation is not causation.
Ron Wis
Whatever it takes to nurture the next Einstein or da Vinci will not be found in this book.
Brian

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

63 of 67 people found the following review helpful By Deborah Ruf, Ph.D. on March 27, 2000
Format: Paperback
Bloom's study helps those seriously interested in understanding the differences between different kinds of talent and it can be nurtured. The study describes how the nurturance of gifted athletes and musicians takes a different path than that of intellectually gifted young people. It points out that the families do not choose between the intellectual and athletic areas but follow the talents manifested by their children.
Apparently world-class talent becomes evident in the early years of performance and spurs on the efforts of family and youngster. In the cases of musical and physical talent, in this study it is concert pianists and Olympic swimmers, children show an intitial interest for practice and competition but go through a period of resistance before they make the talent area truly their own. Such youngsters do not succeed without the time and financial support of their families. Much, including regular schooling, needs to be sacrificed. The study concludes that eminent sculptors have a much less clearly defined or supported pathways to prominance.
Although the nurturance and support systems are similar for world-class athletes and musicians, the actual family environments differ considerably. The musicians experience a family environment more like that of the mathematicians and scientists in their youth.
Intellectual talent like that found in expert mathematicians and scientists also requires facilitation by the family. A particular point of interest is the generally overall high intelligence of these young people, and an unusually high degree of family cohesiveness. Few eminent mathematicians or scientists come from families of divorce.
Finally, the types of personalities vary by talent area and the book gives excellent case study examples.
I would give the book 5 stars if it gave more specific information on intellectual make-up of the study subjects or the groups under study.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By bill greene on March 19, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Bloom's book lays out in great detail his hypothesis that great achievement is the result of training, coaching, and perserverence--not the result of genetic endowment. There has been a growing number of writers on the subject who agree with him--that a person's capabilities are not predetermined or fixed at birth but may be significantly shaped and developed by environment.

The author claims that there are very few predictors of a child's future success and great achievement can be "grown" by parents, coaches, schools, and constructive mentors and role models. Bloom's study looked at the childhoods of 120 success stories from several vocational fields and his findings showed no correlation between ultimate success and IQ in such fields as music, science, medicine, chess, and sports. What seemed to count for most of the successful individuals was the enthusiastic support of their family, early exposure to required chores, the development of a sound work ethic, lots of practice and determination, and coaching by devoted teachers.

One of the more interesting parts of this book is the explanation of how our brains and skills develop. Humans, it seems, are quite different from animals, and very different from ants and bees. While they are primarily predetermined by inborn instincts and coded behavior, humans arrive with a vast potential to develop as needed by whatever environment they encounter. It all has to do with something called myelin sheaths that insulate our nervous system and allow specific development of whichever parts of our body are exercised. Thus, our brains and hard wiring are able to grow stronger, just like your biceps, by intensive use, practice, and concerted effort.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Gary Avischious on February 11, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a great book and suitable for anyone working with children. Similar in nature, but preceeding Stephen Covey's work in 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, this book looks at common traits among talented young people across a multitude of disciplines. The USOC uses this work as a core fundamental in how coaches should work with kids. While this research and book was written in 1985, current research from Carol Dweck, PhD, and author of Mindset, supports the notion that the "talent" that we see is just a snapshot, a result, of a young persons true talent which is their self-motivated desire. As Bloom states, 100% of young high level performers had, at a young age, a parent, teacher or coach that GAVE them, (not forced on them) a desire for learning or a love of the game. This works in music, math, sports, or anything. You can't get to the top on talent alone! Desire, especially self-motivated desire, which leads to effort is the key! Read it and be transformed in how you work with children!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Deborah L. Ruf on November 12, 2010
Format: Paperback
Bloom's study helps those seriously interested in understanding the differences between different kinds of talent and it can be nurtured. The study describes how the nurturance of gifted athletes and musicians takes a different path than that of intellectually gifted young people. It points out that the families do not choose between the intellectual and athletic areas but follow the talents manifested by their children.

Apparently world-class talent becomes evident in the early years of performance and spurs on the efforts of family and youngster. In the cases of musical and physical talent, in this study it is concert pianists and Olympic swimmers, children show an intitial interest for practice and competition but go through a period of resistance before they make the talent area truly their own. Such youngsters do not succeed without the time and financial support of their families. Much, including regular schooling, needs to be sacrificed. The study concludes that eminent sculptors have a much less clearly defined or supported pathways to prominance.

Although the nurturance and support systems are similar for world-class athletes and musicians, the actual family environments differ considerably. The musicians experience a family environment more like that of the mathematicians and scientists in their youth.

Intellectual talent like that found in expert mathematicians and scientists also requires facilitation by the family. A particular point of interest is the generally overall high intelligence of these young people, and an unusually high degree of family cohesiveness. Few eminent mathematicians or scientists come from families of divorce.

Finally, the types of personalities vary by talent area and the book gives excellent case study examples.

I would give the book 5 stars if it gave more specific information on intellectual make-up of the study subjects or the groups under study.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

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