Every child is gifted and labels aren’t really what they need. They all need to feel special, challenged, and appreciated.
If you are part of the public school system you will know there are kids labeled as “gifted” that are placed in a different class. What does this mean? What about the rest of the kids in the other classes? Aren’t they special too?
This term “gifted” separates and divides students. It also creates so much stress and frustration for the parents. In my opinion, every child is gifted and talented. Every single one has a special interest, passion, and unique talent.
I believe that all kids should be challenged, not only the ones that belong to that “gifted” class. Every child is gifted in a very unique way. Every child needs to find their true passions, and labeling them from a very early age does not help them at all.
Why are we always focusing only on grades and academic achievement anyway? Instead of labeling kids, we should be looking at other very important aspects of their lives. We should be teaching them values, respect, and kindness.
To tell you the truth, I am more interested in my kids well-being than being the best students in their class. Of course I want them to do good in school and get good grades, but a good education to me is way more than just academics. I want them to be happy, to be kind, to be curious about the world.
I wrote a post about traveling with kids and how important it is for their education. If you are interested, please see Experts Confirm Family Vacations Make Children Smarter.
I also care about the people my kids are becoming. Are they making friends in school? Are they really enjoying learning new stuff? Are they being challenged? Are they being offered the right tools so they can explore their interests and passions?
I want to teach my kids that they must work hard to achieve their goals. They must pay attention and learn about geography, math, history, and all the other subjects. Knowledge is power! But I don’t expect them to get perfect scores or straight A’s all the time. Grades do not tell the whole story.
I recently read a very interesting article that talked about How Successful Valedictorians Are After High School. In the article, a researcher at Boston College, followed 81 high school valedictorians and salutatorians from graduation onward to see what becomes of those who lead the academic pack. She found the majority have good lives, but none of these number-one high school performers go on to change the world, run the world, or impress the world.
It is more important for me to know that my first-grader is happy, than to brag about how many words per minute he can read. Or how many math problems he can solve. I am more interested in knowing how he treats his classmates, if he offers them help, if he cares about their feelings.
I want my kids to find their talents and interests. And I want them to follow their dreams. They do not need to be in a gifted class, or be the best ones in their class to achieve their goals and be successful in life.
Labeling kids as “gifted” is really not what they need. All kids need to feel special, because they are. They are all unique, and talented, and wonderful. Please don’t compare your children, every child is special in their own way.
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