When I taught gifted and talented students it always bothered me that only some students received this title. I truly believe that we are all gifted and talented and that it is important to identify those gifts and talents. Each year I would offer to come into any classroom that wanted me and do some of the activities with everyone that I did with the kids in my class. I remember so clearly visiting one third grade room. That day I was sharing Howard Gardner's Theory of Multiple Intelligences. First I explained the areas he identified as intelligences and explained that we all possess all of them but that we often were stronger in one than an other. I explained that if an area was not our strength we could always do things to make it stronger, it just might take a little longer. We also discussed how it was very important to know our strengths so when making decisions we could definitely use them. I remember talking about the verbal/linguistic intelligence. I was explaining to the kids that people who were strong in this area loved words. They loved to write and to talk. They often make great teachers, lawyers, writers, and actors. All of a sudden Chris stood up and literally yelled, "Mrs. Lennox, that's me. That's me!" And it was. Chris was so bright but as so often happens in school he was in trouble a lot, for you guessed it - talking. It was the first time he saw something positive about himself. He saw that what was getting him in trouble now was actually something that could help him become a great success in life. Chris and I talked later about his gifts and talents and the right way to use them. I have a lot of memories from when I taught but this is one that I think of often. It was so nice to be present when this nine year old boy recognized that he too was smart, that he too had something to offer the world.
What are your gifts and talents? We all have them. I love to write. I love to support others in their dreams. I love to help people recognize their strengths so they can use them to live the life they always wanted. Take a minute. Think back to when you were a child. What did you like to do? How did you spend your free time? Think about now. What is it that makes you happy? What do you love to do? What do people say about you? Begin a list that you can see each day. Remind yourself often of the gifts and talents you have to offer. And then share them with us. It's important for you and it is important for us. Remember:
When you share your gifts and talents with the world, magic happens. Let the magic begin!