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What is intelligence in a 5 year old?

(56 Posts)
AutumnGlory Thu 29-Nov-12 22:01:26

In your opinion, what makes a 5 year old bright, clever, average, mediocre?

germyrabbit Thu 29-Nov-12 22:07:49

in my opinion, all 5 years olds are bright clever and intelligent!

AutumnGlory Thu 29-Nov-12 22:19:33

I know, I just can't express myself properly - I'm forrein- I guess I'm just trying to find out how intelligent my 5 year old is...what do I need to observe? Writing? Reading? Drawing? Speech? Social skills??

Lonecatwithkitten Thu 29-Nov-12 22:30:26

It would seem that the single biggest indication of long term academic ability is maths level at this age. Or at least this what I have gleaned from the large numbers of studies that I have read.

AutumnGlory Thu 29-Nov-12 22:37:35

Oh, I see ..

Mominatrix Thu 29-Nov-12 22:40:46

Hmmm, I read that it is the ability to delay gratification which is the biggest predictor of academic success as a young age, also ability to persevere.

joanbyers Fri 30-Nov-12 00:28:15

doing calculus innit.

AutumnGlory Fri 30-Nov-12 09:32:17

Can you explain a little bit more 'the ability to delay gratification'..?

fedupwithdeployment Fri 30-Nov-12 09:42:01

I have an 8 yo and a very nearly 6yo. I think both are bright but possibly the 6yo is brighter (but may well be a bit of a coaster and doesn't have work ethic of older one).

He is always interested in things, and wrt maths, will often interrupt when I am quizzing his brother....and often gets things right first!

I'd love to know what they will turn out like long term....but it is just fun seeing them develop.

At parents' evening the older one's teacher said she really enjoyed having proper conversations with my son. Goodness kknows what he is talking about, but quite possibly politics (basic level), Barack Obama....whatever we have been on about the previous weekend. Is that intelligence or being precocious?

laptopwieldingharpy Fri 30-Nov-12 10:06:50

Agree with mominatrix as a measure of academic achievement.
Raw intelligence is all just potential unless harnessed.
The best thing you can do at 5 is foster consistency and perseverance.

My 4.5 year old taught herself to read and write ( still very basic), is doing number bonds to 5, can occasinally skip count in 3s, 5s, 10s and has the intuition about concepts like multiplication, division and fractions (grouping)
We are also a multilingual family.

Now i only know this is a bit advanced because i have a 9 year old who could not do half that that at that age but is nonetheless very academic because he has a very high capacity to focus and likes a challenge.
Will she outdo him? Am really not sure unless we work really hard on taming her temper! She's so fickle where he was always slow and methodical.

bruffin Fri 30-Nov-12 10:09:40

I would have thought it was the type of questions they ask would be a major indicator.

laptopwieldingharpy Fri 30-Nov-12 10:10:20

Fedup, sounds like we have the same specimens!

exexpat Fri 30-Nov-12 10:11:16

AutumnGlory - the link between ability to delay gratification and later academic success comes from this experiment where children were offered the choice between a small treat now (eg one marshmallow) and a bigger treat if they wait. There was a strong link between ability to wait and the children's later performance in school.

exexpat Fri 30-Nov-12 10:16:12

But of course what that really shows is that academic performance is about more than raw intelligence: it involves self-control/persistence etc too.

The ability to resist the temptation to eat the marshmallow may be correlated to some extent with intelligence (= ability to think through possible scenarios, devise ways to distract yourself from eating etc), but I am sure that plenty of children with high IQs are impulsive and would eat it as soon as the researcher left the room. Those are possibly the high IQ children who might underperform academically because they do not have the sustained concentration you need to do well in exams etc.

deXavia Fri 30-Nov-12 10:16:41

My DS 6 opens his eyes and starts to wonder about Egyptian burials or dark matter or South American rain forests - but struggles to read and write and has the attention span of a gnat (unless its Lego!) but DD at 4 is determined to get everything right and learn exactly what her brother is. I'd say DS is 'brighter' but I'm putting my money on DD achieving world domination grin

Startail Fri 30-Nov-12 10:21:36

delayed gratification

The toddler version is done with sweets, but thinking about it accepting you need to work at school to get a university place is a very long term version of the same thing.

As for 5 yearolds, I guess being curious, lively but still able to listen and confident to try new things.

Usually quite chatty, but not always. Some bright DCs are pretty quiet, but there is a twinkle in their eyes that says they are taking it all in. Also the quiet ones generally give it away by building the best lego model, doing an amazing drawing or coming up with a very astute question.

Less bright children just seem less interested in the world.

acebaby Fri 30-Nov-12 11:53:06

I did the marshmallow experiment on my 4yo DS2. He took the marshmallow, hollowed it out with his little finger, attempted to reconstruct the outside and pretended he hadn't eaten it - so he could get another one hmm. I dread to think what that says about his future prospects or intelligence.

exexpat Fri 30-Nov-12 12:06:14

grin at acebaby's DS. I'm sure he has a very bright future ahead of him. Unfortunately, lying is also a sign of intelligence.

dinkybinky Fri 30-Nov-12 12:16:03

My DD was considered bright at 5 by her teachers. She knew all her tables, could write stories, could spell most words, basic fractions, long +,-,x , fluent reader etc. She ended up sitting GCSEs and A levels 2 years early she’s now at Oxford.

You've got a future prime minister there!

acebaby Fri 30-Nov-12 12:22:35

well he must be a genius then! Off to post about his precocious and prodigious ability on the g&t board...

rotavirusrita Fri 30-Nov-12 12:24:26

hmmmm I thought there was a very simple way to determine intelligence at age 5.....
obviously any 5 yr old who has a parent who posts on mumsnet is always a genius who is destined to breeze throught reading schemes at a breakneck speed/ fly through the 11 plus/ get a string of A's at GCSE/... thats right isnt it?

Reading and writing can be a poor indicator at 5 for example because some children don't have the motor skills to write well.

Why are you concerned about your child's intelligence at 5? Its difficult to assess especially by looking at "academic" performance because that can be affected by factors other than intelligence.

If you had looked at DS1's academic performance at 5 it was way below average because he is mildly dyslexic. He is now in Yr5 (aged 9) and has caught up completely and has started to pass some of the children that were way ahead at an earlier age.

If you want to try and assess it I would look at things like ability to grasp concepts and abstract ideas and extrapolate from them. Ability to plan ahead. Complexity of imaginary play perhaps.

dinkybinky Fri 30-Nov-12 12:32:58

identifying characteristics

Reasons well and learns rapidly
• Has extensive vocabulary and talked early
• Early or avid reader
• Asks lots of questions and learns more quickly than others
• Has a very retentive memory
• Is extremely curious and can concentrate for long periods on subjects of interest
• Perseverant in their interests
• Has a wide general knowledge and interest in the world
• Enjoys problem-solving, often missing out the intermediate stages in an argument
and making original connections
• Has an unusual and vivid imagination
• Is intense and shows strong feelings and opinions
• Concerned with justice and fairness
• Has an odd sense of humour
• Sets high standards and is a perfectionist
• Loses interest when asked to do more of the same
• Is sensitive (feelings hurt easily)
• Shows compassion and is morally sensitive
• Has a high degree of energy
• Prefers older companions or adults
• Judgement mature for age at times
• Is a keen observer
• Is highly creative
• Tends to question authority
• Has facility with numbers
• Extremely good at jigsaw puzzles

headfairy Fri 30-Nov-12 12:33:59

You learn something new every day on mumsnet. That experiement is so interesting!

Hands up who's going to be offering their 5 year olds a sweet this afternoon with the promise of one 15 minutes later? grin

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