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Raising Gifted Kids: Everything You Need to Know to Help Your Exceptional Child Thrive Paperback – October 12, 2006

21 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


"""Parenting gifted youngsters is a challenging task, and this book is a wonderful, practical resource for parents seeking knowledge to do this task right. Dr. Klein offers support that will be most welcome to parents.""

-- Judith J. Roseberry, President, California Association for the Gifted

""Raising Gifted Kids provides a wealth of thoughtful, practical and implementable strategies for effective parenting of the gifted. Dr. Klein's insightful counsel and down-to-earth recommendations will be invaluable to parents of gifted youngsters, and much of what she has to say is simply excellent advice for any parent.""

-- Roger H. Weaver, Headmaster, Crossroads School for Arts and Sciences, Santa Monica, CA"

Book Description

"While it can be rewarding to raise an extremely bright child -- quick, curious, sensitive, and introspective -- it’s also a daunting challenge. Parents need insight into their own motivations (as well as those of their children), and the courage and ability to make tough decisions about their child’s development. Raising Gifted Kids will help parents understand and cope with the obstacles they face in raising a gifted child, and help them make the best choices for their son’s or daughter’s growth and happiness. This upbeat and practical book reveals how parents can:

* help develop their child’s potential and self-esteem without pressuring them

* plan their child’s education

* work optimally with schools and teachers

* recognize and prevent problems

* solve family conflicts over parenting issues

* avoid the dangers of living vicariously through their child’s accomplishments

* and much more

Filled with proven solutions to the unique challenges of raising gifted kids, this book is the powerful yet accessible resource parents have long wished for."


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: AMACOM; 1 edition (October 12, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0814473423
  • ISBN-13: 978-0814473429
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 8.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,077,878 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Dr. Barbara Klein, PhD, EdD, has worked with gifted children, their parents, and public and private schools in the greater Los Angeles area since 1986. Her private practice is dedicated to assisting the special educational needs of gifted and highly gifted children. She is recognized as a national authority on the development of twins.

Dr. Klein has written seven books in the field of developmental psychology and education, including her latest, entitled "Raising Gifted Kids: Everything You Need to Know to Help Your Exceptional Child Thrive."

Barbara facilitates weekly parenting groups because she believes that parents are the most important and influential people in a young child's life. Other workshops and groups include storytelling and creative writing classes for children aged 5 and up.

Dr. Klein's most outstanding contribution to the field of education was her work developing the initial parent education component for Head Start, a program developed to enhance the school readiness of economically disadvantaged preschoolers.

Barbara earned her undergraduate degree from the University of California at Berkeley, her Masters and Doctorate in Early Childhood Education from the University of Southern California at Los Angeles, and her Doctorate in Clinical Psychology from the California Graduate Institute in Los Angeles.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

39 of 44 people found the following review helpful By Mark D. on November 29, 2007
Format: Paperback
Raising Gifted Kids starts off well, describing the support it will offer us later. Sounds good. But the book goes off track quickly.

Klein talks about test scores, describing scores, standard deviations, and descriptions from various tests and test versions, apparently as old as 1970's versions, interchangeably. But they're not interchangeable, and mixing them up this way will confuse parents who don't have another source of testing information, and don't understand the differences between old and modern test versions, and between one modern test and another.

Klein then offers a number of vignettes, which vary from predictable to extreme. These are not supportive because no matter what, the parents are the bad guys. After the introduction talking about all the help and support Raising Gifted Kids will offer us, this chapter tells us how awful we are, and all our good intentions are wrong. Pick a specific gifted school for your child? Wrong. Send your gifted child to public school? Wrong. Live in an isolated rural area and homeschool your gifted child? Very wrong. And lots more. Throughout the vignettes, the psychologist knows the single right answer for each child after only an assessment.

The rest of the book seems more positive, but has it's confusing moments. All gifted kids are not alike educationally or emotionally, and the sweeping generalizations are too grand. More mistaken impressions left behind, especially among parents who are reading for support.

Parents are, for the most part, doing a good job raising their gifted children. Those who aren't, aren't going to read a book about what we need to know - they already know they're doing a perfect job. Good parents need understanding and support.
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21 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Mamma Who Thinks on March 13, 2008
Format: Paperback
Although I was able to find some good information in this book, overall I found it frustrating.

The author makes sweeping generalizations like, "All gifted kids are ____" or "All private schools are _____." I was left with the feeling that she thinks she, personally, is the only person qualified to make decisions about gifted kids. There was just no faith that parents know what is best for their kids or that schools genuinely want to help.

Her chapters on school selection did not reflect my experience at all. (My kids both attend a terrrific public "Gifted Center" school, and we have found the people there responsive, warm, and very very good at what they do.)

Some of the advice is painfully obvious. Don't, for example, say to your child, "Your weird questions are going to send me to an early grave." (I bet you already knew not to do that.) There were also some problems with the writing and some typos or oversights that gave the book an amateurish feel.

Having said all that, I must admit that there were times when a paragraph seemed to be talking about my child or my experience, and a few things were astute enough that I read them aloud to my husband. Thus the second star.

But overall, the author, while clearly very bright, came across as bossy and inflexible with very clear prejudices. Why, for example, did she feel the need to point out what high-powered careers and high-status backgrounds all the parents came from? Does she believe gifted kids are only born into wealthy families? It almost felt like name-dropping.

Bottom line? I'm very glad I didn't have to buy the copy I read. I've definitely read other, better books on this topic.

Pick a different book.
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful By CrimsonGirl VINE VOICE on April 26, 2008
Format: Paperback
There is much to like about "Raising Gifted Kids". The author offers some very helpful advice for those of us facing the challenge of raising an intellectually gifted child. I particularly appreciate her focus on being a "good enough" parent rather than trying to be a "perfect" one.

The biggest issue I had with Dr. Klein is her elitist tone. She is an educational consultant who obviously has a well-heeled clientèle. The impression she gives in her book is that all gifted kids come from affluent families, which is not the case. She describes each of the parents profiled in the book as "So-and-so, a successful/prominent/stellar/up-and-coming/etc. investment banker/attorney/surgeon/executive/etc." The parents' occupations are not relevant to the point she's trying to make, so why even mention them? She also has a tendency to mention luxury items in passing as if they're a normal part of everyday life. Perhaps everyone in Dr. Klein's social circle has a housekeeper and a gardener and takes travel "adventures" and enrolls their kids in multiple enrichment classes. But I personally found her elitist tone very off-putting.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful By P. Macirowski on October 19, 2006
Format: Paperback
The author surprisingly is not a know-it-all but rather an astute observer of "high-potential" or "gifted" children. If you are a gifted adult you may find yourself wishing you had this kind of astute parenting! This book will enable many mothers and fathers (and grandparents) to help give the children in their care rich and rewarding lives. Your kids don't have to be geniuses for them to benefit from the author's experience.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A. C. Johnson on February 24, 2012
Format: Paperback
"Raising Gifted Kids" was the first book I read that described gifted children, and it did have some interesting insights that got my mind thinking, but I find that overall, I finished the book feeling full of anxiety about what to do with my child. Subsequent books I have read, have given me a fuller picture of the issue and have shed light on the shortcomings of this book. I have a hard time recommending it.

This book is filled with anecdotes about gifted children. The stories more or less fall into two patterns. In the "warning" stories the pattern is "Child A was gifted. His parents pushed him too hard. He became a perfectionist, and killed himself as a teenager." Or "Child A was gifted. His parents never challenged him enough. He became frustrated with the difficulties of higher education, so wound up becoming an elementary school teacher (as if that meant his life was a failure)".

The "success" stories are generally along the lines of "Child 'A' was gifted. Her parents hired a psychological advisor, so that they knew the right thing to do. The child became a doctor, and they all lived happily ever after." Since the author is one of these psychologist experts, the general emphasis on finding professional help comes across as very self serving. The author's subtle, though persistent implications that some career paths are not worthy of "gifted" children comes across as elitist and narrow minded.

I have since read a few other gifted children books, and I have learned that there are more or less two camps when it comes to gifted children. There are some who believe that giftedness is an indication that a child has a genetic gift that "should" lead that child to grow into a super-achieving adult. This is the type of gifted child model this book talks about.
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