“Thank you for making the class so thought-provoking and fun for [my daughter] – she was languishing in traditional school, and we’re so grateful to have access to teachers like [Dr. Karen] through Athena’s who make her come alive in class!” ~Natalie, Athena’s Parent
Dr. Karen Arnstein studied Curriculum & Instruction for the Gifted and earned her Doctor of Education or Ed.D. (just like Dr. Biden!) from the University of Denver. Prior to her doctoral studies, she worked in the field of Cartography and Geographic Information Systems (GIS). She transitioned to education after she learned that her son was twice-exceptional (2e) and that the school district had never considered a student could be gifted with a learning difference. (Although she offered to homeschool her gifted son, at age 5 he had his own vision of school and continues to do enrichment after school and on weekends.) Dr. Karen went back to school to earn her M.A. in Education and then her Ed.D. in Curriculum & Instruction in Gifted Education. Her research is focused on the developmental transitions of preadolescent twice-exceptional students. She enjoys finding ways to help her students connect concepts to their areas of interest – making learning real and meaningful.
Dr. Karen is a regular speaker at state gifted conferences such as the California Association for the Gifted (CAG) and the Colorado Association for the Gifted and Talented (CAG-T) and national conferences such as SENG. She is also a contributor and the author of Woman in the Mirror: Accepting my Giftedness by Accepting My Little Square Peg for the GHF Dialogue. Karen continues to teach at the university level, research, and write about twice-exceptional students.
When Dr. Karen moved to California, she saw an opportunity to create walking and biking trails from abandoned railroad track lines. She contacted the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, brought in friends who shared her vision, created maps, presented this idea to various groups and stakeholders, and wrote grants such as Safe Routes to Schools to raise money. Today, her city is home to the Orange Blossom Trail.
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