Under ehat circumstances would you consider early entry for kindergarten - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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#61 of 65 Old 02-26-2010, 01:21 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Linda on the move View Post
I really think it would be better if they had a 2 month period for the cut off. All children whose birthdays fell within that period would best tested and the school would recommend starting them or holding them back. It would make more sense than a 1 day cut off.

So I think we agree.
I want to nominate you to be the new secretary of education.

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#62 of 65 Old 02-26-2010, 03:46 PM
 
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I've never seen a truly gifted child (truly gifted, not just "a bright kid") who could not hold a pencil or open milk, short of a physical disability (in which case they'd qualify for an IEP). I started college PT at 12, FT at 16. Guess what? I was the shortest kid - by far. I was a senior in college before I was old enough to get into many places. I wouldn't trade that academic experience, though, for the sake of being the same size/age as everyone else. Gifted children, particularly girls, can end up in loads of trouble during the middle school/jr high years because of the boredom that comes out as classroom disruption in the early grades.

Overall I don't understand the idea of wanting to start a child early or late because they may be the shortest/tallest/skinniest/most awkward kid. Those differences exist within peers of the same age as well, which is why intellect is the primary (and I'd say in most cases, only) motivating factor for me.
My son is gifted (tested and everything ) and in kindergarten he woudn't have been able to open a container of milk (probably couldn't now). He has dysgraphia and fine motor delay, so lots of things are harder for him than his age peers. This is certainly not unheard of. I also think that younger kids may need more scaffolding as they enter school than older children who have more perspective and agency.

I absolutely agree about size etc and that for many, many gifted kids a skip is really important to their academic, emotional and mental health. I have a struggling gifted girl who we should have skipped as we've seen a number of the classic "gifted girl" things - underachievement, totally checked out of school, hiding her abilites etc. DS will likely skip a later grade and we chose HSing for part of his early elementary to accomodate his unique learning needs and asynchronous development.

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Keep in mind for all of the examples of gifted children who lacked maturity, that most of us (gifties) are socially awkward anyway, and age isn't the reason. Hell, I'm socially awkward now, and I'm 29 years old. So those kids probably would've struggled socially whether they were ahead a grade or not. (And in fact, if you look at Nation Deceived, you will find much information about the illegitimacy of "concerns" over the social lives of gifted children.)
This is a stereotype. I actually know a larger number of socially competent gifted people than I do socially awkward gifted people. I think you can be gifted AND socially awkward, just as you can be average IQ AND socially awkward. School-age awkwardness or unfulfilling social lives can be born of lack of fit due to age based grade placement, but I think ongoing awkwardness is a function of personality, or proclivities, or being stuck in the wrong grade for too long, not giftedness per se.

Mom to a teenager and a middle schooler.

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#63 of 65 Old 02-26-2010, 04:42 PM
 
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This is a stereotype. I actually know a larger number of socially competent gifted people than I do socially awkward gifted people. I think you can be gifted AND socially awkward, just as you can be average IQ AND socially awkward. School-age awkwardness or unfulfilling social lives can be born of lack of fit due to age based grade placement, but I think ongoing awkwardness is a function of personality, or proclivities, or being stuck in the wrong grade for too long, not giftedness per se.
I can see many reasons that this is the perception, that giftedness and social awkwardness go together.

Socially awkward gifted people are easier to spot as gifted by the general population than socially savvy gifted people. Part of being socially savvy is not showing off and bragging, a socially awkward gifted person might not realize that going on and on about the special program s/he is in might come across as bragging. Also a socially savvy gifted person will find topics of conversation that are interesting to whom ever they are talking with, where a socially awkward person will stick to the topics s/he find most exciting even if no one else is following them. A socially savvy gifted person is better able to gage what level they need to keep a conversation at for the other person to understand what they are saying, the socially awkward one will talk over the other persons head making it obvios that s/he understands things the other person doesn't. So the socially awkward gifted person is easier to spot than the better camouflaged socially savvy gifted person.

Many gifted people will give up trying to be socially savvy even if they are capable of doing it. If the environment they are in is such that it becomes a choice between getting along with peers or pursuing interests, they may give up trying to get along with peers they have little in common with. Some will take on the tendencies of a socially awkward person, b/c they are more likely to be perceived as intelligent if they do (I've often suspected this of Bill Gates.) This can simply become habitual.

The socially awkward gifted person is more memorable than the socially savvy one.

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#64 of 65 Old 02-26-2010, 05:08 PM
 
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I can see many reasons that this is the perception, that giftedness and social awkwardness go together.

Socially awkward gifted people are easier to spot as gifted by the general population than socially savvy gifted people. Part of being socially savvy is not showing off and bragging, a socially awkward gifted person might not realize that going on and on about the special program s/he is in might come across as bragging. Also a socially savvy gifted person will find topics of conversation that are interesting to whom ever they are talking with, where a socially awkward person will stick to the topics s/he find most exciting even if no one else is following them. A socially savvy gifted person is better able to gage what level they need to keep a conversation at for the other person to understand what they are saying, the socially awkward one will talk over the other persons head making it obvios that s/he understands things the other person doesn't. So the socially awkward gifted person is easier to spot than the better camouflaged socially savvy gifted person.

Many gifted people will give up trying to be socially savvy even if they are capable of doing it. If the environment they are in is such that it becomes a choice between getting along with peers or pursuing interests, they may give up trying to get along with peers they have little in common with. Some will take on the tendencies of a socially awkward person, b/c they are more likely to be perceived as intelligent if they do (I've often suspected this of Bill Gates.) This can simply become habitual.

The socially awkward gifted person is more memorable than the socially savvy one.
Yes to all of this. I was responding to this:
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most of us (gifties) are socially awkward anyway, and age isn't the reason
I just don't think that there's any basis on which to assert that most gifties are socially awkward. Sure, those who are stand out, and every time they do the stereotype is affirmed in people's minds. It's also a great way to seem to" level the playing field," as in "sure, they're smart, but man are they weird/awkward/clumsy."

Gifted people are people - some are physically agile, some are clumsy; some are introverted, some are extroverted; some are socially agile, some are socially awkward; some have internal drive, some sit on the couch and watch sports...etc.

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#65 of 65 Old 02-26-2010, 05:49 PM
 
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Yes to all of this. I was responding to this:


I just don't think that there's any basis on which to assert that most gifties are socially awkward. Sure, those who are stand out, and every time they do the stereotype is affirmed in people's minds. It's also a great way to seem to" level the playing field," as in "sure, they're smart, but man are they weird/awkward/clumsy."

Gifted people are people - some are physically agile, some are clumsy; some are introverted, some are extroverted; some are socially agile, some are socially awkward; some have internal drive, some sit on the couch and watch sports...etc.
I think it's important though when talking about grade acceleration to look at these stereotypes that may be influencing the decision closely. Is a socially savvy child who is manging well in X grade being denied acceleration to Y b/c they are fitting in well in X grade? Is the socially apathetic child, who gave up trying to make friends, being denied acceleration b/c they are "immature?" Is the socially awkward child being denied accelaration b/c it would "make her/his social problems worse?"

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