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Advanced toddler? Is this mad?

(104 Posts)
ItsOkayItsJustMyBreath Mon 26-Nov-12 20:50:01

Have NCed for this as it feels a of a cringy thing to ask blush

Ds is 21 months and I am beginning to think that he may be showing signs of being advanced. By this I mean he knows the alphabet both names of the letters and their sounds, he can count to 12 and knows other numbers such as 20, 100, 150 but can only count objects up to 12 iyswim. He talks a lot and uses the correct verb tenses and has a very wide vocabulary. He is incredibly inquisitive, he genuinely wants to 'learn' and finds it interesting.
Today he 'sounded out/ read' his first word, "sky". It was unprompted and in the middle of the town centre.

My question is, is this normal development? Even if it is advanced it doesn't necessarily mean that he will always be advanced does it?

Sorry to be so pfb, my DM is getting very excited at the prospect of another genius in the family (the others being my DB and my biological father) and I'm not sure what to say to her as it is exciting but everyone thinks their child is brilliant don't they? grin

ItsOkayItsJustMyBreath Mon 26-Nov-12 21:40:27

Ah, see ds could never dress himself, he can undress, in public, at any given opportunity but, as yet, hasn't found a love of clothes in general!

bialystockandbloom Mon 26-Nov-12 21:41:08

The reading bit definitely sounds out of the ordinary to me. My dd is a year older than your ds and recognises some letters and the phonics sounds ('kuh' for k, for example) but she has an older brother so is exposed to all this stuff, and is well within the normal range for her age. How does your ds know about the phonetic spelling/sounds? I am amazed he can read 'sky' properly given the 'y' sound!

coldcupoftea Mon 26-Nov-12 21:44:43

My 2.5 yo DD2 can count to 20, but I think the knowing the letter names is very advanced, yes! As a comparison I think my 4yo DD is averagely bright (ie she's bright, inquisitive but certainly not gifted) and she could recognise the letters in het name by the age of 3- knew the alphabet by 4, which I think is about average. Only just started sounding out now that she has started reception.

Just a thought though- DD1 could 'read' the word Disney at the age of 3, ie recognise it when she saw the logo in a shop (thanks to over-exposure to disney princess schmaltzy crap!) . Is there any chance he has just seen the sky logo on tv/at home and recognised it?

ItsOkayItsJustMyBreath Mon 26-Nov-12 21:46:59

I blame his love of countdown blush

I was an English teacher and have worked with children with SEN in the past so the phonemic alphabet is second nature to me, I guess I have taught him without realising it. He just seems drawn to numbers and letters, as in he would choose books over most toys (except a Tombliboo or two).

mercibucket Mon 26-Nov-12 21:49:07

I would guess 'sky' is from the tv ads etc, but he sounds v sweet
Ds2 was like this. He's a total chatterbox and yes, clever, but not genius clever. It's cute though smile ds1 didn't do any of that and is equally as clever though, but less of a chatterbox

mercibucket Mon 26-Nov-12 21:49:07

I would guess 'sky' is from the tv ads etc, but he sounds v sweet
Ds2 was like this. He's a total chatterbox and yes, clever, but not genius clever. It's cute though smile ds1 didn't do any of that and is equally as clever though, but less of a chatterbox

Wallace Mon 26-Nov-12 21:49:24

That is very advanced.

I have had 3 dc who have been very verbal at that age, but dc4 is just 2 and only saying single words. However I think he is concentrating on the physical side of things as he is very coordinated and has been riding a bike since 22 months!

thegreylady Mon 26-Nov-12 21:50:58

My dd was reading fluently by 2 and could do the other things.By 11 she was just towards the top of a bright class.she studied philosophy at university and is now a lovely wife and mum and an outstanding teacher...not a high court judge or a consultant surgeon.
Your ds sounds very very bright-enjoy him.
My dd learned to read by her brother teaching her letters/sounds from their alphabet pj's!

ItsOkayItsJustMyBreath Mon 26-Nov-12 21:58:41

merci That is a good point, it may be from an advert he's seen but he did sound the word out iyswim before he said it. I guess time will tell and WOW to thegreylady at your dd reading fluently at 2! Ds can do the fill in the words in some of his books but not read!

queenofthepirates Mon 26-Nov-12 22:08:12

Crickey, my 20mo has just run two words together, those being Granddad and Poo and I thought that was pretty awesome smile

She did say 'I shot the sherrif' about a month ago but I could have misheard that. Despite some pressing, she doesn't know what happened to the deputy.

SavoirFaire Mon 26-Nov-12 22:26:54

queenofthepirates grin

Kiwiinkits Mon 26-Nov-12 23:43:06

yep, that sounds very advanced for that age. And very exciting!

anothercuppaplease Tue 27-Nov-12 10:47:23

About speaking in sentences - even if you have a child with a speech delay it doesn't mean they are not clever. Lots of children who speak late are very smart. Einstein was one of them. Genius?

Your child knows the letters and sounds because you are teaching him.

He knows how to count because you are teaching him.

Just go out and make mud pies. Better for them I say.

anothercuppaplease Tue 27-Nov-12 10:49:24

Oh and yes, the first word that DS read was Tesco. Then, it was Petrol. The Sky theory is pretty good!

bialystockandbloom Tue 27-Nov-12 10:56:43

Loves Countdown does he? Does he attempt the conundrum?

This is a windup surely.

amck5700 Tue 27-Nov-12 11:06:31

loads of small children and babies get fixated on unexpected tv programmes bialy - when my son was a baby years ago he had a thing for carol volderman's voice and would watch countdown and all those loan ads she used to do - i don't seriously think he was attempting the puzzles or in the market for a loan grin

It's strange what they find interesting!

I'm guessing it could be the sound of the countdown clock he likes.

gnocci Tue 27-Nov-12 11:08:07

bialy why on earth do you think this is a wind-up?? My 24m old can do some amazing things like name and identify the planets in the solar system. OP's DS sounds far more advanced as we've only just started on the letters but nothing she has said makes me disbelieve her.

gnocci Tue 27-Nov-12 11:09:27

Reminded me of my super clever brother who at about 15m was watching breakfast tv when he suddenly came out with "Day-vid-Fwost" grin

SarkyWench Tue 27-Nov-12 11:12:42

the 'windup' comments really piss me off.
I found out that people in our toddler group were bitching about me making stuff up when ds1 was this age.

Why shouldn't a toddler love looking at the letters on countdown? My cat loved snooker ffs smile

Your ds lounds lovely btw. I hope you find some RL friends who can share in how amazing he is.

bialystockandbloom Tue 27-Nov-12 11:27:09

I don't doubt for a single second that there are some very early readers and all that.

And knowing things like planets in the solar system is not the same - you could teach a child this in the same way as you could teach them peppa pig characters (ie recognition).

Just always wonder why people would really need to disengenously ask MN if their child was advanced when they were apparently reading at 21 months. Does the OP really need us to tell her that this wasn't the norm?

It was the suggestion that watching Countdown was somehow responsible for this that made me snort.

lingle Tue 27-Nov-12 11:32:20


I think the OP should be given a free pass as
(i)she has NOT given us stealth boasting about her own superior parenting and
(ii) her child shows his advanced tendencies whilst reassuringly watching crap tv, which makes the rest of us feel better about what we do with our own kids grin

bialystockandbloom Tue 27-Nov-12 11:40:21

Lingle, you're probably right. It's not that I don't believe that dc as young as this can read - my brother was, actually, but I suspect he has AS (I knew it had to come from my side of the family wink). And obviously I am aware that children can have weird taste in tv programmes. Anyway I will stfu now grin

but I maintain there was some stealth boasting in there

ItsOkayItsJustMyBreath Tue 27-Nov-12 13:11:20

Blimey, bit of a palaver here!

bialystockandbloom He has watched Countdown since birth and his first word (other than mama, dada) was 'c(l)ock' blush; now when we see a clock he says 'Nick's clock'. He is a bit obsessed with the programme, it's not a wind up.

Maybe there is some boasting here, I am very proud of him whether he is advanced or not but I really didn't mean it to come across as anything but genuinely wanting to know what other people thought without embarrassing myself in RL iyswim.

Thank you for everyone's fab comments and advice. I have spoken to DM this morning and mentioned the 'stage not an age' phrase! I also found this which I think he may have so will be seeing how things pan out. I'm not going to push him or have him tested or anything ridiculous like that, he's my baby.

PerchanceToDream Tue 27-Nov-12 15:17:27

OP, 21-month DD is similar but she doesn't know her alphabet (although she has a go: A C F at all the wrong letters - she knows what they are and is really eager to have a go) and she certainly can't spell anything out yet - that's VERY advanced! But she's pretty much fluent now using all the correct tenses and the possessive 's' etc, which I'm really surprised about.

I get comments all the time about how advanced she is, which is great but like you, I kind of don't want her to be too advanced or labelled gifted IYSWIM. Her Daddy had a reading age of 15 at 6, or something like that (not that it did him any good in the long run - grin) and her uncle has Aspergers and actually is a tortured genius so I'm fully aware of the downfalls. I guess it's about stimulating them at their level for now and by the time they go to school - who knows! Perhaps it'll all even out.

corinthian Tue 27-Nov-12 21:37:17

I know quite a few 23-24 month olds who can recognise letters and/or count and/or use correct grammar, though not sure they were doing it at 21 months. The sounding out a word seems unusual.

As another poster pointed out, lots of exceptional physicists and mathematicians were very late talkers so any correlations are complicated. As far as I can make out, most children who do these things early end up bright but not necessarily geniuses (and depends what you mean by a genius of course!)

I don't think there is much you can do at this age other than let them satisfy their curiosity about the world and be careful not to label them.

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