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Are children who read at 2.5/3 years gifted?

(28 Posts)
bronya Sat 27-Jun-15 09:26:17

Or are they just in homes where everyone else values reading and access to text (and adults to explain it) is plentiful?

Reading is an obsession with my toddler right now, but if I had not helped him learn, I am sure he would have given up trying. Talking to my friends (almost all older children) many of their children were similar. Some encouraged it, some didn't want their children to learn the 'wrong' way so didn't help. All are good readers now.

I was like my DS is now. My mother taught me with Peter and Jane and I was fine lol.

midnightvelvetPart2 Sat 27-Jun-15 09:40:33

It's a bit too early yet to tell but encourage it yes smile

I could read before I went to school and I'm not g&t, ds1 could not read before school and he is g&t. However he's g&t in maths and I did teach him how to play chess and rummy before he started school so maybe there a correlation.

Parental involvement imo is vital to education so it sounds as though your child has a great start smile smile

SoupDragon Sat 27-Jun-15 09:45:29

No, they aren't necessarily truly G&T. It might be that they are flagged as G&T when they start school based purely on whether are compared to their peers. It doesn't mean they are truly gifted though and their peers may catch up and some may even overtake them.

However, I do think an interest in reading should be encouraged provided it never becomes a chore for them smile

MrsLeighHalfpenny Sat 27-Jun-15 09:51:27

Both my DDs could read at 3,and so could I. None of us are g&t, though probably above average ability (good gcse grades etc). We just like reading, and read a lot.

Mistigri Sat 27-Jun-15 12:43:28

I think it depends how they are reading.

My oldest was a fluent, independent reader at 3 - reading came quickly and easily for her (went from first attempts to code/decode phonetically to completely fluent reading in maybe 4-6 weeks). She was referred for testing by the school ed psych so we know she is very gifted but it's obvious anyway.

My second could decode quite well at 2.5/3 but was a long way from being an independent reader. He is a logical child with a good visual memory and good concentration, so amenable to teaching. He is very academically able but I do not know if he is "gifted". He is certainly much less brilliant at language tasks than his sister.

To sum up - I would be astonished if a child who is an independent reader at 3 were not gifted. A child who is reading simple words phonetically at 3 probably has good language skills, a good memory, and above average concentration all of which are correlated with academic success - they may or may not be gifted though it depends what definition of gifted you use.

SunnyBaudelaire Sat 27-Jun-15 12:47:09

tbh yes it is possible but that doesn't mean it will translate into academic success in later life

CamelHump Sat 27-Jun-15 12:48:40

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SaulGood Sat 27-Jun-15 12:56:25

I think a lot of children probably could be taught to read at 3. I think the two things that make them more likely to be reading at 3 are ability or personality. DD was reading at 3 and whilst undeniably bright (she's in Y3 and works to a Y6 level so bright but not gifted), she just tended in that direction. Good memory, good attention and really wanted to read. DS is 3 and he can and does remember all of his letters and can decode. He doesn't particularly want to though (learnt it at preschool and through other stuff) and if he didn't live in this house (mother a writer/librarian, big sister a big reader, I run a few sessions he attends), he might not even be decoding yet.

So, er, maybe. grin

Just encourage whatever they love and it will become clear either way.

WorldsBiggestGrotbag Sat 27-Jun-15 13:04:43

I read independently at 3 and wouldn't say I'm G&T. Fairly academic, good degree etc but nothing massively out of the ordinary.

JustRichmal Sat 27-Jun-15 16:46:01

IMO a child's learning potential depends on both genetic and environmental input. So, if a child has been taught to read they are intelligent enough to have been taught, but in teaching, their ability to learn has been altered. The question of whether education increases a child's intelligence is still debated, but from what I have read, it is; it is just a case of to what degree.

So until every child's DNA can be analysed to find their initial intelligence level, I would say it is impossible to say how much of a child's learning potential is due to nurture or nature. Over and above this, a child's academic ability in a subject can be increased by teaching them that subject. So even if education does not increase their intelligence, it increases their ability.

teeththief Sat 27-Jun-15 17:59:08

Both of my DC could read at 3 and, whilst they are both bright and working ahead academically I wouldn't say they are gifted.

The benefit of being able to read is huge though in reception/ks1 as my DC were able to work independently and therefore finished sooner and were then given challenge work. They were both flagged as g&t early in reception. Now they're y5 and y3. DS is massively ahead in maths, DD good at maths and literacy but not massively ahead of her peers any more.

Nevergoingtolearn Sat 27-Jun-15 18:08:30

Both of mine were reading at nursery, one ( now age 11 ) is on the g&t register for maths and English, I have been told that her writing skills are amazing due to reading ( she's a real book worm ), my other dc is average in all areas.

Marmitelover55 Sat 27-Jun-15 18:11:43

I could read at 3 and am reasonably able but not gifted by any means.

McFarts Sat 27-Jun-15 18:13:01

My DD1 taught herself to read at 3, she learnt all her phonics watching Barney the dinosaur and cbeebies grin i didnt encourage nor discourage (tho I was scared she'd be bored, when she started school!). She could also count up to 1000s do basic arithmetic and knew many times tables. She is now 12 and doing very well in school, she is G&T in both Maths and English, she is also Autistic and fabulous grin

silverglitterpisser Sat 27-Jun-15 18:15:07

My DD could read before starting nursery at 3. Yes she is very bright but she's not rocket scientist material iyswim. I think it's an indicator they will be clever but bot how clever.

silverglitterpisser Sat 27-Jun-15 18:16:08

bot = not!

heylilbunny Sat 27-Jun-15 18:28:10

If you read very young you are also likely to end up short - sighted. You may have seen recent newspaper articles with evidence that over 90% of children in some countries in Asia need glasses because they are encouraged to read and do mathematics and other close reading tasks at very young ages.

Eyesight is still developing at this age and is important that children spend lots of time outside in natural light. That way they can focus on many distances and natural light is needed for healthy eye development.

I was an early reader and reading library books (chapter books) before school. I was also considered very bright and performed at a very high level academically. I also have horrendous eyesight! I cannot have laser surgery to improve my vision because my sight is so bad.

There is an obsession with children doing academics so young but although I am still an obsessive reader (if not an addicted reader) I would prefer good eyesight. Luckily my children have perfect eyesight and do very well at school but I read to them and had them listen to books on CD and they read just as well as precocious readers.

Let them play outside for hours instead.

teeththief Sat 27-Jun-15 18:51:28

Why does reading at a young age equate to not spending hours outside?

WorldsBiggestGrotbag Sat 27-Jun-15 19:48:23

Agree with teeth. I read at 3, my older brother taught me. Didn't mean I sat with my head in a book all day long! Pretty sure we also played in parks, went swimming, went to the beach, played in the garden... In fact I have photos of all those things! My parents didn't sit me inside all day drilling me on the alphabet grin

WorldsBiggestGrotbag Sat 27-Jun-15 19:48:49

Oh and I'm now 30 and so far still have perfect eyesight!

bronya Sat 27-Jun-15 20:33:50

If he wants to read, he can read. He is two. Will hardly be reading for hours!

MirandaWest Sat 27-Jun-15 20:37:02

I could read when I was 3. Was very academic throughout school and then did very well in professional exams. I have fairly bad eyesight (-11.25 in both eyes) but am very happy with my contact lenses. I'm pretty sure I could have laser surgery if I wanted but don't want to.

My sister wasn't interested in reading until she went to school. Didn't start blossoming at school until she was about 10. She went to Cambridge and did maths (I am the "black sheep" of the family who didn't go to Cambridge and do maths grin)

heylilbunny Sat 27-Jun-15 20:39:31

Yes I understand that you can do both but I have known many early readers who do end up spending hours and hours reading with no break at very young ages (by choice as they enjoy it). Also cultures: family culture, school culture, larger community cultures that encourage and boast about very young children spending many hours doing academic work. Many of those children are in G and T programs, I personally know many.

bronya Sat 27-Jun-15 21:46:28

heylilbunny I don't know any tiny children who do anything for hours at a time. Their attention spans are not long enough! I started to read chapter books at about seven years old and would not expect him to read them earlier. There is a whole world of picture books to explore at an earlier age.

Mistigri Sun 28-Jun-15 14:45:11

There's definitely a correlation between lots of close work as a child, and poor eyesight, although I don't think it's as simple as cause and effect. Of my kids, the one who was reading chapter books at 3 has the better eyesight, although both wear glasses (no surprise since both their parents do).

Just wanted to add that "gifted" children are not always "rocket scientist" types. Obviously it depends on the area of giftedness. My very early reader is very good at school maths, but she's not truly gifted at mathematics in the way that some children obviously are.

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