Building Successful Schools for 2e Children (Part I)

This four-part series will provide a glimpse into what it takes to build and run a successful school for 2e children. It will offer teachers a primer of what 2e students need to thrive, and show parents how they can help or hinder the work of specialized educators. Additionally, it can help medical and therapeutic professionals understand the emotional and social pressures of being 2e. I have worked with 2e children and their families for 20 years, and have created and operated a school for 2e children for the past nine years. This series will celebrate the exceptional abilities, and tackle the most difficult aspects of working with 2e students and their families, through day-in-the-life stories from my school. Stories are how we humans relate to each other, learn from each other, and develop empathy for each other.
Part 1 - Education and Emotional Health
“We need help! There’s trouble in the Zen Room!” (The irony of that statement does not escape me). I hurried into the room to see James menacing our math coach with a pencil. On the floor lay most of the contents of the bookshelves and table. I eased our coach out of the room and faced James, “You’re safe, James, it’s OK.” James threw a pencil at me and grabbed the electric pencil sharpener. As I reached down to unplug it, he pulled out the shavings drawer and flung shavings in my face. Then he grabbed the cord and tried to swing the pencil sharpener at me. As I caught it, his eyes darted around the room for something still within reach. When he realized nothing was left, he pushed a chair against me and tried to crush me between the chair and the wall. Fortunately for me, James was only six, so I didn’t feel particularly threatened, despite the well-aimed pencil shav...


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About Melanie Hayes

Dr. Melanie Hayes has made it her life’s work to help twice-exceptional people find their niche and work to their strengths. To that end, she created Big Minds Unschool, a microschool for 2e children that lets them learn without limits through mentoring and supporting their intellectual, social, and emotional well-being.