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Charles Baudelaire, I know that you are familiar with signs of giftedness in young children and I did not mean to imply that children who pick up on things (including reading) quickly are not gifted. What was getting at was that, although there has been good research linking early speech with giftedness, there has not been as much emphasis in the literature that I have seen linking early reading and giftedness. Perhaps this is due to the differing definitions of reading, as others have noted, as well as the huge pressure put on young children to read now a days.

In the past when only "gifted" kids might be reading at 4 or 5, now we expect nearly all children to be reading at 5. If they are not, they get put in reading recovery programs - yikes! It blurs the line on who would naturally be able to read at that age (and thus be showing some sign of greater academic ability) and everyone else b/c everyone is expected to meet that standard. I have also met some very bright children who learned to read much later than average and who then surpassed their peers rather quickly. I don't know if the timing is that important.

Yes, many gifted children learn to read early on & pick up on it quickly, but many young children learn to "read" through drilling from their parents and teachers and are no more gifted than an average child. They were just pushed. Pushing a child to do something before s/he would have naturally shown interest and ability does nothing to produce a child with higher abilities long term. On that, I am sure that we agree.

That is my concern with learning toys, videos, etc. We do have some of them, but not b/c I am seeking to turn my children into little geniuses. I do think that you can coach a kindergartener or young child into something that is beyond their natural abilities with some success, but as far as it "putting them on the fast track" to academic success (my older dd's teacher's justification for drilling the kids on stuff), I don't see any proof that it will work. I'm not in any way meaning to imply that you are doing anything like this. I am just trying to explain (hopefully in some coherent manner!) what I meant in my last post.

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Originally Posted by onlyzombiecat
I don't think any toy gives your child an edge over other kids. I think it is weird to think that competitively about young kids. Knowing how to read at a sixth grade level by age 5 doesn't make you a better person. It doesn't mean you are nicer or have more common sense. It doesn't mean that the kid who doesn't know how to read won't match or surpass you in a few years when they are ready.
ITA! That's exactly where I am at. We just have way too many parents who want their kid to be the best, the smartest... I am tired of all of the comparisons and competition that I see among my dds' peers parents. I am proud of my girls & I understand a parent being proud of their bright child. But, will that child be a better person b/c she reads better or does math better? I am sure that it doesn't really make a difference. As I told dd's teacher, I would much rather my child be a happy blue collar worker than a miserable president. Good school grades don't always equate to the president, either. My brother struggled through school with a C avg & I was the honor student with a Masters degree. Solely from a financial success standpoint, he makes 10 times what my dh & I do. We're all happy people, though, and that it what really matters.
 

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Christa, I understand what you're getting at, but I think almost everyone would agree that a child who self-initiates reading instruction/teaches himself to read at age 3 or younger is gifted. And by reading I'm using CB's definition, e.g. being able to pick up a book they've never seen before and read with some fluency. Additionally, I think we would all agree that a child drilled to recognize a few dozen sight words is not truly reading.

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I have also met some very bright children who learned to read much later than average and who then surpassed their peers rather quickly. I don't know if the timing is that important.
It is true that not all gifted kids learn to read early, and that those who learn later usually start surpassing their peers rather quickly (my daughter is doing this right now). However, that doesn't negate the fact that kids who teach themselves to read early are very likely to remain intellectually "ahead" their entire lives. Your statement above seems to be heading in the direction of the "all children even out" myth, but perhaps you didn't mean it that way.
 

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Quote:
Your statement above seems to be heading in the direction of the "all children even out" myth, but perhaps you didn't mean it that way.
Oh no, I didn't mean it that way. I know that they don't all even out. I was meaning to express that gifted children don't all learn to read early and early reading isn't always a sign of giftedness. There are other much more accurate means of assessing giftedness than when a child learns to read.

eta: I think that there is currently just too much emphasis put on early reading in school and elsewhere. Reading to children from a very early age on can never be overemphasized IMO, but getting them to read themselves at a young age is not as good of an indicator of academic success.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by ChristaN
Oh no, I didn't mean it that way. I know that they don't all even out. I was meaning to express that gifted children don't all learn to read early and early reading isn't always a sign of giftedness. There are other much more accurate means of assessing giftedness than when a child learns to read.

eta: I think that there is currently just too much emphasis put on early reading in school and elsewhere. Reading to children from a very early age on can never be overemphasized IMO, but getting them to read themselves at a young age is not as good of an indicator of academic success.
 

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ok since there are two issue going on parallel i wanted to pipe in with the one i hadnt replied to. i used to use nazi till i found i genuinely offended some folks that i met face to face (who had nothing to do with concentration camps or jews themselves) and i stopped.

but unfortunately in todays world history only seems to survive in slang. in mainstream public i mean. for instance how many of us have studied about nero in our history lesson yet who would ever remember who nero was and what he did if we still didnt use 'nero' as a slang word. i so wish polpot, stalin, mao were slang too so the world still remembers the horrors they perpetrated.

yet if u went on the street and asked who pol pot or stalin or mao was they would have no clue. of course many wouldnt know hitler or nazis but at least some would.

so am i saying nazi should continue as a slang and people use it. absolutely esp. with our school system. does it mean i like it - absolutely not.

http://users.erols.com/mwhite28/tyrants.htm

and yet why did ghengis khan get all romanticised? go figure!!!!

a hundred years or two from now nazi might just be a word the mainstream public heard in a 'seinfeld' episode.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by ChristaN
Oh no, I didn't mean it that way. I know that they don't all even out. I was meaning to express that gifted children don't all learn to read early and early reading isn't always a sign of giftedness. There are other much more accurate means of assessing giftedness than when a child learns to read.

eta: I think that there is currently just too much emphasis put on early reading in school and elsewhere. Reading to children from a very early age on can never be overemphasized IMO, but getting them to read themselves at a young age is not as good of an indicator of academic success.
ITA - imaginary/pretend play is a better sign of giftedness.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by lckrause
Christa, I understand what you're getting at, but I think almost everyone would agree that a child who self-initiates reading instruction/teaches himself to read at age 3 or younger is gifted. And by reading I'm using CB's definition, e.g. being able to pick up a book they've never seen before and read with some fluency. Additionally, I think we would all agree that a child drilled to recognize a few dozen sight words is not truly reading.
I think the younger you obtain almost any skill the more indicative it is of future ability. I have been told time and time again that early speech is not very indicative of giftedness, but I think if you take that to an extreme... a child speaking at 2 months, or in complete sentances at 6 months, etc... you are going to get an almost perfect correlation.

That said, I was very surprised by Hoagies' idea of "early" reading. They listed the "Ability to Sight Read Early Readers" at 4.37 years for Gifted children, 5.06 years for "Average" children--- the first was much later than I would have thought, the second earlier. Of course, it is dependent on how they are identifying gifted (I assume the most stringent criteria they would be using in this case to be a 130IQ).

http://gifteddevelopment.com/Article...tics_Scale.htm
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by TiredX2
I think the younger you obtain almost any skill the more indicative it is of future ability.
I think this is true when, as noted, obtaining that skill is largely child-led. There are 4yos in preschools right now, spending lots of time tracing letter sheets and having some serious adult prepping/pushing to get them to write. I'd bet some of them can write their whole name. My son taught himself to write at 3 with no instruction and he's never traced anything. He can't write his surname from memory. So I don't think it means much that a child writes his surname earlier than another, after loads of tracing sheets, instruction, homework and general pushing. He obtained the skill early, but it took a lot to get it and adults basically made him do it. I don't think that will be much of an indicator for future success.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by ChristaN
Charles Baudelaire, I know that you are familiar with signs of giftedness in young children and I did not mean to imply that children who pick up on things (including reading) quickly are not gifted. What was getting at was that, although there has been good research linking early speech with giftedness, there has not been as much emphasis in the literature that I have seen linking early reading and giftedness. Perhaps this is due to the differing definitions of reading, as others have noted, as well as the huge pressure put on young children to read now a days.
Oh, and isn't it frustrating, too, when researchers don't even define what they mean by "reading"?? I know my Henry and Mudge rule is hardly the scientific standard -- someone else might define "reading" as the ability to read five unrelated words on a page, or whatever. No, I thought I'd misunderstood you and yep, I had!
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by LeftField
I think this is true when, as noted, obtaining that skill is largely child-led. There are 4yos in preschools right now, spending lots of time tracing letter sheets and having some serious adult prepping/pushing to get them to write. I'd bet some of them can write their whole name. My son taught himself to write at 3 with no instruction and he's never traced anything. He can't write his surname from memory. So I don't think it means much that a child writes his surname earlier than another, after loads of tracing sheets, instruction, homework and general pushing. He obtained the skill early, but it took a lot to get it and adults basically made him do it. I don't think that will be much of an indicator for future success.
I just figure that the younger the child is, the more likely they "did it themselves." The vast majority of children, no matter WHAT you did would not be reading by the time they were 18 months, kwim? If you have a child doing that, good chance that something outside the norm is going on.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by TiredX2
I just figure that the younger the child is, the more likely they "did it themselves." The vast majority of children, no matter WHAT you did would not be reading by the time they were 18 months, kwim? If you have a child doing that, good chance that something outside the norm is going on.
Gotcha!


And sorry (to the mod) for the derailment! I'll stop now.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by teachinmaof3
We have the fridge magnets only b/c a friend recommended them. I HATE those things! The computerized voice on there doesn't pronounce most of the letters right.
:

Ds insists that is says "T says 'puh'"
 

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well. grandma just bought a leap pad today for ds and he seems to like it. i have to agree with lillian that the simple toys that appeal to us as parents are not always what appeal to our kids. plus, really, c'mon guys, we're all sitting here typing away on our slightly more advanced leap pads - not sitting on our porches whittling for our pleasure by candlelight. i'm not sure i see a diff.

i agree with a lot of the pps about it probably not making much of a difference for development. they'll read when they're ready - fancy toys or no.

the fridge magnets are kind of funny. i saw a mom buying them when grandma was buying ds his leap pad.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by tug
plus, really, c'mon guys, we're all sitting here typing away on our slightly more advanced leap pads - not sitting on our porches whittling for our pleasure by candlelight. i'm not sure i see a diff.
I have always agreed with this. When I was little, I liked my Lincoln Logs and my wooden blocks, but I also liked my junky, brightly colored, whizzbang plastic toys. I also played outside a lot. I'm not the most creative adult in the world, but my dh, who grew up coloring in coloring books and playing with GI Joes and Transformers, has a degree in fine art and is highly creative.

We try to keep plastic toys to a minimum for environmental and human rights reasons, but not necessarily for Waldorfy reasons.

Namaste!
 
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