I am not sure why it annoys me so much, gushing parents bubbling over with pride when they discuss their "gifted" child. Am I insecure or worried about my own child's lack of brilliance? Not particularly. Zack is a wonderful, silly, "spirited" little boy, but I would not describe him as "gifted", and I am okay with that. So why do I feel the intense urge to roll my eyes when I hear someone discuss the difficulties of finding a preschool that will really challenge their little Jimmy who is doing math and speaking french at 3 and a half? I suppose that really may be an issue for them. Jimmy may be bored in a preschool with all that singing and silly art work.
Today I read a post on the Berkeley Parent's Network that irked me. It was a parent describing their truly gifted four year old. Apparently this child is reading at a third grade level, composing complex text messages and doing basic multiplication. No- I am not exaggerating. This parent wanted advice on how to find the right kindergarten program for their baby genius, but wasn't sure what to do since miracle boy was more advanced than most third graders she knew. I had to wonder-was she herself exaggerating a little? Complex text messages? My child could barely use the phone to call 911 if he needed to. I think he believes that screaming 911 at the receiver would do the trick. Well if all of this is true then her child surely is "gifted", but do we have to use that word?
Zachary as I mentioned would likely not qualify as gifted, but does that mean then by default, he is without gifts? Of course not! He is to me the most amazing gift ever. He is my son, and he has amazing "gifts" or qualities. Maybe we should call the wiz kids something like "advanced", or "accelerated", or "with parents who have the insane ability to bring up how smart their babies are at every possible opportunity".
Ahh well, it's a pet peeve, and perhaps a little healthy venting on a Monday night.