What are some good programs or activities for young elementary-aged kids who are gifted?
This is an excellent question. It is one I have struggled with for years. In fact, it's actually on my list of hubs to be written. The first thing I have learned is that what works for one gifted child does not necessarily work for all. My eldest is 11 now. She has always been gifted. She was walking by 6 months old and carrying on conversations at a year. She was about a year old when she looked at her mom across the dinner table one night and said, "Mommy, what does the word transparent mean?" She loves to read. She loves science and math. Public school is the best option for her with the social interactions, but she has failed to realize her potential there and has subsequently dropped out of all "gifted" education, because she realized it wasn't harder work, just more of the same work. So, that one, we're still working to find ways for her to really shine. Meanwhile, her younger brother, also bright as a whip is in kindergarten and we decided not to let him promoted to first grade part way through the year, but he is doing well enough to do so. He's very mechanically inclined. He likes to take things apart and figure things out. We help him by encouraging his curiosity and natural abilities with toys like Legos, working with me when I'm doing wiring or working on the computer or putting something together. We give him pictures of stuff--a damaged car, a broken vase, etc.--and he works at figuring out what happened and reasons it and explains it all out. Meanwhile, he hates reading. *shrug* Another of our children loves to color, so we adopt lessons for her that include coloring. Overall, what we have found is that the lesson has to be tailored to the child. Our most recent endeavor with our eldest is to provide her projects she can do at home to show off her talent and she helps pick those projects that we find from a variety of educator supporting websites.
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