An 8-week group coaching program for parents
Parenting your Intense gifted kid
Do you want to feel more confident raising your intense gifted or twice-exceptional kid?
Perhaps this resonates with you...
You know your kid or teen is awesome. They’re smart, funny, creative, and caring. But they also have big, intense feelings that overwhelm them.
Your kid seems more passionate than their peers - they’re the one who throws a tantrum at soccer, storms out of the room when corrected, or bursts into tears at school when something doesn’t go their way.
Your kid loves to learn, but they hate the feeling of not knowing something. If learning feels too hard or they make a mistake, they may cry, rip up their work, or refuse to participate.
Your kid is hard on themselves - really hard. Even though they’re bright and talented, they call themselves stupid, say they’re the worst in the world, say they hate themselves, or wonder why they’re so different from their peers.
Once your kid is having a big feeling, it’s hard to get them out of it. You’ve tried reassuring them, reasoning with them, talking them through it, being understanding - nothing seems to help.
You’re worried your child’s perfectionism will erode their love of learning and that their big feelings will drive away friends.
You’ve read a lot of parenting books and tried to implement the strategies, but your kid seems to run on a different operating system - nothing you’ve tried has been quite right.
Sometimes you worry you’re too lenient with your child and they’ll never learn to function in the “real world.” But other times you worry you’re too strict or that your child is developing some shame about their big feelings.
You're ready for a new approach...
You want to feel more confident and connected even when your kid is melting down or acting out.
You’re craving clear principles and practical strategies to guide you during tough moments.
You've maxed out general parenting advice and want ideas from someone who understands gifted and twice-exceptional kids like yours.
You're ready for a new framework to support your bright, passionate kid - so you can feel more confident they’re exactly where they need to be.
Imagine if you could...
Understand giftedness so you know what your child needs to thrive
Stay more calm and collected in the face of your child’s big feelings
Channel your child’s intensity into one of their greatest strengths
Nurture your child’s talents while also supporting their challenges
Encourage your child’s resilience in tough moments
Build a strategy list and support system tailored to your child and your family
Tap into your strengths as a parent, even when things are tense
I designed Parenting Your Intense Gifted Kid
to help you reach these goals.
What is Parenting Your Intense Gifted Kid?
An 8-week group coaching program designed to build parents' confidence
Each interactive lab meeting is 90 minutes long. I’ll introduce new information about giftedness & new principles and strategies to support your child and your parenting. You’ll use a journal or computer document to respond to carefully crafted prompts, adapt strategies to your family, reflect on your experiences, collect helpful ideas, & make a plan to try out new strategies. During each lab meeting we'll have time for Q&A and small-group coaching.
Learn about giftedness so you understand what your kid needs to thrive.
Learn new strategies that are grounded in research and effective for gifted kids.
Personalize and adapt ideas to your unique family situation through guided activities, live Q&A, and interactive small-group coaching. Get support directly from me - I'll answer your questions and help you adapt strategies as needed.
Reflect on your preferences, strengths, and challenges to celebrate successes and generate solutions for tricky situations.
Connect with other parents who are equally passionate about supporting their own smart, sensitive kids.
Apply & observe
Between our weekly lab meetings, you’ll apply what you’ve learned to see what works best for you and your family. Parenting is complex and each kid and family are different. The learning lab process is all about learning new ideas, adapting ideas to your unique situation, trying new approaches at home, observing results, reflecting on what happened, & adapting as needed until you find what works for you.
Put your plan into action - use the plan you made during the lab meeting to try out new principles and strategies at home.
Observe & reflect to see what works for your kid, your parenting style, and your current situation.
Repeat this process to find what works for you and your family.
Support between meetings
As questions arise between meetings, you have two options for support: office hours and the group network.
Office hours: I'll answer questions live for 60 minutes during office hours on Fridays. If you can't attend, don't worry - you'll have access to the recordings for six months.
The group network: In a private online group network, you can share challenges, successes, and questions with your fellow labmates. You can also post questions for me in our group network and I will post a video answering posted questions once per week.
Get more support directly from me, your parenting coach - I'll answer your questions and help you adapt strategies or problem-solve as needed.
Connect more with other parents as you share challenges, success, and questions.
Adapt & Plan
Observe & Reflect
By the end of 8 weeks, you’ll have:
A new framework to understand your intense gifted kid
A list of strategies designed to support gifted kids with big feelings
A developing sense of which strategies work best for your family, in what situations, and with what adaptations
A plan to support your child and yourself in the year ahead
Here's a summary of what we'll do each week
Week 1: Understanding Gifted & Twice-Exceptional Intensity
You’ll learn a clear, simple framework to understand your child’s big feelings and how their intensity relates to their giftedness. You’ll uncover how your child’s apparent intensities are related to some of their biggest strengths. If you’ve researched giftedness or twice-exceptionality for hours and still have questions, this is the week when you finally get a clearer picture.
Week 2: Responding to Big Emotions
You’ll learn a 3-step process you can use when your bright kid has big feelings. This process can help you stay calmer during emotional moments and help your child feel seen while also maintaining boundaries and rules. The strategies you learn this week are some of the biggest keys to a calmer family life, so you can start putting them to work right away.
Week 3: Expanding Strengths
Gifted folks thrive when they’re engaged in one of their strengths or talents, but big feelings and disruptive behaviors often distract from kids’ strengths. You’ll explore some creative, new ways to expand and leverage your child’s strengths - because focusing on strengths can reduce meltdowns and improve mood, relationships, and behavior.
Week 4: Supporting Challenges by Embracing Neurodiversity
This week, we’ll discuss common misunderstandings of gifted kids and problematic paradigms that reinforce these ideas. We’ll discuss how you can support your child’s challenges with an approach that affirms neurodiversity and helps your child develop a realistic, positive identity.
Week 5: Crafting Better-Fit Learning
Typical school practices often aren’t a great fit for bright, passionate kids. This week, you’ll learn common educational “fit” problems for gifted students and some potential solutions, such as acceleration, assistive technology, 504 and IEP plans, or collaboration with school. I’ll tailor the specific content to each group’s questions, with extra time for Q&A.
Week 6: Encouraging Resilience
If your child gets overwhelmed by setbacks and disappointments, you’re not alone! This week you’ll learn tips and strategies based on motivation research to support your child’s engagement and resilience. We’ll review common de-motivating messages to avoid and more motivating messages to use instead.
Week 7: Building a Support System
Raising a bright, passionate gifted kid takes a village - tailored to your child’s strengths and needs and to your family’s style and resources. This week, you’ll explore new ways to find your people, build a support system, and feel less alone in your parenting journey.
Week 8: Making a Plan
You’ll reflect on your learning lab experience and identify your key-takeaways. You’ll identify your biggest wins and favorite new strategies. Then I’ll lead you through a process to set goals for the coming year and craft a clear, actionable plan to reach your goals.
Meet your coach
Hi, I’m Danika. I’m passionate about helping families understand and nurture their gifted and twice-exceptional kids.
As a teacher and therapist, I’ve always been drawn to bright, passionate kids who struggled at school or home or who were misunderstood because of their big feelings, behaviors, or learning challenges.
As a parent coach at The Gifted Learning Lab, I have a unique approach to supporting parents that's rooted in research as well as my 12+ years helping gifted kids and their families thrive. It's also inspired by my personal experiences growing up gifted and parenting a young gifted child.
I believe all kids can thrive when there's a good fit between their characteristics and their environment. To craft this fit for intense or sensitive gifted kids, parents need to know how they work and what they need.
That's why I started the Gifted Learning Lab - all parents of gifted kids deserve information and support designed just for them, so they can feel confident and thrive right alongside their child.
This learning lab is for you if...
You think your kid is awesome - a truly creative, fun, and likable person - yet you’re at your wit’s end about handling their behavior or supporting their big feelings
You know you’re a great parent with a lot of strengths - even though you don’t feel as confident yet about handling your kid’s intense feelings and behaviors
You’re curious about different approaches to parenting and ready to try new parenting techniques
You’re comfortable reflecting on your own feelings, thoughts, and identity as a parent - in fact, you sometimes even enjoy this or find it validating
You want to learn and make brave changes alongside other thoughtful parents who understand the joys and challenges of a bright, passionate kid
This learning lab is NOT for you if...
You have a hard time naming your child’s strengths or your strengths as a parent - everything about parenting your bright, passionate kid feels really tough right now
You want to reign in your child’s big feelings and behaviors without looking closely at your own feelings and behaviors as a parent
You don’t have the bandwidth right now to try new parenting techniques and strategies
You’re not very confident your child is gifted - if that’s the case, the strategies in this program won’t be a great fit
Want to join Parenting Your Intense Gifted Kid, our 8-week group coaching program?
Here's how it works.
Right now, you can sign up for the waitlist to be the first to know when registration opens - click the "Put me on the list" button to the left.
If you sign up for the list, you’ll get an email to let you know when registration is open.
If you're still interested, you'll register and pay.
You’ll fill out a brief questionnaire to make sure the group coaching program is a good fit. If I don’t think it’s a good fit, I’ll tell you why and refund your money.
You’ll do some work before the first meeting to reflect on your situation and goals.
We’ll have weekly small-group lab meetings on Zoom. Each lab meeting will be 90 minutes long and will include presentations from me; guided journaling, reflection, or planning; time for Q&A; and small-group coaching.
Each lab meeting will be recorded and you’ll have access to the recordings for six months after the program ends.
Between meetings, you’ll adapt & apply the ideas and strategies you learned during each lab meeting to see what works for you, your child, and your home.
You’ll have access to your small lab group in a private network to connect, commiserate, ask questions, and share successes.
I will host a live 6-minute Q&A group coaching session on Fridays, where you can get more support applying ideas to your specific situation or problem-solving tricky situations.
If you can't make it to the live Q&A, you can post questions for me in your group’s private network and I will post a Lab Q&A video replying to questions once each week.
You keep a copy of my presentations and reflection prompts forever.
The weekly 90-minute learning lab meetings with Danika Maddocks will be on Tuesdays from 11:30am to 1pm CST. Live office hours will be on Fridays from 10am to 11am CST.
The lab meeting dates for the next round are:
Live office hours are on Fridays, September 30 through November 18.
Registration is currently closed. Put your name on the waitlist to be the first to know when registration opens.
The cost of the entire 8-week program, including a copy of Danika's presentations and reflection prompts, is $1925.
A payment plan is available for no extra fee.
Once registration opens and you've made your payment, you'll fill out a short questionnaire about yourself, your child, and your parenting goals. If I have any concerns the program might not be a great fit, I'll let you know as soon as possible and refund your payment if it turns out the program is not the right fit.
Interested? Get on the waitlist and be the first to know when registration opens.
When you sign up for the waitlist, I'll also send you Gifted Lab Notes, my weekly email. You can unsubscribe easily at any time.
Have more questions about the group coaching program and whether it's a good fit for you?
See the Frequently Asked Questions below. If your questions aren't addressed below, contact Danika at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is this learning lab relevant for me if I have an intense gifted preschooler? An intense gifted teenager?
This program is designed for parents of intense gifted kids ages 2-18. The key principles you’ll learn are relevant throughout the lifespan - so if you’re a grown-up gifted kid, you may even use some of them to support yourself. Based on my background in child development, I’ll give examples about how to adapt the strategies for different ages. You can continue to use the strategies for years to come.
Does my child or teen need to be officially identified as gifted for me to participate in the learning lab?
Your child does not have to be officially identified as gifted, as long as you strongly suspect your child is cognitively gifted or advanced.
If your child isn’t officially identified as gifted, please read these gifted characteristics listed by the National Associated for Gifted Children or this list of behaviors common among gifted children during early childhood. Not all gifted children exhibit all these characteristics, but you’ll want to make sure that some of these descriptions resonate, or the strategies in this program won’t be a great fit.
If you have any questions about whether the learning lab is a good fit, please contact me directly at email@example.com to set up a time to chat.
I’ve already read a lot of books and articles and listened to a lot of podcasts about gifted kids, intense kids, or parenting. What’s different about the group coaching in the learning lab?
There is an overwhelming amount of information about giftedness, intensity, and parenting on the internet, in parenting books, and on podcasts. You could spend hours reading or listening (which perhaps you already have!) yet still not get clear answers to your most pressing questions, like how to help your child with their big feelings or what expectations are appropriate.
During our group coaching meetings, I’ll guide you through an organized process to understand your child better, craft a plan for your family, and reflect on what works and what doesn’t. I’ve used my background in giftedness, twice-exceptionality, education, parenting, and motivation to distill tons of information into a manageable set of guiding principles and strategies.
The step-by-step learning lab process helps you approach your parenting in an organized way that can feel calming and grounding after months or years of stressful research alone.
A second critical part of the group coaching experience is the opportunity to adapt ideas and strategies to your specific parenting situation and your unique child. One of the most frustrating parts about learning parenting ideas from the internet, books, or podcasts is that it's not always clear how to use the ideas in your life, or how to adapt them so they'll work. During group coaching and live Q&A sessions, you'll get help applying the program's content to your actual parenting situations and questions.
A third big difference is that my approach is grounded in science and clinical experience. While there is a ton of helpful information about giftedness on the internet, there is also a lot of potentially misleading, inaccurate, and unhelpful information.
In this program, I let you know which frameworks and strategies are based on trustworthy research, and I tell you which strategies come from my experience as a teacher, psychologist, consultant, and parent. To the best of my ability, I’ll let you know when there is no good research about a certain area. I’ll let you know which common ideas about giftedness are unsupported by evidence or potentially harmful. And I’ll give you a new framework for understanding your gifted kid that views giftedness in terms of strengths and neurodiversity.
Is this program therapy?
No, this group coaching program is not therapy and is not a substitute for therapy or a professional relationship with a licensed mental health professional. During group coaching lab meetings, you'll reflect privately on your own experiences, strengths, and challenges - but we won't spend time exploring any participant's personal psychology in depth with the group or with me.
If you or your child are already participating in therapy services, this group coaching program can be a great complement to your personal therapy work because it will give you a gifted-specific framework to understand your child and improve your family dynamics.
If at any point during the group coaching program you realize that your own or your child's anxiety, sadness, history of trauma and stress, or other mental health challenges are affecting your ability to use the new information and strategies you're learning, I'd encourage you to seek out therapy services to get additional personalized support.
What if I have some issues with the terms “gifted” or "twice-exceptional"?
You don’t have to be completely comfortable with the labels “gifted” or “twice-exceptional” to benefit from this program, as long as you see your child as bright or as intellectually/academically advanced. During this program, you’ll get a chance to understand giftedness in a new way and learn more about what giftedness means for your child.
The term “gifted” has a complicated and problematic history. Historically, IQ testing and gifted programs have been used to support eugenics, racial stereotypes, and inequities. Yet some children from all races, ethnicities, and socioeconomic situations are unusually bright and advanced.
My view of giftedness is this: giftedness isn’t about being better, it’s about being different. And I believe it’s important to acknowledge when a child is bright or gifted because we have to understand a child accurately to support them well. For gifted kids, knowing they’re gifted helps us make a better fit between their environments and their unique characteristics.
If you don’t believe that gifted or high-ability children sometimes think and process the world differently than typically developing children, this program probably won’t be a good match.
What if I have some issues with the word “intense”?
If the descriptions above resonate with you, this program will probably be a good fit even if you don't love the word "intense" or if you prefer other words to describe your kid - like passionate, energetic, sensitive, assertive, independent, or curious.
I chose the word "intense" because it resonates with many parents whose gifted kids who feel deeply, think deeply, and notice things that others don't. In this program, we'll look at "intensity" in a new way to highlight your child's strengths and help you identify successful strategies to support them.
I think "intense" can be a useful shorthand, but it doesn't capture all the nuance and individuality of a child's strong feelings, thoughts, or behaviors. In fact, I wrote a brief article about the word "intense" - how it can be validating or invalidating, depending on how it's used. I also list some other ways to describe apparent "intensity." Check it out here if you're interested.
My intense gifted child is autistic, has ADHD, or has a learning disability like dyslexia. Is this program designed for families like ours?
Absolutely. Parenting Your Intense Gifted Kid was designed with twice-exceptional kids in mind and all of the approaches you'll learn in this group coaching program are neurodiversity-affirming and appropriate for twice-exceptional kids. We also spend significant time helping participants adapt the principles and strategies to their specific child's neurotype, personality, interests, and other characteristics. I have a lot of experience supporting families of intense gifted kids who are autistic, have ADHD, and have learning disabilities or sensory sensitivities - as well as supporting the kids themselves. I am continually learning about neurodiversity-affirming approaches to parenting and coaching as well as the lived experiences of neurodiverse folks of all kinds.
What’s the refund policy?
This is an all-in investment. There are no refunds after lab meetings have begun. You’ll be learning a new framework to help you understand your child better, feel calmer as a parent, and bolster your support systems. The 8-week group coaching experience walks you through this framework and gives you the tools you need to make real, lasting changes in your parenting and your family. This is vulnerable, exciting work. I want you to be fully invested in the process so you can get the most out of what the learning lab has to offer. With this policy, you’ll know that your labmates are as invested in the process as you are.