The task of educating children is not always easy, but when it is also about a child with some special or specific need, (either due to a developmental disorder, or due to learning difficulties or ADHD, etc. .) This task can be complicated, so knowing what our child is like and their needs can help us in our day to day with them. On our site we focus on the challenge of educating children with high capacities or talents.
Without dwelling in depth on the definition and distinction between concepts such as high capacities, talents or precocity, we can say that they are children with a high intelligence, high competence in certain areas, good memory and high language development.
But not only their capacities define them at an intellectual level, but at a personal level they have a series of characteristics such as their enormous capacity for imagination, curiosity, creativity, perfectionism, high sensitivity, concern for adult issues, feeling of being different, tendency to leadership, early ability to differentiate between reality and fantasy, etc ...
Having high abilities is not just getting good grades, (in fact it is not always the case) ... and we can say that it is their "talents" that on many occasions become their "great enemies" if they do not have an environment of understanding of their emotional, academic characteristics and needs, etc...
Some difficulties associated with high abilities are usually:
- Relationship problems with their peers, feelings of being different.
- Difficulties listening to others, tendency to question everything
- Anxiety, feeling that they are not understood.
- Frustration, boredom, very perfectionists, little tolerance for frustration.
- Very sensitive to criticism.
- High level of activation that if not channeled leads to frustration.
Many times we are scared when they tell us that our son has high abilities, and we believe that we will not know how to respond to their demands. The important thing is to know what they are like and what we can do, as with any other child, right? It must be taken into account that the fundamental needs of a child with high capacities are emotional ones, without proper emotional management, many gifted people fail cognitively.
Some guidelines and orientations at home to take on the challenge of educating a child with high capacities:
- It is not about pointing them to all the activities that exist, but about choosing the ones that motivate them the most, stimulate their creativity and abilities.
- Take into account the "evolutionary dyssynchrony". That is, despite their superior intellectual capacity, other areas of development are not as "superior", for example the emotional or the psychomotor. Despite his high intelligence, the rest of the areas do not accompany him.
- Do not downplay their concerns or interests claiming that "they are not children's things." Attend to you, listen to you and try to respond to your needs. We can provide you with various sources of information to meet those needs.
- Attend to their emotional and social development. They can be branded smart or know-it-all by their peers and adults, sometimes they feel that they do not fit in, and that leads to difficulties in their self-esteem, self-acceptance, and anxiety problems and even childhood depression.
- Listen to them, and that they have an environment in which to express their concerns and help them solve the problems they encounter.
- Do not treat him like a child older than he is, nor do we demand more from him than we can ask for just because he is "smarter", because he is still a child.
- Clear rules and limits as with any other child, but at the same time patience and understanding. It may happen that if they are very focused on something they do not listen to us or pay attention, but not because of disobedience, but because it is difficult for them to disconnect from the task in which they are immersed.
- Explain why they have to do things and don't give them an "just because" answer. They need answers and that is why they sometimes question our decisions. Not out of rudeness but out of a need to know the why of things.
In summary, Faced with the challenge of educating a child with high capacities, we must not be scared and we must respond to their needs as we would with any other child. And fundamental, pay attention to the emotional area, which is usually your "Achilles heel" for feeling and experiencing yourself as different on many occasions.
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