My 9 year old was identified as gifted when he took the Terra Nova test last school year. He scored in the 99th percentile. I have known since he was in pre-school that he was gifted so it was nice to finally have it on paper.
I had a conference with his teacher the other day and she expressed some concern over his grades and his behavior. He has all A's and B's and made the Honor Roll. Well, according to her he isn't working up to his ability and she would like to see some improvement. I understand what she is saying (as he has always been a straight A student until this year). She said that he is very "hyper" (and he is VERY hyper) and talks a lot to the other kids in the class. He has literally gone from being painfully shy to talking non-stop. He "hates" school and really doesn't enjoy reading whatsoever. The school has done away with the gifted program in the Elementary school but they do offer it in the Middle and High schools so I had a really bad feeling about this year. The letter I received from the Board Of Education (when he was identified) suggested that he take part in the gifted program. He always tells me that he's "bored" at school. I don't think it's because he isn't being challenged but I don't know. His teacher has offered to give him some more challenging work, but I'm not really sure that would be best for him since it's the work he dislikes.
I guess what I'm wondering is if anyone else has had experience with this type of child and what did you do to keep them motivated toward school? I almost feel like the gifted label is more of a curse than a blessing sometimes. There is so much more expected out of him and when he can't live up to what's expected he is "underachieving".
My husband was not tested till he was 11. Before then he didn't listen in class, wouldn't do his work, was seen as a problem child and stupid. He had a maths test in school of which the school called in his parents and accused him of cheating because all the answers were right with no working out and done in half the time of the other children. He went through a wide range of tests at 11 because he was the "problem child" one of them being an IQ style test. He is also a 99%. He didn't want to do the different more challenging work when he was given it. If it didn't interest him he didn't care. He was taken out of main steam school and did a special program supported by "Landrover" (the car company) with a job offer when they turned 16. which he turned down.
Maybe discuss with the teacher letting him choose his own homework. Then he can do something that interest him, at his level. That way his also get some feeling of control, coz if he is anything like my hubby he wont like doing things more coz he doesn't like being told he has to do something not just coz they bore him.
From what I understand, the Terra Nova is an acievement (versus ability) test. Was he tested on all subjects? How old is he for grade? If he is socially adept (friends with older children) I think you have a good case on your hands for a grade skip.
I also think the Terra Nova is an achievement test, but it sounds like that's the test that the OP's school uses to determine entry into the gifted program.
OP - Can you send in more challenging work that he does enjoy? What do you think has caused him to talk non-stop when he was formerly painfully shy?
Thank you all for your replies! Yes, the Terra Nova is the test that the school uses for entrance in to the gifted program. Of course since they've done away with it in the Elementary he can't take part in the classes.
His gifted traits go way beyond some test scores...he meets the criteria to a T. He was in therapy last year because he would have a breakdown if someone would say a cuss word or if somebody did something that he thought was "inappropriate" like he doesn't think his Sister (who is 13) should talk to Boys or even like Boys. He thinks she is too young. Sometimes I really feel like he is a little old man trapped in a boy's body..He is also an extreme perfectionist with everything (except his school work lately).
His therapist who specializes in Autistic, Aspergers and Gifted kids first thought he could be border line Aspergers but after several meetings and testing with him she decided that the things that were going on were more linked to him being gifted rather than Aspergers and she felt that he has a high IQ but he has never been formally tested.