Sunday, October 16, 2005

talented youth

Our son has done really well on the standardized tests that the kids take each spring. So this year he has been invited to do some more testing, to further "categorize" him (so he can "be all that he can be").

During the information night at the school, the teacher was really discouraging the parents from accelerating their studies in a particular area (like math), because they would eventually "run out of" topics that could be tought at the school. I didn't like that answer, because if the kid is so excited by the topic that he/she needs to study more and more, he/she should not be discouraged from doing it. Especially in the area of math, where topics of study in college and grad school are not even fathomable in grade school.

So, I've bought a book (suprise!). One of the first things it says, in the section meant to "dispell myths", is that one of the myths is that the child will "run out of curriculum" before they graduate high school. This hits the nail right on the head, and really makes me hesitant to trust the opinions of this teacher whom my son is likely to have in a couple of years. Man . . .

I guess one of the big points of this learning exercise I've been going through is that any child who is not of the mainstream learning capability needs extra attention from his/her parents in order to be nurtured properly. But, I wonder, does any child really fit "the mainstream"?

3 comments:

Barbara said...

I found that comment less than satisfying also. How can you run out of math? Aren't there infinite problems to solve?

Anita said...

Congratulations to your son. Mine did the opposite. I'm lucky the school isn't hounding me to locate some remedial help.

At any rate, I'm with you. Running out of curriculum is ridiculous. If a child is bored out of their mind because the curriculum isn't stimulating enough, that seems like more of an issue than advancing quickly. I'll admit I'm dying to know who said this . . .we'll have to take it offline for that. That doesn't seem like a very appropriate answer to me in a school where the whole point should be to address individual needs. After all, it is a small class.

I'm no expert, but it seems to make sense to keep the child socially with his peers while stretching his intellectual capabilities as much as possible.

Suzanne said...

I agree, Anita. I think what we will be doing is keeping him in all of his classes and giving him some more stimulating things to do. Don't know what those things are yet, but he is very much against being taken away from his friends. Maybe he can do some more advanced stuff at the same time as the work on the curriculum-based stuff is being done? I dunno . . .