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4-year-old observed by nursery to be extra intelligent, expert called in - what now?

(26 Posts)
solidgoldbrass Wed 03-Dec-08 12:34:24

I don't quite know the terms - was delighted but startled... anyway, DS is 4.2 so will not go to school till next September. He is in a private nursery where he has always been happy (2.5 days a week), and the nursery manager has just called me to say that they are getting an educational adviser or something in to make suggestions as to how they can keep him happy and interested and challenged as he is so very clever at numbers, reading, etc.

Does anyone else have a bright 4-year-old and can you advise me or tell me what it;s like?

saythatagain Wed 03-Dec-08 12:36:43

What does he do that makes them think that?

Doodle2U Wed 03-Dec-08 12:41:24

'They' do say, very bright children get bored and disruptive. Have to say, with my DS, we never found this at all. He'd join in with whatever was going on and very bright children enjoy finger painting as much as the next kid, IM(limited)E!

Maybe nursery are looking for ways to extend his learning, so they're edging in to the reception class curriculum with him but because it's a private nursery, they need the ed.specialists because they can't just nip across to reception to ask the teachers there!

Enjoy the ride with him but keep an eye on his social skills at the same time. We found that DS lost it a bit with these skills and part of the problem may have been due to him being ahead of his peers and finding more in common with older children.

Finally, if he doesn't want to do summat, don't push him - just rock along with the stuff that interests him, otherwise there's a danger of putting him off something before he's had time to grow into it, IYSWIM?!

jrsqueak Wed 03-Dec-08 12:42:25

My dn is 4.1 and just had the same thing. They had a meeting with sil and will go away and advise the nursery what they should be doing to help her.

solidgoldbrass Wed 03-Dec-08 12:44:04

He can almost read (recognises familiar words, can work out what new words are from the phonics), he can count up to a least 400, do simple arithmetic, and nearly tell the time.
I don;t thinkg he is being disruptive BTW, I think they are hoping to address his needs before that happens.
I have no intention of pushing him, I want him to be happy and reach his potential in his own time (but I don't want him to be bored and lose interest either, obviously)
Thanks for the point about a nursery not being able to ask reception - they did say that he was ahead of the Early Learning Goals or seomthing, hence their seeking advice.

TheProvincialLady Wed 03-Dec-08 12:47:07

Well it is really good that the nursery are seeking extra advice on how to challenge him but I don't think it makes any difference to how you need to treat him IYSWIM? If he is so good with his numbers, bright etc then you must be doing something right at home already, so I would let them do what they need to do and just concentrate on the usual 4 year old stuff. I agree with Doodle2U, the social skills are important too and that is where you can be extra vigilant.

lijaco Wed 03-Dec-08 14:21:03

My son was observed by an external person in Nursery when he was just 4 because considered very intelligent. He could read well, write and was very good with numbers. Vey chatty etc. He was my first child so didn't realise that he was smart. I didn't treat him any differently. Didn't have any problem with social skills as he had lots of friends very outgoing. A good all rounder really and still is. Just let your child be themself. Enjoy and have fun. He is 18 now and only ever had older friends which isn't always a good thing when they are a teenager.

Kammy Wed 03-Dec-08 16:45:10

You must be proud. Like Doodle - I don't think all very bright kids are easily bored or disruptive - my ds is very enthusiastic about everything at school.
Similar scenario to you - his (private) nursery picked up he was very bright, but they didn't have the advice of early years teachers to call on. Once at school, I'm sure it will get picked up pretty quickly, and any curriculum adjustments made. My ds gets seperate maths, but enjoys everything else they do at school(perhaps a bit more vigorously on occasion!)

Pruners Wed 03-Dec-08 17:02:47

Message withdrawn

PaintingRainbows Wed 03-Dec-08 20:26:52

I think this is becoming more common sgb. Our dd had two visits. One when she was 3.2 where they assessed her reading age as being 7.9 and then a 2nd visit last June when she was 3.10 in order to inform the school. She also exceeded all the ELG's except the physical and socio-emotional goals where she was 'green'. Nursery were actually advised that they should concentrate on keeping her included and not worry about her academic development as she would continue to develop in this area anyway. She is now part time at school - but will be full time reception from January. I don't think the school really gave too much weight to her nursery report. They have done their own assessments, as they do on all children, and are certainly differentiating work for her. They also keep able children in their own year groups which I'm pleased about for her social development. Obviously the teacher has to be more creative in her differentiation but I think its better than the 'lazy' option of just moving them up a year (where they still might not be challenged). I know we are lucky that she is one of the youngest in her year group (she's 4.4 now) - if she had been born a few weeks later then we would be in your position with another 9 months in nursery and I think she would have become bored - even though I think the nursery staff were fab. She is now in a good school and so I'm confident that she'll be fine. School doesn't make a big thing of G&T either - its not mentioned to parents as they have a strong ethos around allowing every child to reach their potential. Nursery gave us the name and number of the county G&T school coordinator which might be useful for you to get for your area if you have school concerns but we never needed to go down that route. We just really enjoy our dd as she keeps us on our toes and it sounds as though your ds is delightful toosmile

chipmunkswhereareyou Wed 03-Dec-08 21:36:46

I have a 3.5 year old ds who is at the same stage as yours with reading, can tell me the letter sound and name for pretty much any word I say, can do very simple arithmetic (can't count that far as refuses to go past 30 as apparently it's boring!), starting to tell the time etc. etc. From other posts on here, other than the counting as far as 400 thing, I don't actually think he sounds THAT unusual for 4.2. Not saying it's usual either of course, as he clearly is ahead of average but there are plenty of Mnetters with kids of 4 who are reading even though they're not in reception.

My ds goes to two nurseries - part time (long unrelated story to do with my working hours). Anyway, at his parents eve at nursery 1, I was told 'oh he's fine with letters and numbers' and the best they managed was 'he's very articulate'. They then went on at length about social skills etc.

At the other nursery the keyworker didn't seem to know much about him (although other staff have long said he's very bright indeed) and started talking about how the class would be doing phonics soon which would be good....when he's known his letters since he was two. She didn't have a blardy clue. And I KNOW the other worker in his room knows he knows this stuff so it's not like he doesn't 'do it' at nursery.

So, my point is I'm very, very impressed that the nursery is making such an effort for your ds. At the same time, I want ds to focus on social skills as that's where he needs more support and I figure he picks up the academic stuff anyway.
The saving grace for us is he'll start school at 4.2.

Curious - when you say 'he can nearly tell the time' what exactly does he do - does he round up to the nearest half or quarter hour?

chipmunkswhereareyou Wed 03-Dec-08 21:38:44

Might I add, before someone flames me, I do just want him to play at nursery, which is why I haven't pushed the issue with either nursery.

solidgoldbrass Wed 03-Dec-08 22:46:31

Chipmunks: he understands the difference between quarter to and quarter past, half past and the hour etc.
I am very pleased with the nursery too - he has been going there since he was 1 and has always been happy.
His social skills are OK too: he has two or three particular friends and gets on with other kids about the same as most 3/4 year olds do (best mates one minute and squabbling over the toy bus the next).

I have to say I am rather chuffed though - it's nice to have your DC praised by other people (because obviously he's my PFB and therefore wonderful)...

ToysAreLikeDogs Wed 03-Dec-08 22:48:14


chipmunkswhereareyou Wed 03-Dec-08 23:20:11

God my ds's nursery is crapola isn't it.

solidgoldbrass Thu 04-Dec-08 23:41:15

Chipmunks: well if you want him to play and be happy and he's doing that then probably no need to worry - but I don't think I would like the parents' evenign thing of his alleged keyworker not seeming to know anything about him. Mind you, she could have been the one dingbat there and now have left.
Whereabouts in the country are you?

nappyaddict Thu 04-Dec-08 23:45:48

I didn't think nurseries did stuff like phonics?

solidgoldbrass Thu 04-Dec-08 23:49:50

I think this may be a relatively new development: am sure I read something about it only coming in over the last year or so that now all pre-schools and nurseries are supposed to be 'implementing educational goals' and stuff.

chipmunkswhereareyou Fri 05-Dec-08 10:50:40

It's the Early Years Foundation Stage - came in in Sept. All quite controversial and often called something like the 'nappy curriculum' in a tongue in cheek way.

The keyworker kind of knows him but not the letters/ counting side of thing. She might have been slightly tiddly too as the staff were on the wine during the parents evening....

solidgoldbrass Fri 05-Dec-08 19:04:53

I knew it was something pretty recent. I would, generally, sort of be on the side of those who say let DC just play and enjoy themselves when they are so little, and we definitely don't sit DS down with flashcards or anything... I have always liked the nursery because he has seemed to be happy there (even though he used to yell at drop-off time... once I realised that he had stopped crying and started giggling and playing while I was still folding up the buggy I decided he was doing all right there...)
Basically if your DS is enjoying himself then there's probably no need to worry about changing nursery.

Marne Fri 05-Dec-08 19:12:51

Dd1 was bright at nursery (still is), her nursery (not private) taught her to read and write. She is also good with numbers (could add and subtract at 3.5 years). She is now at school (started in september) and is roughly a year ahead for her age. Dd loves learning but struggles with the social side of things (she has aspergers syndrome). She's getting a bit bored at school at the momment as they have been busy doing christmas things and havn't had time to change her reading books.

We bought the Oxford reading Tree home pack so she could read at home last summer holidays.

She didn't start learning phonics as such until she started school.

Luckymum20 Fri 08-Mar-19 22:12:28

So this is my first post so please be kind! I have two girl. 7 and 4. They are both very bright. The 7 year old, girl has an almost photographic memory. Can speak many words in several languages. Watch a film once and recite whole scenes from it. She is a lovely caring girl. Very sociable, kind etc. She went to a public school for reception and year 1 and part of year 2. She never really made a friend and was horribly bullied for being "different" so we moved her to a private school. A smaller class. She was often left to her own devices in the other school. When she was 6 they said she had a reading age of 12. Anyway, she struggles to make friends. Two reasons. One - she was bullied at the first school and trusts no one. Second - she is different. She isn't into LOL dolls or charging round the playground. She wants to talk about animals and space etc. She plays at home with her sister, Lego, painting, dressing up. And she has friends outside of school who she is confident around who come round to play. But she is struggling to make friends at school because of past experiences. I encourage her to just "do what they want to do" then next time "you suggest a game" but it doesn't seem to work. She is still resistant. Any suggestions from anyone in a similar situation? Thanks.

Confusedbeetle Fri 08-Mar-19 22:27:30

I would say take a chill pill and don't take things too seriously. Enjoy your child in the moment. Whatever you do don't make your child feel different or special, just love them

Luckymum20 Fri 08-Mar-19 22:52:33

It's easy to say "take a chill pill" but when your child comes home from school and says that the other children have called her weird that's a bitter pill to swallow. I don't make her feel different or special. I earn a modest wage and didn't go to University. . I haven't pushed this on her.

moominmomma1234 Fri 08-Mar-19 23:01:31

hello, do you know you have added your message onto a post from 2008? maybe the earlier insensitive comment about chill pills is targeted at the original post from 2008? you might be best to start a fresh post.

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