Working with Families

Many scholars accept that the development of young gifted children is distinctive and different to the development of children seen as typical for their age. This results in young gifted children often experiencing early learning and development in a characteristically distinctive way. These differences can have consequences for the way the young gifted child learns at home, for their engagement with early childhood peer groups and for the family’s social interactions with other families.

Support for families who have a gifted child is important in helping families understand their child’s development and ensuring the successful orientation into an early childhood and school setting. Strong partnerships between parents and the early childhood professional can make an important contribution to healthy, holistic development in a young gifted child.

Gifted and talented children are usually those whose parents have pushed them into academic learning at an early age or that ‘giftedness’ is wishful thinking by the parent.

In reality children are stimulated by intellectual learning that is relevant to them and information and skills that they are capable of learning. Many young gifted children show their early accelerated abilities through behaviours such as constantly asking for information and using that knowledge to shape more complex questions, or to independently teach themselves skills such as reading.

Most parents who believe their child is advanced for their age are usually correct, they may not know how advanced, but recognise their child is developing differently than other children of a similar age.