January 2021
● Directors' Corner
-Dr. Kristina Henry Collins
● SENG Announcement
-New Board Members
● Friends of SENG Reminder
● Feature Article
-Paula Prober
● Upcoming SENGinar
● Annual Conference Call for Proposals
● Advertise with SENG!
Directors' Corner
Dr. Kristina Henry Collins
SENG President (2020-2022)

Happy New Year !

It’s 2021 … already. While the world seemed to move in slow motion, time still seemed to fly by. And like most of you, I am still trying to wrap my mind around the events of 2020. However, as I sat down to prepare this message for our SENGvine readers, I still planned to offer the traditional, organizational new year message--one of reflection, sharing with you that which we have accomplished despite the circumstances from the year 2020. Then it happened: news outlets were reporting what seemed to be more of the same from 2020!  
At that moment, I felt discouraged, deflated, and all of what we accomplished for the year seemed irrelevant, insignificant, and in vain. Shortly after, I heard someone recite a quote they had heard from Van Jones, a CNN political contributor. Weighing in on the events of the day surrounding the certification of votes for the presidential election, Van Jones declared that there are [paraphrasing]
Some things you have to see to believe,
and then there are those things
you have to believe to see.
Upon further research, I discovered that Jones went on to say that amidst all of the pandemonium that we were experiencing, there was favor and goodwill to be experienced. He believed in America and its people. He believed in humanity. In that moment, I reconciled--acknowledging existence of an underlying harmony of things that seem to be vastly inharmonious--with all that has happened, because I, too, believe! I believe that while many of us may find ourselves on the wrong side of history when it is written, the majority of us will have testimonies of perseverance, persistence, and determination. It further reminded me of the infamous “Survival Rule of 3”:

  • You can survive 3 minutes without breathable air.
  • You can survive 3 hours without shelter in a harsh environment.
  • You can survive 3 days without drinkable water.
  • You can survive 3 weeks without food.
Written in this order, we must assume that the prior need has been met to survive the one that follows. Under this same premise, we must ask, then, what need must be met to survive 3 minutes without breathable air?
The answer is HOPE. One of the best expressions of such HOPE is that of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in his “I Have a Dream” speech. Dr. King spoke of HOPE that was seen through the eyes of BELIEF. He believed that peace on earth among all men was possible, and that belief--that hope--fueled his fight and his survival. So, today, I won’t belabor the events of yesteryear--not even with all of the proud accomplishments of SENG throughout the year. Today, I challenge each of you to believe and to hope, and to join SENG as we make forward progress in our belief for not just survival , but success and significance and impact! Join us as we rally a call in 2021 for RENEWAL. REBIRTH. REDEMPTION!!!
 Won’t you please join us this summer for a virtual conference like no other as we, as a community, share collective strategies for affecting significant change. Be an active participant. Submit your proposal TODAY! 
SENG Announcement
New Board Members
The SENG Board of Directors is thrilled to announce our newest directors!
Dr. Karen Arnstein is a graduate of the Morgridge College of Education at the University of Denver where she earned an Ed.D. in Curriculum & Instruction with a Specialization for the Gifted. Dr. Arnstein is a consultant, speaker, and author dedicated to helping teachers and school districts understand how to identify and provide a strengths-based curriculum while simultaneously addressing challenges of twice-exceptional students. She is the co-founder and Director of Technology at Sierra Gifted Educational Services, a non-profit dedicated to bringing enrichment opportunities and resources to gifted and twice-exceptional students.

Dr. Arnstein teaches graduate courses in education to pre-service teachers at the University of Redlands. Her involvement with SENG began when her twice-exceptional son was only 5 years old. She is a strong advocate for SENG while discovering new challenges parenting a twice-exceptional teenager. She and her family reside in Southern California.
Gayle Brady is the SENG Board’s International Members Representative and has over 25 years of professional experience in education. She began her career as a teacher and now serves as a counsellor and coordinator for gifted students at École Gabrielle-Roy (EGR), a K-12 francophone school in British Columbia’s lower mainland.

Gayle enjoys assisting and collaborating with both students and colleagues to navigate the social, emotional, intellectual, and physical challenges gifted students and their families experience at school and home.  
Adam Laningham has over 20 years of experience in the field of education. He is the Manager of Gifted & Advanced Academics for Deer Valley Unified School District, a large, diverse school district in the Phoenix area providing a wide range of services to over 5,000 gifted identified students. Adam was recognized as the 2014 Arizona Gifted Teacher of the Year, he has taught at several schools, multiple grade levels and run numerous gifted programs. Adam has served on the Board of Directors for the Arizona Association for Gifted & Talented for many years, and is currently the Arizona SENG Liaison, an international speaker, consultant, and published author. 
Dr. Lin Lim is a graduate of Boston University, where she earned a Ph.D. in human development. She also holds an Academic Graduate Certificate in twice-exceptional education from Bridges Graduate School of Cognitive Diversity in Education, and completing an Academic Graduate Certificate in Mind, Brain and Education from Johns Hopkins University Graduate School of Education. Dr. Lim volunteers for education related non-profits as her community involvement commitment as she journeys through parenting her gifted children. Dr. Lim is a founding board member of the Gifted Education Family Network, a Texas non-profit supporting gifted programming in public education.
Carrie Pokrefke is an Audit Manager for BECU, the nation’s largest Community Credit Union, based in Seattle, Washington. She is an accomplished and experienced leader with over 20 years of experience in financial services as both an internal auditor and as a state and federal regulator. She enjoys building inclusive, high-performing teams through developing and mentoring employees, building relationships, and connecting people.
Carrie was recently selected to BECU’s 2021 Building Inclusion and Leveraging Differences (BILD) Council. She serves on the National Association of Federally-Insured Credit Unions’ (NAFCU) Compliance/BSA/Risk Network Steering Committee and the Northwest Credit Union Association’s (NWCUA) Awards Committee. 
Carrie loves to travel and has achieved her goal of visiting all seven continents. Besides traveling, she is a photographer, drummer, painter, writer, and humanitarian. Carrie enjoys public speaking; In 2020, she presented “Auditing with Emotional Intelligence” to auditors across the Pacific Northwest region. Carrie was also a presenter at the 2020 annual SENG conference. 
She holds a Bachelor of Science in Banking and Finance with a minor in Speech Communication from the University of Southern Mississippi. 
Join Friends of SENG
Friends of SENG is a year-round donor program with some pretty neat benefits. When you make a donation of $25 or more , you'll receive recognition and special discounts on SENG events, programs, and membership!

Listing in annual report
The above, plus
50% discount on membership; social media shout-out
The above, plus
a complimentary membership
The above, plus
1 free online workshop; 2 free SENGinars
The above, plus a
Profiles in Giving feature about you in the SENGVine newsletter and a half page ad in the annual conference program.
Best of all, making a donation to SENG improves the social and emotional well-being of our gifted, talented and twice-exceptional community, and provides resources for families, professionals, and educators.
Feature Article
The Loneliness Of The Highly Gifted
Does this remind you of you? At age 4, you made a plan to help the starving children in Mogadishu. At 5, you made a book about deforestation and the poaching of animals. At age 11, you petitioned to save the elephants of Thailand and at age 15, you won a contest with your essay on human trafficking. People told you, you worried too much. They mocked your passion, and told you to go and have fun like the other kids. But you were determined to speak out and you did not understand why your drive was seen as so unusual.

At 29, you are still struggling with being an outspoken outlier and with how to take action in a world that feels so broken. You have long wished there were more than 24 hours in a day. Your family continues to dismiss your striving as unrealistic or unnecessary. These days you avoid talking with them but you have yet to find a place to belong or a clan of like minds.
You may have found one or more career paths that fed some of your intellectual curiosity for a while or provided for your financial security but did not nourish your soul. Or when you mastered a job’s requirements in the first week, you found your coworkers do not respond with appreciation; while you remained frustrated and unfulfilled.
What is often the experience of the highly (exceptionally, profoundly) gifted is that you can be successful and high achieving in a variety of fields.
Dare I say, at everything you try.

Perhaps you learned to play several musical instruments without the usual hours of practice. And you are now fluent in your fifth language. You remodeled your home without any training or schooling. And you diagnosed your own chronic illness when all of the doctors were stymied. You taught yourself quilting, gourmet cooking, fly tying, stock trading, and chess, in your spare time. Not only that. You may have been like Chris who “took up target shooting at the age of 50, took my brand new air pistol out of its box, fired. Had someone ask me if I’d been in the army, I said no, then they asked how long I’d been shooting, and I replied ‘about 5 minutes since I took this out of its box’.”

Upcoming SENGinars
Living in a world that’s increasingly unpredictable, today’s kids are more anxious than ever before. In this workshop, Dr. Sharon Saline, veteran psychologist and author, discusses the grip of anxiety and what parents and professionals can do to help reduce the worries of 2E kids. After looking at the physiology, psychology and common sources of anxiety, she will show you how to help 2E children and teens change their relationship to worry, realistically evaluate situations and tolerate uncertainty. You’ll learn effective tools to teach them how to calm down, avoid the pitfalls of negative thinking and build lasting resilience.
Sharon Saline, Psy.D., a licensed clinical psychologist with more than 30 years’ experience, is a top expert on ADHD, anxiety, learning differences and mental health challenges and their impact on school and family dynamics. Her unique perspective, a sibling of a child who wrestled with untreated ADHD, combined with decades of academic excellence and clinical experience, assists her in guiding families as they navigate from the confusing maze of diagnoses and conflict to successful interventions and connections. Dr. Saline funnels this expertise into her new book, What Your ADHD Child Wishes You Knew: Working Together to Empower Kids for Success in School and Life. Heralded as an invaluable resource, her book is the recipient of two highly-acclaimed awards: Best Book Awards winner by American Book Fest and the Gold Medal from Moms’ Choice Awards. Dr. Saline is a member of ADDitude Magazine’s ADHD Specialist Panel.

As an internationally sought-after lecturer and workshop facilitator, she combines psychology with her love of theatre to animatedly present on a variety of topics from understanding ADHD, executive functioning and anxiety in children and teens, making sense of the teen brain, working with different kinds of learners and raising digital citizens. A magna cum laude graduate of Brown University, she received her master’s degree in psychology from New College of California and her doctorate in psychology from the California School of Professional Psychology at Alliant University. Dr. Saline is a regular contributor to ADDitude.com and PsychologyToday.com, a featured expert on MASS Appeal on WWLP-TV and a part-time lecturer at the Smith School for Social Work. She lives with her family in Northampton, MA.

As an internationally sought-after lecturer, workshop facilitator, and clinician/educator trainer, she expertly addresses topics ranging from the teen brain to working with different kinds of learners to bullying prevention. A graduate of Brown University, she received her master’s degree in psychology from New College of California and her doctorate in psychology from the California School of Professional Psychology. Sharon lives with her family in Northampton, MA
Gifted individuals are often highly in tune with their environments. As a result, they can pick up on information that may not be evident to somebody less observant than they are. This seminar will introduce some common mechanisms of intuitive information and provide suggestions for self-management and self-care.
Amy Estersohn is an educator and a college adviser. She particularly enjoys helping sensitive  individuals find themselves and appreciate their unusual talents.
SENG is thrilled to announce that we have begun preparing for our 2021 Online Annual Conference!

We invite advocates, educators, entrepreneurs, healthcare providers, individuals, parents, researchers and professionals interested in presenting to this unique community to submit their proposal for consideration on or before Sunday, January 31st, 2021.
Life Lessons for Gifted Students
 by By James A. Reffel, David M. Monetti, and David T. Wasieleski (Valdosta State University).

Life is challenging for gifted students because their thoughts are often considerably more intense and persistent than their age-mates’ (Hebert, 2011). They generally consider and question things that age mates do not.
Talking about Giftedness: The Elephant in the Room
by Nancy M. Robinson, Ph.D.

One of the special advantages of SENG gatherings is the fact that parents and kids can talk about giftedness without fear of being misunderstood, or worse, teased or belittled.