“Confessions: What It Really Feels Like Being Labeled Gifted and Talented Since Kindergarten” Series – Parts 4 and 5 “College and Beyond”

Hey, Guys! Thank you for those who read my previous posts for the past few weeks and those who are reading it right now.

From my intensive scientific research, aka googling and social media, these are some of the college majors and careers we’re in at the moment:

  • Veterinary
  • Computer Science
  • Engineering
  • Journalism
  • Law
  • Communications
  • Music
  • Mathematics
  • Finance
  • Business

We’re everywhere! It’s been fun to reconnect and catch up with former classmates while writing this series. I hope by writing this, there will be more conversations about public school education, the importance of a dynamic, positive and diverse learning environment, and passionate, supportive teachers/parents/guardians.

On another note, I’m actually interested where our GT Teachers are right now, but that might be a future post! 😉

Wishing you the best in everything you do!

Love,

Trisha

“Confessions: What It Really Feels Like Being Labeled Gifted and Talented Since Kindergarten” Series – Part 3 of 5 “High School” (2 min read)

Hey, Everyone! Hope you’re having a great week so far! If you’re reading this, thank you for your time and interest.

Similar to the previous posts, this week’s reflections of high school are based on my own experiences and observations of my classmates who were labeled gifted and talented since kindergarten.

My intention of these series is to start a conversation about what gifted and talented really means, if there is any meaning or value at all. Some of my friends who were in the GT program call it “Gifted Trash,” so even the disdain and awareness is apparent when you are in the program or not. And others truly believe there is such a thing as a “gifted” or “talented” child. What do you think?

Without further ado, this is what it felt like to be in high school for some GT students.

Part 3 of 5: High School

  • Picking the high schools: Magnet schools, including schools offering Pr-AP/AP/IB/College credit were the standard. It was nice meeting homeschooled students for the first time.
  • Most likely you’re surrounded by kids of professionals or very supportive parents/guardians
  • There’s a lot of diversity in race, religion, and lifestyle
  • Some students just want to get into an Ivy League school or prestigious school (Harvard, Princeton, MIT, Stanford, etc.)
  • A lot of us aspired to be doctors, lawyers, or engineers or other conventional career
  • Hanging out with friends a lot (group projects, volunteering, talent shows, dances/prom, movies, eating out, parties, etc.)
  • Teenager craziness of growing up: angst, drama, dating, family problems, and choosing priorities (school, sports, socializing, and/or working)
  • Some were overachievers, others were not
  • Most decided to go to college

As you can tell, GT elementary students went in different directions in high school, just like any other student. Most of us experienced similar joys and struggles in adolescence.

Come back for Parts 4 & 5: College and Beyond! Where are those 1st Grade GT kids now?

Thank you and God bless!

Love,

Trisha

“Confessions: What It Really Feels Like Being Labeled Gifted and Talented Since Kindergarten” Series – Part 2 of 5 “Middle School” (2 min read)

Hello, again! Hope you’re doing well! If you’re reading this, thank you for your time. I really appreciate it!

So in “Elementary,” I briefly recorded experiences of students labeled gifted and talented since kindergarten based on personal experiences of my own and others. I ended the last bullet as a transition to today’s topic, “Middle School.”

How was middle school, probably one of the most transformational years physically and mentally growing up, like for a GT student?

 Part 2 of 5: Middle School

  • You stand out like a sore thumb. Whether you’re really knowledgeable, funny, or unusual in how you look or act.
  • Thinking about college and what to be when you grow up more seriously
  • Special perks: being the only ones using the new laptops in class, creative projects and assignments
  • More opportunities to get ahead academically: science/tech camps, taking more advanced classes
  • You develop your interests/hobbies more seriously
  • You and your friends call yourselves or admit inwardly you are geeks or nerds
  • You participate in more academic/music/sports competitions
  • You’ve thought about home-schooling or independent study
  • Self-esteem/confidence/depression issues
  • In some cases, summer before high school, you’re mentally more like a college student in an awkward teenager body

To be honest, I don’t know anyone who had an amazing middle school experience whether they were in GT or not. Personally, I’m thankful for my middle school years to a great extent because even though I may have attended an older, lower-income middle school compared with other schools in the area, I developed long-lasting friendships and my time in middle school sparked the fire to take charge of my own education.

But would I want to relive those 3 years again? Heck no! Haha.

Come back for Part 3: High School next week!

Wishing you the best in everything you do!

Love,

Trisha

“Confessions: What It Really Feels Like Being Labeled Gifted and Talented Since Kindergarten” Series – Part 1 of 5 “Elementary” (2 min read)

Hi, Guys! Hope you’re doing well! If you’re new here, welcome to my little space in the internet.

I just came back from a morning run and this idea popped into my mind. I couldn’t get the idea out of my head, so I knew I needed to write about this. Where I live (Rio Grande Valley), there’s a lot of early college prep/AP/IB/IDEA schools/magnet/private schools blossoming. It’s got the notice of educators beyond the valley that now they’re studying the education system infrastructure and partnerships with the community. ¡Viva RGV! ¡Arriba!

Now back to the real talk about what it really feels like to be labeled gifted and talented at a young age. This is based on over 15 years of personal experience and observations from other “remarkable” students.

Part 1 of 5: Elementary

  • In kindergarten, you have no idea you were “talented” or “gifted” and don’t even remember taking the GT assessment.
  • You are really excited to transfer to another school for 1st grade but have no idea what to expect.
  • You are surrounded by GT kids your age and feel it’s the norm.
  • Just like any other class, you see other GT kids bully other GT kids.
  • You are exposed to fun activities in school: cooking, cross-stitching, paper mache crafts, growing crystals (lol!), writing/directing skits, field experiences (visiting a local ecosystem), reading and listening to the Lord of the Rings (lol!), junior gardening program, how to write a check/budget (lol!), etc.
  • You get jealous of other GT kids but still be best friends with them
  • You have amazing, supportive GT teachers and parents
  • Overall, you’re just like other kids: being weird/silly, playing games, watching cartoons/movies/Disney/MTV, going to the mall, listening to music, making friends, trying extracurricular activities, growth spurt, getting crushes, etc.
  • You’re bored a lot
  • Your heart breaks and you cry when you realize you’re not going to the middle school of your dreams.

I could really keep going, but I’ll stop here. Come back for Part 2: Middle School!

Wishing you the best in everything you do!

Love,

Trisha

IMG_3151

Picture: My 1st Grade GT class in 1998-1999

Experiment: I Didn’t Use YouTube for 5 Weeks, Instagram 7 Weeks, and FB for 4 months!

Hi, Guys! I hope you’re doing well!

Several months ago I wanted to sacrifice something I really enjoy using for Lent, so I stopped using Youtube, Instagram, and Facebook for several weeks and in some cases, it went on for months. As a side note, I don’t use Snapchat or Twitter.

I love taking breaks from social media because I’m curious what I learn from not using them. I’ve been using FB for 12 years, Youtube for 11 years, and Instagram for 5 years, so I grew up with social media (anyone remember Friendster and Myspace?! Haha). Despite these numbers, I prefer to enjoy the outdoors and connecting with nature much more.

Anyways, these are my takeaways and reflections from my social media detox!

  • For me, YouTube was the hardest social media to stop using because I used it for the following: music, fashion, film, self-growth, development with God, and learning anything under the sun. Honestly, I still have no idea how I made it for that long without YouTube. But it is possible.
  • I hanged out with friends a lot without social media. Almost every week I would hang out with my friends regularly so using social media was not necessary to maintain true, close friendships.
  • Honestly, I like not using social media to a great extent. I’m one of those people who believe that if there’s something really important to know about, someone will tell me about it. Don’t get me wrong, I love current events and ideas. But sometimes I just want to have peace of mind.

Now, I am utilizing YouTube, Instagram, and FB with more intention than ever. I believe moderation for everything (eating, exercising, sleeping, working, social media use, etc.) is very important. If anyone has ever been interested in unplugging from social media, I highly recommend it because you’ll learn a lot from the experience.

Will I ever do a social media detox again? Absolutely. The best moments in my life are the ones that cannot be posted. 🙂

Wishing you all the best in everything you do!

Love,

Trisha

7 Filipino Classical Pianists Still Alive Today!

Hey Everyone! Since growing up I didn’t know ANY famous Filipino classical pianists, I thought it would be beneficial to do a roundup of 7 Filipino classical pianists who are still alive today! This will be an ongoing list since I know there are more Filipino classical pianists out there sweating it out on the keys  that the world has not heard of.

As a side note, to be honest, even though I was a classically trained pianist, I still don’t identify myself as a classical pianist because I’ve never had the desire to be a touring concert pianist. I’m just crazy about classical music and love teaching others from my own experiences in the classical repertoire (including other genres!). So until further ado, let’s get started!

  1. Ingrid Sala Santamaria

2. Cecile Licad

3. Albert Tiu

4. Jovianney Emmanuel Cruz

5. Adolovni Acosta

6. Maxelende Ganade (For quick reference: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maxelende_Ganade)

7. Rowena Sánchez Arrieta

Being a classically trained pianist requires extreme discipline, dedication, and artistry. When I was starting out in music school, it was encouraging and inspiring to know there were famous Filipino classical pianists who dedicated their lives to sharing their love for music with others. Thank God for Google!

Even if you’ve never played the piano before, don’t be fooled by the notion that it’s too late to learn. I truly believe playing the piano is for everyone, regardless of age, social background, or talent. It’s all up to you.

If you made it this far to my blog post, thank you for your time. Please share this post to anyone you know who might need encouragement that it’s okay to be a classical pianist or have a career in the fine arts. You are not alone.

Love,

Trisha