Have you ever wondered if your child is gifted or talented?
All children have their preferences when it comes to learning; some may be artistically minded and will be able to create truly exceptional landscapes and scenes and portraits with a pencil or a paintbrush, while others may have a knack for working with computers and coding and general IT management, and others might be more scientifically or mathematically minded. There are so many different specialisations in our world, and each child will have their own place in one of these categories based on their own innate interests and skills. However, a small proportion of children—approximately 3%—will be true masters of their chosen crafts, and it is these children who are referred to as being gifted or talented.
Many parents are unsure as to whether their child is gifted or talented. After all, there is no one specific trait that makes a child gifted or talented; this can make understanding the nature of these children difficult. However, gifted and talented children will generally share a number of common traits with each other.
Traits of Gifted and Talented Children
The best way to assess these traits is to compare the child to his or her peers of the same age.
Gifted children generally show a higher level of intellectual ability and memory skills from an early age. Often, they will have a strong passion for reading and may often read books that are more advanced than their own age level. Furthermore, they will usually have a large and well-developed vocabulary and may often seem more inquisitive and curious than their peers; penetrating and thought-provoking questions might be the norm, and their ideas will often be complex and well thought out. Of course, this can also give gifted individuals a number of more unfavourable personality traits, too; they will often be stubborn in their own beliefs and opinions and can get bored easily; with that being said, they can show a long attention span for topics that are of interest to them.
Examples of Gifted Children
Gifted children come in many different forms; a gifted child isn’t necessarily the next Einstein! By contrast, some may simply above average in terms of intellectual ability but may possess a natural inclination for music, for example; what makes one child gifted and talented won’t necessarily make another child gifted!
A good example is for a child who is passionate about stories. Many gifted young individuals will spend a lot of time reading and may go on to write their own stories or “spin off” stories as well. This child might be naturally curious and will ask a lot of questions, while other children in their class might be less so.
At the end of the day, no child is better than any other. Some are gifted and talented, while others are destined for roles in other fields of work. But, whatever the case, they are all incredible individuals in their own right.
In this regard, education plays a key role in helping individual child blossom. Specialised teaching methods and materials while fostering an environment whereby like-minded peers work together with each other in selective schools is believed to enhance students with potential to flourish. It is with this in mind that the government of each Australian state uses the selective school exams to sieve out the best and brightest to hone their potential. The selective school exams or tests are called by different names in different states;
New South Wales
Selective High School Placement test (SHSP)
Select Entry Accelerated Learning Programs (SEAL)
Higher Ability Selection Test (HAST)
Academic Selective Entrance Test (ASET/GATE)
Regardless of the name, the objectives are similar in each state.