Twice-exceptional or 2e children are those who are both gifted and have a learning difference. Because they are gifted, they are far beyond their peers in at least some academic areas. Because they have a learning difference, they lag behind their peers in at least one area. These learning differences can be challenges such as dysgraphia, dyslexia, ADHD, sensory issues, etc.
(I have an entire page dedicated to my many posts about gifted/2e children. I encourage you to check out that page as well.)
2e Children and Asynchronous Development
The combination of being advanced in some areas and struggling in others leads to asynchronous development. This is the seven year old child who might read like a teenager, do math like a fifth grader, play like a seven year old and have the emotional intelligence of a four year old. Or it might be a ten year old who speaks like an adult, does math like a high school student, struggles with age-appropriate reading comprehension, and plays like a seven year old. The combinations are nearly endless. In each case, the child is out of sync developmentally which can lead to significant struggles educationally and emotionally.
There are some who believe 2e children “could be considered the most misunderstood of all exceptionalities.”
Parenting a Twice Exceptional or 2e Child
Being the parent of a 2e child is challenging. This is true whether your child is in public school, private school, or you homeschool. When you have a child who does not fit the “normal” parameters in an educational setting, it can be overwhelming for everyone involved.
But being the parent of a 2e child is fun once you get a grip on what your child needs and how to meet those needs! As the speakers in the videos below point out, 2e children are delightful! They are clever problem solvers with sophisticated language and a wicked good sense of humor. They have an insatiable curiosity! When you can begin to channel all of those unique personal traits in positive directions, they add so much richness to life!
I’ve put together this page for parents of 2e children. It is geared toward helping parents find resources that will help them understand their child and his/her unique needs. If I could share two things that I have learned in my journey so far it would be these.
1. Find people who understand.
Don’t do this alone. Find a Facebook group. Find a local group. Find a Yahoo mailing list. Find a forum. Find a group of people who understand what it means to parent a 2e child. Other people simply will not fully grasp how this impacts your life. You absolutely need to know you are not alone or a parenting failure.
Your child is more challenging to parent. Find people who understand and will support you.
2. Don’t look for the silver bullet that is going to solve everything.
This is a long journey, not a quick fix. Early on in parenting I kept thinking if I could just figure out what the “thing” was that we were missing we could get on with “normal” parenting.
If you have a 2e child, your life is not going to be like the lives of your friends and family members who have neurotypical children. It’s just not.
Embrace the child and life you have been given and determine to enjoy the journey ahead!
Creating a Cozy Life for a Twice Exceptional Child
My site is centered on the idea of creating a cozy life filled with peace, understanding, and joy. I believe the need for a life filled with peace, understanding, and joy is ESPECIALLY true for twice exceptional kids. Home may very well be the only place in their life where life can make sense.
These three posts are foundational to what I do here and each one builds on the others. Each post has a unique free download that will encourage you. Even if you don’t homeschool and don’t plan to homeschool, I believe each one will help you think through how to create a home life that best supports your twice exceptional child and his/her needs.
- Creating a Cozy Life – Getting Started
- Creating a Cozy Homeschool
- Why Differently Wired Children Need a Cozy Life
Please remember the inclusion of a book, website, or link is not an endorsement of all the content.
Books About Twice-Exceptional Children
There are a number of helpful books about twice exceptional children. They are a completely different kind of child in the most amazing way. No one can write a book that will cover every twice exceptional combination, but these books will give you some good places to start in terms of understanding your child.
Books That Provide an Overview of Twice Exceptional Children
The first step is simply being able to put a name to it. Twice-exceptional brings it all together.
Books About Twice Exceptional Children and Learning
Twice-exceptional kids face a lot of challenges when it comes to learning. They may be gifted, but that is often masked by the difficulties they struggle with all the time. Most teachers have no idea of twice-exceptionality, how to identify it, and how to work with it. If you are trying to partner with your child’s teacher and school to make it work, these books will help you advocate for your child’s needs. But be aware. You are going to probably face an uphill battle. Helping twice-exceptional kids succeed in a traditional school environment will take a lot of work on your part.
Books About Homeschooling the Twice Exceptional Child
Many parents with a 2e child end up opting for homeschooling. Many of them are people who never in a million years envisioned themselves as homeschoolers. Until they had their child. While not every parent will choose to homeschool, most parents of 2e kids that I’ve interacted with have indicated that homeschooling was infinitely easier than the stress of advocating on behalf of their child and trying to make their differently wired child fit into a school system that is designed all wrong for 2e kids.
My Posts Related to 2e Parenting
I’ve written many posts related to parenting our daughter. These are my posts that deal primarily with 2e or in which her twice exceptional traits significantly impacted some area of our life. I have many other posts that deal with giftedness in general and those will be found here.
Understanding Our Daughter is Twice-Exceptional
- The Key Was Understanding Twice-Exceptional (2e) – Sallie’s Story
- Embracing the Journey of Parenting a 2e Child
- Adjusting Expectations as the Parent of a Gifted Child
- When You Begin to See Your Child as a Problem to Be Solved
- The Need for More Margin in Families with Gifted Children
Our Experience with Professional Testing
- Occupational Therapy for Dysgraphia or Writing Problems
- Should I Have My Gifted Child Tested?
- No One Understands Your Child Like You – The Downside of Gifted Child Testing
Homeschooling a Twice-Exceptional Child
- Gifted Children in the Classroom from a Teacher’s Perspective
- 100 Reasons to Homeschool Your Gifted Daughter
- When Homeschooling is Hard – The Day I Called the Public Elementary School
- The Loneliness of Homeschooling a Gifted Child
- Classical Conversations Negatives and Why We Didn’t Join
- Homeschooling a Gifted/2e Visual-Spatial Learner
Christian Parenting with a 2e Child
Having a 2e child made us rethink everything we thought we believed about Christian parenting. While some of our beliefs and views did not change, we did change in other ways. My faith runs thought many of my posts about parenting and homeschooling, but these posts are specific to wrestling with the best way to raise our daughter in the Christian faith while also being respectful of who God created her to be.
- Raising Gifted Children in the Christian Faith
- Thinking about Gifted/2e from a Christian Perspective
- Discipling Gifted and 2e Children in the Christian Faith
- Gifted and 2e Children at Church
- Gifted and 2e Children Asking Hard Spiritual Questions
- Children Who Struggle with Church (An Update)
- Discipling Children in Christ Outside the Box
- Gifted Children Who Don’t Fit Grade Level Parameters
Games for 2e Families
Games are a powerful way for twice-exceptional kids to learn. Our daughter especially benefited from Spot It! due to the individual issues she has. All of these games offer valuable skills for 2e kids depending on their specific needs.
Articles and Blog Posts About 2e
These are articles and blog posts written by other authors.
Defining and Describing Twice-Exceptional
- Twice Exceptional on Wikipedia
- What is 2e? from 2enewsletter
- Twice-Exceptional Kids: Both Gifted and Challenged from Child Mind Institute
- Twice-Exceptional Children from National Association of Gifted Children
- Is my Child 2E or Twice Exceptional? [The Ultimate Guide] from Seth Perler
- 7 Myths About Twice-Exceptional (2E) Students from Understood
- An Expert’s Guide to Understanding Twice-Exceptional Children from Noodle
- The Six Types of Gifted Child: The Twice-exceptional from Jade Ann Rivera
- Darn Those Mythological Gifted Kids Who Are a Construct of Our Social Norms from Gluten-Free Mum
- What’s It Like to be Twice Exceptional? from Inspired Attention
- Dual/2e from GiftedKids.ie
- Is Your Child Twice Exceptional? 4 Simple Ways to See It, and Why You Absolutely Need To Know from Not So Formulaic
- Asynchronous Development and the Gifted Child from My Little Poppies
- Asynchronous Development in Gifted Children from Raising Lifelong Learners
- Anxiety and Giftedness. What is the reality? from Up Parenting Creek
- The Affective Side: Emotional Issues of Twice Exceptional Students from SENG
- Gifted Visual-Spatial Learners are Twice-Neglected from Crushing Tall Poppies
- LEGO® and the Gifted Visual-Spatial Child from Crushing Tall Poppies
Homeschooling 2e Kids
- Our Journey : Unexpectedly Homeschooling a Twice Exceptional Child from Secular, Eclectic, Academic (SEA) Homeschoolers
- Homeschooling the Twice-Exceptional Student – There Will Be Gaps and That’s OK from Secular, Eclectic, Academic (SEA) Homeschoolers
- Yes, Your 2E Child Should Be Homeschooled from Simplify 4 You
- Homeschooling Twice Exceptional Kids from Raising Lifelong Learners
Miscellaneous Twice-Exceptional Articles
- She Brought Me Peanut Butter and Banana: The Gift of Twice Exceptional Children from Not So Formulaic
- The Twice Exceptional Movement: Supporting Bright and Creative Students with Learning Difficulties from Scientific American
- Why So Many Gifted Yet Struggling Students Are Hidden In Plain Sight from NPR
- Got a Reluctant Learner? Gifted and High Achieving Aren’t Always the Same Thing from Not So Formulaic
- Special Education and Homeschoolers from Hand in Hand Education
- 5 Tips to Conquer Homework with a 2E Kid from Up Parenting Creek
- In Defense of Perfectionism from Up Parenting Creek
Websites Devoted to Giftedness and 2e
I’ve selected some excellent websites that focus on giftedness and 2e to share here.
Bloggers Who Write About 2e
There are a number of bloggers who write about parenting and/or homeschooling their twice-exceptional child. Here are a few to check out and see if they overlap with your own situation.
- Cait at My Little Poppies
- Celi at Crushing Tall Poppies
- Colleen at Raising Lifelong Learners
- Ginny at Not So Forumlaic
- Jade at Jade Ann Rivera
- Jen at Laughing at Chaos
- Jo at Sprite’s Site
- Kathleen at Gluten-Free Mum
Videos About Twice Exceptional Children
There is something about listening to real people and real experts talk about the blessings and challenges of parenting a 2e child that makes it all seem more real and more “normal” because you realize you aren’t alone.