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A Possibly Gifted Toddler - The Next Move

By Inderbir Kaur Sandhu, Ph.D

Q: I want to know whether there is any way of bringing my nephew's intelligence to someone's attention and getting him tested. He is 3 years old.

He is extremely inquisitive, has a very accurate and amazing memory. Counts in English and French, recognizes written words, knows his alphabet, all his colours and what they make if you mix them together. Uses the correct terms for body parts and internal organs, such as esophagus, trachea, lungs, intestines etc... he knows where they are and what they do.

If you tell him something once he remembers it and not just that he understands too. He speaks more like an older child/adult, uses fairly 'big' words, has a wide vocabulary. He also has a great sense of humour and is very sarcastic.

He loves to play with toys for older children. Including his learning computer games on his V-Tech, which are aged from 4-8 years old. He also operated the PC to a degree. He has impressive hand-eye coordination. And he can do jigsaw puzzles, in fact books are his favourite things. He learns by asking questions and absorbing copious amounts of info.

The nursery teachers at his toddler group are astounded as are we all. He has been counting etc... since he was 18 months old. I know this is long winded but I was asked to be precise.

So, do you think he could be gifted? And if so how could we get him tested. He comes from a working class family. Thanks.

A: From your description, I believe your nephew may be gifted. You did not mention any effort in helping him learn, so I assume that he is learning on his own without much help a natural innate trait of gifted children.

He needs to get tested in order for his educational needs to be catered for. The first step is get help from his school. The teachers may be familiar with local educational psychologist who may be able to help. Or they may know of school teachers who are more familiar with the issue of giftedness. You should also get in touch with the National Association for Gifted Children in England (I assume you are from England?). Go to "contact" from the homepage and get in touch with them.

Your nephew should not be left alone - he needs the necessary support from his family and a good place to start is with some help from this association. Get his parents to enrol or you can as well. His parents may need to get actively involved in his education to help him develop further and make the best of his gifts. Gifted children need help to maximise their potential to the fullest. You may also want to check out Professor Freeman's website and email her consultancy at 

Hope that little information would help you get started. My very best wishes to you.


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