Have you ever Wondered if your Child may be Gifted?
Children who are gifted have the potential to perform at a much higher level compared to other children their age. When giftedness in children is identified, schools have more tools and options to provide enriching and challenging learning opportunities.
What is Giftedness?
There are several different theories of giftedness. Most often, giftedness is described as above average general or specific abilities that have developed naturally. Depending on the definition used, giftedness may be identified in 2-10% of children. Alberta Education defines giftedness as “exceptional potential and/or performance across a wide range of abilities in one or more areas.”
The National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC), an American organization, has written a position statement (found here) that outlines considerations for both identification and support of gifted children and youth.
Supporting Gifted Children
In Alberta schools, when a child is identified as being gifted, schools must provide individualized and appropriate supports, just as they do for students who have other identified needs.
It is essential to support the growth and development of gifted children as they reach for their personal best. Supports can be provided:
In your child’s regular classroom, with specific needs outlined in an Individualized Program Plan (IPP),
In congregated programs within the public school systems, such as the Calgary Board of Education’s Gifted and Talented Education [GATE; Gifted | Exceptional & Special Needs | Supports for Students | Programs | Calgary Board of Education (cbe.ab.ca)] and the Calgary Catholic School District [Calgary Catholic School District - Congregated Gifted (cssd.ab.ca)], or
In specialized schools, such as Westmount Charter School (https://www.westmountcharter.com/)
Typically, admission to Gifted programs and schools is based on a Psychological Assessment indicating that your child is gifted.
A Psychological Assessment will look at your child’s cognitive abilities and academic achievement. Scores from these tests are compared to a group of children the same age. Some programs and schools use a certain score as an admission requirement.
Potential Signs your Child is Gifted
Gifted children are all unique in their traits and interests. Some possible signs your child is a gifted learner include, but are not limited to:
Is highly curious
Is observant of the world around them
Engages in elaborate, complex discussions
Thrives on novelty and complexity
Acquires basic skills quickly
Only needs to be exposed to something once or twice before mastery
Has a desire to produce their ‘own’ product, is not content with copying
Can come up with several solutions to a problem
Has an advanced, more sophisticated vocabulary
May show great interest in a particular subject
Might get bored with routine tasks or repetitive work
May not appear to be listening but can show understanding of what was said
May be self-critical or experience perfectionism
If your child shows some of the previous characteristics and you have questions about Gifted Assessments, please contact one of our psychologists to talk about assessment options. You can email email@example.com with any inquiries.
Keep your eye on important decision deadlines within your school division.
Click the following link for more information: https://www.westmountcharter.com/admissions/
Blog post written by Carmen Gietz, Kassandra Burk, and Dr. Andrea Stelnicki