Upcoming Documentary Explores the Need for Change in Gifted Education
Upcoming Documentary Explores the Need for Change in Gifted Education
PUBLISHED: Wednesday, December 12, 2018 by Andilynn Feddeler

An insightful new documentary, The G Word, takes a look at our education system and how it is severely unequipped to support and challenge gifted learners, especially those with disabilities. The film is currently in production and will feature numerous interviews with gifted education experts, including many well-known authors.

There are around 6.4 million gifted people in the United States, and a large majority of that population faces frustrating challenges when it comes to finding an adequate learning environment that will fully support their potential, as well as their diverse (and often complex) needs. These learners strive to be challenged and accepted, but are continually met with backlash and isolation because their needs are unique and don’t fit the status quo. The G Word will explore this tension that often leads gifted kids to become agitated, depressed, and anxious.

The documentary will also take an extensive look at how our society has a very narrow view of intelligence—one that often excludes students of color and from low socioeconomic backgrounds. It expands upon the need for teachers to be able to look at nonquantifiable characteristics of their students and change their perceptions about kids who act out or crave attention, because these behaviors can sometimes be due to lack of intellectual stimulation. Budget cuts and lack of resources have led these students to be bored, unsatisfied, and unable to meet like-minded peers who understand them. In an education system that focuses on averageness, we must do better to identify and support the needs of gifted and twice-exceptional children.

This film focuses in on reputations of giftedness, perceptions of intelligence, and the lack of representation in gifted classrooms. It reveals the immense diversity of these students that is rarely reflected in gifted programs due to bias and non-universal screening. As evidenced in several clips available, audiences of The G Word will come away with in-depth understandings of the inherent discrimination in gifted education and the need for change in how we identify and educate gifted learners.  Check out some of the clips that are currently available: