Nearly everyone out there has had someone tell you to sit up or stand up straight. That’s not the kind of posture we’re addressing this week. Posturing is behavior that is intended to impress or mislead. Very few of us have never postured. We see it in our school the most with students who are not highly gifted. The gifted kids don’t have to posture because they are good at many things. Just about anything they try, they are going to make a decent showing. The ones who posture the most in my school are the ones who cannot compete academically. These students often excel at sports or talents or fashion or something similar. Because they cannot swing the best grades in the room, they posture to impress (not to mislead).
Because I know this is going to happen, I try to build many activities in my program that allow rewarding of that posturing. I do not want someone who is not technically “gifted” to think he/she is not, in fact, talented. Talented people get work just as often as gifted people.
If you have multiple children, posturing is occurring in your home. You’re going to need to check yourself to make sure you are not only rewarding academics. In the same vein, your gifted child will begin posturing if your praise goes to the talented child.
I know that the definition of posturing seems derogatory. I don’t think it is, though. I think posturing is simply a person’s way of saying, “I have value, too.” If you have a child who seeks to impress quite a bit, you might have a child who cannot tell you are proud of him. Do your best to praise each child for his special abilities rather than comparing one to the other.
Now, I cannot help you if you have the posturing child who does it to mislead. Smart kids come from smart parents, though, so don’t accept “buttering up.” The chances are high that the child is leading you away from the truth! You’ll just have to learn his “tell,” and keep him on the high road!