As our babies start becoming kids, it isn't just parents that take note of these differences anymore. Schools and preschools often categorize kids into remedial, normal and gifted groupings. It is not unheard of for some preschools to have entrance exams that require above average aptitude in order to even attend their institution. What is the value behind this? Supposedly, the point is to pick out the naturally gifted children and allow them the opportunity to really nurture that "gift".
Backtrack to me with my 2 year old that will not be undergoing any formal intelligence testing anytime soon.
I am not saying to ignore obvious cues if a child is falling seriously behind. Early intervention programs are wonderful and sometimes necessary. However, if you know that your child is doing fine and is on track, then learn to let go of the constant scrutiny and comparisons.
Realistically I know that I will continue to compare, it is human nature to do so. For my own sanity I am glad my kids seem to stay ahead of the curve for the most part, but in large group settings there will pretty much always be a kid that is ahead. At least I know that I can breathe a sigh of relief when I come across that twenty month old at the playground that can say his ABCs perfectly.
There are several longitudinal studies showing the weak correlation between kindergarten IQ and aptitude versus the IQ and aptitude of those children when they are older. Two of the ones I have looked at thoroughly are:
- Gifted Today but not Tomorrow? Longitudinal Changes in Ability and Achievement during Elementary School. By David F. Lohman & Katrina A. Korb 2006
- Assessment Issues in the Testing of Children at School Entry. By Donald A. Rock, & A. Jackson Stenner 2005
Please keep your comments and jeers to yourself regarding my bibliography style, I have been out of college for a few years and frankly don't care about technicalities anymore. If I never look at another MLA, APA, or whatever handbook again, it will be too soon!