Frequently Asked Questions about Gifted Children - Part 1
By Andrew Loh
"Giftedness is an intellectual ability significantly higher
than average. It is different from a skill, because someone acquires
skills either by learning or by acquiring." - Wikipedia
Some children are born gifted and talented.
Giftedness comes naturally to them. Just watch those child prodigies and
their stupendous talent! Some of them are extremely versatile in music
and arts while others are extraordinarily gifted in studying. Most of
them are very young and within the age bracket of 15 years. This display
of extreme intelligence, resourcefulness and skillfulness has intrigued
everyone including researchers, academicians and scientists apart from
those parents who are as puzzled as anyone else is in the world. The
facts that words “gifted children”, “giftedness” and “brilliance” are
used in the lexicon of child development makes parents interested in
learning more about it.
Smart parents need smart answers! They
need to know more about child giftedness and its importance. They may
also need to learn and understand why gifted children are so special and
what makes them so special. Here are some intricate details about child
giftedness and gifted children:
Who are gifted and what makes them called “gifted”
Highly gifted children are the special ones may include the following:
Some children score very high marks in individual IQ tests – 148+ in
Stanford-Binet L-M scores or 140+ in Stanford-Binet Fourth Edition. If
your children score such marks, then you can call them extremely gifted.
Some children are extremely talented and skillful in music, math
and chess right in their childhood.
General IQ tests give results
of 170 and gifted children often cross a score of 130
Could you please tell me the total numbers of gifted children in the world?
It is very difficult to give an authentic figure.
However, according to researchers like Webb, Meckstroth and Tolan, one
child in about 2000 children are more likely to be gifted and they may
have an IQ value of more than 150. However, children who cross an IQ
value of more than 170 are extremely rare and you can expect one child
in a million with such a score.
Is my child gifted?
Honestly, you will never know unless he or she is subjected to some
IQ tests. However, there are some telltale signs that you can use as a
guideline to decide whether your child is gifted or not. Most gifted
children exhibit one or many talent and skills in a number of areas.
However, these perceived abilities may be hidden and invisible to you
especially when a child is studying in a school where the method of
teaching is always traditional; such methods depend on conventional rote
learning or typical blackboard type of teaching.
Note: If possible, subject your children to IQ testing and make sure that you
observe them for some hidden skills and talents.
Tell me the tests used to find out giftedness in my child
The most commonly used test is the Stanford-Binet Form L-M and this
test is used to find out giftedness in children who are under the age of
thirteen years. Other forms of tests are The Stanford-Binet Form L-M,
Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children (WISC-R) or the 1986
Stanford-Binet Fourth Edition (SB: FE). To find out math and mental
aptitude abilities, you can use the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT).
Children who are extremely good in match, reasoning and mental aptitude
skills usually score higher than 400 in the scholastic tests. Try to
find out your children’s score after consulting your physician. In many
cases, a gifted child may score very poorly in such tests and such
children are usually very good in non-scholastic areas like painting,
arts, sculpture, games, sports, field athletics and music. In other
words, giftedness means both conventional and unconventional abilities.
Why educating a gifted child is often very difficult
As mentioned before traditional classes are not enough for a gifted
child because of the slow pace of learning. Gifted children learn at
quicker pace and they face some learning problems in such classes.
Gifted children are special in the following issues:
Process available learning materials at a faster pace.
Learn at increased sensitivity levels.
Enhanced awareness about the world around them.
Learn at their own pace and impatient at time while learning.
Extremely fickle minded and greater emotional sensitivity.
Impatient and display of eccentricity at times.
Why gifted children often do very badly in classroom
Most classrooms simply fail to recognize the presence of gifted children in
their classes because of the absence of skills and knowledge to identify
such students. Gifted children usually face lots of problem while
learning and teachers who handle them often miss this for dullness and
start neglecting them in the process.
Note: If you feel that your children are gifted, then you will need
to work in close cooperation with school authorities and class teachers
to let them about problems they are most likely to face in the school.
Will my gifted child have any effect on other children?
Most gifted children are sensitive, intense, passionate and
demanding. They may find going very difficult with other children. They
also need constant attention and nurturing too. Sometime in the future,
they may suddenly display a particular interest in a specific area of
study and start pursuing their interest. In many cases, it is possible
that there are more than two gifted children within a family especially
when patents themselves are gifted and skilled. Giftedness usually does
not go away. Giftedness is always hidden and invisible and most gifted
children are very bad achievers in a conventional classroom.
Unfortunately, most of them are even recognized as gifted and talented.
Note: Never neglect your other children in the event there
is a gifted child in your family. Treat all of them equally and find out
solutions to find solutions for a troubled gifted child.
The next article
Frequently Asked Questions about Gifted Children - Part 2 will explain more
about giftedness in children and highlight how they display their talent and
skills if given a good opportunity.