Learning Disability vs. Gifted - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
Thread Tools
#1 of 3 Old 02-16-2013, 05:43 AM - Thread Starter
pattimomma's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: The Dirty South
Posts: 1,178
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)

What does this sound like to you?


My 9yr old DD has always excelled at reading, it just comes easily and naturally to her. She is currently in fourth grade and a recent standardized test placed her as reading at a 7th grade level and in the 96 percentile. However she has always struggled with math. The same test put her at a fourth grade level for math and at the 51 percentile.


My question is: Is she gifted in the area of reading or LD in the area of math? I don't understand why the scores are so far apart. Does math just seem so hard to her because reading came so easily and putting in some work to understand math then seems like a chore to her? Her math scores are average, could her giftedness (is that even a word) help her compensate for a weakness in math so it comes out as average?


Thanks for the input!

~Patti~ rainbow1284.gifMomma to three girls and three boys chicken3.gif, First mother to one girl triadadopt.jpg

Certified, card carrying member of the IEP Binder Clubkid.gif  

pattimomma is offline  
#2 of 3 Old 02-16-2013, 03:09 PM
Linda on the move's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: basking in the sunshine
Posts: 10,672
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 67 Post(s)

There are a lot of different test that can be given to children and then tell us very different kinds of information about the child. Some test help pinpoint how children learn or try to measure their potential to learn, and those are the test used to id giftedness and LDs. Other tests tell us what the child has learned so far, that those are the ones that tell us things like grade levels and how the child compares with other in the state who took that test last year.


The tests your DD were given fall into the second category. They just tell you where she is right now. You would need completely different tests to find out if she is gifted or has an LD.


Your DD is a very strong reader (good for her!). Does she read for pleasure? How many hours a week does she read? I think that for kids who get a bug for reading, they quickly reach a point where they can read pretty much anything.


Your DD is average for math. Completely average. When you say she "struggles," what do you mean? She is exactly where she is expected to be based on her age and education.


To find out if your DD is gifted, she would need an IQ test. An IQ of 100 is average, and an IQ over 130 is considered "gifted." 


To find out if your DD has an LD related to math, she would need to be given specific test for specific LDs by someone highly qualified to figure such things out.  Part of it would be finding out her IQ and seeing if her ability in math lined up with her intelligence.


But if she only ever has to do the math she HAS to do, and reads quite a bit, the achievement gap could be explained by amount of time spent practicing rather than her innate ability.

I think it is very normal for people to find one of these subjects easier and more pleasant than the other. My Dh and younger DD are math people. They think it is fun.  My older DD and I are happiest in bookstores, and prefer calculators to the "joy" of mental math. 


So, depending on what you mean by she "struggles" with math, it may not mean a thing. If you just mean that she has to work at it and then doesn't get it all perfect and she doesn't like that, then there's nothing wrong with her. That's normal!


A true LD for math looks different than that -- kids who really cannot grasp spacial things, so all of geometry is lost on them. Kids who cannot think abstractly, so the idea of "2 + x = 5" is impossible because X is a letter, not a number.

but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

Linda on the move is online now  
#3 of 3 Old 02-17-2013, 10:51 AM - Thread Starter
pattimomma's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: The Dirty South
Posts: 1,178
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)

Thanks Linda! I guess I should have clarified "gifted". Our school district doesn't use IQ scores to identify and qualify children for the gifted program. My oldest DD is in this program. They use achievement tests - IOWA and COGAT. If the students score high enough (90% or greater) on those standardized tests then they do additional testing in the areas of creativity and motivation. You have to score in the 90% or greater on either the motivation or creativity test to qualify. Even if you are clinically gifted, IQ 130+, you cannot be in the gifted program without meeting the other requirements. So if you are IQ 130 but LD reading and you score less than 90% on achievement tests then no gifted program for you. In fact if you have any accommodations on an achievement test, such as extra time, you can't qualify even if your scores are perfect. It should really just be called the high achiever program instead of the gifted program!


Both my DSs are LD with other comorbid diagnoses so I am familiar with psychological, speech language and OT evaluations in both the public and private sectors.


The school waits until children are obviously failing or falling significantly behind before doing anything. I am just concerned because middle school is right around the corner. If I can identify a LD now then I can plan for extra tutors and help so that she never gets so far behind that it's hard to catch up. 


She cries over math and says she can't get it. I don't know what she can't get. My husband accuses her of just being lazy and not wanting to work because she is use to other subjects being so easy. She does read a lot. Maybe I am just imagining a LD or over reacting. But then again the school said she didn't need speech for articulation but I had her privately tested and on the GFTA second edition her standard score was a 74! Average is 100 so she is 1.5 standard deviations below normal which is significant and warrants speech therapy. 

~Patti~ rainbow1284.gifMomma to three girls and three boys chicken3.gif, First mother to one girl triadadopt.jpg

Certified, card carrying member of the IEP Binder Clubkid.gif  

pattimomma is offline  

Quick Reply
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off