Thanks to Dana for sharing this post:
During the fall semester, I took an elective course called the Nature and Needs of Gifted and Talented Children. Throughout the semester, we took part in book clubs, where we each read different novels that had something to do with giftedness. One of the book club books I read was, The Curious Incident of The Dog In The Night Time by Mark Haddon. In the book, the main character, Christopher, has Asperger’s syndrome and is a genius in certain areas. Because he has a social disability and is also considered to be somewhat of a savant, Christopher is “twice-exceptional.” The book is extremely enjoyable, emotional and powerful, as the reader catches a glimpse into the life of an extraordinary boy who is unable to empathize or understand other people’s thoughts and feelings. Through Christopher’s narration, the reader is able to see his amazing memory, attention to detail, and also, his difficulty to interact with others.
Then during the winter break, I was lucky enough to get tickets to see the Broadway play version of the book, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time. In my opinion, the play was written and produced flawlessly, truly portraying and transforming the book into action. I felt every single emotion possible as I watched Christopher interact with others and the world around him. My favorite part of the play was how Christopher’s special education teacher, Siobhon, partly narrates the story along with Christopher. Siobhon is a caring and thoughtful teacher who fully considers all of Christopher’s needs, abilities and feelings. Christopher’s teacher became somewhat of a role model for me as an educator, as I hope to be as caring, thoughtful and patient with my own students and their diverse needs.
Overall, I highly recommend both the book and the Broadway play to all, especially for educators. It gives a peek into the life of an intelligent boy with certain struggles that he simply cannot help or change. Even if you plan to solely work in general education, I truly believe it is important to consider and think of all students and the individual needs and struggles they may have.