And now class, it’s time for the essay portion of this blog

April 26, 2010 at 9:31 pm (Uncategorized)

As I sit looking at yet another astrology chart, I think of all the childhood moments that made me who I am today.  I think of second grade and my TAG class.  They called us Talented and Gifted, but most days I just feel inept.  I don’t understand why I can make comparative religion charts that extend even to the fields of astrology and tarot but can’t seem to shred old bills.  The mound of reality with which I am unable to deal is immense.  (Please note, however, that my last sentence did not end in a preposition.)

Like most writers, I digress.  TAG members were taken out of class twice a week.  We met in a small room with maybe ten kids and were led by a lady who wore the brightest red lipstick I had ever seen.  I, of course, adored her.  We talked about rainbows, constellations and problem solving.  And while science in not my field, I remember reading the word “refraction” for the first time when I was writing that paper on rainbows.

About six months ago, I started pondering rainbows again.  The context was not scientific but symbolic.  I no longer ponder refraction; I am interested in the rainbow as bridge between worlds.  With its mystical beauty, it draws our eyes to the sky connecting the earthly and spiritual realms, bringing us closer to the divine.  And this association, my friends, is the one I’ve been looking for all along.



  1. Liz E. said,

    I love this way of looking at rainbows as a kind of connective tissue between things. And as a living symbol. So much to consider there.

    Also, you make a really interesting point about the “gifted children” programs. I’m kind of torn in the way I see them. On one hand, it seems like a valuable thing for children to know there’s something extra for them to ponder in the world, beyond the standard curriculum. I know so many people who remember being in TAG-like programs who say it opened up a lot of possibilites for them and made them better students. However, like you said too, it places a label on a child — “You’re gifted.” Now live up to it. How does anyone do that? Great post!

    • athenasden said,

      I love that: “connective tissue”!

      As a writer, it’s always interesting to me how you never know what’s going to resonate with your readers. I had no idea bringing up TAG programs would stimulate so much response.

  2. Joseph Rogers said,

    K. This one I’m gonna have to disagree with. Jack Welch (Former CEO of GE), has a system he implemented called differentiation. It places labels on people, and to a certain extent, I like it.

    Top 20% of your performers are to be lavished with bonuses, raises, praise, etc….it keeps them motivated to continue to perform

    Middle 70% of your people are to receive normal benefits, and the best of them shifted around to see if a position can be found for them in which they can become part of the top 20%

    Bottom 10%? Given warning, and phased out.

    Now, admittedly…this is a corporate environment, and not a school environment. However, telling a child they’re special just because has led to a lot of problems today, and the entitlement syndrome. Don’t get me wrong, I love my son, and nothing would ever change that…but I expect him to live up to the potential he has within him.

  3. David Gillaspie said,

    Double rainbows give a bridge over and a bridge back, though one of the rainbows fades quickly.

    re: TAG: One tag kid, one not. The non-tag graduated high school with honors, the tag kid did not. Sort of a family joke now.

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