Years ago, while on the playground with a group of my students, a distant rumble caught my attention. The ten-year-old standing next to me blurted out, “Oh, that’s a Cessna 172 up there.” How did he know? “Because of the easy giveaways,” Evan quickly replied, “the single front engine, tail shape, and wing style and placement.”
How had he noticed all that with just a quick upward glance? I later found out that Evan (as I’ll call him here) had been fascinated by flight since his toddler days, and was the proud builder of an amazing collection of model planes.
But in school that same child was struggling to keep up with assignments. Often, Evan appeared to be daydreaming. He frequently neglected math and spelling homework, which he claimed were just too “boring.” How is it possible that such a gifted student, who in conversation was a walking encyclopedia of flight mechanics, did not thrive academically?