Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Laughed and Cried when I read this

Caleb is like "Alex"--maybe not quite as brilliant, but pretty darn close. So when I read this I laughed and cried, and saw yet one more reason we must homeschool that boy.


I tried cyberschooling for Caleb, even--and no teacher there could even comprehend what I meant when I said "gifted"--because they knew gifted kids, and Caleb is not that. He is somewhere between Highly and Exceptionally Gifted. I'd guess. He's smarter than me, and I had an IQ of about 145 when I was 8 (which makes me only Moderately to Highly Gifted on this chart.

According the their descriptions of the characteristic development of the profoundly and highly gifted (sitting independent at age 4 months, speaking a hundreds of words, clearly and with perfect grammar, by 12 months, very early onset of reading), my kids have IQs of over 150. And, as the article points out, these kids dealing with their "age peers" is like a regular old smart kid dealing with an intellectually handicapped person with an IQ of 70. No wonder Caleb struggles to make friends (and other kids mock him). They are really about 8 years apart--it's like a 16 year old being expected to make friends with the 8 year olds at church.

These 2 paragraphs actually were really reassuring to me about Caleb: "Differences between moderately and extremely gifted children are not, of course, confined to the cognitive domain. Hollingworth (1926) defined the IQ range 125-155 as "socially optimal intelligence." She found that children scoring within this range were well-balanced, self-confident, and outgoing individuals who were able to win the confidence of age peers. She claimed, however, that above the level of IQ 160 the difference between the exceptionally gifted child and his or her age-mates is so great that it leads to special problems of development which are correlated with social isolation. These difficulties appear particularly acute at ages 4 through 9 (Hollingworth, 1942).
DeHaan and Havighurst (1961), examining the differences between what they termed second- order" (IQ 125-160) and "first-order” (IQ 160+) gifted children, reinforced Hollingworth's findings. These findings suggested that the second-order gifted child achieves good social adjustment because he has sufficient intelligence to overcome minor social difficulties but is not “different” enough to induce the severe problems of salience encountered by the exceptionally gifted student. Janos (1983) compared the psychosocial development of 32 children aged 6-9 with IQs in excess of 164, with that of 40 age peers of moderately superior intellectual ability. The findings of Janos emphasized that the social difficulties experienced by this highly gifted group did not stem from a pre-existing emotional disturbance, but rather were caused by the absence of a suitable peer group with whom to relate. There are virtually no points of common experience and common interest between a 6-year-old with a mental age of 6 and a 6-year-old with a mental age of 12."

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