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I am convinced my 2 y/o is gifted.<br><br>
I was considered gifted as a child and not encouraged or nurtured and I don't want to make those mistakes with J.<br><br>
He is very interested in music and I would like to look into lessons as described in one of the threads here, but other than that, where do I begin?<br><br>
When can a child be tested? Is there a formal track for gifted toddlers? Is early schooling encouraged? Are there any must reads that deal with giftedness in very young children? Any absolute do's or don'ts from BTDT mamas?<br><br>
TIA for all your help!
 

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Typically, there is not a formal program to identify and accelerate gifted toddlers.<br><br>
On the whole, gifted children are incredibly driven to learn and to teach themselves. In an enriched environment, they will learn automatically, without an adult necessarily leading them. You may wish to read Maria Montessori's <span style="text-decoration:underline;">The Absorbent Mind</span> about how toddlers use the environment to develop their own brains and characters.<br><br>
My own experience with Suzuki method music lessons (we do violin) has been very positive. Two, though, is young even for Suzuki, and you may wish to start with something like Music Together, or Kodaly music classes.<br><br>
The best things you can do at this age are to read widely to your child, to take them interesting places, like zoos and museums, and to talk to them about things that are interesting to you and to him/her. Plenty of time for exploration and creativity are important, too. Children this age are working on so many fields of experience at once! It's a fun age.<br><br>
And welcome!
 

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When can a child be tested? Is there a formal track for gifted toddlers? Is early schooling encouraged? Are there any must reads that deal with giftedness in very young children? Any absolute do's or don'ts from BTDT mamas?<br><br>
TIA for all your help!</div>
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A child can be tested young if you have the money, but it may not be very helpful. A lot of people recommend delaying until about age 6. My kids will likely be tested at ages 5 / older 3 respectively. That's because we're on a wait list at the university and I would like some feedback on their strengths at this point.<br><br>
I personally don't think there's any data in support of schooling as a toddler (and to some extent beyond). I think schooling interferes with the development of passions, for being a time sink without benefit at a bare minimum. One exception might be a well run Montessori work environment, morning hours only. However, I chose not to put my children in Montessori because it is $$$$ and I was not convinced that they would be better off than they would being unschooled.<br><br>
I like:<br>
The Absorbent Mind<br>
Dumbing Us Down<br>
Mindset (a crucial read for any high ability child)<br>
The Call to Brilliance<br><br>
My advice:<br>
Try, try, try not to praise ability or outcome and try not to label him smart. It doesn't seem to make them happier, just more afraid of failure. Note when they work hard.<br><br>
Find mixed age activities with people who are willing to meet a child on his level. If he is physically advanced also, sports like gymnastics, hockey, tennis, swimming may be good bets. Get a balance bike for him so he can learn to ride on two wheels (if he does not already).<br><br>
As with all children, the early years are the time to start the second language and music (need not be formal instruction).
 

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I think the best advice I could give to the parent of a very young gifted child is this: If you're caring for your child's basic needs (food, clothing, shelter, love), then you're not going to do anything to damage his potential. In other words, even if you do absolutely nothing else (and I'm sure that you're doing a great many more things), he'll still be gifted at five/ten/fifteen/etc.<br><br>
Testing: The first thing you want to do is decide whether or not testing will be useful to you, your child, and your family. I can think of a few situations where it might be helpful to have a child tested at two, but in most cases it won't be terribly useful until they're six or seven.<br><br>
Right now, the best thing you can do is probably providing an enriched environment (something that all parents should be doing, ideally) and getting to know your child. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up">
 
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