When my son was in preschool, we received an informational packet about how we could get him tested for NYC’s “gifted” programs. We decided not to bother.
Not because we don’t think he’s got potential, but because it just seemed like unnecessary stress for a four-year-old. Besides, if Detective Munch is some kind of supergenius, we’ll find out eventually (and laugh all the way to the bank!)
I’m glad we passed on the testing, because last week I saw an article on PopSugar called “Signs Your Child May Be Gifted” that takes all the guesswork out of determining whether your kid might one day be able to buy you an island*.
20 Signs of Gifted-ness (with commentary from Dad and Buried)
- Learns rapidly, easily, and efficiently – If you’re referring to how quickly he learned to use the remote control, CHECK.
- Has exceptionally large vocabulary for their age – Um, he knows a bunch of swears?
- Demonstrates unusual reasoning power – Yeah, unusually annoying, am I right? Hahaha! But seriously, reasoning? Most of his reasoning is just him saying “but I want it!” over and over. Harvard Law, here we come!
- Has an unusually strong memory, but is bored with memorization and recitation – He can point out the McDonald’s we stopped at on a road trip three years ago but can’t remember/refuses to tell us what he did at school earlier today. Does that count? Otherwise: yeah, unusually annoying, am I right?
- Needs little outside control — applies self-discipline – HAHA. HAHAHAHA. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.
- Has a liking for structure, order, and consistency – See above.
- Is flexible in thinking patterns; makes unusual associations between remote ideas – He thinks the fact that he only went a little bit berserk at Target means he should get a new toy, which is a pretty fucking remote idea.
- Displays a great curiosity about objects, situations, or events; asks provocative questions – “Daddy, does the Death Star have bathroom?”
- Makes good grades in most subjects – He’s a grade-A pain in the ass!
- Has a power of concentration, an intense attention that excludes all else – Sure, let’s call “ignores everything we say because he’s a hateful problem child” his amazing “power of concentration.” This list is really making me feel better about my son. Thanks, PopSugar!
- Provides very alert, rapid answers to questions – Totally! For example, he can say “No!” over one hundred times in under three seconds.
- Is resourceful, solving problems by ingenious methods – Let’s see. He whines, and if that doesn’t work, he screams, and if that doesn’t work, he flails, and if that doesn’t work, he says “I hate you!” and if that doesn’t work he whines, and if that doesn’t work, he screams… Eventually, it works. So yeah, it’s pretty ingenious.
- Has avid interest in science or literature – He mostly has an avid interest in poop.
- Reveals originality in oral and written expression – Does gibberish count as originality?
- Has a power of abstraction, conceptualization and synthesis – Um, what? Do I have to be gifted to be able to tell if my son is gifted?
- Is secure emotionally – He just had a meltdown because I got the bread out of the toaster, instead of Mommy. You tell me.
- Tends to dominate peers or situations – He does seem to be a tad bossy with his friends. And he dominates the shit out of me.
- Uses a lot of commonsense – See the toaster story above.
- Displays a willingness to accept complexity – What is this willingness you speak of? He’s five.
- Is perceptually open to his or her environment – Sure, if the environment include toys and/or screens. Let’s give it to him.
Obviously, not all of the indicators are appropriate for children as young as five. Unfortunately, judging by how poorly he fared on the checklist, it seems that, regardless of his age, my son is a straight-up dullard.
I hope your kids fare better. Run through the list and find out! (Send all complaints to PopSugar.)
*assuming you can monetize it and also that the weight of being smarter than everyone else doesn’t result in painful anxiety, crippling depression, and a lifetime of loneliness. Good luck!