Possibly Gifted Child
By Inderbir Kaur Sandhu, Ph.D
Q: I'm just curious to know if my son's
milestones considered normal for his age. He is 2 1/2 years old now. He
started walking at 10 months. At 11 months he can say daddy, shoes,
house, touch very clearly. By 12 months he can ran. By 14 months he can
say 3 word sentences and his hearing is so sensitive. He would always
ask "daddy, what is that?" Every time he hears or see something new. He
also loves to dance every time he hears music.
At 18 months he can count to 15, knows all his abc's and their sounds,
he can name his body parts, he can name his daddy's tools, he knows a
lot of animals and imitate their sound, he knows different kinds of
trucks, knows a lot of opposites, knows a lot of colors from dark blue
to sky blue, he knows different shapes. And he can recognized music for
example we are in a car and his daddy's favorite music started playing
then he would say " daddy's song".
By 2 years old he can say 5 - 6 word sentences. He can even memorized
the dialogue on the cartoons his watching. He knows the names of each
and characters of whatever his watching. He knows and can say my full
name and his daddy's name when being ask. He knows all the planets and
the different phases of moon. So at night when we go out and he sees a
moon he would say " mommy, look there's a crescent moon. Its beautiful.
And Neil Armstrong was the first person to walk on the moon" and when he
sees the stars at night he would say " mommy, Galileo was the first
person to observe the night sky using the big telescope" He just amazed
me. He remembers all the books that we read. He can even memorized the
book. I can go on and on and on about my baby. And he is also potty
trained at 18 months. Your opinion is highly appreciated. Thank you so
From your description, your little one is accelerating at a way faster
pace than his peers. he is definitely not doing what a normal child
would be doing at that age - his skills are highly advanced. It is
fortunate that you are aware of what is happening at an early stage, and
have been advised to look for better opportunities for him.
A good start in nurturing him potential would be to encourage him to
follow his interests at this point. In case you find that he is
fascinated with something, do more of it and gradually increase its
complexity. Since he enjoys books, you may start with activities that
includes reading, story telling, looking at pictures, etc. Have
different types of reading materials in terms of texture - magazines,
newspapers, books with hard/soft covers, fabric types and so on. Gifted
children are sensitive to texture and this would enhance their sense of
touch. Having said that, more work of the same kind may sometimes bore
above average children, so it is always important to try to have
variations of the same activity. This involves creativity on your side.
You must also know when to stop - a good cue is to observe when he
starts to lose interest (irritable, distracted). If this happens, drop
the activity and allow his some free play time. Pretend play is crucial
and this is when they develop their brain and unleash their creativity.
Ensure that he remains challenged all the time so as not to have any
time to be idle which may cause such children to throw tantrums or be
disruptive. The following are a few tips that you can use at this stage
and later to encourage his learning:
Help him determine differences; compare and contrast
Use measurement words often: little, more, many, half,
quarter, etc. as an introduction to early math.
Instead of reading stories from books all the time,
create your own and try to get him to contribute. Or play a game of
stories - each comes up with one.
You can also watch educational programs with him and ask
him the “whys” and “whats” - and then explain. Introduce him to Youtube
– make sure you pick some educational clips for him.
Look for similarities and differences and have him group
things that belong. It helps in critical thinking.
Create a scenario and ask him about what could happen in
You may also want to look out for play schools, which may be a great
environment for him to also develop him initial social skills. If he is
in play school, speak to the school about him abilities and have them
assess him to determine what may be best for him. I feel he would not
fit in a chronologically similar age class; rather perhaps some kind of
acceleration may help him develop further. Look out for support group in
your area (e.g., National Associaltion for Gifted Children)
Hope the tips are helpful and have a great learning journey with your
little one. Keep monitoring his progress and encourage him to learn
positively. All the best!