Last year I gave a talk in Vancouver on testing, intelligence, and potential. Most of the audience consisted of parents and educators. But it’s not their questions that stuck most in my mind.
I was especially struck by the points made by a young kid. I told him if he wanted to write something to me, I’d publish it in some form. Well, he recently sent me the letter below.
His name is Omar, and he is in gifted education. He makes some great points. Maybe it’s time we stopped fighting so many battles among ourselves and listen more to children.
They keep it real.
my name is Omar, I am twelve, and lots of parents say things to each other like: “my child is gifted because my child doesn’t have to work hard and your child does need to work hard so he/she is not gifted.” I say as a “gifted” child myself all gifted kids have to work hard its only 1 or 2 subjects that we need a challenge or find easy. if you say things like or related to: my child is gifted because my child doesn’t have to work hard and your child does need to work– just be quiet and keep to yourself, because it really doesn’t matter. as a gifted child I believe (I have no clue whether other gifted kids feel this way) that if I get labelled gifted highly able or even highly gifted I don’t really care because I was always like that I have no point of reference. so instead of proving your child gifted to the teachers,school staff, etc. and making your child undergo seemingly endless tests just let them do what they want. if they like it where they are leave them be if they want something new THEN AND ONLY THEN let them get tested and always leave the option to go back to where they were.
Take it from a gifted kid