Many parents often wonder if their child is gifted, and while that isn’t always the case, yours may very well be. But how does one tell if their child is simply smarter than the rest, or actually gifted?
Children that are gifted are graded based on certain traits. Instead of just basing it off of IQ, the US National Association of Gifted Children defines a gifted child as the following:
“Gifted individuals are those who demonstrate outstanding levels of aptitude (defined as an exceptional ability to reason and learn) or competence (documented performance or achievement in top 10 percent or rarer) in one or more domains. Domains include any structured area of activity with its own symbol system (e.g., mathematics, music, language) and/or set of sensorimotor skills (e.g., painting, dance, sports).”
To nurture your child’s linguistic abilities and creative expression, consider the book ‘Raising a Gifted Child: A Parenting Success Handbook‘ by Carol Fertig. This resource offers practical advice and strategies to support and encourage the unique talents of gifted children
You can, of course, have your child tested, but here is a detailed checklist that covers a number of traits often depicted in gifted children. Keep in mind that Austega says that no one child shows all gifted traits. But showing a high number of them increases the probability of their giftedness.
Enhance your gifted child’s exploration of the world with ‘The Everything Kids’ Science Experiments Book‘ by Tom Robinson. This book provides a variety of fun and educational science experiments, perfect for stimulating a young, inquisitive mind.
1. Learns rapidly, easily, and efficiently
2. Has exceptionally large vocabulary for their age
3. Demonstrates unusual reasoning power
4. Has an unusually strong memory, but is bored with memorization and recitation
5. Needs little outside control — applies self-discipline
6. Has a liking for structure, order, and consistency
7. Is flexible in thinking patterns; makes unusual associations between remote ideas
8. Displays a great curiosity about objects, situations, or events; asks provocative questions
9. Makes good grades in most subjects
10. Has a power of concentration, an intense attention that excludes all else
11. Provides very alert, rapid answers to questions
12. Is resourceful, solving problems by ingenious methods
13. Has an avid interest in science or literature
14. Reveals originality in oral and written expression
15. Has a power of abstraction, and synthesis
16. Is secure emotionally
17. Tends to dominate peers or situations
18. Uses a lot of common sense
19. Displays a willingness to accept complexity
20. Is perceptually open to his or her environment
To assist in developing organizational skills and self-discipline in gifted children, ‘Smart but Scattered: The Revolutionary ‘Executive Skills’ Approach to Helping Kids Reach Their Potential‘ by Peg Dawson and Richard Guare is an excellent resource. It offers insights into helping children harness their potential through effective executive skills management.
If your child is gifted, or you believe they may be, try taking the test as listed on the following website (Gifted Development) where services are also provided at exploring this possibility further. Without proper testing, it is impossible to know, but taking the first steps to find out will put you on the right track.