What is giftedness
There are several definitions of giftedness, but for simplicity we can think of giftedness in children as having an ability that is significantly above the norm for their age. A child can be gifted in one or many domains such as intellectual, creative, artistic, leadership, or in specific academic fields (like mathematics, language or music).
Traits of giftedness
While determining whether your child or student is gifted requires a diagnosis by a professional, we can look out for several traits that are often shared among gifted children (note that a child may be gifted in a single domain, music for example, and need not show all these traits). Here are traits often seen in gifted children.
1. Advanced language skills.
Has an unusually large vocabulary for their age, and can form complex sentences.
2. Loves to read and has advanced reading skills.
A child who is gifted often reads two or more age levels above their grade and can often be found with their head buried in a book.
3. Curious about the world.
Has a heightened awareness of self and the environment and is constantly curious about the things around them and how they work. They will tend to ask many detailed questions. In school children, their curiosity may well go beyond what is provided in lessons. They’ll want to know more than what is simply needed to perform well in assignments and exams.
4. Can recognize patterns at an early age.
A gifted child can not only recognise patterns in things like games (e.g. Jigsaw puzzles), but also behavioural and social patterns, e.g. in a young child, when it’s supper time.
5. Prefers the company of Adults or older children.
Their advanced intelligence means they may have difficulty relating to their peers. As a result they will seek out the stimulating conversation of older peers and adults.
6. Highly Sensitive.
A gifted child often has intense feelings and emotions. They may get emotionally hurt more easily and could be sensitive to environmental stimuli like loud noises and crowds.
7. They Are original and creative.
Gifted children have unique ideas and may show original insights into puzzles and problems. They are highly creative and like to find multiple solutions to any one problem.
8. Has excellent focus in topics that interest them.
However, this may not be evident in a classroom where they lack stimulation, and may even be considered to have poor attention.
9. Leadership Skills.
Gifted children are often mature and have good problem solving skills and thus may exhibit remarkable leadership skills. This, however, requires the right setting. A gifted child in the wrong setting may very well isolate themselves and be introverted.
10. Vivid Imagination.
Will tend to create unique and very imaginative stories and games.
11. A good sense of humour.
Has an appreciation of adult humour and even an interest in absurd humour. Advanced intellignece means they may be quick witted and have humorous insights that is beyondthe level of their peers.
12. High Energy levels.
A gifted child may be in constant motion, always doing and thinking. Because of this they may choose to forgo naps.
Has a heightened need to create, understand and do in general.
14. Has an excellent memory.
A gifted child’s parents are often amazed at the number and detail of things their child can remember, and how quickly they can retain newly learned information.
15. Has excellent reasoning skills.
A gifted child may display the ability to apply advanced logic for their age and solve difficult and unusual problems.
16. Good learner.
Can grasp new concepts and ideas quickly and easily.
17. Many interests.
Gifted children often show interest in many topics and fields.
This list is by no means exhaustive, and being gifted doesn’t mean you’re exceptional across all fields and aptitudes.
For those interested to learn more about giftedness and how to support a gifted child, lookout for Hollyblue Academy’s new course coming out in November 2019.