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Carol Bainbridge

You Know Your Child is Gifted When...

By June 24, 2006

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Parents of gifted children often have no trouble recognizing giftedness in their children. How? By looking at lists or characteristics? By having their children tested? No, by the things their children say and do.

You know your child is gifted when...

  • he explains to people at a museum how to tell the difference between a brachiosaur and a brontosaur -- when he's four.
  • she helps the guide at a plantarium point out constellations to visitors -- at age five.
  • the only threat that works is "If you don't behave, you can't read tonight!"
  • at three years old, she can't sleep because Polaris won't be the North Star in 2000 years.
  • on "100 day" in kindergarten, he draws 100 zeros after a one to make a googol.
  • your three year old rubs his "blankie" while reading a book on black holes.

Here is some more reading about gifted children:

How would you complete the sentence? Let us know by entering a comment.

(Edit, June 29, 2011:  These comments from parents about their children are not meant to be a test for giftedness or a way to identify gifted children.  It is simply a lighthearted and fun way for people to see what some gifted kids say and do.  Here are some more examples from other parents: You know you're the parent of a gifted child when... For more serious looks at recognizing and identifying gifted children, I recommend these articles: What is a gifted child? Is my child gifted? and Definitions of Gifted.)

December 6, 2010 at 2:01 pm
(1) tiffanie says:

This is the dumbest test for gifted-ness I have ever seen in my life and could not possibly come from anyone who knows anything about education, childhood development, or even anyone who has common sense. Being gifted can come out in various ways that can have nothing to do with unusual knowledge. Some gifted children do not like reading at all because they prefer number related activities. For Christ sakes Einstein was a terrible student and showed extreme difficulties in math!

December 6, 2010 at 3:04 pm
(2) Gifted Kids Guide says:

Tiffanie, this isn’t a test of giftedness. It’s a lighthearted way for parents to talk about abilities their kids demonstrated that are not what we see from most other kids. And the fact is that many parents do recognize signs of giftedness in their children long before any testing is done. Also, Einstein did not have any difficulties in math. That is a myth. You can read about that here: http://www.time.com/time/2007/einstein/3.html. Like many gifted kids, little Einstein didn’t like school. That’s not the same as having difficulties.

March 30, 2011 at 9:57 pm
(3) Haley says:

I am in a middle school gifted class, and half of the students got a 70 on a 10 question test! It was an English test, and I know my peers better than to just write them off as stupid. They all have their own gifted abilities. For example: my friend and I are both excelent at writing and computer skills. He and I both have difficulty in school (math, English), yet we are called upon for any technical difficulties that happen in the school.
Giftedness does not mean that a four-year-old can tell the difference between one dinosour and another, it just means that you are highly “gifted” in a certain area; most likely math, reading, Englsih, different languages, or a musical instrument. The second part of this article is so degrading.

June 29, 2011 at 4:22 pm
(4) Wilhelm Wundt says:

Whoever wrote this is spreading misinformation. Giftedness does NOT manifest itself in the way this article describes it. It is actually very difficult to identify a gifted individual and the signs are not anywhere near as obvious as this article makes it out to be.

June 29, 2011 at 4:36 pm
(5) Carol says:

I’m not sure why people keep seeing this as a test or way to actually recognize giftedness in children. It is just a way for parents to have fun. There are numerous other articles on this site that take on the issue of identifying giftedness in a more serious way. And in many instances, it is indeed easy to recognize giftedness, if you know what you’re looking for. I would never take any one of these instances, however, and automatically say, “Oh look! A gifted child and there’s proof.”

April 24, 2012 at 1:45 am
(6) Annie says:

I must say, I agree with the others: it is a little misleading. My highly gifted child is plagued with dyslexia but when she was eight she enjoyed reading Stephen Hawking’s “A Briefer History in Time,” and “The Odyssey.” But to be honest with you, in other ways she seems, well, NORMAL. There are just funny things she does sometimes that indicate she is a little bit “MORE” than the average child (for example, she enjoys watching calculus videos with her older brother, who is fourteen). By the way, what do you mean by “parents to have fun”? Is this just an overexaggeration of gifted traits or what? I don’t understand what you mean by “there are numerous other articles on thsis site that take on the issue of idenitfying giftedness in a more serious way”?

June 5, 2012 at 7:17 am
(7) brooke says:

Relax parents. I have a gifted child and I found this article to be amusing and recognized my daughter in several places. We had the testing done professionally, this is just an article with a list of things those with gifted kids might relate too. I recognized my daughter in several places. Not degrading at all. Just a light hearted list of things you might have experienced. Didn’t experience any? That is o.k. too. Why so sensitive? If you are trying to find information on wether you, or your children are gifted-by definition you will not be able to factually determine that on the internet. You will need to have several tests done by a specialist. Just like any parents of a kid that doesn’t fall into the average child category, wether socially or educationally it is nice to be able to see that there are others experiencing what you are and that is what the article is trying to do. I found it humorous and appreciate the author’s list. Thanks!

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