Case studies of gifted kindergarten children: profiles of promise.The early years have been considered formative and critical to subsequent cognitive, social and emotional development, yet research on young children has focused on commonalities; individual differences and abnormally advanced development are often viewed as "'troublesome noise' rather than objects of interest in themselves" (Robinson, 1993, p. 507). Despite considerable growth in the field of school psychology, identification of, and intervention with, the young gifted has received little emphasis; most notably neglected are gifted school-entry-aged children. So few areas with respect to the young gifted have been researched that much uncertainty still exists about the nature and fostering of giftedness and talent at this age.
There has been a preponderance pre·pon·der·ance also pre·pon·der·an·cy
Superiority in weight, force, importance, or influence.
Noun 1. preponderance of retrospective studies retrospective study,
a study in which a search is made for a relationship between one phenomenon or condition and another that occurred in the past (e.g. in the examination of the early lives of the highly gifted (Albert, 1980; Cox, 1926; Goertzel, Goertzel, & Goertzel, 1978). Bloom's (1985) study on world-class achievers found their early years to consist of warm and gentle nurturance. The abilities of prodigies, those whose adult-level talents emerge by middle childhood, are rarely addressed prior to school entry (Feldman & Goldsmith, 1986; Radford, 1990). The accuracy of parent and teacher identification has also been examined. Because of biased sampling from high socioeconomic areas, early studies of the young gifted tended to conclude that they were superior in all facets of development. Unfortunately, these studies have instituted firmly held beliefs that these children are able to overcome their problems independently and will rise to the top, regardless of any intervention provided.
This study utilized an in-depth, qualitative case study research approach, as described by Bogdan and Biklen (1992), to investigate the lives of gifted kindergarten kindergarten [Ger.,=garden of children], system of preschool education. Friedrich Froebel designed (1837) the kindergarten to provide an educational situation less formal than that of the elementary school but one in which children's creative play instincts would be children. When studying subpopulations of gifted students, it is difficult to obtain large populations and it is not possible to employ random selection as the identification of the gifted and talented within this age group is not common practice. Very few studies of this population have been undertaken in "present time," when the children are actually experiencing events, such as school programs, parenting, social relationships and other influences that contribute to their overall development. By focusing on the present, characterizations of particular and idiosyncratic id·i·o·syn·cra·sy
n. pl. id·i·o·syn·cra·sies
1. A structural or behavioral characteristic peculiar to an individual or group.
2. A physiological or temperamental peculiarity.
3. features of the child's development and more detailed attention to environmental factors influencing the individuality and diversity of this population can be acquired. Retrospective studies, by contrast, are subject to the inaccuracies of the recollections of older memories. This study allowed growth and change experiences to be observed firsthand first·hand
Received from the original source: firsthand information.
There have been a number of research case studies conducted within gifted education Gifted education is a broad term for special practices, procedures and theories used in the education of children who have been identified as gifted or talented. Programs providing such education are sometimes called Gifted and Talented Education (GATE) or . Children with IQs exceeding 180 (Hollingworth, 1942), gifted twins (Witty & Coomer, 1985), eminent historical figures (Goertzel & Goertzel, 1962), adolescents (Flack, 1983), world class performers (Bloom, 1985), prodigies (Feldman & Goldsmith, 1986), and the radical acceleration of an Australian extraordinarily gifted child gifted child
Child naturally endowed with a high degree of general mental ability or extraordinary ability in a specific domain. Although the designation of giftedness is largely a matter of administrative convenience, the best indications of giftedness are often those (Gross, 1986) are all examples of research utilizing this methodology. Case study techniques were used to develop theory unique to special populations of gifted individuals. Whitmore and Maker (1985) focused on gifted individuals with disabilities, including those with hearing, visual, and physical impairment Impairment
1. A reduction in a company's stated capital.
2. The total capital that is less than the par value of the company's capital stock.
1. This is usually reduced because of poorly estimated losses or gains.
2. , and learning disabilities. However, these research studies, with the exception of Gross, have focused on intellective in·tel·lec·tive
Of, relating to, or generated by the intellect.
intel·lec and academic characteristics rather than the overall development of these individuals within a social and academic setting.
Early life experiences can powerfully impact attitudes toward learning and later achievements in education. The purpose of this study was to: (a) delineate developmental characteristics and (b) explore educational needs that apply to the young gifted. This information can be used to provide the foundation for the provision of developmentally appropriate curricula.
In order to obtain subjects, this study was publicized pub·li·cize
tr.v. pub·li·cized, pub·li·ciz·ing, pub·li·ciz·es
To give publicity to.
Adj. 1. publicized - made known; especially made widely known
publicised through a number of channels, including support groups for parents of gifted children, public and separate school boards throughout Alberta, preschool and early childhood education organizations, early childhood and gifted councils of the Alberta Teachers' Association The Alberta Teachers' Association (ATA) is the provincial trade union body for the teachers of Alberta, Canada. It was founded during World War I, and currently has 39,300 members. It is an affiliation of the Canadian Teachers' Federation. , charter schools for the gifted, and chartered provincial psychologists known to have a particular interest in gifted and talented children. The initial criteria for identifying participants were: a) an intelligence quotient intelligence quotient
n. Abbr. IQ
An index of measured intelligence expressed as the ratio of tested mental age to chronological age, multiplied by 100. (IQ) score at or greater than 130 on the Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scale Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scale
test used to measure IQ; designed to be used primarily with children. [Am. Education: EB, IX: 521]
See : Intelligence IV (Thorndike, Hagen, & Sattler, 1986); b) a chronological age chron·o·log·i·cal age
n. Abbr. CA
The number of years a person has lived, used especially in psychometrics as a standard against which certain variables, such as behavior and intelligence, are measured. between 5 and 6; and c) an expressive language score equal to or greater than the 75th percentile percentile,
n the number in a frequency distribution below which a certain percentage of fees will fall. E.g., the ninetieth percentile is the number that divides the distribution of fees into the lower 90% and the upper 10%, or that fee level on the Expressive One- Word Picture Vocabulary Test--Revised (Gardner, 1990). Of the 24 nominations (4 girls and 20 boys) received, 12 met the specified criteria.
From these 12, four participants were selected to represent: a) distinctiveness of characteristics; and b) a variety of educational settings. A fifth participant, Xiang-Huo, although not meeting the cognitive criterion, was also selected for the reasons explained below. All 5 children were between 5 years, 7 months (5-7) and 5 years, 11 months (5-11) of age at the onset of the study. With the exception of Xiang-Huo, their IQs ranged from 131 to 141. The students' expressive language measures ranged from the 94th to above the 99th percentiles (age equivalents between 7-10 and 11-11). Three children underwent cognitive assessments independently of this project: Patrick, who needed an IQ measurement as a requirement for entrance into a charter school; Xiang-Huo, at his teachers' suggestion to determine current intellectual and academic functioning; and Jane, whose assessment was used to explore programming options because she was eager to begin school. In the interest of maintaining confidentiality and anonymity, the children were assigned pseudonyms This article gives a list of pseudonyms, in various categories. Pseudonyms are similar to, but distinct from, secret identities. Artists, sculptors, architects
Patrick was nominated by his kindergarten teacher who noted that he "excels verbally and shows strength in logical reasoning The three methods for logical reasoning, deduction, induction and abduction can be explained in the following way: 
Given preconditions α, postconditions β and the rule R1: α ∴ β (α therefore β). ." He was chosen because his reading and writing skills are at the kindergarten level (age and grade appropriate), and because he attended one of the two charter schools specializing in the education of students who are gifted and talented. Physically, Patrick was observed to be very small, yet at 5-11, he was the oldest in the study. He was very affectionate, engaging, and especially verbal. In his kindergarten classroom, which consisted of 14 students, Patrick was very popular and often was the first one picked by his classmates Classmates can refer to either:
sales manager n → directeur commercial
sales manager sale n → and a registered nurse. Patrick has a 10-year-old sister.
Xiang-Huo was nominated by his kindergarten teachers, both of whom described him as "reading, running a computer with ease, doing high level math (multiplication multiplication, fundamental operation in arithmetic and algebra. Multiplication by a whole number can be interpreted as successive addition. For example, a number N multiplied by 3 is N + N + N. & division), [and having] good oral language skills." Reported behaviors and his parents' and teachers' confidence that his assessment results (IQ=116) far underestimated his ability were the driving force behind his inclusion. Initially, there was surprise and shock by both parents and teachers in reaction to Xiang-Huo's low assessment scores (attained independently from this project). Comments on the psychological assessment report stated that he was "very verbal throughout, although difficult to admit [that he] didn't know [an] answer, ... eager to try more challenging items, ... often completed uninteresting (jargon) uninteresting - 1. Said of a problem that, although nontrivial, can be solved simply by throwing sufficient resources at it.
2. Also said of problems for which a solution would neither advance the state of the art nor be fun to design and code. tasks with [his] eye closed or not looking at the paper and refused to do some (noncompliance noncompliance
failure of the owner to follow instructions, particularly in administering medication as prescribed; a cause of a less than expected response to treatment.
noncompliance ), ... [and on creative tasks, there was] not a lot of effort, [he] hurried through." Xiang-Hno looked older than his age would indicate, but he was the youngest in the study. Very quick/y, he revealed his independence, humor humor, according to ancient theory, any of four bodily fluids that determined man's health and temperament. Hippocrates postulated that an imbalance among the humors (blood, phlegm, black bile, and yellow bile) resulted in pain and disease, and that good health was , and self-challenging nature (i.e., spoke without ending a sentence or taking a breath, drew without lifting his pencil from the page) Xiang-Huo's school, an independent preschool and kindergarten, provided individualized in·di·vid·u·al·ize
tr.v. in·di·vid·u·al·ized, in·di·vid·u·al·iz·ing, in·di·vid·u·al·iz·es
1. To give individuality to.
2. To consider or treat individually; particularize.
3. programming and a small student-teacher ratio Student-Teacher ratio refers to the number of teachers in a school/university with respect to the number of students who attend the school/university. For example, a student teacher ratio of 10:1 means that there are 10 students for every teacher available. based on the Project Approach (Katz & Chard, 1988), encouraging young children to explore their environment and express themselves through an in-depth study of a particular topic. There were 22 (3 preschool and 19 kindergarten) students and 4 teaching staff in his classroom. Xiang-Huo's mother was the general manager of a computer company, and his father was a professor of engineering sciences. Xiang-Huo's 11-year-old sister was a source of information for him; he often rummaged through her school bag for books to read and exercises to complete. Paternal PATERNAL. That which belongs to the father or comes from him: as, paternal power, paternal relation, paternal estate, paternal line. Vide Line. grandparents grandparents npl → abuelos mpl
grandparents grand npl → grands-parents mpl
grandparents grand npl also lived with Xiang-Huo's family.
Cole was nominated by his kindergarten teacher and his parents. He was characterized by his nominators as "inquisitive in·quis·i·tive
1. Inclined to investigate; eager for knowledge.
2. Unduly curious and inquiring. See Synonyms at curious. , determined, goal oriented, [having a] strong sense of humor Noun 1. sense of humor - the trait of appreciating (and being able to express) the humorous; "she didn't appreciate my humor"; "you can't survive in the army without a sense of humor"
sense of humour, humor, humour , introspective in·tro·spect
intr.v. in·tro·spect·ed, in·tro·spect·ing, in·tro·spects
To engage in introspection.
[Latin intr , very energetic, [and] tenacious te·na·cious
1. Clinging to another object or surface; adhesive.
2. Holding together firmly; cohesive.
viscid; adhesive. ... he would 'practice' for quite a length of time." In addition, he was interested in a variety of sports (basketball, speed skating speed skating
Sport of racing on ice skates. The blade of the speed skate is longer and thinner than that of the hockey or figure skate. Two types of track are used in international competition. ), academics (particularly math and reading), and constructing things from Lego, K'nex, and other building devices (evident during his assessment by his strengths in abstract/visual skills and pattern analysis). Cole was chosen because, in addition to the above-mentioned characteristics, he was noted by his parents and teacher as not being sensitive t to other children in his classroom, and furthermore because Cole's school is a district site for The Academic Challenge Program [ACP (Associate Computing Professional) The award for successful completion of an examination in computers offered by the ICCP. It is geared to newcomers in the computing field. For more information, visit www.iccp.org.
ACP - Algebra of Communicating Processes ], a program for which Cole may be eligible in grade one. His teacher stated that ACP "is a way of looking at the world differently, a way of being able to process information that is different from other children and you can see it in kindergarten ... Cole is able to process information instantaneously ... his mind is spinning with questions. It is not taught." In discussing school demographics The attributes of people in a particular geographic area. Used for marketing purposes, population, ethnic origins, religion, spoken language, income and age range are examples of demographic data. , she continued, stating, "these kids come well-trained ... it's the area. These people [adult community in surrounding area] are educated. They know that it's important to read to their child every night. They talk to their children, they take them places ... and it shows." Cole's kindergarten class had 26 students. His mother was a high school teacher, his father was a graphics designer, and he had an 11-year-old sister.
Jane was nominated by her kindergarten teacher and her parents. Her teacher described her as "bright [with] very good attending ski/Is." Her mother noted her "reading skills, 'take charge' attitude, love [for] challenges, [and] fear of failure and ridicule." She was chosen because of her observational skills, focused concentration and motivation, engaging nature, and very precise language use. During the initial home visit, Jane illustrated several science experiments on static electricity, performed a music recital Recital - dBASE-like language and DBMS from Recital Corporation. Versions include Vax VMS. , and appeared to read flawlessly flaw·less
Being entirely without flaw or imperfection. See Synonyms at perfect.
flawless·ly adv. with emotion and seemingly little effort. There were 15 students in her classroom. Jane's mother was a communication and marketing specialist and private consultant, and her father was an independent businessman. Jane was an only child. Access to a diary, kept throughout Jane's mother's pregnancy through to the present, made an interesting addition to this study's data collection.
Sawyer was nominated by her parents and by her preschool teacher A Preschool Teacher is a type of early childhood educator who instructs children from infancy to age 5, which stands as the youngest stretch of early childhood education. Early Childhood Education teachers need to span the continum of children from birth to age 8. from the previous year. Her nominators described her as having "an advanced vocabulary and a high level of reading comprehension Reading comprehension can be defined as the level of understanding of a passage or text. For normal reading rates (around 200-220 words per minute) an acceptable level of comprehension is above 75%. . She readily sees relationships, detects patterns, makes generalizations, and is able to transfer her knowledge from one area to another ... She is highly observant ob·ser·vant
1. Quick to perceive or apprehend; alert: an observant traveler. See Synonyms at careful.
2. and has an excellent eye for, and memory of, detail. She very rule- and routine-oriented." She was chosen because her nominators also note her overwhelming shyness and nervousness with new people or situations. Her kindergarten teacher was surprised by Sawyer's nomination, describing Sawyer as "a selective mute mute (myt), in music, device designed to diminish uniformly the loudness of a musical instrument. " at the beginning of school, which continued for 4 months, and how she socially lagged behind, spending all of her time by herself, hiding in the reading center, reading, although never reading out loud. Sawyer's teacher continued, commenting, "you couldn't tell she was in the room." Sawyer was extremely shy initially, and not entirely comfortable with her meeting with the researcher, although she did allow her mother to leave the room after approximately 20 minutes together. She was not willing to guess under any circumstance (i.e., prompting, support) and waited to be told how to respond, or to state her response. She appeared anxious and insecure in·se·cure
1. Lacking emotional stability; not well-adjusted.
2. Lacking self-confidence; plagued by anxiety.
in with her own ability. She was most at ease with the verbal memory tasks. Over time, she was challenged by the assessment process and persisted through all elements. Her behavior strongly suggested that her measured scores may be an underestimation of her ability. Sawyer attended an inclusive, multicultural school setting where the teaching staff use Gardner's theory of multiple intelligences Multiple intelligences is educational theory put forth by psychologist Howard Gardner, which suggests that an array of different kinds of "intelligence" exists in human beings. to acknowledge gifts in different areas occurring across all grades, kindergarten to six. There were 19 students in her classroom, including one autistic autistic /au·tis·tic/ (aw-tis´tik) characterized by or pertaining to autism. child (with a funded aide). Sawyer's mother was a stay-at-home mother, although she had completed one year of a university arts degree. Her father, a lawyer for 8 years, was completing a post-graduate degree in business. Sawyer also has a 4-year-old brother.
pertaining to data that have been submitted to standardization procedures.
standardized morbidity rate
see morbidity rate.
standardized mortality rate
see mortality rate. assessments. A number of achievement tests were utilized for reading, receptive language, math, fine motor skills The examples and perspective in this article or section may not represent a worldwide view of the subject.
Please [ improve this article] or discuss the issue on the talk page.
“Dexterity” redirects here. For other uses, see Dexterity (disambiguation). , creativity, and memory. The difficulty in attaining reliable assessment information of children of this age was appreciated. Individual intellectual and academic assessments of the participants varied across a continuum from efficient, quick, and on-task behaviors that produced high degrees of confidence in the measured outcomes to long, sporadic responses requiring much encouragement which resulted in lower levels of reliability in the measured scores.
Observations. Observations, as outlined by Bogdan and Biklen (1992), occurred in a number of settings (homes, schools, and other settings in which the children were involved (e.g. skating skating: see ice skating; ice dancing; roller skating.
Sport in which bladelike runners or sets of wheels attached to shoes are used for gliding on ice or on surfaces other than ice. arenas, music bands, art and swimming classes).
Questionnaires. A Parent Questionnaire was developed for the study and completed by the parents of each participant to provide information on their child's birth and medical history, personal experiences, and parental perceptions of functioning. A Teacher Questionnaire was also developed for the study and completed by the teachers of each participant in order to provide information on the child's cognitive (expressive and receptive language), psychomotor psychomotor /psy·cho·mo·tor/ (si?ko-mo´ter) pertaining to motor effects of cerebral or psychic activity.
1. (coordination), and social functioning social functioning,
n the ability of the individual to interact in the normal or usual way in society; can be used as a measure of quality of care. .
Interviews. Interviews were used to review information obtained from questionnaires, clinical testing, observations and other sources of information. Semi-structured and focused interviews, as outlined by Borg and Gall (1989), were conducted with the children, their parents and teachers. Interviews with the children were based on a protocol developed for the study. All interviews were audiotaped, and subsequently transcribe To copy data from one medium to another; for example, from one source document to another, or from a source document to the computer. It often implies a change of format or codes. verbatim ver·ba·tim
Using exactly the same words; corresponding word for word: a verbatim report of the conversation.
adv. . Interviews were used to develop content ideas and suggested directions for final interviews.
Data collection and analysis are simultaneous processes in qualitative research Qualitative research
Traditional analysis of firm-specific prospects for future earnings. It may be based on data collected by the analysts, there is no formal quantitative framework used to generate projections. (Merriam, 1988; Yin, 1994). Yin's (1989) case study data-base, an ingredient to enhance the reliability of case studies, was created and maintained. All the above-mentioned data gathering sources were included and triangulated to assure the reliability and validity of this process (Creswell, 1994) Data analysis from this data-base involved two types of coding: open coding and axial coding Axial coding is the disaggregation of core themes during qualitative data analysis. References
Gatrell, A.C. (2002) Geographies of Health: an Introduction, Oxford: Blackwell. (Strauss & Corbin, 1990). From open coding, patterns, categories, and themes emerged from the data through "the process of breaking down, examining, comparing, conceptualizing, and categorizing data" (Strauss & Corbin, p. 61). As Patton (1987) suggests, there were no a priori a priori
In epistemology, knowledge that is independent of all particular experiences, as opposed to a posteriori (or empirical) knowledge, which derives from experience. categorizations that were imposed on the data. Axial coding put the data "back together" by initiating connections among the categories derived in open coding (Strauss & Corbin), Each piece of datum The singular form of data; for example, one datum. It is rarely used, and data, its plural form, is commonly used for both singular and plural. , such as need for stimuli/keeping busy was compared to other data relating to relating to relate prep → concernant
relating to relate prep → bezüglich +gen, mit Bezug auf +acc the child's need to be kept busy to detect incidents of specific phenomena.
Results of Thematic Analyses
Thematic analyses of the database, from the coding procedures described above, resulted in systematic data reduction into patterns and then themes. Consistent with a qualitative design, the themes are developed into narrative descriptions (Creswell, 1994) for the readers to appreciate how they are exhibited in young gifted children. The following categories were generated: intellectual/achievement domain, social domain, affective domain affective domain,
n the area of learning involved in appreciation, interests, and attitudes. , physical domain, aesthetic and creative domain.
Knowledge/concept comprehension/pattern analysis. The children's extensive amounts of acquired, or background knowledge, were commonly noted by their respective parents and teachers. Patrick's teacher described his acquired knowledge as "tremendous," and Xiang-Huo's teacher described his as "vast." Cole's knowledge was also qualified as extensive for his age by his teacher. He exhibited an understanding of concepts beyond what a child at this age usually comprehends. Jane's teacher described her as "bright, well-stimulated, [and an] eager learner." Sawyer's pattern analysis, at age 3 1/2, was so well-developed, explained her father, that she identified the Little Dipper Little Dipper, familiar configuration of stars in the constellation Ursa Minor (see Ursa Major and Ursa Minor). out of the sky. She transferred this to a home visit with her play school teachers. In an atlas, she pointed out the entire solar system solar system, the sun and the surrounding planets, natural satellites, dwarf planets, asteroids, meteoroids, and comets that are bound by its gravity. The sun is by far the most massive part of the solar system, containing almost 99.9% of the system's total mass. , including identifying Jupiter and naming its moons.
Memory (i.e., associates past and present experiences). All the parents and teachers commented on the children's excellent memory skills. Patrick had memorized lines of movies and songs. According to according to
1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of: according to historians.
2. In keeping with: according to instructions.
3. Patrick's teacher, "he has an incredible memory, and if something's said to him once, and it's just interesting enough for him ... he's a sponge, he's learned it, he remembers it, he'll bring it up at the right time at the right place." Sawyer and Xiang-Huo were described by their parents and observed to have similar retention levels for movies. Sawyer's memory was agreed upon Adj. 1. agreed upon - constituted or contracted by stipulation or agreement; "stipulatory obligations"
noncontroversial, uncontroversial - not likely to arouse controversy by her parents as the earliest indicator (age 18 to 19 months) of her giftedness.
Performances on the Short Term Memory subtest of the Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scale--IV (Thorndike, Hagen, & Sattler, 1986) were extremely high for Sawyer (exceeding the 99th percentile), Jane (98th percentile), Patrick (95th percentile) and Cole (92nd percentile). Xiang-Huo's score was estimated to be within average limits.
Rules, order, and peacekeeping peace·keep·ing
Of or relating to the preservation of peace, especially the supervision by international forces of a truce between hostile nations.
peace versus chaos. The children varied in their acceptance and following of rules (e.g., bedtimes, rules of conduct), requirements for order (e.g., the need for organized bedrooms and playrooms), and peacekeeping (e.g., daily transitions). Bedtime bedtime Sleep disorders The time when one attempts to fall asleep–as distinguished from the time when one gets into bed was consistent and unchallenged by Patrick and Cole, each with at least 10 hours sleep per night. Although erratic bedtime hours were experienced, Sawyer did fall asleep after reading. Challengers of bedtime rules were Xiang-Huo and Jane.
Although Jane demanded organization around her, her bedroom and playroom were kept in chaos. Jane had rules of conduct that she expected others to abide by To stand to; to adhere; to maintain.
See also: Abide ; if another child was misbehaving, she was disdainful dis·dain·ful
Expressive of disdain; scornful and contemptuous. See Synonyms at proud.
dis·dainful·ly adv. of their behavior. If the teacher left the room, Jane would even berate the children to mind their manners. However, as both Jane's mother and teacher explained, she is quick to defend and help the underdog, standing up to adults and children twice her age and size. Her mother continued, "often the accused backs off as they are stunned stun
tr.v. stunned, stun·ning, stuns
1. To daze or render senseless, by or as if by a blow.
2. To overwhelm or daze with a loud noise.
3. by such a little girl holding her own with excellent verbal skills. Her air of self-righteousness is daunting daunt
tr.v. daunt·ed, daunt·ing, daunts
To abate the courage of; discourage. See Synonyms at dismay.
[Middle English daunten, from Old French danter, from Latin as well, when in the face of what she sees as bullyism."
Sawyer enjoyed a semblance of order in chaos. Sawyer's mother stated that she had always been messy; her thousands of books and clothes were in disarray dis·ar·ray
1. A state of disorder; confusion.
2. Disorderly dress.
tr.v. dis·ar·rayed, dis·ar·ray·ing, dis·ar·rays
1. To throw into confusion; upset.
2. To undress. . She could find anything in this condition, knowing where all her things were located. In addition, Sawyer was adamant about storing books with their accompanying tapes, or a book and its video, together. Membership in one book club resulted in receiving two books together. Naturally she would read them together, and they were forever in pairs, "like friends," she explained.
A continuum of behaviors was reflected in the children's abilities to deal with school transitions and rules. Both Patrick's and Jane's teachers discussed how daily transitions and rules were very easy for them. Sawyer's teacher stated that, even though her class had difficulty with transitions, for Sawyer, they "are not that difficult ... [and] she is pretty well on task, not just sitting there but doing what is required." However, Cole, "in his eagerness to share his ideas ... often forgets classroom procedures. He often needs reminders about routines and expectations." Xiang-Huo disregarded classroom rules altogether. During my first visit to Xiang-Huo's school, the class was watching a short video; this had been a part of Tuesday's daily school-leaving routine since the beginning of the year. Prior to his mother's arrival, Xiang-Huo was complaining that the show was "boring" and rather stubbornly attempted to get his teacher to do something else with him. The moment he saw his mother peering in the window, he ran to her, whipping WHIPPING, punishment. The infliction of stripes.
2. This mode of punishment, which is still practiced in some of the states, is a relict of barbarism; it has yielded in most of the middle and northern states to the penitentiary system. the door open, and yelling yell
v. yelled, yell·ing, yells
To cry out loudly, as in pain, fright, surprise, or enthusiasm.
To utter or express with a loud cry. See Synonyms at shout.
n. "Come on Morn, let's go Let's Go may refer to: Television
Philosophy. All the children have pondered questions about the universe, religion, mythology, and our planet, Earth, from a very young age. Most recently, Patrick had been asking about Medusa. Xiang-Huo often asked his parents about God, and was concerned about the earth and recycling. Cole considered dying and the after-life. Jane had an early recognition that the planet was only a dot in the universe. Her interests also included the origin of life, and death. Sawyer was interested in and concerned about the environment, and had an early fascination with the solar system.
Reading, math, and spelling skills. The children's academic abilities were noted at early ages. From younger than 3 years of age, Xiang-Huo's reading ability and math skills had frequently been noticed and commented about to his parents by friends, his teachers, and visitors to his home. Jane's play school teachers commented on her ability to read and understand German. In addition, from early on, many family members and friends said that Jane read [English] exceptionally well.
Academic skills in reading, math, and spelling varied greatly across the participants. Academically, Patrick functioned at the level of same-age peers, whereas Xiang-Huo and Cole surpassed peers in all the academic skills (math and science, reasoning, and problem solving problem solving
Process involved in finding a solution to a problem. Many animals routinely solve problems of locomotion, food finding, and shelter through trial and error. ). The assessment of the components of reading (letters, words, phonetic pho·net·ic
1. Of or relating to phonetics.
2. Representing the sounds of speech with a set of distinct symbols, each designating a single sound. skills, and comprehension) revealed that Xiang-Huo exceeded the 98'h percentile, while Cole, Jane and Sawyer were all at or above the 89th percentile. Patrick was within the average and high average ranges, between the 50th and 85th percentiles. Sawyer was very unwilling to complete the math subtests; this resulted in an inability to arrive at final assessment scores. Math skills were above the 99'h percentiles for Cole and Xiang-Huo. Patrick fell Father Patrick Fell (born 1940) is a Roman Catholic priest who was convicted in the 1970s of being a commander of a IRA active service unit. In June 1984 he was successful in his action to find the British Government guilty of violating the European Convention on Human Rights. between the 40th and 73rd percentiles. Jane scored at the 84th percentile.
At-home reading activities were a common interest for all the participants in the study. There were a number of special topics of interest in their reading. For Patrick, it was Egypt, mummies, snakes, music, volcanoes, Indiana Jones, Greek mythology Greek mythology
Oral and literary traditions of the ancient Greeks concerning their gods and heroes and the nature and history of the cosmos. The Greek myths and legends are known today primarily from Greek literature, including such classic works as Homer's Iliad and , and the Goosebumps series. Xiang-Huo enjoyed reading mysteries, word puzzle books and math workbooks. For Cole, it was dreams, sports, and Canadian flags This is a list of flags used in Canada. National flag
Flag Date Use Description . For Jane, it was volcanoes and nature. Sawyer was particularly interested in butterflies, plants, insects, and most especially cats.
Differences existed between the extent of home and school reading for all the children. None of the children chose reading during classroom free time; reading time only appeared to be tolerated by all. Classroom reading materials appeared to be within appropriate reading levels for, although not always accessed by, Patrick, Xiang-Hio, Cole and Jane. For two participants, Jane and Xiang-Huo, at-home reading was a solitary (with little parent support) experience. However, Jane also appeared to enjoy the "center stage" aspect of reading out loud to her class. Sawyer's reading level exceeded most books in her classroom. Even though resources did not match Sawyer's abilities, she repeatedly perused the same nonprint, biggest picture book during class reading time and solitary reading exercises involving the ordering of scattered Scattered
Used for listed equity securities. Unconcentrated buy or sell interest. segments of different poems (six or eight poems in one pocket) which she easily accomplished. Observations revealed Patrick's heavy memory reliance when reading; his tendency was to read by recognition rather than phonetic application. However, he usually perceived the meaning and humor in passages that were read to him.
Standardized assessment of the participants' spelling abilities produced scores ranging from the 34th (Patrick) to the 96th (Jane, Sawyer, and Xiang-Huo) percentiles. The children's performance on the Woodcock woodcock: see snipe.
Any of five species (family Scolopacidae) of plump, sharp-billed migratory birds of damp, dense woodlands in North America, Europe, and Asia. Johnson Tests of Achievement--Revised (ACH (Automated Clearing House) A system of the U.S. Federal Reserve Bank that provides electronic funds transfer (EFT) between banks. It is used for all kinds of fund transfer transactions, including direct deposit of paychecks and monthly debits for routine payments to ; Woodcock & Johnson, 1990) revealed spelling skills exceeding the 95th percentile for Xiang-Huo, 85th percentile for Jane and Sawyer, 75th percentile for Cole and 34th percentile for Patrick. All the children's editing skills (use of periods, commas, capitals), with the exception of Xiang-Huo who was not assessed, exceeded the 75'h percentile. On numerous occasions when observed in class, Cole was very evasive e·va·sive
1. Inclined or intended to evade: took evasive action.
2. Intentionally vague or ambiguous; equivocal: an evasive statement. with spelling exercises. Similarly, Xiang-Huo utilized a number of avoidance tactics when asked to write, including the construction of signs to accompany his newly created "hotels" and "stores." In contrast, Sawyer enjoyed creating new words through different ones; for example: PAR + IS = PARIS Paris, in Greek mythology
Paris or Alexander, in Greek mythology, son of Priam and Hecuba and brother of Hector. Because it was prophesied that he would cause the destruction of Troy, Paris was abandoned on Mt. ; SING + A + POR POR problem-oriented record.
Problem-Oriented Record. + E = SINGAPORE.
Language. First words
First Words is a Canadian hip hop group, consisting of Halifax beatmaker Jorun, DJ STV and emcees Sean One & Above. were spoken under one year of age by all the children except Patrick, who first spoke at 18 months of age. Although delayed in speaking, Patrick seemed to retain everything he heard. His parents recognized his verbal abilities when he was about 3 years old. Jane's mother stated that she knew the alphabet alphabet [Gr. alpha-beta, like Eng. ABC], system of writing, theoretically having a one-for-one relation between character (or letter) and phoneme (see phonetics). Few alphabets have achieved the ideal exactness. at 9 months. Sawyer's parents described her early speech as "an explosion of language," yet like Patrick, she did not tend to repeat things. When she spoke, her language was incredible and she was noted as having advanced language skills.
All the children excelled in expressive language. Patrick and Cole loved sharing ideas. Patrick demonstrated immense strength, with quick comprehension of abstract ideas; his definitions for rotate ("spin") and volcano volcano, vents or fissures in the earth's crust through which gases, molten rock, or lava, and solid fragments are discharged. Their study is called volcanology. ("an erupting e·rupt
v. e·rupt·ed, e·rupt·ing, e·rupts
1. To emerge violently from restraint or limits; explode: My neighbor erupted in anger over the noise.
2. mountain") were very quickly added to class discussions. Xiang-Huo easily and clearly expressed himself, using sarcasm very effectively. Jane's clear, articulate, mature sentence structure and grammar were observed and commented upon by her parents and teacher. Sawyer's teacher found her language to be typical of a much older child. The children's expressive language measure, used as an entrance criterion for this study and tested by the Expressive One-Word Picture Vocabulary Test vocabulary test A component of IQ tests in which a person is asked to define words of varying level of difficulty, and use them in context, which provides the examiner with a measure of the person's intellectual achievement and aptitude. See IQ test. (Gardner, 1990), ranged from the 9441 (Cole) to the 99th (Patrick, Jane) percentiles. Sawyer's score exceeded the 99th percentile; an age equivalent measure of 11 years, 11 months (11-11) was determined.
With respect to their receptive language, all the children had a very good understanding of classroom concepts and directions. According to Jane's teacher, Jane consistently asked if she did not understand something. The receptive language measures on the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test- Revised (Dunn & Dunn, 1981) exceeded the 98th percentile (approximately above the age equivalent of 9) for Jane, 91st percentile for Sawyer, and 89th percentile for Patrick. Cole and Xiang-Huo were within the average to high average ranges, between the 60a' and 86u' percentiles. Perhaps as a means of producing challenge, initially both Sawyer and Jane jokingly answered with the opposites of many of the responses required. They were very amused a·muse
tr.v. a·mused, a·mus·ing, a·mus·es
1. To occupy in an agreeable, pleasing, or entertaining fashion.
2. by it! Patrick, Sawyer, and Jane were all visibly upset by an item on dissection dissection /dis·sec·tion/ (di-sek´shun)
1. the act of dissecting.
2. a part or whole of an organism prepared by dissecting. , while Cole laughed, stared and responded, "Cool!!"
Friends. All the children tended to prefer their own company to that of other children, particularly when working on self-initiated activities, both in and out of school.
Patrick socialized so·cial·ize
v. so·cial·ized, so·cial·iz·ing, so·cial·iz·es
1. To place under government or group ownership or control.
2. To make fit for companionship with others; make sociable. within the greatest age variability of playmates (kindergarten to grade six). Patrick, according to his teacher, "is very much liked by his peers. He is cooperative and considerate con·sid·er·ate
1. Having or marked by regard for the needs or feelings of others. See Synonyms at thoughtful.
2. Characterized by careful thought; deliberate. ." He interacted with every one of his 13 classmates in a variety of activities. Older children also enjoyed Patrick's presence. Xiang-Huo's mother voiced her concern about him not having friendships with the boys in either his class or in their neighborhood. He could be impatient and defensive. Cole's teacher portrayed his social ability as very low. He loved to be the center of attention and needed to learn to be sensitive to others' ideas, opinions and needs. Cole often enjoyed announcing his presence in, or re-entry RE-ENTRY, estates. The resuming or retaking possession of land which the party lately had.
2. Ground rent deeds and leases frequently contain a clause authorizing the landlord to reenter on the non-payment of rent, or the breach of some covenant, when the into, the class after some time away. He chose to play with immature children who were making choices that were not always appropriate for the circumstances, but "he may not be mature enough to pick children at his intellectual level," his teacher explained. The end of the kindergarten year led to some loneliness for Cole; his classmates chose not to play and interact with him. Jane's teacher described her as "confident, kind and considerate." Although she preferred girls as friends, having three close girl friends, Pierre, a comic, and Cameron, quiet and intelligent, were also considered her friends. Jane's best friend in the class, and also a neighbor on her street, was Janet. They spent a lot of time together, both in and out of school. However, some hostility presented itself at the end of the kindergarten school year. Sawyer's play school teacher discussed how gentle her peers were with her; "... children attempted to talk, some encouraged her to play, and others were okay to have her there. She held back for a long time and did lots and lots of observing." Sawyer's kindergarten teacher mentioned that she had a couple of students in the class whom she just recently started "being buddies with," and that her closest friends were Ben, Denise and Patti (Ben and Denise were with her in play school). Sawyer's parents stated that Sawyer "doesn't have friendships in sort of the traditional sense ... she doesn't ask for people to come over, she won't talk on the phone to anybody."
Older children/adults. When interacting with others in some form of play, pairing with older children was preferred and enjoyed by all the participants. Patrick maintained a close friendship with a boy 6 years older. Jane's mother described how Jane's friend, Petra, one year older, had been "a source of knowledge." Three participants enjoyed the company of adults. Patrick, his mother commented, "is certainly very comfortable with them [adults]. I always put it down to being in the squash club and watching adults; he'd interact with them." Observations showed that Xiang-Huo prefers to be with adults when engaged in activities at centers and exploring outside. He often viewed his teachers as his peers. Jane's mother commented that Jane considered herself an equal to adults.
Intellectual peers. Participant interactions with "like minds" in the classroom greatly varied, including their awareness of each other's competencies and abilities, seeking one another out on tasks, and compatibility in working together.
Patrick was aware of his peers' competencies. He commented about one classmate's elaborate Lego building of a spacecraft--justly due and appreciated. His teacher commented, "he's very accepting of people, who they are, and where they're at. He works with everybody ... I don't know Don't know (DK, DKed)
"Don't know the trade." A Street expression used whenever one party lacks knowledge of a trade or receives conflicting instructions from the other party. if Patrick is aware of his strengths. He may have been complimented on [it], but I don't think he himself has figured out ... that [he] really knows a lot more about certain things." Xiang-Huo's teacher stated that he had "equals" in the classroom, "even though he may not access them, Evan and Jonathan ... Evan is really good at ... [being] inclusive and creating very elaborate schemes with play ... The only type of play that [Xiang-Huo would do is] socio-dramatic play ... He's trying to make connections, but mostly with adults."
Cole infrequently in·fre·quent
1. Not occurring regularly; occasional or rare: an infrequent guest.
2. took advantage of potential intellectual equals in his class. His teacher identified his intellectual peers as Edward and Paul. Cole may have initially worked with them, and generated some ideas, but the completion of a project together would not happen, as Cole tended to take over. He didn't leave room for their ideas. For Cole to know that they were at his level, "they would need to gravitate grav·i·tate
intr.v. grav·i·tat·ed, grav·i·tat·ing, grav·i·tates
1. To move in response to the force of gravity.
2. To move downward.
3. towards him, and they tend to stay away ... They don't see him as someone who wants to share ideas," explained his teacher. Jane's teacher described how Jane and Cameron, the brightest boy in the class, enjoyed the "house center ... taking little pieces of colored not of the white race; - commonly meaning, esp. in the United States, of negro blood, pure or mixed.
See also: Color rice and putting them into the dinosaurs' mouths because they were actually giving them some medicine or food or something." Cameron's mother, having rarely seen him play with a girl, said, "I think it's a meeting of the minds that's the attraction." Her teacher then described a very quiet child in the class, "Esther may be more advanced in writing, but ... her receptive and expressive vocabulary may not be quite as sophisticated as Jane's." They have, near the end of their kindergarten year, been spending time "Spending Time" is the first single released by Christian artist Stellar Kart.
The lyrics describe the band members desire to spend "more time with God". "Sometimes it’s a real struggle to spend time with God. together at centers and during circle time. For Sawyer, Lynda, Ben and Spencer were intellectual peers in her classroom. "They are very bright, but ... they do not take into consideration other people's feelings." Of the three classmates, Sawyer interacted with Ben the most often. They had attended the same play school the previous year. Very little dialogue was exchanged between them and interactions focused on solitary, parallel play which often involved drawing.
Self- versus other-centered. The children differed in their abilities to conform to Verb 1. conform to - satisfy a condition or restriction; "Does this paper meet the requirements for the degree?"
coordinate - be co-ordinated; "These activities coordinate well" group norms and see the points of view of others. According to Patrick's teacher, "a lot of kids come running to him [for paired activities] ... He almost waits for someone to come to him, and they do; they'll fight over Patrick," regardless of the activity. She felt that Patrick's intellect was higher given his social ability, that he somehow did better because he was quite comfortable in himself versus a child who is ostracized. He had no difficulty interacting with any child on any activity in the classroom. Xiang-Huo's teacher believed that his introduction to school involved his realization that he was not going to be the only child in school. Xiang-Huo did get over this shock, and he "does let others have ownership for their own ideas." Cole's teacher discussed how, although 5 year olds tend to be self-centered, "if you watch that [kindergarten] group, there are many individuals who are caring about each other ... [one student] will go out of his way to help someone else. I tell Cole, 'now other people have sat there and listened to you, now you need to listen to them.' I'm concerned because I can't seem to get him to enjoy it; I see an unhappy kid doing it. I see him as, 'oh, I have to do this again, I have to listen to her, I have to listen to those kids, but I would really rather talk about what I'm going to do.'" At recess, Cole was by himself, bored, kicking sand in the playground and looking around. No one joined him. In play groups before the onset of school, Jane's mother observed how she would "watch all the kids, what they are doing, how things are working." Her intensive stare, quite obvious to the author at the initial meeting, was captured by the mother's description of a lunch with some of her friends. "I was still carrying her, so she was 3 months, still a baby ... and she just looked at each person individually around the table to the point where they fell silent, uncomfortable, [and] said 'Oh, my', ... they had never been scrutinized by an infant." Jane does Jane Doe
female counterpart of John Doe. [Am. Usage: Misc.]
See : Everyman not observe people with the same intensity as she once did. She often migrated to the assistance of other children that were having difficulty in class. Jane also asserted that she likes her own way. In fact, she was angered by attempts to change her approach, often stating "I'll do it my way and you do it your way." Sawyer's teacher stated that Sawyer, although understanding and tolerant of those needing extra help, would not offer assistance. When asked to help with the children who did not know how to speak English well, perhaps by reading simple stories, Sawyer refused consistently and adamantly ad·a·mant
Impervious to pleas, appeals, or reason; stubbornly unyielding. See Synonyms at inflexible.
1. A stone once believed to be impenetrable in its hardness.
2. An extremely hard substance. . She did accept two ESL (1) An earlier family of client/server development tools for Windows and OS/2 from Ardent Software (formerly VMARK). It was originally developed by Easel Corporation, which was acquired by VMARK. students, Patti and Denise; they wrote letters to each other. Sawyer appeared content that they could do that with her because there was not really anyone else who was motivated or willing to, even if they could. In addition, Sawyer's mother revealed a number of commonalities between her daughter and Mark, a child with autism autism (ô`tĭzəm), developmental disability resulting from a neurological disorder that affects the normal functioning of the brain. It is characterized by the abnormal development of communication skills, social skills, and reasoning. in her classroom. They both had strong passions for space, Star Wars, and Jumanji. A body awkwardness, antisocial antisocial /an·ti·so·cial/ (-so´sh'l)
1. denoting behavior that violates the rights of others, societal mores, or the law.
2. denoting the specific personality traits seen in antisocial personality disorder. tendencies, and disconnections between their feelings and behaviors were evident for both.
Emotional intensity and sensitivity. Emotional intensity and sensitivity varied across participants. This theme included their abilities to connect with the needs and ideas of others, their need to be correct, and the behaviors they exhibited in reaction to low comfort levels (i.e., separation from parents, first day at school). Jane's mother relayed how she would "react with tears if she is even looked at the wrong way. She will sometimes misinterpret mis·in·ter·pret
tr.v. mis·in·ter·pret·ed, mis·in·ter·pret·ing, mis·in·ter·prets
1. To interpret inaccurately.
2. To explain inaccurately. someone's sad or non-expressive face as a reflection of something wrong with her ... [she is] very sensitive to interference with her own plan ... [and] needs to know she can be successful before beginning anything ... [yet] can see failure ahead, so is reluctant to try ... she is so sure about herself that if you make any suggestion about anything, [the] fight's on, [it] doesn't matter what it is, [the] selection of clothing, type of shoes, don't need mitts, don't want a hat, want to wear this coat.., if I give her a choice then that's OK." In addition, her mother explained how Jane could very easily introduce herself to other people and had, more recently, become afraid to make a fool of to render ridiculous; to outwit; to shame.
See also: Fool herself and be different from those around her. Jane's teacher described Jane's sensitivity to include a wide range of understanding of other people' s needs; she could "fit in with other children, and knows how to handle conflicts with other children, [which] is directly related to the dialog between her morn and her." Her teacher continued to discuss how with the most challenging children, Jane would often take them along side, assessing what was needed in a given situation very quickly.
Patrick demonstrated an unusual invulnerability in·vul·ner·a·ble
1. Immune to attack; impregnable.
2. Impossible to damage, injure, or wound.
[French invulnérable, from Old French, from Latin to the actions of others during his Taekwondo lessons; he appeared to be undisturbed un·dis·turbed
Not disturbed; calm.
1. quiet and peaceful: an undisturbed village
2. by the 20 older and more advanced classmates around him. He was a white belt and the class had the entire continuum of belts represented, although he was by far the youngest and smallest student. He maintained the proper stance, practiced and performed desired routines repetitively and on cue (many other students were confused), and bowed as required (entering and exiting the room) at all times. Patrick performed the last and most complicated routine correctly while the rest of his group required interventions from the instructor. Sawyer, according to her parents, seemed very insensitive in·sen·si·tive
1. Not physically sensitive; numb.
a. Lacking in sensitivity to the feelings or circumstances of others; unfeeling.
b. to others, yet "her sensitivity to herself is more intense than her sensitivity to people." Sawyer possessed a "heightened sense of self-consciousness ... sometimes if she's very relaxed, she'll be dancing around, but if somebody comes in or if she feels that ... she hasn't done particularly good, ... she just looks a little uncomfortable ... because she knows what she wants to do and ... her body just doesn't comply." Her mother described the death of her 10-year-old cat Boogie. "Sawyer seemed strangely detached ... seemed more upset when two fish we'd had for 3 weeks died ... she has even used Boogie's death to try to manipulate us." Her reactions were intellectual or factual, rather than emotional. Sawyer had experienced a number of toilet accidents, almost daily throughout play school and before the start of kindergarten, beginning in the summer until, according to her mother, she relaxed in kindergarten. At the end of kindergarten, Sawyer's soiling behavior returned. Her mother discussed Sawyer's recent admission of not wanting to go to grade one. Beginning at age 2, Sawyer also had a tendency to pick holes in her arms and face, in some cases to the point of bleeding; "it went right through the first year of play school and then it sort of stopped during that summer ... and then just before school [kindergarten] started ... and she did it for the first part of the new school year of play school and then it went away." Sawyer's play school teacher described how "extremely difficult" it was for Sawyer to separate from her mother over the beginning several months of play school. Sawyer was silent for almost 4 months at the beginning of kindergarten.
Both Cole and Xiang-Huo could be very competitive. Both Cole's teacher and teacher's aide "Teacher's Aide" is an episode of the television series The New Twilight Zone. Cast
Humor. An animated sense of humor was a characteristic common to all the participants. Xiang-Huo's, Patrick's, and Cole's teachers specifically described them as having a great sense of humor. Patrick "perceives humor ... that the average kindergarten student may not." Cole, in one situation involving a substitute teacher, responded "everyone it's time It's Time was a successful political campaign run by the Australian Labor Party (ALP) under Gough Whitlam at the 1972 election in Australia. Campaigning on the perceived need for change after 23 years of conservative (Liberal Party of Australia) government, Labor put forward a for recess!" when it was announced that it was time to put books away. Some children laughed, and the substitute teacher, quiet for a moment, smiled too. His teacher stated, "You can kid around, at an adult level ... he can understand more mature humor."
A tendency to set rigid high standards of personal performance.
per·fection·ist adj. & n. . The children demonstrated several signs of perfectionism and placed unrealistic pressures on themselves. Patrick's mother described his need to master all toys, including those well above his age level. He "will put in hours to get things right ... [and] will return to projects over and over." She felt that these pressures have been construed by other adults as pressure and high expectations she and Patrick's father placed on him. Patrick's teacher noted that his perfectionistic tendencies often led to frustration; "if he just doesn't know the answer, he doesn't want to admit it ... he'll cry and he'll say, 'I didn't mean that ... this is what I meant.'" An observation of Patrick's language arts language arts
The subjects, including reading, spelling, and composition, aimed at developing reading and writing skills, usually taught in elementary and secondary school. activity revealed him to first draw a dinosaur dinosaur (dī`nəsôr) [Gr., = terrible lizard], extinct land reptile of the Mesozoic era. The dinosaurs, which were egg-laying animals, ranged in length from 2 1-2 ft (91 cm) to about 127 ft (39 m). and later elaborate his "story" with the addition of a gorilla gorilla, an ape, Gorilla gorilla, native to the lowland and mountain forests of western and central equatorial Africa. It is the largest of the apes, the males reaching a height of 5 to 6 ft (150–190 cm) with a 9-ft (144–cm) arm spread. . After eight minutes of work on this task, Patrick erased e·rase
tr.v. e·rased, e·ras·ing, e·ras·es
a. To remove (something written, for example) by rubbing, wiping, or scraping.
b. everything on his page. When asked why he erased it, he responded, "those don't look anything like a dinosaur and gorilla." There have been a number of occasions where Patrick has been observed to erase all of his work off the page. Jane's mother described Jane's early reading as an example, "when she was just starting out, she'd read a sentence, and she'd hit a word she didn't know, and she'd stop ... [I would] hear her sounding it out and then she'd say it again and again, and again with the right accent.., and go 'ahhh ... so that's what that word is!' and then go back to the beginning and read the sentence." Sawyer's mother commented how Sawyer "doesn't try things either until she is sure she can do it or not at all. Even her language, she didn't 'practice' words, she just did them!" Sawyer's teacher commented that "even in kindergarten students don't want to take risks. They don't want to make a mistake. I'm only starting to let them use erasers. I would not let them use erasers because they would be erasing and erasing. They want to know exactly how to spell things. I want them to go through the scribbling scrib·ble
v. scrib·bled, scrib·bling, scrib·bles
1. To write hurriedly without heed to legibility or style.
2. To cover with scribbles, doodles, or meaningless marks.
v. and consonant consonant
Any speech sound characterized by an articulation in which a closure or narrowing of the vocal tract completely or partially blocks the flow of air; also, any letter or symbol representing such a sound. stages."
Motivation. Overall, the children were described by their parents and teachers as being very motivated by tasks of interest, but varying degrees of prompting and encouragement were needed to focus them on tasks of low interest. Patrick needed to be reminded to stay on task, especially for any writing and cutting assignments. He was bored with the tedious nature of some of the tasks. Xiang-Huo responded primarily to extrinsic EVIDENCE, EXTRINSIC. External evidence, or that which is not contained in the body of an agreement, contract, and the like.
2. It is a general rule that extrinsic evidence cannot be admitted to contradict, explain, vary or change the terms of a contract or of a rewards and struggled with praise, encouragement and support. His mother stated a concern that he was not sufficiently challenged at school; at home, particularly when on the computer, he could be extremely motivated. "He'll work in there for hours. He never quits quits
On even terms with by payment or requital: I am finally quits with the loan.
[Middle English, probably alteration (influenced by Medieval Latin ." On one occasion, Xiang-Huo was observed during a class reading/discussion of an alphabet book. By the time the letter "M" was reached, he moved up to the very front. By the letter "S," he was briefly distracted by some children moving on the couch On the Couch is an Australian television program formally broadcast on the Fox Footy Channel and it focuses on the current issues in the AFL. This is now broadcast on Fox Sports after the closure of Fox Footy Channel.
The show airs on Monday night and is hosted by Gerard Healy. . At the letters "T and U" he sat right in front of book, looking directly at the print. He said the entire alphabet with the class when asked, speeding ahead at times, but completed it with the group. However, during the second read through, he was not attending or participating. Cole, according to his teacher, "is very motivated and concentrates for a very long time when it is a task he initiates or generates. He usually cooperates in doing assigned tasks, but doesn't always put forth his best effort, often rushing to get through. He is self-directed and intrinsically motivated." He did not actively seek challenge; when presented with challenge, the teaching assistant explained, "he's capable of doing it, but it takes a long time...[or] if it's really easy for him, he gets bored, so he doesn't want to spend the time doing it ... so he quits ... or goes to the science center and looks at the plants." His mother commented that since the age of 2 1/2 years, Cole would practice basketball on the deck outside for hours at a time by himself. This focus was later seen with baseball, math, reading, and computers. Jane and Sawyer persevered, completing all tasks, even those chosen by their teachers, without needing assistance or reminders to stay on task. This observation marks a change from her play school year; her play school teacher discussed how Sawyer frequently arrived withdrawn and needed to be drawn into the play activities. "She loves to find out about the world from her own safe space and in her own time." Sawyer did not respond to excess praise, attention, or encouragement. Sawyer's mother stated, as early on as toilet training toilet training
The process of training a child to use a toilet for defecation and urination.
Noun 1. toilet training - training a young child to use the toilet , "the more we praised, the less she was inclined ... it was a nightmare."
Need for stimuli/keeping busy. The need to have something to do at all times was recognized in the participants in a number of ways. Xiang-Huo and Jane were notably "raring rar·ing also rar·in'
Full of eagerness; enthusiastic.
[Present participle of dialectal rare, to rear, variant of rear2. to go" when they awoke a·woke
A past tense of awake.
a past tense and (now rare or dialectal) past participle of awake and were difficult to put to sleep at night. Both respective sets of parents reported that their child felt that something important would be missed.
Participants watched between 7 (Patrick and Cole) and 30 (Sawyer) hours of television each week, including cartoons, segments on the Discovery Channel, Rugrats, and Wishbone wishbone
see furcula. . Child- and parent-selected movies were also watched (e.g., Mighty Ducks
Mighty Ducks is a half-hour Disney animated series aired on ABC and The Disney Afternoon in the fall of 1996. Twenty-six episodes total were produced. and Space Jam). According to Jane's mother, "I get a lot of people say that she watches too much TV, but she's interested in so many things, [its] not like she sits there all the time." According to Sawyer's mother, she "watches [TV] a lot ... videos ... she watches them again and again and again until she's saturated." From the movie Jumanji, Sawyer repeated the line, "Mom, Dad, I'm home! It's me Alice!" whenever she walked in the door. Sawyer watched, memorized, and then used lines when she and her brother play-acted.
Participant involvement in organizations and clubs ranged from 1 activity, swimming for Sawyer, to 11 structured activities, for Jane. Cole had mastered expert ski runs, and he swam swam
Past tense of swim.
the past tense of swim
swam swim and power skated. Patrick was linked to 10 different organizations, including Taekwondo and drama. Xiang-Huo attended gymnastics gymnastics, exercises for the balanced development of the body (see also aerobics), or the competitive sport derived from these exercises. Although the ancient Greeks (who invented the building called a gymnasium and piano lessons. All organized activities were 1 hour per week, with the exception of Xiang-Huo's piano and Patrick's Taekwondo, which were 3 hour per week commitments.
Home activities, although not structured, included computer time and science experiments for Xiang-Huo and Jane, and hockey, baseball, cycling, and swimming for Cole. Checkers checkers, game for two players, known in England as draughts. It is played on a square board, divided into 64 alternately colored—usually red and black or white and black—square spaces, identical with a chessboard. and chess were also noted for Xiang-Huo, Cole and Jane. Sawyer and Cole seldom went to sleep without reading.
Weekly computer usage varied greatly across participants, although all families owned a computer. Xiang-Huo had his own computer since the age of 2. The time spent on the computer ranged from 2 (Patrick) to 14 (Xiang-Huo) hours during the week on a variety of activities, including Jumpstart, Mathstorm, Kidspix, Solitaire solitaire or patience, any card game that can be played by one person. Solitaire is the American name; in England it is known as patience. There are probably more kinds of solitaire than all other card games together. , and Puzzle Mania Mania
ancient Roman goddess of the dead. [Rom. Myth.: Zimmerman, 159]
See : Death . Jane enjoyed geography, math, and word manipulation programs. Sawyer systematically explored all of her programs. Xiang-Huo has also been surfing the Internet. Both he and Jane installed their CD programs themselves.
Cole, according to his mother, "is a little boy that ... feels like there's so much to do and that he hasn't got enough time to do it." Cole stated that, when he grows up, he "wants to play in the NHL NHL Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, see there in the winter, then a worker man, doing buildings, and then ... play baseball and basketball in the summer." His teacher recognized that he is interested in everything around him, "he was so busy ... [that I had a] problem with him concentrating on ... my tasks, what I wanted him to do."
A developmental profile A developmental profile is a standardized psychodynamic diagnostic instrument for assessing clinically relevant personality characteristics. It is based on the clinical observation that adult personality characteristics often bear a considerable similarity to the behavioural was constructed for each child from birth to present. Early eating and sleeping habits were normal, yet both girls tended to be fussy fuss·y
adj. fuss·i·er, fuss·i·est
1. Easily upset; given to bouts of ill temper: a fussy baby.
2. eaters. Unassisted walking occurred between 11 (Xiang-Huo and Jane) and 15 (Sawyer) months.
Great variability existed in the participants' physical development. Patrick and Cole expressed their passion about, and exhibited talent in, a number of sports. The remaining 3 children tended to avoid physical endeavors, and for Jane, a fear of physical activity was demonstrated.
Patrick's gross motor ability, according to his teacher could be summarized as "tremendous athletic abilities ... [playing sports] since he was 2 1/2 ... He shows all of this at our school playground and during physical education." Likewise, Cole's athletic ability, from the age of 2 1/2 years, was noted by friends, neighbors, and other children's parents. Cole's teacher stated that he was "quite an athlete ... very well coordinated, but he tended to run over other people and not watch where he's going." He has played hockey and basketball in the basement or on the driveway since he was 3. Power-skating was his more recent sport interest and he was very driven. According to Xiang-Huo's teacher, he "seldom engages in gross motor activities; he explains that he's 'tired' or 'sick.'" Jane and Sawyer also participated in physical activity. According to her mother, Jane's "physical activity is not a strong suit; she has an innate sense of danger in all areas, and recognizes instinctively in·stinc·tive
1. Of, relating to, or prompted by instinct.
2. Arising from impulse; spontaneous and unthinking: an instinctive mistrust of bureaucrats. that sports can cause injury." Jane was afraid of being physically hurt and feeling pain. When she really hurt herself, she wouldn't cry. "She held it in. I think she was more embarrassed because she was clumsy and thought the pain of embarrassment through tears was worse ... [yet] she is really empathetic em·pa·thet·ic
empa·theti·cal·ly adv. to someone else's pain, whether physical or emotional, ... she is quick to console." Sawyer tended to move awkwardly and stiffly, often walking and running on her toes. Sawyer's parents described her beginning swimming lessons a month after she began kindergarten; the initial lessons consisted of her hanging and walking along the edge only. After 6 months of weekly lessons, Sawyer had still not gone under the water.
All the participants found fine motor activities to be time consuming and/or challenging. Patrick showed little interest in coloring and cutting. His teacher stated that "his printing [is] much better since the beginning of the year, but [he] finds coloring too time consuming." In a cutting/building exercise where a half dozen shapes were to be cut out and glued in a spaceship design, Patrick was frustrated frus·trate
tr.v. frus·trat·ed, frus·trat·ing, frus·trates
a. To prevent from accomplishing a purpose or fulfilling a desire; thwart: with his inability to stay out of the shapes, rather than remaining on or outside the designated lines. After faulting on three shapes, he joined a group doing "rubbings" of various space artifacts artifacts
see specimen artifacts. . Xiang-Huo rarely chose fine motor experiences, such as printing, drawing, painting or Lego. However, he used scissors scissors
Cutting instrument or tool consisting of a pair of opposed metal blades that meet and cut when the handles at their ends are brought together. Modern scissors are of two types: the more usual pivoted blades have a rivet or screw connection between the cutting ends adeptly and printed clearly. Cole's fine motor skills were very good, yet he often rushed through as if he would prefer to do something else. Jane's grasp of scissors was unique, and she preferred it. Jane's teacher stated "Jane finds writing a challenge ... [especially] when the spelling is not provided for her."
All the children enjoyed The Beery beer·y
adj. beer·i·er, beer·i·est
1. Smelling or tasting of beer: beery breath.
2. Affected or produced by beer: beery humor. . Buktenica Developmental Test of Visual-Motor Integration (Beery, 1997); this test involves the drawing of various presented shapes. All the children, with the exception of Cole, scored in the average range, functioning between the 47th (Patrick) and 81st (Xiang-Huo) percentiles. These results reflect a broad average range for this age group. Cole scored in the high range, at the 96th percentile. It was apparent that he enjoyed the novelty of the exhibited diagrams, some involving elaborate combinations and overlays.
Aesthetics and Creativity
This domain presented itself within a number of different situations for each child. Music and drama classes, designing a tree house, making movies, different classroom centers, and dramatic play all provided vehicles for the production of creative products. Patrick's mother commented on a tree house being built during the summer. He "designs the tree house every night and he's got the drawbridge drawbridge: see bridge. , a bed, and a sand pit underneath, and maybe a mattress to jump on when jumping out of the tree house, and the swing bridge, and the moat ... Joshua [a grade six student at the Charter School who lives down the street] likes to do projects as well. Joshua's got a video camera [and] would do the acting and [Patrick] would video it." Drama and singing were of special interest to Patrick, who participated in a community theatrical club. Piano was of interest to both Jane and Xiang-Huo, who were taking lessons at the Yamaha school and the Provincial Conservatory conservatory
In architecture, a heavily glazed structure, frequently attached to and directly entered from a dwelling, in which plants are protected and displayed. Unlike the greenhouse, an informal structure situated in the working area of a garden, the conservatory became of Music, respectively. Xiang-Hou had already given six public recitals prior to and during the course of this study.
Patrick's creativity has been observed in free play work (house center, castle and Lego), and in discussions including a "planet school" rotating around the solar system, and a statement about pollution, "it's to the earth like cigarettes are to the lungs." Xiang-Huo, although he enjoyed blocks, painting, and cutting, often produced repetitive patterns, more from a problem solving than creative aspect. Xiang-Huo could create very elaborate schemes for socio-dramatic play, when language was involved. Yet his play was quite immature; he often played along side other children with his own scheme and rarely dealt with their input. Cole was observed to be particularly creative at the craft table. Jane preferred the exploration of creative expression at the home center rather than the art center. Sawyer spent a lot of free time at the children's chalkboard drawing her pet cats, which were distinctively cat-shaped.
The play of two participants with their siblings siblings npl (formal) → frères et sœurs mpl (de mêmes parents) was described as creative and elaborate. Cole's sister and he "have a ritual ... when they bought a new beanie baby Sources:
A Beanie Baby is a stuffed animal made by Ty Inc. Ty was founded by Ty Warner who promoted the line in specialty stores and gift shops. The Ty company's famous special "posable lining" is understuffed with plastic pellets (or "beans") rather than stuffing ... they had a ceremony where ... the new beanie baby was introduced to every single member of the family." She often initiated play, and Cole maintained and prolonged pro·long
tr.v. pro·longed, pro·long·ing, pro·longs
1. To lengthen in duration; protract.
2. To lengthen in extent. it. According to both of Sawyer's parents, Sawyer's brother is the imaginative one, instigating things and she brings it to an intellectual level. "She directs and he acts ... she'll quote line by line what he's supposed to say."
Two standardized creativity measures were utilized dynamically. Patrick really enjoyed the Thinking Creatively with Pictures (Torrance, 1962), drawing detailed pictures from vague triggers and giving elaborate descriptions of all the items drawn. On one occasion, he integrated two individual triggers to produce one response combining both. Xiang-Huo did not enjoy these tests and experienced difficulty in completing all tasks asked of him. Cole provided good elaboration of the initial triggers presented. However, mostly common products were provided and his titles were often short with few adjectives. Jane responded on the elaboration of a trigger with one shape, a "gourd gourd (gôrd, grd), common name for some members of the Cucurbitaceae, a family of plants whose range includes all tropical and subtropical areas and extends into the temperate zones. ," repeatedly drawn, and entitled en·ti·tle
tr.v. en·ti·tled, en·ti·tling, en·ti·tles
1. To give a name or title to.
2. To furnish with a right or claim to something: it, "The Desert Food." Her drawings were all neatly completed. For the Thinking Creatively in Action and Movement (Torrance, 1981), Patrick produced over 30 responses on the request for movement. He used sport actions to produce several, varying speeds, positions, and limb involvement. Cole produced 20 responses with varying positions, yet his hands were always utilized. Jane produced 12 responses, all standing upright. Creative behaviors involving physical movement were produced with greater variety and apparent ease with the 2 participants most involved in sport.
Aesthetic connections were made for two participants. Jane, at 5 years of age, visualized The Lion, the Lion, The, English name for Leo, a constellation. Witch and the Wardrobe. She "saw" the book play out in her mind and could vividly recount particulars from the book. Cole had consistently experienced vibrant and meticulously detailed dreams.
Atypical atypical /atyp·i·cal/ (-i-k'l) irregular; not conformable to the type; in microbiology, applied specifically to strains of unusual type.
There were three themes that, although not applying to all the children, require some mention: disruptive behaviors, concealment of ability, and imaginary friends Imaginary Friend may refer to:
Disruptive behaviors. For two children in this study, disruptive behaviors began to occur within their respective classrooms. Observations of Xiang-Huo during group reading revealed some very difficult behaviors, including fidgeting and staring around the room. Xiang-Huo continued to challenge established routines. For instance, at the end of the day, the children were given a 5- or 10- minute warning before cleanup, and Xiang-Huo often chose to begin a project and was not willing to negotiate. If allowed to finish, he would start something else. On activities that he did not want to do, he would read in a corner or start cutting optical illusions (spiral formations). He corrected his teachers very disruptively. At home, his sister Long-Long was an enabler for some of his negative behaviors, often letting him get away with things. Even when she received something new and Xiang-Huo wanted it, his teacher explained, Long-Long will give it to him to meet his needs. His teacher's image of their relationship was one of "Xiang-Huo stomping through the house, doing what he wants, and Long-Long is following behind him kind of picking up the pieces." Cole, from the age of 2 1/2 years, demanded attention and distracted both his parents with his antics antics
absurd acts or postures [Italian antico something grotesque (from fantastic carvings found in ruins of ancient Rome)]
plural noun . When asked to stop, he'd mock, "I'm not doing it." More recently, daily school transitions are difficult for him. Reading and math resources do not appeal to him, and according to his teacher, "... he wants to sit with his friends, he doesn't want to sit and do a project. Cole was observed to often chat about power skating, basketball, and hockey, or walk around the class. "Cole takes the path of least resistance Noun 1. path of least resistance - the easiest way; "In marrying him she simply took the path of least resistance"
line of least resistance
fashion - characteristic or habitual practice ," continued his teacher. He had repetitive appearances at the art center over the weeks, contrary to a rule that all centers must be visited before repeat visits occur. In addition, during News Sharing, it was very difficult for Cole to establish and maintain a prolonged attentive and alert posture. He loved sharing information verbally with those sitting within earshot ear·shot
The range within which sound can be heard by the unaided ear; hearing distance: listened until the parade was out of earshot. of him.
Concealment of ability. There have been some situations where the children have concealed their abilities from others around them. Sawyer's teacher described how Sawyer did not speak to anyone in class, the teacher or her classmates, for the first 4 months of school.
Imaginary friends. Patrick and Sawyer did not have any imaginary friends. Xiang-Huo, at age 3, wanted to be the literary character, Arthur. Cole's stuffed animals
A stuffed animal is toy animal stuffed with straw, beans, cotton or other similar materials. Some stuffed animals are very old – home made cloth dolls stuffed with straw go back to at least the were his friends when he was 3 to 4 years of age. Jane, for at least 3 years, had an integrated relationship with a "friend" named Denny. They played tag and raced; Jane made sure that each of them had a turn at winning. Denny ran away once because Jane was being bossy bossy
1. in dog conformation, used to describe overdevelopment of the shoulder muscles.
2. vernacular pet name for a cow. , but did come back. Denny was available whenever Jane felt lonely.
The identification and assessment of special needs in young children can be challenging and difficult. Young children can be independent (choosing alternative and more desired ways of utilizing presented materials), noncompliant (a stubborn unwillingness to complete presented tasks or stating the opposite to desired responses), perseverative (set on the completion of current tasks as directed on earlier tasks), uncoordinated un·co·or·di·nat·ed
1. Lacking physical or mental coordination.
2. Lacking planning, method, or organization.
un (difficulty adapting to quick growth spurts growth spurt Pediatrics A period of rapid growth in middle adolescence; ♀ ↑ ±8 cm/yr ±age 12; ♂ ↑ ±10 cm/yr ± age 14; GS is orderly, affecting acral parts–ie, hands and feet grow before proximal regions, ), distractible dis·tract
tr.v. dis·tract·ed, dis·tract·ing, dis·tracts
1. To cause to turn away from the original focus of attention or interest; divert.
2. To pull in conflicting emotional directions; unsettle. (by stimuli in the environment, including family activities and routines when assessments occur in their own homes), have short attention .spans (requiring quick transitions between tasks, interesting materials and activities, oft-topic dialogue between item/subtest presentations and frequent breaks), and develop unevenly (spurts and lags in growth). Young children are often unfamiliar with examiners and assessment settings and the establishment of adequate rapport The former name of device management software from Wyse Technology, San Jose, CA (www.wyse.com) that is designed to centrally control up to 100,000+ devices, including Wyse thin clients (see Winterm), Palm, PocketPC and other mobile devices. may require the presence of a familiar adult during the initial stages of assessment. Shy or introverted in·tro·vert·ed
Marked by interest in or preoccupation with oneself or one's own thoughts as opposed to others or the environment. children may choose not to respond to any novel or difficult tasks. Standardized test A standardized test is a test administered and scored in a standard manner. The tests are designed in such a way that the "questions, conditions for administering, scoring procedures, and interpretations are consistent"  data can be less reliable (standard errors of measurement tend to be higher) and less valid (inadequate ceiling levels, inappropriate content with higher functioning levels) for young children. The maintenance of appropriate levels of patience and redirection Diverting data from their normal destination to another; for example, to a disk file instead of the printer, or to a server's disk instead of the local disk. See virtual directory, symbolic link, shortcut, redirector and DOS redirection.
1. , and extended assessment times (resulting from long, sporadic responses requiring much encouragement) are common concerns in the reliable and valid appraisal of young children.
These difficulties can exist when assessing young children with any special needs, and there is no denying that, for some children with exceptionalities, several years in school may be required for capture in their school systems' identification nets. Nevertheless, it is commonly accepted practice to work with these challenges in the early identification and assessment of nearly the entire spectrum of special needs; it is commonly believed that valuable information about classification and early implementation of placement and instructional modifications can be provided by the process. However, young gifted children are commonly, and unjustly, left until the mid-point of their elementary school elementary school: see school. career.
The early identification of gifted and talented children should be supported and adopted as common practice. As with any other children with special needs, young gifted children deserve appropriate family supports and educational planning (Hayden, 1985; Whitmore, 1980); these practices can also help avoid problems that might be experienced in later childhood or adult life, including the development of underachieving behaviors and concealment of ability (Roedell, 1989). Furthermore, children identified as gifted at a young age tend to continue to be identified as having high ability and accomplishment later in life (Milner & Elrod, 1986; Monks, 1992).
This in-depth, exploratory, current time, qualitative case study investigation of gifted kindergarten children contributes an important, and unique, perspective to the existing literature on this population's experiences of growth and change. This approach permitted a holistic and descriptive design of the study, which allowed actual examination of the children, and those associated with them, exploring areas of uncertainty in our understanding of their development in environmental (home and school) contexts. Most research has focused on retrospectives when collecting information on the young gifted; these approaches rely heavily on the biased and selective memories of events over time. Adhering to the essential case study properties outlined by Merriam (1988) and Yin (1994), this article serves to provide focused, prototypical accounts and dynamic descriptions within the context of these children's usual lives to contribute to the further understanding of this population.
As with any other methodological approach, case study research has a number of advantages and limitations. On the positive side, it provides: 1) a holistic view through a variety of sources of evidence (interviews, observations, documents) anchored in real-life situations (Yin, 1994); 2) a rich descriptive illuminative il·lu·mi·na·tive
Of, causing, or capable of causing illumination. picture, weaving description, speakers' words, fieldnote quotations, and the researcher's interpretation (Yin); 3) facilitation Facilitation
The process of providing a market for a security. Normally, this refers to bids and offers made for large blocks of securities, such as those traded by institutions. of phenomenon research in cases where the boundaries between the phenomenon and context are not clearly evident (Yin, 1994); 4) an ideally suited medium to investigate and describe events or individuals characterized by their rarity, such as gifted children (Foster, 1986); and 5) analytic generalizations which can be expanded to generalize generalize /gen·er·al·ize/ (-iz)
1. to spread throughout the body, as when local disease becomes systemic.
2. to form a general principle; to reason inductively. theories (Yin). The limitations of this approach include: 1) its time consumption and massive documentation; 2) its demands on the investigator's "intellect, ego and emotions are far greater than those of any other research strategy" (Yin, p. 56); therefore, there exist objectivity limitations due to researcher sensitivity and integrity as the researcher is the primary instrument of data collection (Merriam, 1988); and 3) criticisms for lack of rigor rigor /rig·or/ (rig´er) [L.] chill; rigidity.
rigor mor´tis the stiffening of a dead body accompanying depletion of adenosine triphosphate in the muscle fibers. , little basis for scientific generalization gen·er·al·i·za·tion
1. The act or an instance of generalizing.
2. A principle, a statement, or an idea having general application. or statistical generalization (Merriam). Given that this study is the first in-depth investigation of young gifted children in Canada, attention to this population's individuality and growth as influenced by environmental factors could best be achieved by case study methodologies. The findings from this study have also been compared to the existing literature.
The characteristics commonly identified in gifted children are a misunderstood area. The inclusion of physical attributes and temperament, not synonymous with synonymous with
adjective equivalent to, the same as, identical to, similar to, identified with, equal to, tantamount to, interchangeable with, one and the same as the gifted, do exist, perhaps as a legacy of Terman's (1925) perception of the gifted as healthy, well-adjusted, and attractive. The commonly noted characteristics for young gifted children have included similar points (Lewis & Louis, 1991; Parke & Ness, 1988; Roedell, Jackson, & Robinson, 1980; Sankar-DeLeeuw, 1997). Four skills are often mentioned by parents of young children as indicative of giftedness--expressive language, memory, abstract thinking, and development ahead of peers. The literature on young gifted children requires more finely tuned delineation and differentiation of these children's characteristics than currently exists.
There are inconsistencies across studies on this population with respect to participant age designations. Sankar-DeLeeuw's (1995, 1997) discussion of the ages considered in studies with the term "young" revealed a range from 2 to over 12 years, with 3 to 5 years of age the most commonly considered. In this study, the term "young" was defined as between the ages of 5 and 6 years. These specified ages were chosen to avoid difficulties in large developmental changes across participants. Studies have noted, however, that parental identification of giftedness commonly occurs at earlier ages (Anderson, 1986; Ciha, Hannis, Hoffman, & Potter, 1974; Jacobs, 1971; Karnes, 1988; Louis & Lewis, 1992) and that parents typically know that their children are unusual before they enter school (Golant, 1992). In this study, all the parents identified characteristics indicative of their children's atypical abilities at very young ages, in some instances as young as 2 1/2 years old. Expressive language ability, memory skills, keen observational skills, academic and athletic prowess, sense of humor, and independence were specifically delineated de·lin·e·ate
tr.v. de·lin·e·at·ed, de·lin·e·at·ing, de·lin·e·ates
1. To draw or trace the outline of; sketch out.
2. To represent pictorially; depict.
Teacher identification of young gifted children, on the other hand, can be difficult (Ciha et al., 1974), and tends to worsen wors·en
tr. & intr.v. wors·ened, wors·en·ing, wors·ens
To make or become worse.
to make or become worse
worsening adjn at lower grade levels (Gear, 1976; Jacobs, 1971). Teachers tend to focus on mature, high-achieving students (Whitmore, 1982). Complications in the teacher identification of giftedness existed for two children in this study; one teacher doubted her student's nomination and later supporting identification data, while another participant's teacher and teacher aide doubted their perceptions following the presentation of unsupportive assessment data.
The working definition of giftedness incorporated into this study was as broad and encompassing as possible; it is important to cast a wider net over the gifts and talents of the young because development is uneven at this age. Giftedness was defined as those children (5 and 6 years of age) at or above the 95th percentile on intellectual and 75th percentile on expressive assessments. The latter criterion was instituted to facilitate the verbal engagements required by participants in classroom exchanges and for collecting interview data.
Nomination data revealed a remarkable population of kindergarten students. At the outset, a ratio of 5 boys to every 1 girl was nominated. Why were so many more boys nominated? Within this age group, is the acknowledgment acknowledgment, in law, formal declaration or admission by a person who executed an instrument (e.g., a will or a deed) that the instrument is his. The acknowledgment is made before a court, a notary public, or any other authorized person. of gifts and talents in girls less likely? No support for this hypothesis could be located from earlier studies. Should this discriminatory pattern continue into formalized for·mal·ize
tr.v. for·mal·ized, for·mal·iz·ing, for·mal·iz·es
1. To give a definite form or shape to.
a. To make formal.
b. school system programming, it would be disturbing. In addition to the 5 children selected, 8 additional nominees (providing interesting perspectives into the areas of artistic, memory and problem-solving domains), also met the study's entrance criteria. However, due to limited resources and time, they could not be included in this study.
1. Having a purpose; intentional: a purposeful musician.
2. Having or manifesting purpose; determined: entered the room with a purposeful look. sampling from those meeting these cognitive and expressive criteria allowed the selection of 5 children with a diverse range of abilities, interests and behaviors, and within different educational settings. This enabled the present-time investigation of very different children. Sawyer, according to her parents and preschool teacher, in addition to having advanced vocabulary and reading skills, was overwhelmingly shy and nervous with new people and situations. Her kindergarten teacher was surprised by her nomination into this study and stated that Sawyer was "a selective mute" at the beginning of school. Jane, according to her teacher and parents, possessed exceptional reading and attending skills, and a fear of failure and ridicule. She attended a school that is a district (Edmonton Public Schools Edmonton Public Schools is the largest public school district in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. The district offers a variety of alternative and special needs programs, and many are offered in multiple locations to improve accessibility for students. ) site for the Academic Challenge Program [ACP]. ACP is designed to provide a more challenging academic program for students who excel in both academic and cognitive functioning cognitive function Neurology Any mental process that involves symbolic operations–eg, perception, memory, creation of imagery, and thinking; CFs encompasses awareness and capacity for judgment . ACP supports those who are gifted and talented, although programming is not designated for only gifted and talented students; it also caters to students with high ability and high achievement. Kindergarten students within these sites are not eligible for ACP, as programming begins in the first grade. In September 2004, two new programs addressing the needs of gifted learners from kindergarten to grade nine will be added to Edmonton Public Schools' program portfolio.
Patrick attended one of the province's two charter schools for the gifted. It already adopted modified practices throughout all grades, including kindergarten. According to his teacher, Patrick excelled verbally, was very popular, and performed at the kindergarten level academically. Of the 14 students in Patrick's classroom, 12 students bad IQs between 130 and 150. According to his parents and teacher, Cole was inquisitive, determined and very energetic. Xiang-Huo attended a private kindergarten and underwent a private assessment; to the shock and disbelief of his parents and teachers, his intellectual ability was placed within the high average range. His teachers described his oral and reading skills, computer finesse fi·nesse
1. Refinement and delicacy of performance, execution, or artisanship.
2. Skillful, subtle handling of a situation; tactful, diplomatic maneuvering.
3. , and humor as advanced.
Despite their diversity, commonalities were evident even at such young ages, although some common characteristics were presented with varied expressions. Developmental asynchrony asynchrony /asyn·chro·ny/
1. lack of synchronism; disturbance of coordination.
2. occurrence at distinct times of events normally synchronous; disturbance of coordination.asyn´chronous (Morelock, 1992), or unevenness, was also very evident in each child's profile and caused some difficulty in separating out giftedness from age-appropriate behaviors. This study generated the following major themes: Intellectual/Achievement Domain, Social Domain, Affective Domain, Physical Domain, Aesthetic and Creative Domain, and Parent and Teacher Influences (to be discussed in a future article).
Within the intellectual/achievement domain, a number of themes were generated. The children's knowledge base/concept comprehension/pattern analysis, memory, and rule following/requirements for order were intellectual themes. Within the academic realm, their language, reading, math and spelling skills were explored. Fine motor skills, including writing abilities (presented within the physical domain in the results section earlier in this paper), are discussed within the context of academic skills within the intellectual domain.
Within the intellectual area, the participants demonstrated a number of common abilities. The children's general and specific fund of knowledge was exceptional. In addition, the quest for Verb 1. quest for - go in search of or hunt for; "pursue a hobby"
quest after, go after, pursue
look for, search, seek - try to locate or discover, or try to establish the existence of; "The police are searching for clues"; "They are searching for the answers on philosophical questions was also commonly experienced. Consistent with Parke and Ness (1988), exceptional memory skills were commonly reported for all the children by their parents and teachers. Standardized testing, however, did not support this statement when applied to Xiang-Huo. The cognitive assessment, completed privately prior to the outset of this study, placed his short-term memory short-term memory
Abbr. STM The phase of the memory process in which stimuli that have been recognized and registered are stored briefly. within average limits. Xiang-Huo's music teacher contrarily described his ability to play musical pieces after quick, initial exposures. The linking of extraordinary memory capabilities to poems, stories, songs and movies was commonly demonstrated by Patrick, Xiang-Huo, and Sawyer. Three participants (Jane, Cole, and Patrick) performed within the superior range for abstract cognitive measures (i.e., pattern generation). Xiang-Huo's strength was exhibited in verbal, not visual, abstractions. Observations of Sawyer at home support her advanced abstract skills in pattern generation and contradict con·tra·dict
v. con·tra·dict·ed, con·tra·dict·ing, con·tra·dicts
1. To assert or express the opposite of (a statement).
2. To deny the statement of. See Synonyms at deny. her standardized measure of this ability.
The participants' abilities within the academic spectrum represented age levels of 5 or 6 to above 12 years. Language, math, writing, reading, and spelling abilities were the academic areas examined. Superior expressive and receptive language skills were observed and measured for all the children. Superior math abilities, exceeding age equivalents of 7 years, were measured for Xiang-Huo and Cole, while Jane's, Sawyer's and Patrick's functioning was measured at age-appropriate levels. None of the children chose reading activities during free time. With the exception of one participant, Patrick, all the children exceeded the 89th percentile on reading and its component tasks. Sawyer's relative nonobservance non·ob·ser·vance
Failure or refusal to observe, as a religious custom or holiday.
nonob·ser to details of physical print may be indicative of a trait commonly identified in older readers; a strong connection to ascertaining desired meaning from print, rather than the subtleties of it, is illustrated. Cole and Xiang-Huo did minimal writing in school. Yet, both boys excelled in spelling skills, and fine motor abilities were high and age appropriate, respectively.
Stereotypical thinking holds that gifted students excel in all areas. However, many exhibit average ability in most areas but special ability in only one. Academic findings for Jane and Sawyer delineated average to high average writing and math skills asynchronous Refers to events that are not synchronized, or coordinated, in time. The following are considered asynchronous operations. The interval between transmitting A and B is not the same as between B and C. The ability to initiate a transmission at either end. to superior reading and spelling skills. Xiang-Huo's high reading, math, and spelling skills appeared asynchronous to his average fine motor skills. These three participants' functioning appears to be consistent with earlier studies (Roedell, Jackson, & Robinson, 1980). For Patrick, all academic skill levels, including writing, are within appropriate age and grade levels, while Cole maintained high functioning levels across all academic areas.
How essential are reading and verbal precocity precocity /pre·coc·i·ty/ (-kos´it-e) unusually early development of mental or physical traits.preco´cious
sexual precocity precocious puberty. to the identification of young gifted? To programming? These are the precocious pre·co·cious
Showing unusually early development or maturity.
pre·cocity , pre·co behaviors most often noticed. Although several studies have found that a high percentage of gifted students were early readers (Brown & Rogan, 1983; Feldhusen, VanTassel-Baska, & Seely, 1989), reading on its own does not guarantee that gifted behaviors follow. Four of the children in this study exhibited high abilities in both, while one, Patrick, was reading age-appropriately. Although Patrick was reading age-appropriately, his accurate, advanced and easily presented dialogue, long-term retention, and comprehension of orally presented material would not, in all likelihood, place him in an early program for the gifted if reading were a required component.
A related issue, not examined in this study, is the practice of grade-skipping; it is presented because Jane was accelerated into grade two after her kindergarten year. According to Gallagher (1985), one of the ritual statements made by educators is that students should progress at their own rate. When this philosophy is checked against actions in the case of acceleration of the gifted, a puzzling contradiction is found. Most teachers have objected to letting unusually bright children grade skip (Proctor A person appointed to manage the affairs of another or to represent another in a judgment.
In English Law, the name formerly given to practitioners in ecclesiastical and admiralty , Black, & Feldhusen, 1988). The term "skipping" connotes that something vital is being passed over. Conventional wisdom has held that no matter how academically precocious children are, their social development will be hurt if they are moved out of their age group and into a more advanced class. There is research supporting the use of early admission for intellectually gifted students, a strategy which places them closer to their developmental level (Paulus, 1984; Proctor et al., 1988). In the pilot case study to this investigation (Sankar-DeLeeuw, 1997), "Courtney" was also "skipped" into grade two, and her teacher's only statement about the practice of acceleration was that "her handwriting is seen in a poorer light now." It is essential that acceleration be initiated early, before children are used to being consistently underchallenged,
Access to, and opportunities to learn from, other children is an almost universal characteristic of development (Bandura ban`dur´a
n. 1. A traditional Ukrainian stringed musical instrument shaped like a lute, having many strings. , 1977) and with developmental progression comes more extensive exposure to peers, and its accompanying socializing influence becomes more pervasive (Grusec & Lytton, 1988). However, regardless of social skill level, time alone was consistently preferred over the company of others by all the children in this study. Nevertheless, it is vital that gifted children are assisted with, and eventually alleviated of, any social difficulties they may be challenged with. Although there is support for favorable fa·vor·a·ble
1. Advantageous; helpful: favorable winds.
2. Encouraging; propitious: a favorable diagnosis.
3. psychosocial development psychosocial development Psychiatry Progressive interaction between a person and her environment through stages beginning in infancy, ending in adulthood, which loosely parallels psychosexual development. See Cognitive development. experiences by the majority of gifted children, research has indicated that some gifted children may be at-risk for social and behavior difficulties (M6nks & Ferguson, 1983). In this study, the social interaction domain contained assembled themes dealing with friends, older children/adults, intellectual peers, and self/other-centeredness.
This study focused on younger children than those previously cited in the literature, yet, as identified in studies with older gifted children, it supports a number of social functioning levels--ignored/invisible, well-liked, and rejected/unpopular by peers (Betts & Neihart, 1988). Interactions with classmates proved problematic for Cole and Xiang-Huo; they appeared to experience an intolerance intolerance /in·tol·er·ance/ (in-tol´er-ans) inability to withstand or consume; inability to absorb or metabolize nutrients.
congenital lysine intolerance of them. Both boys demonstrated "conceited," dominating, and bragging behaviors; solitude often resulted and many times they watched from the sidelines Sidelines
Hypothetical position referring to noninvolvement in a stock; merely watching. . Jane and Patrick, however, easily interacted with children of a variety of ages. Their learning appeared to be facilitated by the friendly exchanges and encouragement they derived from those around them. Classmates actively sought Patrick while Jane actively sought those weak in social interaction. Sawyer found almost all interactions, other than with immediate family members, painful, often remaining distant and isolated from other classmates. Sawyer is largely socially inactive, invisible to her peers. She would likely receive assistance from Jane should they have an opportunity to interact.
Are social difficulties due to misunderstandings caused by quantitative and qualitative differences in thinking between gifted and nongifted classmates? Does the meeting of like minds alleviate difficulty? Paralleling their interactions with the nongifted classmate interactions described above, Jane and Patrick utilized and appreciated like-minded classmates, and Xiang-Huo, Cole, and Sawyer still had difficulty interacting with intellectual peers. The two girls with whom Sawyer spent her time were, according to their teacher, bright, yet exchanges were limited as they were learning to speak English, and play was more parallel than cooperative or interactive. Cole chose to befriend be·friend
tr.v. be·friend·ed, be·friend·ing, be·friends
To behave as a friend to.
to become a friend to
Verb 1. a child at the opposite end of the ability spectrum. Interactions with adults for both Xiang-Huo and Jane illustrated how they enjoyed the company of adults and considered themselves as equals, and Patrick maintained an ease with, as well as an enjoyment of, similar company.
The social pressure to conform, by suppressing or diverting abilities, is often cited in studies involving older gifted children. In this study, conforming behaviors and suppressing abilities were observed in Sawyer; she did not speak to anyone until 4 months into kindergarten. Consistent with Hay (1993), who found that young gifted students may reduce development in cognition cognition
Act or process of knowing. Cognition includes every mental process that may be described as an experience of knowing (including perceiving, recognizing, conceiving, and reasoning), as distinguished from an experience of feeling or of willing. areas and seek peer acceptance, supportive and encouraging peer relationships while talents are developing are essential. Sawyer's teacher believed that she held back in displaying her reading skills. A similar concern does not exist among older school-age gifted children as their competence in cognitive and general self-worth exceeds that found in physical and social areas (Chan, 1988). Similar conforming behaviors were speculated about Jane and Xiang-Huo as well.
The combined presence of disruptive behaviors and giftedness, at any age, has not been adequately addressed in literature. Little data have affected assessment practices, teaching interactions, intervention, or classroom procedures (Reid & McGuire, 1995). In this study, disruptive behaviors were presented as an atypical theme for two participants. Most opportunities for choice and points of transition were not well received by Xiang-Huo and Cole; wandering behaviors and arguments with teachers often resulted. Settling down into a spot for large group interaction and the completing of assigned activities (i.e., writing news) were especially problematic for them. Behavior concerns, argued Kauffman (1989), are a large consideration when dealing with lack of interest and relevance to students. He stated:
Offering instruction for which the pupils have no real or imagined use ... fail[s] to engage students, but it also hinders their social adaptation by wasting their lime and substituting trivial information for knowledge that would allow them to pursue rewarding activities (p. 200).
This statement may provide support for the misconception mis·con·cep·tion
A mistaken thought, idea, or notion; a misunderstanding: had many misconceptions about the new tax program. that, regardless of environments failing to meet learning needs, the gifted will succeed.
Further research into the area of social skills functioning and young gifted children will need to focus on comparisons of individuals with both strengths and weaknesses. Are social difficulties due to specific skill deficits, or are there other contributing factors (i.e., parenting practices, teacher expectations, physical appearance, attention problems)? How are placements in inclusive settings affecting the social behaviors In biology, psychology and sociology social behavior is behavior directed towards, or taking place between, members of the same species. Behavior such as predation which involves members of different species is not social. a young gifted child exhibits? The prevalence of social difficulty within the population of gifted children, compared to the population of nongifted children, has not been effectively addressed. Finally, the area of behavioral difficulties and giftedness has vast areas of obscurity. Although identification of behaviors may be uncomplicated, assessment and intervention planning are difficult and lack research-based support.
Within this study, the affective domain included themes of emotional intensity and sensitivity, humor, perfectionism, motivation, a need for stimuli/keeping busy, and rules/ order/peacekeeping versus chaos. Emotional sensitivity and emotional intensity, the despair and cynicism Cynicism
See also Pessimism.
(444–371 B. C.) Greek philosopher and founder of Cynic school. [Gk. Hist.: NCE, 121]
churlish, sarcastic advisor of Timon. [Br. Lit. that accompanies awareness of environmental and social problems, have been documented by a number of researchers (Piechowski, 1992; Roedell, 1984; Whitmore, 1980). Emotionally intense and sensitive behaviors by the participants in this study included abilities to connect with the needs and ideas of self and others, needing to be correct, and behaviors exhibited in low comfort situations (i.e., separation from parents). Jane and Patrick demonstrated behaviors revealing vulnerability to criticism along polar ends of a continuum; Jane was extremely vulnerable while Patrick demonstrated considerable invulnerability. Patrick methodically me·thod·i·cal also me·thod·ic
1. Arranged or proceeding in regular, systematic order.
2. Characterized by ordered and systematic habits or behavior. See Synonyms at orderly. and perseveringly per·se·vere
intr.v. per·se·vered, per·se·ver·ing, per·se·veres
To persist in or remain constant to a purpose, idea, or task in the face of obstacles or discouragement. completed most (unwritten LAW, UNWRITTEN, or lex non scripta. All the laws which do not come under the definition of written law; it is composed, principally, of the law of nature, the law of nations, the common law, and customs. ) tasks, whereas Jane's eyes swelled up with tears when "looked at the wrong way;" she needed a guarantee of success or was reluctant to initiate, and exhibited a sensitivity to input, often perceiving it negatively. According to Baska (1989), this may stem from her keen perception of her "less gifted" aspects and her awareness of the subtleties of interpersonal communication Interpersonal communication is the process of sending and receiving information between two or more people. Types of Interpersonal Communication
This kind of communication is subdivided into dyadic communication, Public speaking, and small-group communication. , such as tone. Jane's wide understanding of people's needs and her ability to handle conflicts support this connection. According to Mendaglio (1994), high levels of self-criticism, commonly associated with young gifted children, create a "distorted view of what it means to be gifted" by some gifted children. Correspondingly, Chamrad and Robinson's (1986) finding of excessively high expectations of self among young gifted children may also apply to Jane, but not to Patrick.
There were varying levels of acceptance of rules and desire for order demonstrated by the children. Both Xiang-Huo and Cole verbally and behaviorally challenged school, but not home, rules. The ability to follow school rules appeared to be easiest for Sawyer, Jane, and Patrick. Jane also disdained dis·dain
tr.v. dis·dained, dis·dain·ing, dis·dains
1. To regard or treat with haughty contempt; despise. See Synonyms at despise.
2. To consider or reject as beneath oneself.
n. misbehavior and supported children victimized by bullies. However, Jane struggled more at home when complying with rules designated there. The ordering of personal belongings personal belongings npl → efectos mpl personales within the home also varied. Both Sawyer and Jane have chaotic spaces at home (bedrooms and play rooms), consistent with Silverman's (1995) observations of older gifted children, yet for Sawyer, meticulous order for her books and movies stood in contrast to her chaotic space.
Literature on young gifted children has not documented many of the behaviors Sawyer demonstrated over the course of this study. Soiling behaviors, picking her arms and face, difficulty separating from her mother (over months of preschool and kindergarten), and selective muteness Muteness
dumb serpent; gives no warning of its approach. [Br. Lit.: Paradise Lost]
bald-headed, pugnosed and silent youngster of comic strip. offered great challenges to her parents and teachers. Cook (1997) defined selective mutism Selective mutism is a social anxiety disorder in which a person who is normally capable of speech is unable to speak in given situations. Description
In the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders selective mutism is described as a rare psychological as, "the lack of speech in selected social situations where speech is expected" (p. 83). Sawyer's kindergarten teacher questioned her nomination (submitted by her preschool teacher and parents) and was skeptical when confirming assessment information was relayed. Despite the numerous occasions of play, work and interaction with this author, Sawyer never experienced comfort and ease (unlike the other participants). In addition, she experienced occasions of great impatience, and, as qualified by her parents, awkwardness with herself. She elected to cover her eyes during written tasks rather than produce neatly aligned work. There is doubt as to whether Sawyer would be considered for special programming for gifted students; it is much more likely that she would receive social and emotional intervention. It is not known whether Sawyer's behaviors are related to her giftedness, or whether there are other possible explanations for her behaviors, nor can a conclusion be made about any factors contributing to the behaviors she exhibited.
The theme of sensitivity towards others was created from a host of documented behaviors. Cole and Xiang-Huo experienced great difficulty in reconciling arguments and exhibited competitiveness with classmates. Conversely con·verse 1
intr.v. con·versed, con·vers·ing, con·vers·es
1. To engage in a spoken exchange of thoughts, ideas, or feelings; talk. See Synonyms at speak.
2. , Jane and Patrick had an aptitude for dealing with conflict, were accepted by classmates, and valued friendships with older children. Jane, consistent with Parke and Ness (1988), had an empathic em·path·ic
Of, relating to, or characterized by empathy.
Adj. 1. empathic - showing empathy or ready comprehension of others' states; "a sensitive and empathetic school counselor"
empathetic connection to those who are upset or sad. Jane appeared to feel, not only her pain, but everybody else's too. On the other hand, Sawyer portrayed a detachment from those individuals around her, responding intellectually rather than emotionally to many situations.
Humor is another theme that evolved within the emotional domain. Very little research has addressed humor as it pertains to the young gifted child and little assistance is provided to funny children in encouraging their humor, rather, reprimands can be the recompense RECOMPENSE. A reward for services; remuneration for goods or other property.
2. In maritime law there is a distinction between recompense and restitution. (q.v. of funny remarks or clownish acts. Humor is influenced by cognitive, motivational, and socio-affective factors (Fern, 1991). Tannenbaum's (1983) notion of the gifted child as a producer and innovator of new ideas "New Ideas" is the debut single by Scottish New Wave/Indie Rock act The Dykeenies. It was first released as a Double A-side with "Will It Happen Tonight?" on July 17, 2006. The band also recorded a video for the track. parallels a talent for producing humor. He continued to state that the abilities required, specifically in the performing arts, are not closely related to those measured by IQ. All the participants were described as having a great sense of humor by their parents and teachers. However, it was witnessed most frequently with Jane, Cole, and Patrick. Fern's finding among children in grades one through three, that the majority of those identified as funny by their peers were described as popular, very social, and leaders of their social groups, appears to be consistent with 2 of the children in this study, Jane and Patrick. In addition, Fern's statement that a minority of those identified, those who manifested attention-getting mechanisms due to their restlessness, were reprimanded frequently for talking or socializing too much, appears to apply to Cole.
Literature on the young gifted does not adequately address the area of perfectionism (Parker & Adkins, 1995; Whitmore, 1980), yet it has been identified by some as a common characteristic of the gifted (Adderholt-Elliot, 1987; Roedell, 1984; Webb, Meckstroth, & Tolan, 1982). The incidence of perfectionism among the gifted population has not been shown to differ from the incidence in the general population (Kanevsky, personal communication, 1997). Perfectionism, according to Burns (1980), is the compulsive com·pul·sive
Caused or conditioned by compulsion or obsession.
A person with behavior patterns governed by a compulsion.
the state of being subject to compulsion. pursuit of impossible goals, and although it can produce a desire to do very good work, it can also hinder participation in activities or completion of work (Adderholt-Elliott). Although the processes involved to explain perfectionism have not been explained, nevertheless, it can result in the loss of the joy in the process and the opportunity to profit from mistakes (Roedell, 1984). Perfectionism applied to Patrick, Sawyer and Jane in several instances. Patrick returned to "perfect" projects and writing (at times erasing an entire page). Both Patrick and Sawyer, at very early ages, did not speak until their pronunciation pronunciation: see phonetics; phonology.
Pronunciation - In this dictionary slashes (/../) bracket phonetic pronunciations of words not found in a standard English dictionary. was perfect. Jane exhibited perfectionistic tendencies with her reading, often returning to the beginning of stumbled sentences several times until she read them flawlessly. All the children tended to set unrealistic goals for themselves on several occasions. When faced with challenge, even occasionally with some teacher support, Cole and Xiang-Huo tended to procrastinate pro·cras·ti·nate
v. pro·cras·ti·nat·ed, pro·cras·ti·nat·ing, pro·cras·ti·nates
To put off doing something, especially out of habitual carelessness or laziness.
v.tr. , or give up and move on to something else, Patrick started over again, and Jane completed her task, usually explaining areas in which she had to compromise (i.e., creative spellings, drawings). Sawyer's tendencies presented themselves during the individual assessment sessions; she very easily performed early task items, yet struggled with, and many times elected not to answer, the tasks' ceiling items. Later sessions proved to be unfruitful as Sawyer chose not to attempt the assessment tools presented (creativity and math specifically). Clark (1988) discussed how gifted and talented students may place unrealistic expectations on themselves and suffer from a desire to achieve at a level of perfection that can lead to frustration, reduced motivation, intolerance of peers achieving less than this standard, and social isolation.
Motivation is another theme within the emotional domain. A motivational component has been included in several definitions of gifted and talented. High levels of motivation were a commonality com·mon·al·i·ty
n. pl. com·mon·al·i·ties
a. The possession, along with another or others, of a certain attribute or set of attributes: a political movement's commonality of purpose. across all the participants on self-initiated, albeit differing, tasks: completing workbooks and playing computer games (Xiang-Huo), sport activities (Cole), conducting home science experiments, reading and maintaining an attractive physical appearance (including Jane's "feminine" behaviors like stroking shins with hands, crossing legs), building Lego games and acting (Patrick), and reading, especially about cats (Sawyer). Renzulli's (1978) "task commitment" acknowledged this aspect of personality as an essential component of gifted behavior. Consequently, the children did not require much encouragement or praise on these tasks. Moreover, Sawyer did not appear to be motivated on any given task by praise. Criticisms for the delineation between gifted children and others on the basis of production (not producing = not gifted) have been made, especially in acknowledgment of those not performing to their potential.
Underachievement, the discrepancy between school performance and some ability index (Rimm, 1986) and the young gifted child, has not been addressed in the research literature. Most attention has been to connect chronic antipathy toward school and poor work habits with unchallenging and boring early school experiences (Whitmore, 1979). For two participants in this study, Xiang-Huo and Cole, several of their behaviors (boredom, distractibility distractibility Psychiatry The inability to maintain attention; shifting from one area or topic to another with minimal provocation Significance Sign of organic impairment, or a part of a functional disorder–eg, anxiety states, mania, or schizophrenia , noncompliance, resignation from challenging endeavors) were of concern to their teachers, and can be indicative of those often identified in older gifted underachievers (Rimm, 1995). Underachievement often involves inconsistent work and time on-task, lack of concentration, reporting school to be boring, uneven skill development (i.e., strong verbal skills paired with poor fine motor skills) and a lack of friendships (Rimm, 1986). All these characteristics, including uneven skill development, can be attributed to both Cole and Xiang-Huo.
Boredom, according to Mikulas and Vodanovich (1993), "is a state of relatively low arousal arousal /arous·al/ (ah-rou´z'l)
1. a state of responsiveness to sensory stimulation or excitability.
2. the act or state of waking from or as if from sleep.
3. and dissatisfaction, which is attributed to an inadequately stimulating situation" (p. 3). Most definitions of boredom do not differentiate between those uninterested in school and unchallenged, and those maintaining interest, but lacking challenge. Descriptions made by teachers about the children in this study qualified this concept. Cole and Xiang-Huo were frequently uninterested in classroom activities. Xiang-Huo's attention on things of little interest, like having to listen to Dr. Seuss Noun 1. Dr. Seuss - United States writer of children's books (1904-1991)
Geisel, Theodor Seuss Geisel , and on repetition, like re-reading the same book (which may have captivated cap·ti·vate
tr.v. cap·ti·vat·ed, cap·ti·vat·ing, cap·ti·vates
1. To attract and hold by charm, beauty, or excellence. See Synonyms at charm.
2. Archaic To capture. him during the initial read), often resulted in his frustration and unhappiness. Jane and Sawyer were depicted as maintaining interest, and also lacking challenge. Sawyer required further challenge in the language arts area (reading, writing, oral expression). Jane needed challenge in all the academic areas. Patrick was neither described as, nor observed to be, bored at school. There were always several students working ahead of him academically; therefore, additional challenge was always available to him.
Boredom can be prevented by adequate challenge based within realistic ideals about abilities and interests (i.e., minimizing fear of failure with an accurate estimate of abilities). Children who are not producing at school, and who, on their own, learn multiplication (as was the case of Cole) or complete numerous word and math workbooks (as was the case of Xaing-Huo), frustrate and challenge educators and parents. Differing levels of motivation within home and school settings are displayed by such examples. Furthermore, these children, from early on in their lives, need a lot to do; this was the case with Jane, Xiang-Huo, Cole, and Patrick. Each would challenge the number of commitments conventionally held to constitute over-scheduling a child's free time.
Television, as discussed by Abelman (1992), was a source of information and entertainment for the participants; for 4 of the 5, it was a highly prominent one. Reported daily television time ranged from 1 to 4 hours (15 to 30 hours weekly). Abelman and Rogers (1987) found gifted preschool children to watch significantly more hours of television per week than nongifted children; a comparison with viewing times today is difficult to make due to the advent and popularity of the personal computer as an alternative medium of entertainment and education that was not as prevalent at the time of the aforementioned study. However, consistent with Abelman (1992), the participants in this study did not passively engage in television viewing; they were intently involved in program content and the narrative techniques engaged in to tell the story.
Another domain explored in this study was creativity. It was very difficult for the parents to denote de·note
tr.v. de·not·ed, de·not·ing, de·notes
1. To mark; indicate: a frown that denoted increasing impatience.
2. their young children's products and behaviors as creative. Concretizing creativity as unique ways of viewing problems (Sternberg, 1985) and producing divergent di·ver·gent
1. Drawing apart from a common point; diverging.
2. Departing from convention.
3. Differing from another: a divergent opinion.
4. solutions (Guilford, 1967), the children in this study were creative, yet very different behaviors were exhibited by each child. Jane displayed creative language expression in the home center, Patrick experimented with language (producing innovative sayings), designed special projects (i.e., treehouse) and created (wrote, directed, starred) "movies," Sawyer repeatedly produced creative drawings involving cats, and Xiang-Huo and Cole formed socio-dramatic play schemes. Cole also demonstrated creativity in crafts, and Xiang-Huo, in music. The standardized creativity measures that were utilized provided additional support for previously observed behaviors. Patrick was the only participant who enjoyed them. The measures supported gross motor strengths of Cole and Patrick; each was able to produce a variety of actions relating varying positions, speed and limb involvement. Patrick also enjoyed creating a variety of diverse drawings from presented triggers while Xiang-Huo immensely disliked these tasks.
Play is a learning experience that is synonymous with early childhood settings, but how appropriate is it for the gifted young child? Because these youngsters are productive, advanced in their abilities and learning readiness, and perceived expectations many grades ahead of the current one, play has been challenged (Kaplan, 1980). Play can have an educational purpose. Piaget (1936/1952) on the development of intellect, viewed play as an essential ingredient. As language and general knowledge acquisitions predominately involve play and natural exploration, it would follow that gifted children would enjoy the activity. Although Jane and Patrick did, the others found school play challenging and frustrating frus·trate
tr.v. frus·trat·ed, frus·trat·ing, frus·trates
a. To prevent from accomplishing a purpose or fulfilling a desire; thwart: . Conversely, these three children found play with siblings to he enjoyable.
The children in this study presented unique challenges to existing knowledge about parenting, identifying, and programming for young gifted children. There is no single adequate definition, and there are no procedures, or combination of procedures, that address all the important areas impinged upon by the heterogeneity het·er·o·ge·ne·i·ty
The quality or state of being heterogeneous.
the state of being heterogeneous. of this collective group. Although differences among the children were ascertained within every domain (intellectual, social, affective affective /af·fec·tive/ (ah-fek´tiv) pertaining to affect.
1. Concerned with or arousing feelings or emotions; emotional.
2. , creative, and physical), and despite selection procedures emphasizing diversity, it is remarkable how much similarity there was among the children studied. Far earlier than most educators expect, these children can be distinguished from the general population, supporting the position that an effective foundation for identification practices can be established. This, in turn, leads to the need to investigate, and especially evaluate, educational options (early entry, heterogeneous classroom, self-contained gifted classroom), including whether specific options are more beneficial, overall, as well as for specific gifts and talents. Curricula and learning situations for young gifted children, as for all children, must be individualized according to unique characteristics, interests, and abilities, because learning patterns are established, and attitudes towards others formed, early in their development.
The breadth of student experiences of giftedness is varied (Kerr, Colangelo, & Gaeth, 1988; Kunkel, Chapa, Patterson, & Walling, 1995), but very little attention has been focused on the experiences of the gifted young child. This in-depth, multiple case study investigation adds confidence and value to the literature on young gifted children. The challenges in identification and assessment practices were specifically highlighted for young gifted children. Clinical assessments require great patience and expertise from the examiner. Parental identification occurred at early ages from language skills, reading, persistence, or observational skills. Teacher identification can be more difficult due to disbelief and distrust in the identification of behaviorally, socially, and emotionally challenged children. The 5 children selected for this study for their distinctiveness and unique educational settings were similar in many ways. The children's notable amounts of acquired knowledge, pursuit of answers to philosophical questions, memory and language skills, preference for solitary activities, sense of humor, high motivational levels and persistence on tasks of interest, and need to keep busy were all common characteristics. The developmental asynchrony (Morelock, 1992), or unevenness, in each child's profile was also evident and caused some difficulty in separating out giftedness from age-appropriate behaviors. However, a spectrum of abilities was exhibited in academic areas, social interactions, emotional intensity and sensitivity, perfectionism, gross and fine motor skills, and creative pursuits. Parents and educators have key roles in helping these children grow intellectually, socially, and psychologically, toward being able to function productively in the real and challenging world.
Epilogue ep·i·logue also ep·i·log
a. A short poem or speech spoken directly to the audience following the conclusion of a play.
b. The performer who delivers such a short poem or speech.
The participants' school year following kindergarten presented a few surprises.
Patrick was placed in an inclusive grade one class within the Separate School District because of uncertainty about the Charter School's future, a desire for a French Immersion French immersion is a form of bilingual education in which a child who does not speak French as his or her first language receives instruction in school in French. Jurisdictions offering it
Canada option, and his parents' hope for him to be educated at the same school as his sister. Xiang-Huo attended a summer program offered by his school, during which he became more interactive with his classmates and less reliant on his teacher. Xiang-Huo gave an impromptu A Windows query and reporting tool from Cognos with support for a large variety of databases. It is capable of generating cross tabs for spreadsheets such as Excel, Lotus for Windows and Quattro Pro for Windows. concert to his class and played Ode to Joy. In October of grade one, his mother explored the Academic Challenge Program option and decided to put Xiang-Huo into the same school as Cole (even the same classroom). Cole was not handling his grade one year very well; from the onset, he struggled with not being the smartest in his class. When the option of accelerating Jane to ACP grade two was presented during a parent/teacher conference, Jane's mother decided that she would discuss it with her. Jane was admittedly against the idea because she believed that there is a definite order to school (i.e., K, 1, 2, 3) and that the grade one teacher would never be met; "she may be a wonderful lady." During the summer, Jane began reading the Nancy Drew series and was enthralled en·thrall
tr.v. en·thralled, en·thrall·ing, en·thralls
1. To hold spellbound; captivate: The magic show enthralled the audience.
2. To enslave. with "research, finding things on her own." Reassurances that these activities would be explored by more of her grade two classmates, she advanced to, and appeared to enjoy, grade two. Jane quickly made new friends. Sawyer remained within the same school as her kindergarten year in a grade one/two split. Her mother finds that, although the reading is too easy for her, there are challenges for her. It has been very difficult getting her to school on Mondays. There have been instances when Sawyer has declared that she is not going, kicking all the way there when taken, only to stay if her mother remains also. Her friends, Denise and Patti, have terminated their connection with Sawyer, and Ben is no longer at her school. According to her parents, Sawyer has become a very lonely girl.
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Dr. Naomi Sankar-DeLeeuw is a chartered school psychologist with Edmonton Public Schools. This article is developed from her three paper formatted dissertation in School Psychology completed at the University of Alberta under the direction of Dr. Carolyn Yewchuk E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Manuscript submitted August 27, 2003.
Revision accepted November 10, 2003.