Gifted & Distractible
Newsletter for the Twice Exceptional Community
This issue of "Gifted & Distractible" sponsored by:
To sponsor an issue of "Gifted & Distractible," fill out this form or contact Julie.

February is Gifted Education month. It's time to celebrate and evaluate. Is gifted programming working for your gifted or 2e child?

I frequently find myself in conversations with colleagues about the "G" word and concerns of elitism, exclusion and discrimination. The truth is gifted and 2e kids need like-minded (literally) peers. They need friends to share interests and deep thoughts with, to laugh at clever puns and to commiserate over the earth's troubles. One client's son said to his mom, "How will I ever find other 8 year olds who think about the future like I do?"

Gifted is meant to be anything but divisive - it's a descriptor for a certain type of person who has special needs - needs that can only be fulfilled by educators and peers who get them.

This month's issue of "Gifted & Distractible" talks about the need to take care of your gifted and 2e children, students and your gifted and 2e selves. Julie's blog "See me! What We Need for Successful Relationships" talks about the contagion of loneliness, what causes it and what to do about it.

Other articles in this issue address ways for gifted and 2e people to feel connected - mindfulness, mentoring, sleep hygiene, addressing imposter syndrome.  Learn about underachievement in Dr. Jim Delisle's new book and see where With Understanding Comes Calm is spreading the word about the 2e population.

As always, if something resonates, please share and comment so we can reach others with compassionate guidance and durable strategies for the 2e community.
Julie's Monthly Blog, "See Me! What We Need for Successful Relationships" talks about how disconnect in our society leads to anxiety and depression. Screen dependence leads to disengagement in unexpected areas like the decline in teen sex to logical outcomes like rampant anxiety and depression. "Being seen" (appreciated) remains the true indicator for successful relationships at home, in school and professionally. 


How to sleep well in 2018 and achieve great mental and physical fitness tells us about what happens when our sleep hygiene is lacking and how to encourage better sleep habits. Notably limited screen time and increased outdoor time is prescribed.
"How to Find Balance When Too Much Self Doubt Gets in the Way" describes the intersection of perfectionism and imposter theory when stating that "a self-doubting mindset leads to two common coping mechanisms: “self-handicapping”—when students underperform as a way to shield themselves from the psychic consequence of working hard and doing poorly—and “subjective overachievement,” taking heroic measures to guarantee a successful outcome, and attributing that success solely to effort. 

"Can Mindfulness Improve Executive Functioning Skills" after asking her 6th grade class if anyone was stressed out, this teacher started teaching her students mindfulness. Read this blog to learn different way to teach your students, your children and yourself how to calm your system and even learn about a Spiderman meditation!
In Julie's areticle, "Roadmap for a Successful Parent/Educator Relationship," published in the December issue of 2e Newsletter, learn how to build a collaborative two-way street toward accomplishing goals that ultimately lead to happier students, fulfilled teachers and less anxious parents.
"Starting a High School Mentoring Program for the Gifted: Opportunities and Challenges" This Teaching for High Potential NAGC publication talks about the positive effects of mentoring programs on gifted kids and tips for how to successfully set up a mentoring program. 

With Understanding Comes Calm
in the Community

On February 16, from 10:00 am - 11:30 am Julie will present a free lecture Understanding Your Twice Exceptional Child Strategies to bring out the best and raise self-esteem at The Sycamore School, 4600 N. Fairfax Drive Suite 300 Arlington, VA 22203. RSVP
You are Cordially Invited to a Celebration of the Governor's Proclamation of February 2018 as Gifted and Talented Education Month.
On February 21, join Members of the Maryland General Assembly, NAGC, Maryland State Board of Education and local boards of education to recognize recipients in the Excellence in Gifted and Talented Education (EGATE) School Awards. Julie will be there and would love for you to stop by and say hi and celebrate all the award winners! North County High School, 10 East First Avenue, Glen Burnie, MD 21061. RSVP Appreciated.
Julie is excited to present at this year's Diamonds in the Rough Conference. The theme: "Finding Common Ground: Strategies that Work for All Students" features many speakers addressing issues and interests for the 2e community. Be sure to stop by the With Understanding Comes Calm Exhibitor Table to say hello.  Register.
With Understanding Comes Calm will visit with the practitioners at Chesapeake ADHD Center to talk about the true inner experience of the twice exceptional student. 
Julie is honored to guest lecture for Doctor Keri Guilbault's course on the Social and Emotional Needs of the Gifted at Johns Hopkins University. Training educators is a passion of Julie's and she provides several educator workshop options. Check out Julie's educator workshop options here.
Book Review
Dr. Jim Delisle's new book, Doing Poorly on Purpose, presents the issue of gifted underachievement in a conversational way discerning the difference between "underachievers" and "selective consumers." Dr. Delisle explains that "'underachievement' is a whole lot more complex than just doing poorly in school. Its foundation is something much more basic: dignity, or the lack thereof, that kids...believe is absent from this educational enterprise we call school."

  • February 3; Siena School, Improving Reading Comprehension Workshop; 8:30 am - 3:30 pm; will address the research behind what impacts comprehension and will present effective multisensory strategies to improve comprehension at the word, sentence, paragraph and extended text levels.  This session is recommended for teachers, tutors and parents. $120 including lunch. Register.

  • February 8, Dyslexia Advocacy Day, 8:00am-3:30pm.  It will take place at the House of Delegates, Lowe House Office Building, Rm 170.  Go to  for details of the day.  Plan to visit your delegate in the afternoon.  Training is offered that morning. 
  • February 13; 3:00 pm - 4:00 pmFree Webinar, Fostering Confidence to Engage Students, with Richard Cash. Learn ideas for supporting your child emotionally during this session. Register
  • February 21; Celebrating Gifted and Talented Education in Maryland Awards; North County High School.

  • February 21-24; Learning Disabilities of America's (LDA) 55th Annual Conference, Improving Effectiveness of Professional Preparation, Register.

  • February 23, 2018, For Dad's Only: The "Why's" and "How's" of Our Children's Behavior6:00 - 8:00pm, The StudyPro, McLean, VA, This event is free. Register.
  • March 1, 2018,  9:00am-10:00am, Colin Meeks, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ Professional of Complete Money Management | The Basics of Special Needs Planning: Getting Your Questions Answered, Find out the answers to questions such as: What are planning “pressure points” over the lifetime of a child of special needs and the family? What is the difference between traditional financial planning and special needs planning?  What are the benefits of both? Link:

  • March 3; Siena School, Applying the Siena Multisensory Approach to Math, 8:30 am-3:30 pm, This workshop will present an overview of how The Siena School teaches math using hands-on activities and incorporating art, music and technology. $120 includes lunch. Register.

  • March 9-10; Diamonds in the Rough Conference, Johns Hopkins University, Rockville, MD Register.

  • March 10; 9:00 am-3:00 pm, Exceptional in Two Ways: Understanding, Supporting and Connecting Gifted Students Who Have Learning Needs, for parents and educators, Credit available, $35, 420 Washington Ave, Cuyahoga Falls, OH, 44221, Register:

  • March 9-10; Diamonds in the Rough Conference, Johns Hopkins University, Rockville, MD Register.
  • March 16, Application Deadline for the WISER-NCAG Scholarship; $1,000 scholarship opportunities for college bound students with learning differences. Must be a graduating senior in the Metro DC area.

  • March 18-20; NAGC Leadership & Advocacy Conference (Hyatt Regency, Capitol Hill), Register.

  • April 28, 2018!  LDAMC/LDAMD will Co-Sponsor an All Day Conference at the Universities at Shady Grove Conference Center, North Potomac, Md. from 9:00 am – 3:30 pm.   We will offer two half day sessions.  Choose from either one or both: Dr. Rebecca Resnik will speak to the power of student emotions to improve learning outcomes.  Joan Green will help you zero in on tools and strategies that use the latest in technology.  Vendors will be on site throughout the day to offer materials and programs for LD/ADHD remediation.
    Registration opens on February 1 at  There are opportunities to volunteer both before and during the conference in exchange for a reduced attendance rate.  Contact

  • April 29 - May 1, 2018; Wallace Research Symposium on Talent Development, co-hosted by Belin Blank Center University of Iowa, Center for Talented Youth Johns Hopkins University, and Study of Mathematically Precocious Youth, Vanderbilt University (Mt. Washington Conference Center, Baltimore) Register.
  • May 8, 2018 – MEGS (Maryland Educators of Gifted Students) Conference proposals due (

  • Dr. Adam Pletter's online iParent 101 course "Safety in the Digital Age." Learn more and REGISTER. All "Gifted & Distractible" readers enjoy a 20% discount using the code CALM.

  • First Sunday evening of each month; Procrastination Webinar & Student Group Discussion. Includes discussion how procrastination is an emotional response to task aversion - includes current research and strategies to help avoid procrastination. Student group discussions for high school and college age students. Contact Michael Bromley at

  • Wednesday Webinars from Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth check here for topics and to register:; and 18 minute long CTY webinar on "CTY's Special Support Services for Students" 

  • The Center For Communication & Learning in partnership with Alliance Pediatrics is now accepting applications for our Winter/Spring PEERS program for Adolescents This is an evidence based social skills program for teens.  Please contact us to begin the registration process. Location: 9711 Washingtonian Blvd. Gaithersburg, Md 20978; to receive our intake packet. Complete our PEERS Interest form-  
  • Tuesdays, 4:15 pm; Social Adventurers Preschool - Kindergarten. Location:  Center For Communication and Learning Rockville, Maryland
    Contact :  to receive intake information. Complete our Social Interest form:

What is With Understanding Comes Calm, LLC?
Our mission is: To empower parents, educators, professionals and adults to bring out the best and raise self esteem in their children, students, clients and themselves.
  • Mentoring Families Understanding, Durable Strategies, Implementation Plans and Advocacy
  • Supporting Individuals Connection, Fulfillment, Validation, Solutions 
  • Partnering with Educators and Clinicians Collaboration, Training, Best Practices, Resolution.
Contact Founder and President, Julie Skolnick with any inquiries.
Copyright © 2018 With Understanding Comes Calm, LLC, All rights reserved.

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