Talentweb Newsletter Issue 7


Dear ETSN Family:

The Covid-19 pandemic has directly and indirectly led to creative alternatives to the way we communicate with each other. Despite the difficulties presented by the international response to the corona virus, the ETSN capitalized on opportunities for growth through persistent virtual communication among all of its members. Consider the following two examples in which I am involved.

Example 1: ETSN Council Meeting

Our ETSN Council meetings have always been held offline. Council members are typically very active within the gifted education community, and as a result, there are always opportunities through which to collaborate, for meetings and get-togethers. But these opportunities presented themselves in a rather sporadic fashion, and unfortunately, were not as frequent as would have been desirable. Now we’ve started to hold intensive virtual meetings on the first Thursday of every month. Moreover, there were certainly points of contact between Council members in the past – but these occasions were bilateral. Even if in-person contacts retain a special quality of their own, the regularity and frequency of communication with which the ETSN continues to operate in the face of an international emergency is indeed, a clear indication of progress within the network. For our members, the aforementioned consistency creates special advantages. One such advantage is that concerns and suggestions addressed to the Council can be discussed promptly. Members, please make use of this opportunity for swift communication!

Example 2: Talent Center—Talent Points—Networking

A Southern German Talent Center meeting with ETSN Talent Points had been scheduled for last week, far in advance of the lockdown situation. The meeting was cancelled because of university closures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Instead of in-person contact, we held this meeting virtually. Surprisingly, these virtual meetings spaces have allowed the network and its members to grow closer together and have even spurred several new initiatives. I strongly believe that both our Talent Centers and Talent Points can stand to benefit from such a positive and intimate approach to virtual communication. After all, aren´t virtual meetings and contact points a democratic and promising approach to professional growth and network collaboration?

In light of the rapid changes to our way of life and approach to work, can the two examples captured above illuminate a path for the ETSN’s future development? I think so.

Of course, I remain hopeful that we will soon have the opportunity for real, personal exchange. Nonetheless, to make the best out of a difficult situation, and toward continued and sustainable growth, ETSN members have created new and maneuvered existing opportunities for virtual communication anywhere in the world. As leaders, it is our job to build off of the groundwork that they and others within the field have laid. Thus, together with the ETSN Council, I would like to encourage all Talent Centers and Talent Points to take advantage of the novel situation and employ new communication channels to continue to develop a professional network.  Let us remember the quote by Mary Anne Radmacher: “Even from a dark night, songs of beauty can be born.” Perhaps even in the midst of the darkness caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, new connections and welcomed cooperation will be borne from our efforts.

I encourage you to visit the ETSN map: https://etsn.eu/map-of-etsn/. There, I am certain that you will discover points of contact, moments for collaboration and international cooperation. Before the pandemic, creating physical rather than exclusively digital spaces of opportunity had been unique to the ETSN. Why not go virtual?

Prof. Dr. Dr. Albert Ziegler, Chairman of the ETSN


In this issue:

Talent Point in Action: Wind at the Back

Talent Centers in Action: EGIFT – European Gifted Education Training

Talent Center in Action: CTY Greece

Upcoming Event and Invitation to Collaborate: Hacettepe University Research and Application Center for Gifted Individuals

Collaboration Hub: Become part of a vibrant international community at Global Talent Mentoring!

Talent Point in Focus: Kaveri Gifted Education and Research Center

Upcoming Event: “High Abilities and Giftedness: Shared Responsibilities”, 3-5 December 2020, Braga, Portugal

Talent Point in Action: Faculty of Teacher Training of the Károli Gáspár University of the Reformed Church in Hungary

Upcoming Event: “Closing the Achievement Gaps in Gifted Education”, 2nd ECHA Thematic Conference, March 25-27 2021, Budapest, Hungary

Talent Center in Action: Mawhiba Turns Crisis into Seeds of Opportunity

Talent Point in Action and Invitation to Collaborate: Primary school „Petar Zoranić“

Talent Center in Action: Centro Huerta del Rey

Talent Point in Focus: The Hong Kong Academy for Gifted Education

Talent Point in Action: Primary school Stjepan Radić Bibinje

Invitation for News and Talent Web Contributions

Talentweb Newsletter Issue 6


Jean Paul Sartre once said, “There may be more beautiful times, but this one is ours.” In these weeks during which the corona virus may cost millions of lives, we are painfully aware of how quickly Sartre’s words can ring true.

In the Corona era, the phrase that dominates our daily lives is social distancing. At first glance it seems to be directed against everything our ETSN stands for. After all, our aim is to bring people together and encourage them to cooperate. We stand for levelling distances between people and connecting them. And just as we follow the precept of social distancing and move away from each other, we become aware of what we are losing. To that end, we have become painfully aware that the virus infects not just individuals, but whole societies in the ways we have to live with and around it. The term social distancing conceals the fact that only a joint effort – the joint consensual action of each and every person – is required to piece back together our social networks. In other words, individuals alone cannot defeat the virus; but the spirit of cooperation, the communal effort, the proverbial village certainly can.

Let us therefore regard this sad occasion as an opportunity to learn, so that together we can create hope for shaping the future. I have heard of Talent Points and Talent Centers that can no longer perform their normal activities. Talents cannot attend courses; counseling centers have closed; mentors cannot meet their mentees; some institutions are even temporarily closed. But at the same time, I also observe a resurgence. Several Talent Points and Talent Centers have succeeded in adapting at least some activities to the situation by offering digital learning formats to reach educators, teachers and talents. Mentors are continuing to provide guidance and support by switching to e-mentoring where possible.

Such positive examples inspired calls-to-action from the ETSN Council. As Jean Paul Sartre said “there may be more beautiful times, but this one is ours” and we have to deal with this situation now. Our first request: If you have managed to foster good practice strategies with your Talent Point or Talent Center that you would like to share with the network, we encourage you to submit a report, no-matter how long or short, for our newsletter. Our second request: we encourage you to familiarize yourselves with our ETSN Map: https://etsn.eu/map-of-etsn/. Browse through the list of European Talent Centers, Associated European Talent Centers, European Talent Points and Associated European Talent Points. Maybe you will find a partner for cooperation. What a wonderful occasion that, in these dark times, active cooperation could open the door to something new.

Prof. Dr. Dr. Albert Ziegler, Chairman of the ETSN


In this issue:

Talent Point in Focus: Pfiffikus

Talent Point in Action: Rhetorical games

Inclusive Education: Succesfull Conference at Baroda, India

Talent Center in Action: The importance of Educational Policies

Talent Point in Focus: Friedrich-Schiller-Gymnasium

Talent Center in Focus: Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Centre for Giftedness and Creativity

Upcoming Event: 17th International ECHA Conference 2021,

Research Echoes: A Piece of PISA

The ETSN Youth Platform and Youth Summit Guidelines

Talent Center in Action: The Newsletter of the Tribal Mensa Nurturing Program Associated Talent Center

Upcoming Event: “High Capacities and Giftedness: Shared Responsibilities”, New DATES: 3-5 December 2020, Braga, Portugal

Invitation for News and Talent Web contributions


Talentweb Newsletter Issue 5


A Lesson from Dubai

I had had a memorable experience in Dubai, long before the Hamdan Foundation joined the ETSN as a Talent Center. It was after a long project day that the then director of the National Giftedness Center, Arif Yedaiwi, took me for a walk along the beach near the Burj al Arab, the famous hotel shaped like a sail. Suddenly, we were approached by two uniformed police officers who asked Arif to put on beach clothes for the occasion, and informed him that he could not wear traditional clothes – the Kandura – on the beach. Arif was shocked that he was forbidden to wear a Kandura like all his forefathers had before him, here on the beach. The rest of the story I know only from his accounts, and I will share it with you here, as I remember it.

In Dubai, the locals have the right to bring complaints to the king, His Highness Sheik Muhammed, personally, which Arif did do. The king promised to take care of it.

Two weeks later Arif was back with His Highness, and was informed that the order came from the Minister of Tourism. At the time and in the aftermath of September 11, tourists were still afraid of terrorists; and they had complained. Apart from this new information, however, the king did not offer any solution.

Arif left, but returned the following Sunday with some friends. He was no longer alone. Together, they told the king that they considered the Minister of Tourism’s decision very unfortunate. The friends asked the king to reconsider the Ministry of Tourism’s decision.

Weeks later, and still nothing had happened. Arif and his friends came back to the Sheik. But this time there were other friends with them, including members of powerful families. Now it was no longer so easy for the king to wait-and-see. His Highness promised a meeting with the Minister of Tourism.

Before the meeting with the Minister of Tourism had even taken place, Arif had the support of many friends. Most of our readers will not be surprised to find out that, nowadays, if you walk along the beach by the Burj al Arab, you will likely see locals in their traditional Kandura.  What can we learn from this? Sure, Arif is a powerful person in Dubai, but he alone was not influential enough to change anything. Rather, when he created a network for his cause, even the king could not help but support him.

So, my appeal goes out to everyone: Let’s try to expand our network, too. To become even stronger and more influential. Each further Talent Point and each further Talent Center brings us one big step closer to our goals.

If you know someone who would like to join the ETSN as a Talent Center, please bring the following link to their attention: https://etsn.eu/apply-to-become-a-talent-centre/

If you know anyone interested in joining ETSN as a Talent Point, please direct them to https://etsn.eu/apply-to-join-etsn/

Welcome to our growing ETSN family! Prof. Dr. Dr. Albert Ziegler, Chairman of the ETSN


In this issue:

Talent Point in Focus: Mully Children’s Family Associated Talent Point

Talent Point in Action: Children Access to Play at School

Talent Point in Action: Creating Equal Opportunities in Education by means of Academic Language

Talent Point in Action: Talent Support through Tales and Drama

Talent Point in Action: Psychico College Elementary School

Upcoming Events: ECHA 2020 (Sept. 9-12 2020, Porto) – Abstract submission is now open

Research Echoes – Embodied Cognition and Gifted Education

Talent Center in Action: International Research Project in Jesenik

Talent Center in Action: Mawhiba signs a letter of intent with UNESCO

Upcoming Events: 43rd Confratute, July 12-17 2020, University of Connecticut

Upcoming Events: ECHA Thematic Conference 2021

Research Echoes: Wide range of materials on the Schoolwide Enrichment Model

Research Echoes: Why Do Gifted and Able Students Need to Learn to Think about the Future?

Talent Point in Action: National Logic Competition in Slovenia


TalentWeb Newsletter Issue 4


I am particularly pleased to start this ETSN newsletter with a joyful message. Our network has been registered as an international NGO in the Netherlands. This gives us several new possibilities to push our cause forward. For example, we can now officially apply for funding.
Registration was a lengthy process. The Council had previously explored the conditions in various countries, including Germany, Hungary and Ireland. Many aspects had to be considered. For example, it would have been advantageous to choose an English-speaking country, as we would now have to file tax returns in that country’s language. Another important consideration was that in some countries there were rules that required the Council to have a member of the country. Another exclusion criterion was how often a General Assembly had to be held and how many members had to be present. I would like to express my heartfelt thanks to various people for the fact that it has finally worked out.

My first thanks on behalf of the ETSN Council go to Prof. Peter Csermely, President of ECHA. It was he who had the visionary idea of founding an association of institutions committed to the common idea of promoting talent. I would also like to thank Desirée Houkema, Lianne Hoogeveen and Colm O’Reilly for their special commitment to the registration of ETSN and first and foremost Csilla Fuszek for her tireless efforts.
Thank you very much! You have played a decisive role in making ETSN another important step forward.

Another very positive news is that our network is constantly growing. Two more talent centres have joined us since our last newsletter. A warm welcome to the Varazdin Talent Center in Croatia and the Mawhiba Talent Center in Saudi Arabia. I would like to conclude my introductory remarks with a recommendation. The 1st Thematic ECHA Conference will take place between 16 and 18 October 2019 in Dubrovnik, Croatia.
The conference topic is “Creativity Research & Innovation in Gifted Education: Social, Individual, and Educational Perspective” (https://echathematic2019.info/).

Željko Rački, (Chair of the Conference) and I hope to see you all in Dubrovnik!

Albert Ziegler, Chairman ETSN
In this issue:

Talent Point in Focus: Klikeraj

Talent Center in Action: CTY Greece

Talent point in Focus and Invitation to Collaborate: Babits

Talent Point in Action: Benka

Recent and Upcoming Events at Talent Point “Lernen mit Brausewetter”

Upcoming Events: Judit Polgar calls 20.000 children to play chess aiming to a new world record

Talent Point in Focus: Athens College Elementary School

Talent Point in Focus: Developmental and Educational Psychology Department, Universidad de Malaga, Spain.

Invitation for contributions and relevant form

TalentWeb Newsletter Issue 3


The European Talent Support Network (ETSN) is an umbrella organization for around 400 institutions dedicated to the common objective of talent development. However, the range of these institutions is gigantic. They vary with regard to:

  • Size (from just a few members to tens of thousands of members);
  • Expertise in talent development and gifted education (from layperson associations to specialized researched institutions and counseling centers);
  • Focus (talent development as the only aim versus talent development as one aim among many others),
  • Connectivity (rather isolated institutions with no experience in advocacy versus highly politically active organizations with a number of coalitions in talent development).

Continue reading “TalentWeb Newsletter Issue 3”

TalentWeb Newsletter Issue 2

Words from the Chairman

One of the most influential ideas of the entire European culture and intellectual history was Descartes’s cogito, ergo sum (“I think therefore I am”). In gifted education, we still feel its enduring resonance in concepts of giftedness that are top heavy and that neglect humans’ non-cognitive side. In the age of networks and gifted advocacy, however, an updated version of Descartes’s Cogito would be, “I am seen, therefore I am.” More recently, at least within the context of high ability studies, this proposition has evolved: “We are seen, therefore we are.” Continue reading “TalentWeb Newsletter Issue 2”

TalentWeb Newsletter Issue 1


It is with great pleasure that I deliver the introductory remarks for the first edition of the European Talent Support Network’s newsletter on behalf of its Council members Fuszek Csilla (Secretary), Colm O’Reilly (Treasurer), Mojca Juriševič, and Antonios Apostolou. First and foremost, I would like to thank them for their outstanding commitment to their offices. The tremendous progress that the ETSN has made over the last year would not have been possible without the dedicated contributions of its council members. I would like to highlight some of these accomplishments, starting with the most obvious feat: the launch of TalentWeb, the ETSN newsletter. I am thrilled to have won Antonios Apostolou over, and I wish him success in his new role as TalentWeb Editor. Continue reading “TalentWeb Newsletter Issue 1”