For many children, the traditional school structure can work great. However, for gifted children, it can lead to problems. Before we can dive into why these children experience problems, first let’s define what it means to be “gifted”.
There’s a lot of disagreement in what it means to be gifted. Some experts believe that children who score highly on achievement tests are considered gifted, and other experts believe that any child that has exceptional skills in any area is considered gifted. Regardless of which definition you believe, you might have noticed that your gifted child is showing signs of behavioral problems. The regular school structure can become very boring for them, as it is not as stimulating as they need.
The University of Nevada, Reno’s Davidson Institute of Research is focused on the needs of profoundly gifted young people. They found something very interesting, children defined as gifted (scoring in the 99.9th percentile on achievement and IQ tests) require constant stimulation, or they’ll become bored. These kids have an ability to focus for long periods of time and process information very quickly. Traditional school structures move at a slower pace, causing the gifted kids to lose interest. If your kid is suddenly showing signs of boredom, he might not be “bad”, he might be gifted.
Melissa Reed, of the Davidson Institute, states that it is very common for gifted children to be misunderstood by school staff, parents, and peers.
Common diagnoses in gifted students include attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, autism spectrum disorder, bipolar disorders, obsessive compulsive disorder, and more. Missed diagnoses in gifted children may occur for these same conditions when giftedness overcompensates for the weakness.
So, when your child is showing these signs of bad behavior, consider that they may be understimulated. By engaging your gifted child, you turn their “bad” behavior into the opportunity to let their talents show. Here are a few things you can do to help.
Offer Your Gifted Child Flexibility
Reed mentioned that gifted children have to constantly reaccess their educational planning to find what works best for them. She has also stated that when working with gifted children, you have to think outside of the box to decide the best way to meet their educational and emotional needs. The best thing you can do is determine what your child’s individual talents are and give them the opportunity to appreciate and work on those talents.
Challenge Your Gifted Child At Home
School alone isn’t enough for gifted children. They need activities that can help them challenge the skills they already have and find new talents they might not have known they had. It doesn’t matter what your child’s talents are, there is always a way to help them challenge it. As a parent, you always want to be as supportive as possible. When they are exposed to the right environment for their needs, you might find that your troublemaker is actually incredibly intelligent.
Consider Sending Your Gifted Child To A School Designed For Their Needs
As we mentioned above, traditional school environments can be very understimulating to the gifted and talented child. Instead, you might want to consider a private school that could focus on your individual student.
The Tenney School, located in Houston, Texas, might be the school your gifted and talented child needs. They understand that these children have unique needs and they work hard to meet them. Tenney School offers each student one-on-one instruction, which allows gifted children to receive personal attention and customized curriculum. They can move at the pace they need and will not be at risk of ever being understimulated. The Tenney School wants to maximize your child’s academic potential, so contact us to learn more today.