Is My Child Gifted?

Potential of a child

How do parents know if their children are gifted?

You realize they are very “in tune” with their intellectual ability for their age and are intense regarding almost every issue. Many will know they are different by the time they are four or five — and so will you. Unfortunately, testing is the only acceptable way a school will confirm that your child is indeed gifted and needs extra advantages provided by a special curriculum.

Who are some famous people who were overlooked?

Beethoven’s music teacher never considered his musical talent. Winston Churchill failed the sixth grade and finished last in his class at Harrow. Sir Isaac Newton dropped out of grammar school at 14, was sent back at 19 and achieved the Cambridge courses with an undistinguished record.

More Characteristics of Gifted Children

There is no “normal description” of a gifted child, due to a wide variety of special abilities or specific talents. Social environments contribute a large factor to varying personality patterns as well as achievement patterns. Differences among gifted children will be found even when they are grouped together. Some are very strong in one subject and weak in others. The gifted reader may be an average artist, while the gifted artist may be a poor or average reader.

There are many forms of being gifted including leadership and/or social cognitive and intuition above and beyond normal sensitivity for their age. Most will have many of the characteristics listed below — although no child will possess them all.

Gifted Children…

  • have a heightened self-awareness of being “different”
  • display unrelenting goal-directed/organized behaviour (although many are very unorganized)
  • possess an intensity of emotional depth
  • take less for granted
  • can spot inconsistencies and inaccuracies
  • are unwilling to accept authoritarian lifestyles or guidance without critical examination
  • have a keen sense of humour
  • have a highly sensitivity to moral and ethical issues
  • have unusually high expectations of self and others
  • resent structure and rules
  • have an unusual sensitivity to the feelings and expectations of others
  • have a variety of interests and a discriminating nature of curiosity
  • can construct and handle abstractions than children of same age
  • read intensely and widely
  • have incredible memory
  • learn basic skills faster, quicker and better
  • have a highly intense thought process
  • have a longer attention span
  • possess superior level of verbal ability
  • have the ability to understand diverse relationships
  • have the ability to generate original ideas and solutions that seem mind-boggling to others but will be right on target
  • show extraordinary insight
  • have an eye for little, as well as large details
  • are greatly motivated to learn

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