A loyal blog reader and local mama sent me some info the other day about “giftedness” in children. It seems that, from everything I’ve written about DD, she may be “gifted”. While I abhor labels for children, what intrigues me about this is the special social challenges that some gifted children face. As you know, DD has her share of challenges in this regard, and I’ve noted on many occasions that she doesn’t seem all that interested in “running with the crowd” when it comes to play. I don’t mean that in a peer pressure way, I mean picture a gang of kids laughing and running around together – it’s like a magnet for other kids to join in. But not DD. She’d much rather stay absorbed in whatever she’s doing, like reading a book most likely. I don’t think this is a “problem” but I feel it would help me be a better parent to her if I could understand this better.
As far as the “academic” stuff goes, I honestly never thought of her as gifted because she is so like me and DH at that age. We were both early readers, both loved books, both learned things quickly and I, at least, took great interest in science and nature. To me she is just behaving the way one would expect given her parents’ proclivities.
Anyways, a big thank you to N. for suggesting I take a closer look at this. Anything that helps me to understand DD’s needs is welcome. Fortunately it seems that whether or not she is “gifted” doesn’t matter that much because we are homelearning. In fact, from the websites I’ve looked at so far, this appears to be the biggest challenge for parnts of gifted kids: dealing with the school system. But if I can get a window into her social needs that would be great. I mean, if she is truly happier hanging with adults and not that intrested in hanging with groups of kids that is *fine* by me. I just want her to be happy. If she does yearn to hang with them but has difficulties figuring out how, then I want to help her. And somehow, reading that “bossiness”, which is a reflection of leadrship abilitis and a desire to maintain order and control in her world, is a common trait in gifted children makes me feel more tolerant of it, silly as that may be.