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    #147 04/19/06 12:25 AM
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    Hi, I have been a member here for a short time. I�ve read through all the posts and it is comforting to read about others� experiences that are so similar to ours. I have two gifted children, though not profoundly gifted. Regardless, we face many of the same daily issues as the profoundly gifted. Our son is nine years old. We had a school psychologist administer the WISC IV when he was 7. He scored in the 98th percentile. What I didn�t know at the time of testing was the psychologist primarily works with learning-disabled children and had never administered an IQ test for a gifted child. After receiving his scores the psychologist stated, �Wow, I�ve never had a child score so high!� A red flag went off in my mind because I had already read �Genius Denied� and knew many children would score higher. We are considering taking both of our children for an evaluation by a psychologist who does work with gifted children. The school psychologist rated him very high in the verbal portion of the WISC IV and lower in the quantitative portion. Months later he completed the School and College Ability Test (SCAT) through Johns Hopkins and his scores reflected the exact opposite. Our motivation for a second evaluation isn�t that we�re seeking a higher score, but rather a more credible score. I�ve read that a second IQ test shouldn�t be administered until a considerable time has passed since the first. Any opinions on how much time we should allow between tests?

    Our daughter is seven years old and has never been IQ tested. When she entered school last year she spent two months in kindergarten and then the school administrator suggested we move her to first grade. She is now in the second grade and still complains of boredom and often states, �I�m sick of waiting for everyone else.� I volunteer in her classroom one day a week and I often observe her placing her head down on her desk and closing her eyes. I mentioned this to her teacher and was told she does this often. The teacher feels this is her way of absorbing information. I wonder if she�s just checking out, though.

    Our two kids are very different in their giftedness. Our son is very vocal about his situation at school and tells his teachers exactly what�s on his mind!! Our daughter is quiet and obedient. She does exactly what the teacher wants and then I get an ear full of her true opinions when she gets home. We call her the �silent dissenter.�

    The school doesn�t have a gifted and talented program. The administrator claims they will have something in place next year. It may just consist of some distance learning options though.

    Thanks for reading my post and please reply with any suggestions.

    J.

    #148 04/19/06 01:36 AM
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    No definitive information - just my experiences and what I have read.....

    The guy who tested my son was used to LD kids and even so, we feel he did a good job on him. Maybe not all we could have gotten from the test had someone else done it- but he was used to not-average and stayed very aware.

    If you got the detailed report, you can look at the scaled scores on the subtests and see if there are any 19s. That equates to hitting the ceiling on the test.

    I read somewhere that you should wait 2 years before using the same instrument. I always ask the question: what will be done differently based on the score?

    Curiosity is a powerful thing - but not necessarily a good reason to retest IQ.

    I recently took my son for a complete evaluation by a pediatric neuropsychologist. I expected a new IQ test and she didn't do one. She said there was nothing we could get from it that would be as actionable as the individual achievement test - so she did that instead. (His IQ scores were only 1 year 4 months old).

    If you really want more information, you might think seriously about individual achievement testing. They are normed similar to the IQ scores and can be very useful. Make sure that they can also give you the grade level scores and age level scores. That will allow easier communication with the school as they are more likely to understand what grade 5.7 means than what 145 on math means.

    Where are you located? hoagiesgifted.com has a listing of psychologists that people have written in to recommend as having been good with their gifted child. You might find someone within driving distance that way.

    As I mentioned, we did just do a full evaluation on our son (except for IQ) with a specialist in gifted kids and we found it very worthwhile - including a report with recommendations on grade placement and accomodations. She found several areas of weakness that everyone else had overlooked and we are going to start working with an occupational therapist and have his hearing tested based on her recommendations.

    I would suggest seeing if the school can't do something with compacting. Compacting combined with distance learning might actually be more useful in some ways than a typical gifted program. Some gifted programs just mean the child gets more work than other kids.

    Good luck,
    Mary


    Mary
    #149 04/19/06 06:15 AM
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    Thank you for such a quick reply. You�re right about curiosity being a powerful thing, and in retrospect I have asked myself, �What difference does it make if he scores higher or lower on a retest? The day after receiving his new scores, we�ll all continue to go about our lives just as we did the day before taking the test.� Very little, if anything, will be done differently based on the score.

    I guess it�s the discrepancy between the WISC IV and the CSAT that bothers me. One test indicates he�s highly talented in verbal qualities and not quantitative and the other test indicates the exact opposite. I have considered maybe my son was just �playing around� with the test and/or the tester. He has that kind of personality.

    I will consider your suggestion for an individual achievement test. I hadn�t thought of it until you mentioned it. My next step is finding someone to administer the test. I�m indecisive whether we�ll take both kids for this testing or just my daughter. I�m located in Colorado and the Gifted Child Development Center in Denver is within driving distance. They come highly recommended however a full evaluation costs well over $1000.

    You mentioned your son is working with an occupational therapist. I�ve known occupational therapy to help people who are suffering from health problems. The therapy assist in regaining or building new skills in order for people to achieve independence and well-being. How do occupational therapists apply their talents towards assisting gifted children? Or, is the occupational therapist only involved if your son is found to have hearing problems?

    I�ll have to learn more about compacting and then ask the school about the possibility. My son is completing a distance learning math course through Johns Hopkins. He completed the third grade coursework in three months and is now on the fourth grade coursework. The school won�t recognize his scores from Johns Hopkins University because the University�s curriculum doesn�t match perfectly with the Colorado State Standards for math. In my opinion the Johns Hopkins program greatly surpasses the Colorado State Standards.

    I agree that some gifted problems only mean more work. I hope our local school implements something that is actually meaningful. I asked for more information about their plans today.

    Take care,

    Jonette

    #150 04/19/06 09:59 PM
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    Jonette -
    As a mom,(I'm not a professional), I wanted to pipe up that with scores like your son's and knowing that biological sibs are usually within 10 IQ points of each other, there is no doubt in my mind that you daughter COULD be underchallenged with only a single grade skip. Would the school be willing to use single subject acceleration in a few subjects to get a better fit? Try http://www.davidsongifted.org/db/Articles_id_10044.aspx for a review of a book that's a helpful reference.

    #151 04/20/06 01:24 AM
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    Trinity,

    I read the book review from the link you provided and also the review for the book on Amazon.com. It looks like another "must" read to me!

    It is possible for my daughter to be single subject accelerated. The school has allowed this for other students. The real issue is this - if a child is in third grade but really needs fifth grade coursework in a particular subject, then the third and fifth grade teachers must teach that subject at the same time of day to accomodate the child leaving their regular classroom to attend the class at the higher grade level. If the teachers can't or won't synchronize their daily schedule, the child is out of luck for subject acceleration.

    I tried to get my son in a higher math class this year. The two teachers couldn't work out a schedule to accomodate. Rather, my son meets with the special education teacher for math. The arrangement works out o.k. He gets some one-on-one tutoring. The only draw back is that the teacher has a LD student in the same time slot as my son. She is expected to teach a GT student and a LD student at the same time. The teacher instructs pre-algebra to my son and then immediately switches gears to teach one digit addition to the other student. My son would get frustrated listening to the other student struggle to answer "What is 5 plus 2?" Now he uses his time to work on his studies to assist the LD student. I can't fault the teacher for this arrangement because I believe she is doing the best she can under the constraints she's given from the school administrator. Her main objective is to work with the LD students and she has no previous experience working with GT students. Ours is the first and she only agreed to help my son because he basically didn't have any where else to go to learn math.

    Advocating for gifted students can feel like a battleground somedays, but I'm absolutely convinced it's worth it. (I'm sure I annoy the teachers somewhat though.)

    J.

    #152 04/20/06 01:39 AM
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    Hi Jonette -
    My son, now almost 10 got a lot out of 6 months of Occupational Therapy back when he was 7. One of the great leaders of Occupational Therapists, A. Jean Ayers http://www.geocities.com/heartland/2085/SENSORY.htm
    Her work has helped children overcome many of the difficulties we recognise in our gifted children as overexcitabilities. http://www.southpawenterprises.com/resources.asp for more information on Sensory Integration Disorder.
    Do I "believe" in SID? Not nescessarily. Do I believe that my son's ability to handle his oversensitivities, and get along in this world increased dramatically from the work he did with his OT? Absoulutly! Does Every gifted kid need this? Of course not. Would many benifit from it? In my opinion, I believe that when a child's development follows an atypical course (including gifted), it shouldn't suprise us that that child has a higher risk of certian vulnerabilities. I come from a family of "cut the tag out" "my clothes are touching me" "it's too loud in here" people, and I grew up thinking we are just whiney and would have to live with it! To me it's very exciting that a group of folks have figured out how to assist these little ones and help them "mature."

    Big Smile - Trinity


    Coaching available, at SchoolSuccessSolutions.com
    #153 04/20/06 02:56 AM
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    Hi Trinity

    It's refreshing to talk to others who have sons around the same age as mine. I've noticed a greater percentage of the posts on this board are about boys. Hmm, I wonder why?

    I checked out the links you mentioned above. I had heard of overexcitabilities in gifted children before, but had never studied it much. I also did a general search for SID on Google. I found some thoughtful information from SENG. Was your son displaying oversensitivities other than tags or touching? What types of behavior would he display when the sensory problems would arrise? Would he just refuse to do a task, or would he get more physical when the frustrations rose to level of intolerance? I found it interesting in reading about SID that many professionals confuse SID with ADD or ADHD. I once had a teacher insinuate our son showed symptoms of ADHD. Have you had anyone who didn't know your son well make the same insinuations?

    When my daughter was one or two years old she would refuse to let me put on her shoes on her if the lines going across the toes of her socks were the least bit twisted. She still insists her socks are perfectly straight before she puts her shoes on. Actually, she prefers to wear sandals so she doesn't have to bother with socks at all!!!

    Take Care,
    Jonette

    #154 04/20/06 11:40 PM
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    MY son has some fine motor skill problems and that is where the OT is expected to help. If he has audio processing problems instead of a hearing problem, my understanding is that an OT might also be helpful there - but at the moment, I'm leaning towards hearing problem as he has started yelling a lot lately.

    We had our first round of individual achievement testing done with a local psychometrist for less than $200. It was actually pretty accurate, although he refused to share grade level scores feeling they were too ridiculous to be meaningful. We had a pretty full neuropsych exam for $1200 - although without the IQ test.

    A couple of years back, we considered full blown evaluations and dismissed it as too much money. Now we have reached the point of not holding anything back when it comes to the kids. We have discovered the value of real information.

    As for ADHD - that was one of the motivations for the evaluation of my son. The school was making 'attention problem' noises. I often have people come up to me in public and comment about how they also have an ADHD son - clearly having 'diagnosed' my son based on their observations.

    Well, the neuropsych blew that idea out of the water conclusively. No attention problems. Just boredom - although apparently the motor skills and the hearing have contributed to some of what folks have interpreted as ADHD. I'm sure he has Dabrowski's overexcitabilities too although he is calming down a bit as he gets older. (Big mature 7 now.... LOL)

    Google on Nation Deceived report and download that. It covers a number of ways of dealing with gifted kids in the classroom and is good reading. Free too.

    Mary


    Mary

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