Four Clues That You are Raising a Gifted Preschooler
The preschool years are a time of rapid intellectual growth and development, so naturally, these years provide a prime opportunity for parents and teachers to enhance and develop a child's natural strengths and talents. This is especially important for parents who are raising a gifted preschooler.
Giftedness is defined as ability that is significantly above the norm for a child's age, according to the National Association for Gifted Children. While IQ tests are not typically given until a child reaches elementary age, a demonstrated ability above that of his or her peers in one or more of the following areas may be an indicator that your child is, in fact, gifted:
The table below offers a set of traits exemplifying giftedness in preschool-aged children. Keep in mind that every gifted child has his/her own unique strengths, and no gifted learner exhibits traits in every area.
Along with these strengths and talents, often comes a unique set of challenges for parents, particularly when it comes to handling emotions. This table also contains tips for addressing those specific challenges and nurturing your gifted child's strengths.
|Area of Strength||Description||Examples||Ways to Nurture|
|Cognitive||He/she demonstrates advanced thinking skills for his/her age.||
Be attentive to your child's observations. Expose him/her to a variety of books and experiences. Encourage new skills and interests. A token board can be a useful tool for reinforcing the practice of new skills.
Sometimes gifted children think more quickly than they can express themselves, verbally or physically. Respond with patience and try to help them verbalize their thoughts.
|Creative||He/she demonstrates creativity through a specific talent and/or a vivid imagination.||
||Offer plenty of opportunities for your child to explore his/her creativity. Give praise, emphasizing effort and progress, rather than perfection.|
|Affective||He/she exhibits a strong sense of equity and/or empathy.||
||Respond with empathy yourself. Model positive ways to solve problems. Help your child learn to recognize and name his/her emotions. Provide opportunities for your child to connect with other gifted children.|
|Behavioral||He/she is unusually active, alert, and attentive.||
||A lengthy attention span can sometimes lead to disorganization or a tendency to ignore other obligations. Provide structure using a daily checklist or reward chart.|