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A few questions

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
I'm fairly new to this forum and have enjoyed reading about your children and jumping in with my own experiences.

My son six year old son recently had his IQ tested via the WISC IV and his full scale IQ is141 with his general ability index at 146 due to a much lower processing speed score (121). Did anyone else experience this with their kids, and is a slower processing time a source of frustration for your children? My son will flip out if he cannot instantly jam out an answer in his workbook- claiming he doesn't understand when I know he does, but he needs to take things more slowly.
I'm also curious if anyone has any experience with gifted magnet schools - aside from his behavior asynchronicity, we had the IQ test because we are considering putting him on a waitlist for a public magnet school in our area specifically for gifted elementary students - his private school is excellent but quite expensive. I'm nervous about upsetting his apple cart and moving schools- he's an anxious, intense child with some minor social awkwardness. Can't decide if an entire school of gifted children would be a blessing or a disaster for him.

Thanks for your input.
post #2 of 11

121 isn't a low processing speed. It is *lower* than his other scores, but not low, not by a long shot.

post #3 of 11
Originally Posted by Linda on the move View Post

121 isn't a low processing speed. It is *lower* than his other scores, but not low, not by a long shot.

But based on the GAI, it is likely about 1 standard deviation below the verbal and PRI scores, so, together with being just six, can cause a little frustration.  This isn't so huge a gap so as to expect long term problems, though, and based on the scores you report, it might not be fully valid to report the GAI in place of the FSIQ.  I would gather that much of what the OP is seeing is mostly age, personality, and (lack of) coping skills.  When the gap is more like 30 points or more, then it is more likely to be the source of a problem. 


I've found that educational settings used to serving a population of gifted kids (particularly ones with IQ admission criteria, not just achievement) are generally familiar with anxiety, social struggles, intensity, and low threshold for frustration.  The apple cart is quite frequently upset around here, but we've found that the right environment does get the cart righted again.

post #4 of 11

My ds's visual processing score is on the 13th percentile, which would equate to an 82 on the 100-is-mean IQ scale, with a FSIQ of 130 (GAI 146). So his gap is quite profound, in the order of 4 SDs. It has been be a source of some frustration. Music sight-reading hasn't come easily to him, and speed drill type exercises produced a lot of anxiety for him. He also struggled a lot with handwriting, earning himself a dysgraphia diagnosis, largely because (I think) he couldn't process the visual results of his early writing efforts fast enough for them to serve as effective feedback. 


Anyway, despite the huge gap my ds hasn't had major problems. Perhaps that's partly because he was homeschooled for a bunch of years before starting school as a high schooler and we were able to work with his strengths rather than being held hostage by his weaknesses. But even in school, all we did was get his dysgraphia on record in 10th grade so that no one could ever argue about him being able to use a computer keyboard for written output, and that was it. So I would think while a 1 SD difference might provoke some frustration, that unless temperament exacerbates the situation, it likely wouldn't be a degree of frustration that I'd consider unusual for a 6-year-old. Most kids have strengths and weaknesses; as they get older the asynchronicities even out, or the compensatory skills build up, or a bit of both.



post #5 of 11

Just to be clear, Miranda, the OP is talking about processing speed (how quickly the person can manipulate information), and you mention visual processing (how well a person interprets what they see).


My DD's processing speed and working memory are each 2 sigma below her GAI, but still above average, and her visual processing is weak and below average.  The big place we've seen this is in copying information (like copying spelling words off another sheet of paper), and it's worst when copying off a vertical surface (the board or a computer screen).  We've taught her strategies to cope, but she also has accommodations from the school, including not having to work off a computer screen or copy out of a book.

post #6 of 11

Sorry, I mis-spoke. It was ds's "visual processing speed" that was so depressed, not his visual processing score. His working memory was also depressed, relative to his other scores, but not by such a profound margin. He bombed the timed coding and symbol search subtests, which were reported as "visual processing speed." His untimed visual processing scores were actually very high.


Maybe that's still different. I dunno. It's the only report I've ever received on any of my kids, and they discussed it with him, not me, so I'm no expert.



post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 
I appreciate the input- his highest scores were verbal, followed by perceptual reasoning then working memory- all in the gifted range. I know that his processing speed is very good, but for him, it's a relative weakness that causes frustration. The GAI was given only because there was a fairly large margin between his highest and lowest score- and a supplemental score if we were ever to want to place him in a program for exceptionally gifted children to demonstrate that he's likely to be capable of the work.
I'm not so hung up on the score- it's just that the GT world is fairly new to me. I wasn't placed in a gifted program and neither was my husband. I'm trying to figure out how to help him persevere through things that cause him to become upset. A meltdown over a wrong answer or not being able to instantly snap to the correct answer is a common occurrence in our house.
I am going to tour the magnet school to see if it would be a good environment. I have no doubt that it would meet his needs educationally, but I want him to become more mature and self- aware.
post #8 of 11

My kids really struggled with perfectionism at that age, maturation has helped.  Lots of things that are really tough when they're little seem to get easier as they grow.


I really like the book Smart but Scattered.  

post #9 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks joensally. I'm excited to look at the gifted magnet school- and hopeful that it can provide a strong educational and character environment.
I'm glad that some things get better with maturity. I think it must be hard for gifted kids to appreciate early that "struggle" is a natural part of the learning process- especially when they start off with academics coming easier.
I'm glad for this forum- as a parent it's exciting to discover that your child has so much intellectual potential. On the other hand, it does create special needs behaviorally, academically, and socially that aren't well understood. The other week, we were at the park and my son was trying to befriend two older boys. I eavesdropped a bit and found them quizzing him on the multiplication table, seeng if he would trip up. He thought he was making friends by "performing." I had to explain to him that he doesn't have to prove anything to anyone, and that there are many things about him that other kids will like.
post #10 of 11

It sounds to me like the processing speed score is a red herring - I'd say it's perfectionism, self-regulation, impulse control and frustration tolerance that is the issue. All very much typical for our atypical kids.

You may want to look at this:



post #11 of 11
Originally Posted by Tigerle View Post

It sounds to me like the processing speed score is a red herring - I'd say it's perfectionism, self-regulation, impulse control and frustration tolerance that is the issue. All very much typical for our atypical kids.


Yes, its really common.


The school I work at clusters the gifted kids in the same class. They put the gifted cluster with a seasoned teacher due to the issues with emotional regulation and behavior that typically go along with gifted kids.

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