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Testing for Giftedness


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Joined: Nov 03, 2005
Posts: 69138
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Posted Mar 06, 2002 at 2:50:55 PM
Subject: Testing for Giftedness

My 3rd grader,ADD,was recently tested at school for a G/T,gifted and talented program. It has been the belief of all of his past teachers as well as myself that he is definitely an "out of the box" thinker. The test that was given conisted of 64 questions and a time limit of 35 minutes, this info.I got from my son. As to the nature of the questions...he couldn't give me those details. He also told me that they were asked to do problems working with other testing students. Once again the details about that are unclear. My concern is this ...my son has never ever been one that I or anyone could describe checking off boxes on a questionnaire. Nothing about him has ever been cut and dry. He is always a portion of a definition with a twist! Can a standardized test to determine giftedness be the best way ? We were notified yesterday that his test score did not meet the guidelines. Should there be more weight placed on teachers evals ? Can I ask for trial period in the program? Should I? He can always be tested again next year, but then that is another year that opporunity for advanced stimulation goes by. I truly believe that he can benefit greatly by being surrounded even if only for brief periods, by other children that think as he does. He has always been more mature in thought than behavior and doesn't operate on the same level as the other students in his classes. Always thinking above. Does this sound familiar to anyone? Help me navigate for my "Square Peg" ?

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Anonymous
Joined Oct 22, 2014
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Posted:Mar 06, 2002 5:53:33 PM

The GT coordinator our school district told us at a PTA meeting that if a child didn't meet the criteria for GT in the standardized testing, they could still be placed in GT activities if they showed a high degree of motivation (ie, willing to do GT-level work) or their teachers felt strongly that the child was gifted even though the standardized testing criteria was not met. Might be worth contacting the coordinator of your school district's GT program to check.

Having said that, I'm not really sure that the GT label really added much to our son's elementary experience. He wasn't high enough to apply to the highly-GT school. There were no "pull-out" activities that only GT kids went to, only enriched classwork (and I never saw any). And the level of work kids were getting in 4th and 5th grade for classwork and the [excessive] amount/level of homework at night was already at a GT level for ALL kids, IMHO.

So find out what having a GT label really means at your school. Exactly what are is he missing without the label?

I think the GT program is implemented more effectively in middle school where GT students are in separate classes and work on an enriched curriculum for a particular subject. And in middle school, I don't think a child needs a specific GT level of a standardized test to get into a particular GT subject - they need the recommendation of the previous years teacher in that subject and the appropriate mastery of certain skills.

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Anonymous
Joined Oct 22, 2014
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Posted:Mar 06, 2002 6:40:55 PM

YOu've gotten some good advice. Most GT programs, unfortunately, are designed best for the kids who do well on those standardized tests. It's worth finding out just what the program is about and whether it fits your kid.

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Anonymous
Joined Oct 22, 2014
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Posted:Mar 06, 2002 7:05:34 PM

Thanks for your response. I think that when it comes right down to it I feel the need to advocate for all of the other " Square Pegs" that I know have to be out there. I want to address the Dual Exceptionalities and the differences in the thought processes of my son. Who better to vent to than to parents that have an understanding? Thanks!

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Anonymous
Joined Oct 22, 2014
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Posted:Mar 07, 2002 7:31:48 AM

Michelle,
I didn't let the school test my dd for gifted but the test you are talking
about does not tell you if your son is gifted. It is a type of screening
for giftedness. Each state has, and even each school can have thier own
requirements for testing and giftedness.
If you feel strongly about this and you believe
he is gifted. He needs a school or clinical psycholigist to test him You can
have this done yourself outside of school. Cost $300.00 to $500.00.
Just find out which Psycholigist your district will accept.
He may very well test out of the box. And if he does he will not pass
the screening, it takes a Psycholigist to see this.

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Anonymous
Joined Oct 22, 2014
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Posted:Mar 07, 2002 9:58:50 AM

I agree that the best way to know your son's true capabilities is to have some psychoeducational testing done. The WISC (an IQ test) is a better indicator of giftedness than a screening test. Also, if your child is both gifted and has learning disabilities, it is absolutely essential that he be given an education that emphasizes his strengths. Life in the regular classroom can be torture for GT/LD kids, who are simultaneously underchallenged and overwhelmed in that setting.

Andrea

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