By Inderbir Kaur Sandhu, Ph.D
Do you offer any resources or testing on the creative side
for gifted children? The psychologist would not test for IQ
due to age and I head there were more tests that could be
done? I am looking for programs or clubs to get her involved
Kayla is age 6 1/2. She is home-schooled and is reading
about 7th grade level. She is about 2 grade levels ahead on
all subjects at least but mostly her creativity is off the
scale of normal. Her mind constantly creates and it's hard
to keep her challenged.
As a matter of fact, she teaches her 3 1/2 year old sister
arts and crafts every day. Without guidance she is very
involved and creative with making things or entertaining her
all from her own ideas and takes ideas to a different level.
I have had her formally tested by a psychologist for grade
levels etc - but wanted more on the creative side to help
direct and meet/ exceed her needs.
She is mostly interested in creating things such as arts,
crafts, makes up games and does it non-stop and usually
reads at least 1 Chapter books a night (about 4th grade
books such as Box Car Children etc.) More during the day!
She still does normal things for her age like dress up, bike
riding but with an imagination and that is beyond her years.
She is very modest about it and has a love of people BUT
usually doesn't want others to know how smart she is. No one
seems to have test for the creativity etc only the standard.
I want more information. I would love to know of ways to
help direct her talents and gifts to the best of my ability.
Are there programs for children like her? Thanks
A: Kayla definitely appears to
have above average creativity talent and you may need to
work very hard to help cultivate her gifts. There are many
tests for creativity but I am most familiar with the
Torrance Test of Creative Thinking, which has been used
widely and is a rather measurement of individual creativity.
This can be done from 5 years onwards, especially for the
Figural test. You need to look for an educational
psychologist who is able to conduct and score this test in
your area. It may be quite hard to keep up with her
especially since she is home-schooled as she may need a
different environment to create better. Creative children
need to change their environment for exposure which will
help enhance their talent.
In fact, perhaps she may not need to be tested as you know
for sure that she is highly creative. If testing is not
available, find out programs in your area which enhances
creativity such as the arts and performance. She may want to
join certain art and craft classes where they have a
systematic way of helping her improve her talents. It would
also be good for her to be amongst other people as she is
home schooled and such experiences for her would further
expose her to greater imagination.
At home, make sure all her learning has some kind of
creative elements. The traditional method may bore her, so
you would need to think of ways to make learning fun for
her. She needs creative learning and creative teachers. The
good thing about home schoolings is that the flexibility to
use different methods rather than most traditional styles in
formal school which is more appropriate for a larger number
of students. Best wishes in your journey!