Is Your Child Really Average?

Linda Silverman's picture
I have seen a lot of children with test scores in the average range who are anything but average. How can a gifted child get average scores? 
 
Giftedness is exceptional abstract reasoning ability. Abstract reasoning is assessed orally or with visual materials. To demonstrate ability, the child reads, writes, speaks, or manipulates visual materials, under timed or untimed conditions, in a group or individual setting. Extremely capable children with excellent minds can have hidden difficulties with either input mode (auditory or visual), or both. They often go together. These weaknesses are hidden because a gifted mind excels at problem solving and can figure things out logically, bypassing a weak modality. 
 
Children have no way of knowing if the way they see or the way they hear is different from other people.
 
“I had no idea you were seeing two balls,” said the mother.
“I had no idea you weren’t!” said her daughter. (Gilman, in press)
 
If the eyes don’t work together or the ears don’t work together, the child receives confusing information. It takes extra time and more energy to block out a second image. It takes more time and energy to make sense of garbled auditory information. Is it any wonder that a child with auditory or visual issues resists reading or writing or crowds? In school, gifted children with these issues do not stand out as highly capable. They do not do well on tests either—especially timed tests and group tests.
 
How can you tell if your “average” child is really gifted?  
 
  1. Does your child see relationships and make unusual associations?
  2. Does your child make you laugh?
  3. Does your child ask questions you can’t answer with a Google search?
  4. Does your child intuitively understand you and others?
  5. Does your child build incredible structures?
  6. Does your child have a vivid imagination?
  7. Does your child use advanced vocabulary?
  8. Is your child compassionate when others are suffering?
  9. Are brothers, sisters or other family members gifted?
  10. Do you have anecdotes of amazing things your child has said or done?
  11. Does your child come up with ideas or expressions that surprise you?
  12. Is your child anxious about poor performance in school?
 
Consider an evaluation with an optometrist and an audiologist who have had considerable experience with the gifted. We can help. Consider a consultation with the Gifted Development Center. We have found hidden giftedness for 38 years. [[email protected]
 

 

Gilman, B. J. (in press). Academic advocacy for gifted children: A parent’s complete guide (2nd ed.). Scottsdale, AZ: Great Potential Press.