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Old 01-22-2012, 07:11 PM
 
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Almost every white or Asian native English speaking child in my city is gifted, or at least that is what one would gather after talking to most of the parents. A substantial number of kids are even "twice gifted", or suffer from having both a high IQ and a learning disability. The gifted child is usually identified in preschool -- sensitive temperament, profound insight/statements, irritation to tags in clothing, struggling social skills, perhaps a gluten tolerance, and early reading. Usually they are bored in school, and once they start K or 1st, parents are upset with the public school system b/c there is not enough resources directed towards their very special child. They often become vocal advocates for segregated education, gifted vs non-gifted-identified.

God, hear me *scream*. This kind of parent drives me nuts, and they are everywhere. Public, private, every kind of school in Seattle. Somehow I have even ended up in spontaneous conversations at the vet and grocery store w/ people wanting to let me know that their child is gifted, but school birthday parties are the worst. I dread school functions b/c of the parent population. I appreciate that parents place an emphasis on the importance of education & stay involved w/ their kids' schools, but *please* this is ridiculous. Less than 1% of the U.S. (or world's) population is technically gifted, and they can't possibly all live in Seattle or go to my child's school.

I know that this gifted obsession is a function of having a high concentration of well-educated, successful parents. Parents who focus every moment and dime on their child's learning, including utilizing flash cards, tutors, and all kinds of educational systems from an early age (of COURSE a child reads early when someone takes the time to teach them). From it extends a self-centeredness and sense of entitlement. I have heard that NYC also has this element. Is this type of thing present in your city, too?

I would really like to know which cities (if any) are different. Perhaps we'll consider moving there!

Can't parents be educated and laid-back?

Last edited by Bo; 01-26-2012 at 12:27 PM.. Reason: Moved from General US.
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Old 01-22-2012, 09:52 PM
 
6,385 posts, read 10,402,025 times
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LOL, I don't call that the "gifted" epidemic. I call it the "baby angel snowflake" epidemic.

MY CHILD IS SOOOO SPECIAL. I NEED SPECIAL RULES AND SPECIAL ATTENTION FOR MY CHILD!!!

Nope. No they're not. There are tens of thousands of children just like yours. All across the country. But I'm glad that the extra special attention that mommy and daddy constantly give them will ensure that they grow up socially inept and completely incapable of functioning in society.

Do us all a favor and start teaching them how to properly use a shovel and a hammer.
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Old 01-22-2012, 10:08 PM
 
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I liked the teacher in my kids' school who would say, "Yes, honey, you're special... just like everyone else."
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Old 01-22-2012, 10:11 PM
 
Location: East Coast of the United States
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Well, I was gifted in school or at least identified as such. And I certainly want my children to be likewise gifted.

So, I guess I'm part of the epidemic. LOL. You better add the DC area to the list.
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Old 01-22-2012, 10:49 PM
 
6,385 posts, read 10,402,025 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigCityDreamer View Post
Well, I was gifted in school or at least identified as such. And I certainly want my children to be likewise gifted.

So, I guess I'm part of the epidemic. LOL. You better add the DC area to the list.
The question is, if your kids don't turn out to be gifted, will you be one of those parents that endlessly searches for reasons why they aren't?

I think that's what the OP is getting at. Sure, there ARE gifted kids out there...but it's really annoying to run across parents of average kids who THINK their kids are gifted.
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Old 01-22-2012, 11:03 PM
 
Location: East Coast of the United States
15,706 posts, read 18,290,599 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nashvols View Post
The question is, if your kids don't turn out to be gifted, will you be one of those parents that endlessly searches for reasons why they aren't?

I think that's what the OP is getting at. Sure, there ARE gifted kids out there...but it's really annoying to run across parents of average kids who THINK their kids are gifted.
I totally agree. There has to be objective evidence that a child is gifted. If it turns that your child really is average, then that has nothing to do with the school system. You just have to adjust your expectations accordingly.

BTW, I've also seen a lot of parents who force piano (or other music) lessons on their kids even though those kids clearly have very little aptitude or interest in it. It seems like a gigantic waste. It makes you wonder what those parents are trying to prove. But oh well.

Last edited by BigCityDreamer; 01-22-2012 at 11:32 PM..
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Old 01-22-2012, 11:23 PM
hsw
 
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"Gifted" isn't really determined by any school or any one employer or customer

It's determined by how market values one's productivity in one's career, perhaps best measured by one's pay and net worth vs age

Suspect loudest parents claiming "gifted" kids are themselves people w/mediocre career paths

IME, the highest achieving parents are often the most mellow and secure about their kids' formal schooling and college/career choices

In any highly competitive, lucrative industry like software or hedge funds lots of folks graduated at top of class from elite colleges but many are outgunned by some college dropout or alum of a non-elite college who is a co. founder and/or CEO (and who may never have been invited into "gifted" ranks in elem school (prob wasn't very good at coloring within the lines or following instructions/groupthink or memorizing useless facts/trivia that constitutes much of formal education in either K-12 or college...))
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Old 01-23-2012, 09:11 AM
 
Location: New York NY
4,144 posts, read 5,976,255 times
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OP is right that in NYC there is craziness about getting kids into "gifted" programs. Certain upper-middle class parents go nuts about the testing and hire tutors, fake addresses (if that's necessary), and give practice tests even to pre-K kids to get them into these programs.

But what I've found is this. One of my kids tested into a NYC gifted program for middle school. At the same time I have friends with a kid in the same grade in a 'normal' non-gifted program in an affluent Westchester suburb. One day we sat down to compare what our kids were learning and surprise, surprise--the curriculum was virtually identical! Giften programs in NYC aren't (for the most part) really geared for the 'gifted.' They're just the same as you'r find in a strong suburban high school. But that explanis the frenzy to get into them. Education that is as goos as the 'burbs, without having to move there.

Of course the easy answer is to make the curriculum in NYC on the same level. Would kids rise to the level? I think a lot would. Not all, for sure, but a lot. Big part of schoolinghere is that a lot of kids are underestimated and bored. But try making that argument to the DOE. They talk a good game of trying to boost achievement for all, but I think what they're really interested in is keeping these 'gifted" programs to hold on to the upper middle class in the public schools. (And yes, I say this knowing every kid in one of these programs is not an affluent child). I think to some degree the same paradogm is playing out in every other big city too--Chicago, Boston, Philly, DC, San Francisco, LA, et al.
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Old 01-23-2012, 09:46 PM
 
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west seattle gal--

You are my new favorite person.

This is also going on in Atlanta.
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Old 01-23-2012, 10:35 PM
 
Location: Lexington, Kentucky
6,297 posts, read 3,599,099 times
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I have ran across more than a few of these in Lexington, Kentucky also.
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