Pushing your child too hard academically.

Pushing your child too hard academically.

Rod Ronald Rod Ronald
I do not want to toot my own horn here at all, but my kid is pretty special. When he was younger (2 or so) he would amaze us all with his memory and just general understanding of the world around him and the want and need to figure out what was going on and how it was happening. He has always shocked people with his knowledge and just overall size I guess. he does not look nor act like a six year old. I can see it when he plays with other kids. He's still a fun loving kid but he just can't relate with them really. So his teachers have noticed this as well and have suggested we stick him in a gifted program. I'm unsure of this because I don't want to push him too hard and I really don't want to tear him away from his friends this early in the year.
I need some advice, should I push him to be the best he can be, or just let him go as he is now?
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Kitka Kitka
Honestly the only advice I can give is to sit down with him and try to explain to him the best you can what would happen if he entered the gifted program. See if he's open to it or against it and make a decision based on how the conversation goes.
Mwar Mwar
Do it. Please do so.

If he's ahead of most of his peers and isn't being challenged, he can grow bored and displeased with learning.

As a child who was similar to your son, my parents let me go in to the gifted program, and it was SOOO much better for me. Then, we we moved, the school put me in a normal class. It was elementary still. I acted out, didn't care, and this is when I started to dislike school. My parents fought to get me into the gifted program, (but they refused my teacher's advice to bump me a grade, but it's okay).

And as a (almost) neuroscientist it was good they let me go to those classes.

Rant aside. A bored child will act out and despise school.
MidnightStorm MidnightStorm
This is a topic that I can say a decent amount about. I was recognized as "gifted" in the 1st or 2nd grade and had the option to be placed in a Magnet school, but my parents were afraid that it would effect me negatively and opted to keep me in traditional school. Elementary school was a breeze for me and I never had a lot of friends; generally speaking I was a little more mature than everyone else around me. Our gifted program was literally only two students and I was not chosen as one of them, which meant I stayed in the traditional program and put ZERO effort into any of my work. In middle and high school, I was placed in gifted classes, but still put zero effort into my classes. I got good grades, but I was bored out of my mind. I participated in my first gifted program, a summer camp, between my 7th and 8th grade years. It changed my life: I had no idea that there were so many people LIKE ME. The 3 weeks a year I spent there (VAMPY) were the best part of my year. During my sophomore year, after being told repeatedly for no reason that I couldn't skip high school courses, I applied for and was accepted into an early-entrance-to-coll ege program; I skipped my junior and senior years of high school and went straight into college (that program was the Missouri Academy of Science, Mathematics, and Computing).

One of the worst things about not being in a gifted program while I was younger was that my Academic expectations were very low. I never really learned anything and I had no idea how to study until a few years ago (I'm 21 years old). I didn't learn to put effort into my classes because I simply never had to. I work for MASMC now and it's a common complaint I hear: students who get in to college and just don't KNOW how to put effort in to their classes. It sounds like an easy thing; most people get it--but many gifted students do not.

While I always did well in school, my story isn't the only one. Many gifted students give up hope in school and do the exact opposite: they stop going to class and fail out or get their GED two years in because it bores them out of their mind and they can't stand going to school. They find that their classmates are idiots (in their minds), that the classes are slow and repetitive, and that their teachers are poorly informed. This mindset is even more common in males than females and I know a number of gifted male students who did VERY poorly in high school despite having exceptional exam scores, just because they couldn't bring themselves to care.

So I guess in the end, my advice is to not worry about it: if you truly believe you have a gifted child, trust me... He can handle it. And he'll thank you later. While I'm most experienced with gifted programs for high-schoolers, if you ever want any help or advice finding programs, feel free to shoot me a message!
Taylor Taylor
I would talk to him about it. I'm not sure what that particular program is like, but I don't think his teachers would have recommended him for it if it was going to be too challenging for him. Can he return to the regular class if he joins the gifted program and you guys decide it's not for him? Remember he can always see his friends from his other class at recess or after school and that he will likely make new friends in his gifted class if he joins the program.

I personally would lean towards encouraging him to join it, because if it doesn't work he can just re-join his normal class, but if it does work out then he gets to be in that more challenging program.
MidnightStorm MidnightStorm
Originally posted by MidnightStorm
This is a topic that I can say a decent amount about. I was recognized as "gifted" in the 1st or 2nd grade and had the option to be placed in a Magnet school, but my parents were afraid that it would effect me negatively and opted to keep ...
As a side note, this is one of the programs that I'm most familiar with, but if you are looking for a starting resource, you might try here: link Everyone involved in this program is incredible and has an extremely vested interest in it. They deal with parents, students, and educators of all ages and backgrounds. If you ever just want someone to talk to, you can call them at 270.745.5991 or email them via gifted@wku.edu and I'm sure that even if you're not directly interested in the programs they offer, they'd still be more than willing to talk you through some of the decisions you and your child might need to make.
Total posts: 6
Unique posters: 5