Does this make my child a genius?

April 15, 2008 3:16pm CST
Today, I was reading about a 3 year old child who is considered a genius and has an IQ of over 150. Apparently, by the time this child was 2 years old, she could speak in sentences and have conversations, count to 10, get herself dressed and also speak a little French. This is all very good for such a young child but I was surprised to see that her IQ was so high because, although my children are clever, I have never considered that either of them might be a genius. Apart from getting dressed (although he can do some things himself) and replacing the French with a little Mandarin Chinese, my youngest son did all that too. He's 2 months short of 3 years old. He spoke his first words early and is very articulate in speach, capable of true conversation. He could count to 10 not long after 12 months old and he is now learning the alphabet. He spoke single words clearly at around 10 months and was forming sentences by 14 months, while creating clear sentences and having conversations at 17 months. He now recognises some letters and also some two-digit numbers. He has only been let down by gross motor skills ie. he did not crawl until 9 months or walk until 23 months. Although, my older son who is now 8 could do mostly the same things but walked at 9 months and didn't talk quite so early. I am showing off a little here but it just got me thinking when I read about this girl. It is fantastic that she is so bright and capable but my kids must be even more clever than I realised when I take it for granted that children can do certain things. What do you think?
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12 responses
@p1kef1sh (45648)
15 Apr 08
Children may well have some in built ability to assimilate information quickly. But I feel that it the environment that they grow up in focuses those talents and skills. You clearly have spent time stimulating and encouraging your sons. The benefits are that they are able to do so many things at such a young age. Keep going because they will grow up to be more rounded individuals. Whatever you do in life. Being well informed can always help and enhance your life; that is something that can never be taken away from them.
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15 Apr 08
My children assimilate far too much information for my liking, I will have to start putting them in fron of mind-numbing cartoons so they stop asking impossible questions! My babies are already quite well rounded. They both have academic and cognitive ability well beyond average. The little on is already showing an interest in some sports (especially rugby, he's excellent at throwing and catching!) and he draws really well (apparently children aren't "supposed" to know how to draw circles when asked and such like before they are 3). The big one is very interested in science, art, astronomy and anything complicated to which I can not give a suitable answer! So I think they are doing well in the "well rounded" stakes.
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@nannacroc (4019)
15 Apr 08
I think the word genius is overused. I know your children and their cousin are much brighter than average. I also know that you were taught that being average is what keeps the average down. This child is extremely bright but IQ is a difficult thing to calculate because it depends on the questions you're asked. Mine is below average if maths or logic are involved but very much above average if the questions are about language and books.
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15 Apr 08
Children's IQ's are calculated in a different way from adult IQ's. I don't know quite how it works, I will have to look it up. I will not disagree that this child is bright but while reading it, I thought "what's so special about that?" because my children can do pretty much the same things and more.
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@sedel1027 (17873)
• United States
15 Apr 08
Here is how I feel about it, you can have the highest IQ in the world and by numbers that may make you a genius, but it is how you apply yourself that is really important. I don't think it is good for kids who have a high IQ to even know that they have a high IQ. I believe that puts way too much pressure on them to be perfect.
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16 Apr 08
That is all very true. Not that there is anything wrong with a child knowing he/she is clever or talented but I would not put my children through that sort of thing. An older child who chose to do that, possibly, but not a 3 year old. These genius children do apply themselves well though. I don't think anyone would have really cared if it was all about IQ!
@sedel1027 (17873)
• United States
16 Apr 08
Even older kids should not know their IQ number. I think that if you have your kid tested and you know that they are a genius that should be good enough. Give your kid the tools to be successful. I am a bit biased though. My husband is a tested genius. His parents have always told him so, but they never gave him the tools to actually use his genius so he is lost. His cousin – also a test genius - was given everything he needed to be successful (like extra classes, skipped a head a few grades, etc) and he is super successful. It is one thing to have a genius kid and another to have a genius kid and help them develop properly.
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16 Apr 08
Children's talents and interests should be encouraged, whatever they are. Your husband and his cousin are a perfect example that nurture plays an important role in success, regardless of potential ability. As I say, if a child WANTS to know if they are a genius then that's ok but I would not ask either of my children to take any sort of IQ test. To me, it is the same as anything else really. I don't tell my children that they need to participate in anything just because they happen to be good at it but if they are interested and they ask then that's fine. I consider IQ tests pretty much the same sort of thing.
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• Canada
16 Apr 08
I think kids go at their own pace and we won't really know their full potential till they are older, in a way it could be bad if they develop to fast because then they get bored and get ahead of their friends perhaps and may affect them socially, i think we should encourage our kids at whatever pace they are comfortable at and be proud of them no matter what
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16 Apr 08
That is true. I have known children get bored because they are ahead and are not challenged enough (I'm very familiar with this concept because I was one of those children!) I will always be certain to keep to a pace with which my children are comfortable and encourage them in whatever they want to do. I will stimulate them as much as I can for as long as I can. I am very proud of my 8 year old, he can tell me the planets of the solar system in order as well as many other facts about the universe as well as lots of other things! I enjoy learning with him which is a bonus for both of us. I'm proud of my toddler too. He's so funny. He knows all sorts of things. The normal things and more. My favourite thing he does at the minute is when he says things like "that's not a car because it's a motorbike" or "that's hot, I need to blow it". I think that's pretty good reasoning for a tiny person! He also draws well and knows where to put some features. He pointed to the top of the pic. and said "that's the hair", bottom of the picture was the nose and either side, he pointed out ears. I watched him draw ear-esque squiggles in the correct place alongside the eyes he had drawn. I was thinking about all the things he can do and, while I am always proud of him, I was actually amazed when I sat and thought about some of the things he does. Then I was even more proud of him while he played really nicely with other children. I may be proud of my kids for being clever but I also make a special point of letting them know I'm proud of them for being well-behaved and polite. While I'm busy being proud of them, I might just add that they are very handsome little fellows too!
• Philippines
16 Apr 08
I suggest that you check your kid through a developmental pediatrician to know her capacity
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16 Apr 08
I'm not going to do that. I don't think it is good for children to be tested like that. Nurturing their talents and abilities is one thing but I would think that unnecessary tests simply puts pressure on children. I know my kids are clever and I'll continue to teach them as much as I can. I don't really need to know if they are an official genius. Thank you anyway.
@subha12 (18472)
• India
16 Apr 08
I think it can't be said so in a word. the child may be the gifted one, but genius- this term is ambeguous as i think. 150 IQ is something that genius peopel have. but also check how long that stays. i think children have better memory and all than the adults. As a child i could read sentences in book at 2.5 years, can I be said so? i talked from 11 months and by 1 year was able to speak sentences. so i think wat for some time and just make normal gesture to the child.
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16 Apr 08
My partner was reading by about age 2 but he's definitely not a genius! My own children aren't that keen on reading but neither am I. We're all still quite clever! I suppose you could have been considered a genius with your skills.
16 Apr 08
Like others have said the word genius is so overused. And as my boyfriend pointed out recently - the well known geniuses of our time, sir isaac newton, albert einstien, were only discovered as adults. Child geniuses as they are labelled generally means they are early developers, children grow at different speeds, and generally they will even out (to some extent) throughout their lifetime. Though of course I'm not undermining the fact that they will often still turn out with above ave. intellegence. It is obvious though that you don't care about the label, so yes you need to be sure not to take their intellegence for granted. Boast as you will - it's a parents right.
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16 Apr 08
I, as you may have noticed, like to boast about how brilliant my children are! Not only academically but they are also very polite and generally nice people. So, I believe I have an awful lot to be proud of. Some children average out later, thats quite true. I thought my 8 year old was behind with his reading before he began school but discovered that he was actually average. He's now in the top half of his class for most things, including reading. I think nurture is important to make sure children do continue to develop as much as they can. There is no point having a bright child if they can not be encouraged to reach their potential.
@Modestah (11195)
• United States
16 Apr 08
my second child, a daughter, was the same way by age 2. She was completely potty trained before 2, she was drinking from a cup at 4 mos old, could carry on inteligent and articulate conversations before 2, could spell a few simple words by 3 and was reading shortly after age 4. I do not know if she is considered genius or not, but she sure is a stubborn kid prone to defiance. her older brother is bright, but was not as advanced at such a young age, we just figured she had him to help her out some.. her younger sister is much delayed in comparison to her and her brother. maybe your son is gifted - :)
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16 Apr 08
Your daughter could very well be a genius if the article I read is anything to go by! My son is just learning to spell and recognise letters although there are a couple of letters and words he can recognise (provided he's paying attention!). I don't remember when he could rink from a cup and do that sort of thing but having had to feed him solids at four months, he was pretty efficient with a spoon before age 1. Now he's just started to use a knife along with spoon and fork. I don't think either of my children are brighter or more advanced than the other. It's hard to tell anyway with such an age gap but I'm not going to compare them with each other. I'm sure your younger daughter will excel at something later on!
• United States
16 Apr 08
Well I have a nephew whom I believe is a genuis because at the age of six, he can still barely pronounce something right. lol. Nah really, we thought that he was dumb. We were all beginning to get worried that his speech retardation is beginning to manifest seriously. All of a sudden, when he started schooling, he landed 1st in his kindergarten school. He just suddenly sprung out and surprised us. He even perfects his matematics tests always. Whoa... that's genuis. Reminded me of many Scientist who flunked at school only to discover wonders in the field of science. Hope your youngest son goes a distance though. Goodluck and thank you for sharing.
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16 Apr 08
Your nephew is not unusual. There are a lot of children who appear to be behind and then suddenly leap right forwards. Some kids just don't feel like doing certain things or some build up extra information before they decide to use it! The only thing my youngest had trouble with was crawling and walking but once he started, he quickly began running and he looks as if he's going to be good at sports too. I know certain people in my family would not read before they began school but triumphed easily when they did begin!
@allen0187 (10793)
• Philippines
16 Apr 08
pumpkin, you can always go to a nearby MENSA chapter and have your child evaluated. i am a parent myself and i know all parents will agree that our child/children are a source of our pride and joy. any accomplishment , no matter how small, will be feted. i'm sure that your children will reach their fullest potential under your guidance.may God continue to shower blessings to you and your children.
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16 Apr 08
I have no intention of getting my children evaluated but thank you anyway. The article I read just made me think because, reading about a "genius" and thinking "my child can do that and that and that..." would make you wonder wouldn't it? I wouldn't mind knowing if there is an official genius in the house but I think 2 or 3 is far too young for official tests like that. I know my kids are great and will reach their full potential. They don't need to have a label to do so!
@liquorice (3903)
15 Apr 08
My 2 year old daughter is coming close to speaking in sentences and has quite good conversations. She can count to 19 and put some clothes on, but can't speak French or any other language. I don't think she's a genius as some of her friends can also do these things and do some of them better, while others do completely different things better. They just all develop at different rates and do different things when they're ready. I think that the ability to do these developmental things is probably not always related to whether or not they have a high IQ, which is measured by taking special tests. Therefore you could have a very high IQ and not be able to dress yourself have a low IQ yet be able to count to 100! Some of the things that you've described do sound remarkable (especially having proper conversations by 17 months!) and this may well translate to a high IQ as well, but I don't think it's always the case. Hopefully people will correct me if I'm wrong.
15 Apr 08
I agree with you. As I said, I have never considered that my child is a genius but when I read about this "genius" child, I did wonder why because most of what she does seems pretty normal to me. Children do develop at different rates in different areas and a high IQ is not necessarily a good indicator of outstanding ability or vice versa. My children can/could do a lot of things and I know they are above average but, even though they don't seem any less capable than these so called genius children, I have never really thought of either as a possible genius.
@kezabelle (2986)
16 Apr 08
My daughter is two she can count to ten and backwards from 4. She is talking in sentences we dont have a second language although that is not abnormal teaching a child a second language is easier from an early age so I wouldnt think that classes them as a genius she does copy spanish words from the tv programme she watches. I would in now way class her as a genius maybe above average compared to other children and certainly to things her sister did when she was this age but id not really want to class my child as a genius seems like a really big tag to put to your child and a hard one for them to keep up I think, children should be left to be children learning in fun simple ways and leave the real hard work until they have to
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