Menu
Jump to content

What's with the ads?

Noreen Claire

being good/being gifted - were is the line?

Recommended Posts

Where does simply being good at something become gifted?

 

 

 

I can't find the words to coherently expand on my question without delving into my children's strengths/weaknesses/quirks in gory detail, so I'll just ask in general. When does someone who is good at something (several things) move to the point where people would consider them gifted?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You might like to have a look at Gagné's differentiated model of giftedness and talent.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Gifted is an IQ thing, isn't it?  It has to do with how you can manipulate the world  whether it is the world of numbers, words, or your body.  It is innate, though it can be fed or stifled.  You can be good at something without being gifted.  And you can be gifted and good at some things and not others. 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My response assumes that you're talking about intellectual giftedness.

 

For a number of reasons, I don't think there is really a line you can point to and say "Go beyond that, and it's gifted behavior."

 

First of all, there isn't consensus on what it means to be gifted.  I don't just mean among laypeople or school administrators--I mean that experts in the field, people who have studied intelligence and creativity for decades, don't agree.

 

Another problem is that being truly excellent at a particular endeavor requires more than just straight intellectual ability.  Motivation, executive functioning, opportunity, interest, all of these play a huge role in if or how well a particular talent is developed.

 

I think that signs of being truly gifted in a particular field include, for novices (which includes children), making inferences, understanding complex material or processes without being taught, that sort of thing.  Once a person becomes an expert in their field, a sign of giftedness (maybe *the* sign) is creative contribution to that field.

 

But I also believe that giftedness is an internal state that doesn't depend on eminence (or any outward sign) to exist.

 

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There's a verse Prov. 18:16 "A man's gift makes room for him..." I think it might have multiple meanings, but the way I heard it used was what you're saying, that people see what is in your hands, what you're doing, and they go wow that's it, that's your GIFT. So I don't think you have to question it in that sense. 

 

Then is it profound, how does it compare to someone else's, etc., fine it's a thing people ask. But lots of people have a moderate gift that is a gift for them and enough that they do things with it and use it and do good things with it. 

 

Sometimes people are surprising. Sometimes they'll have areas of weaknesses and an area of strength that is their gift. It actually will attract attention, even if it's not an absolute level of giftedness, by IQ, by testing. That's like saying my dd has to be as good at costuming as the person doing Game of Thrones to be worth something. Oh well, fine, whatever. That person is more gifted and my dd is a little gifted. Fine, whatever.

 

If you're asking whether their quirks and profile overall add up to being labeled "gifted"... well usually that's a flat up IQ test. If you want it done, you can get it done. Sometimes people are surprised. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I utterly despise the way our culture - especially our education system - reserves the term "gifted" to intellectual giftedness.  I could rant.  I won't.  (You're welcome.)  

 

As to your actual question:  I knew my daughter was a gifted artist when I noticed she just kept moving forward fueled almost solely by intuition, enthusiasm, and crayons (later Prismacolors).  She's never been taught beyond my mom (also a gifted artist) giving her a few pointers here are there.   So, I think it's some mixture of extraordinary natural ability PLUS work ethic.  Subtract the work ethic and you just have lost potential.

  • Like 8

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My personal sense about putting the gifted label on a homeschooled child is that I would reserve it for a child whose entire mode of approaching certain disciplines so surpassed the limits of my own understanding/way of thinking about them that I was unable to follow along or provide an adequate education for them. I can provide more challenging educational opportunities for my advanced kids-- I can also encourage my less advanced kids to catch up by working hard, which they will doo-- but I feel with giftedness it's not such a matter of being advanced as just approaching things in a totally differently way.

 

I was an accelerated learner in school; my kids seem to be, too, but I've never had the sense that they are "gifted." That is where I'm coming from. I have a feeling it's the gory details that would qualify your kid for the gifted label, though! The little things, that all together add up to a way of approaching the world that is just...um, "gifted"?

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, I think many of us with children defined as gifted have come to it from a long journey of trying to figure out what's going on, spending $$ on testing, etc. in an effort to help our kids.

 

 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As to your actual question: I knew my daughter was a gifted artist when I noticed she just kept moving forward fueled almost solely by intuition, enthusiasm, and crayons (later Prismacolors). She's never been taught beyond my mom (also a gifted artist) giving her a few pointers here are there. So, I think it's some mixture of extraordinary natural ability PLUS work ethic. Subtract the work ethic and you just have lost potential.

I, too, have a child who I would say is naturally talented in the fine arts. (Subtract the mom-taught and I could have written the quoted part of the above post.) Work ethic and hours of practice and honing have helped bring her natural gift out and polished it.

 

I have other family members who might have the same gift, but they didn't have the drive and determination to spend the hours to master the craft. Lost potential seems a good term.

 

I don't know the line for gifted vs. naturally good at, but effort needs to be added to the natural gift, IMO, to cross the line.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks very much for all of your answers. You've expanded my thought process about this topic a great deal. I appreciate it!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think the difference is that "good" means you perform well because you try hard and are diligent...while gifted means you have the ability/understanding easily even without trying hard.  A "good student" might actually do better academically than a gifted one, because they will try hard, be diligent, turn in homework on time ect.   A gifted student may (or may not) have trouble with diligence, may find some schoowork uninteresting or unchallenging, can often be bored in school (maybe not as much of a problem with homeschool, where you can customize learning and stay more at their pace, but they still might get bored with rote learning and such or any learning they don't understand the reason for), can often be troublemakers (because their mind understands the material easily, but needs to be occupied and they get bored).  They may have trouble  following instruction and want to  work in out of the box ways.  They often struggle with things like "showing their work" because they often tend to understand things intuitively.   Their academics can be extremely unbalanced, where they will do extremely well in any subject that interests them but may do poorly in any subject they don't care about.   I have a son who is gifted, a son who is a good student, and a son with learning challenges...so I see how these differences play out.   

 

 

Basically, if your child makes you proud because they work hard to do well, but you can tell exactly why they are doing well, they are a probably simply a good student (which is great...just different from being gifted).

But if your child has knowledge/comes up with ideas that amaze you, that make you think "where did this come from?  How did they come up with that?" or just makes large jumps ahead without it seeming to come from  them putting extra time into it, than I would be more likely to say they were gifted EVEN if they seem to do badly in other ways (often because they just won't put time into things they don't care about, but also sometimes a child can be gifted and also have a learning disability...I have a friend with a gifted dyslexic child).   Now some gifted kids may also be very diligent, hard working, and just do excellently all around.   It may be harder to tell with those kids actually whether they are gifted or simply a good student, but there should still be signs (a quickness to understand new and challenging material,  creative out of the box thinking, etc.). 

Edited by goldenecho
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's not a direct answer to your question, but I highly recommend you to check out a book by Carol Dweck "Mindset: The New Psychology of Success", if you haven't already. It talks about the whole aproach of "talent" and how it's not the main thing in our skills developement. A whole chapter is about kids. It was an eye opener for me! It helps to realise how important it is to develop a growth mindset in my kids! and how to look at their success and failures, and how should I teach them to deal with those.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's been fun to read the responses. I would add that giftedness also adds extra layers to the experience of parenting a child beyond what would be considered normal. Our culture often boils down giftedness into an academic or achievement issue while ignoring the day-to-day challenges of life with all that extra brainpower. When the parenting books don't describe the child in front of you, when the educational guidelines don't make sense for this child, that might be giftedness or 2E. When they can't sleep at night because they can't stop learning or thinking, or when you can't sleep at night because you need to plan for how you're going to stay one step ahead of them for at least one more day, that might be giftedness. It's certainly worth looking into, because, if nothing else, it might help you find different resources (like the Hoagie's board) that are helpful for you in parenting this child.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I never refer to the new 7th grader as gifted. I prefer advanced. Mainly because we started the 1st grade math track while he was in pre-k (Headstart actually).  Now, he is up pre-calc. Advanced, yes. Gifted, I don't know.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...