Bright Child vs Gifted ChildIf you ask the teacher who the gifted kids are, they are likely to point out the ones that are bright. Bright kids are a joy to teach. They listen well, don't question the teacher, work hard and answer questions. They don't challenge the teacher's competence or stray off the curriculum.
Bright kids enjoy school and get challenged with the work that they are asked to do. They find the work neither too hard nor too easy.
The gifted child on the other hand may be spending almost all of the school day thinking or doing something other than what the teacher wants. They find the constant repetition so boring that they often don't shine in the classroom. You might find the gifted child day dreaming, looking out of the window, reading a book instead of listening.
Gifted children often hate school and are not challenged at all by the work presented to them and the concepts and ideas being taught are far below their intellectual prowess. The problems that this creates are many and varied Some may go underground and not perform, some may bully other kids, some might annoy the teacher with wild and silly sounding ideas and suggestions and further annoy the teacher by doing very little work but demonstrating mastery of a subject when it comes to test time.
A Bright Child....
A gifted child....
Knows the answer
Asks the questions - sometimes deep probing questions of an abstract nature.
Is highly curious
Is mentally and physically involved
Has good ideas
Has wild, silly ideas
Plays around, yet tests well
Answers the questions
Discusses in detail, elaborates
Beyond the group
Listens with interest
Shows strong feelings and opinions
Learns with ease
6-8 repetitions for mastery
1-2 repetitions for mastery
Prefers adults or older children or seeks out other very bright or gifted peers.
Grasps the meaning
Draws inferences and opens up new questions.
Creates a new design
Enjoys learning - but may hate school.
Inventor - Loves construction toys
Good guesser - draws on vast information store.
Is keenly observant - seems to remember fine details.
Is pleased with own learning
Is highly self-critical - can be perfectionistic to the point of tantrums when young.
Enjoys straight-forward and/or sequential presentation
Thrives on complexity - needs the whole picture. Requires a gestalt approach.
So, is your child gifted or bright? If many of the statements in the above table ring true for your child - and as a parent you will know, then you may want to find out the child’s behavior in school and see if it is what you expect.