The Gift of Free Time

Image Jo Freitag

Image Jo Freitag

The Hoagiesgifted’ June blog hop is on the theme of The Gift of Free Time.
The topic was chosen for the month of June because the U.S. is enjoying their long summer holiday and people have time for participating in hobbies, courses, camps and activities or for just relaxing.

Sprite was given a gift of free time recently too but without as much freedom to enjoy it. Sprite has been convalescing at home after time in hospital for a major operation on her ankle.
Initially she was trying to complete the work the school had sent for her to do while she was away but she kept falling asleep half way through a sentence.

Caramel Cat parked himself on her book and said “Just relax! Take a chill pill!”
“I don’t need any more pills! I am already being given enough pills for pain to knock out the Memory Elephant for a week!” Sprite said.
“But Intellectual Dabrowski and P’est pour Parfait, the Perfectionist Poodle wanted me to do the school work and Psycho Motor Dabrowski wants me to go outside and play throw the stick”

Sensual Dabrowski had brought scented soaps and fizzy bath bombs and suggested that she should take a nice relaxing bath
“I would really, really love to have a nice warm bath” said Sprite “But I will not be able to do that for quite a while!”
Emotional Dabrowski howled in sympathy.

Imaginational Dabrowski suggested that instead of doing the set work she could look at the pictures in a travel magazine and imagine herself relaxing in the picture. Imaginational did a bit too well at setting the scene for her. Sprite remembered the time she spent playing the Survivor – Gifted Island game and how she had enjoyed relaxing in a hammock then.
The memory was vivid – complete with the picture of the deep shades of blue and the dazzling, shimmering sparkle of the water, the sound of the waves, the salty smell of the air.
And she could still recall exactly how it felt.
“The hammock swinging is making me feel dizzy” she said.

Image Jo Freitag

Image Jo Freitag

“You are not very good at relaxing, are you?” observed Caramel Cat. “You need to mellow out!”

“I wish I could!” said Sprite

“Great book!” said Intellectual
“Michael Piechowski’s ‘Mellow Out’ They Say. If I Only Could. Intensities and Sensitivities of the Young and Bright”
“You should read it sometime. You have plenty of time to read now.”
“I have brought you a selection of reading materials – you could start with War and Peace”
“I don’t think I could even concentrate long enough to read Run, Spot, Run” Sprite replied.

Image Jo Freitag

Image Jo Freitag

By the time her mentor Paula the Physicist visited a few days later with her gift of a helium-filled foil balloon and the soft toy white poodle  Sprite was feeling quite a bit brighter but was getting frustrated with her lack of mobility.

“I am getting SO BORED!” she told Paula.
“We will talk about the whole topic of boredom another time” Paula told her. “But at the moment you need to find some ways of keeping yourself amused. What have you been doing?”

“I have finished the work the school sent” Sprite said. “And I have been doing knitting and crochet. I have played solitaire card games and chess on the laptop, watched TV, and I have read some of the books that Intellectual brought me.

I even calculated my leisure profile at 


But I am not supposed to put any weight at all on my ankle for at least another six weeks.”
“What else can I do to fill the time?”
“Could we go on the Hoagiesgifted’ June Blog Hop and see what activities other people are recommending?”

Image Jo Freitag

Image Jo Freitag

If you would like to join us on the hop go to


The Psych Owl Ogist 2

Tweet and Retweet arranged for a baby sitter to care for the Tweetlets and went to visit the Psych Owl ogist to discuss the results of the Tweetlets’ testing

The Psych Owl ogist said that he had chosen to use the Ravens test because it was suitable for young Tweetlets and a good test of visual spatial ability which is very important for Twitter birds. He said that the Tweetlets had scored very highly indeed and added that, to give a complete picture and a more accurate score, a full battery of other tests could be done in future if required.

He showed Tweet and Retweet a diagram of the Bell Curve of IQ scores in the population and showed them how the higher the IQ was the smaller the percentage of the population it represented.
He cautioned that this could make it difficult for Tweetil and Tweetelle to fit in when they started FLOCK Ed as they may not find others who would understand them. He said it was very likely that they would choose older Tweetlets and adult Twitter birds for their friends.
“It is very important for them to find true peers who can be true friends and share thoughts and experiences with them at the depth they will seek” he said.
“I want you to read Prof Miraca Gross’ article ‘From the saddest sound to the D Major chord to see just how important this is!”
He also warned that they could be very disappointed with the introductory years of FLOCK Ed as they would be covering topics which they already understood.
“In most introductory classes they are still learning the nesty rhymes,” he told them.

“In fact,” the Psych owl ogist continued “it may not be wise to send them to the local flock.  You need to select a flock which will allow them to go far!
Tweetil has the intelligence, strength of character, spatial awareness, ability and vigour to be a future Leader of the Great Migrations!”

“See, I said he got it from you, Tweet!” said Retweet and added, for the benefit of the Psych Owl ogist, “There were several Leaders of the Great Migrations in Tweet’s family tree. Tweetelle is more like my family – they were mostly musicians, poets and dreamers.”

“Both Tweetlets are very gifted” said the Psych Owl ogist “but they are expressing it in different ways. It is very common for siblings to shine in different domains. Often, even when one Tweetlet is identified as gifted, the parents do not realise that the second Tweetlet is also gifted because they seem to be so different.”

“And poets, musicians and dreamers are just as important to the Twitter Bird species as the Leaders of the Great Migrations. We need the poets and musicians to record the history and the dreamers and visionaries to show what could be. Future migrations will traverse landscapes which are quite different from those seen now. It is your duty and challenge to do all that you are able to provide a warm, nurturing nest environment for the Tweetlets with exposure to the teachers and experiences that will encourage and enable their abilities.”

At this point the Psych Owl ogist produced a diagram of Professor Francoys Gagne’s DMGT model and pointed to the Environmental Catalysts section to demonstrate how the influence of the nest environment played its part in the development of the Tweetlets innate giftedness into fully developed talent.

“So it is all about a duty to develop the Tweetlets’ talents then?” asked Retweet. “That seems like a huge burden on us and also on the Tweetlets themselves!”

The Psych Owl ogist drew himself up to his full height and fluffed out his feathers.
“Good heavens, no!” he said “Talent development is very important but it is only one part of the story.
Giftedness is not only about what the IQ score is and what achievements are made.
It is about WHO the Tweetlets are!”

The Psych Owl ogist produced a series of giftedness definition flashcards.

“Here is some more reading for you.”

The moral sensitivity of gifted children and the evolution of society by Linda Kreger Silverman

“Even if Tweetil never gets to be a Leader of the Great Migrations he will still be a gifted Twitter Bird and even if Tweetelle spends her whole life nest making and raising Tweetlets she will not cease to be a gifted Twitter Bird!”