Girl is pproaching problems logically

What does it mean to be Gifted/Talented?


Giftedness is something you cannot develop. Gifted children are born with the capacity for knowledge. For them, learning and understanding come naturally. For teachers and educational professionals, the process of identifying gifted and talented children may be a problem because they are not a homogeneous group. Giftedness refers to human preferences such as intellectual or creative abilities and talent is shown in the field of human activities such as mathematics, literature or music. Parents often have information about their children’s abilities and can be a very useful source of information in recognizing a child as gifted/talented. Louis and Levis (1992) found that parents correctly identified their child as gifted 61% of the time, with the remaining 39% correct because their children had progressed but did not meet the criteria for giftedness.

Bright child or gifted child?


Bright child


  • Knows the answers
  • Is interested
  • Has good ideas
  • Works hard
  • Answers the questions
  • Is in the top group
  • Listens with interest
  • Learns with ease
  • Requires 6-8 repetitions for mastery
  • Enjoys peers
  • Grasps the meaning
  • Copies accurately
  • Enjoys school
  • Absorbs information
  • Is a technician
  • Enjoys sequential learning
Gifted child


  • Asks the questions
  • May have wild, silly ideas
  • May play around, yet tests well
  • Discusses in detail, elaborates
  • Goes beyond the group
  • May show strong feelings/opinions
  • Already knows
  • May require little repetition
  • Prefers adults
  • Draws inferences
  • Creates a new design
  • Enjoys learning
  • Manipulates information
  • Is an inventor
  • Thrives on complexity

-J. Szabos

A boy with books
A boy with books


Fostering challenges in children’s learning


Deborah Eire identified the following:

  •  Plan, do and review: Plan more systematically, be more critical and analytical in the review phase.
  •  Work on harder texts and use a wider range of information: Children need content to explore more, from multiple sources to seek information.
  •  Imaginative recording: Encourage children to explore presenting written information more imaginatively
  •  Roleplay: motivate children to interpret and empathize with different people and situations.
  •  Problem-solving and testing tasks: Encourage children to explore alternatives to problem-solving and explore real-life problems.
  •  Choosing how to handle content: Competent children can often think of more unusual and challenging lines of inquiry.
  •  Decision making: Children can be given an outline of a task and then given the choice of how to develop and record their ideas.
  •  No correct answer: Children are asked to research extensively and then use critical skills to consider the pros and cons of the argument.
  •  Using a single text or artifact: Limiting stimuli can help children look more closely, think more deeply, and imaginatively.


Boy playing piano at home
Boy playing piano at home

What Learners Like To Do:



  • Sensitive to the mood and feelings of others
  • Understand people well
  • Interact and co-operate effectively with others
  • Good at leading, sharing and organizing
  • Mediate between people
  • Enjoy playing social games
  • Listen well to others
  • Enjoy many friends
  • Meditate
  • Build consensus and empathize with others


  • Like to work alone
  • Motivate oneself
  • Intuitive
  • Sensitive to one’s feelings and moods
  • Know own strengths and weaknesses
  • Use self-knowledge to guide decision making and set goals
  • Control own feelings and moods
  • Have a sense of independence
  • Are strong-willed and have strong personal opinions
  • Pursue personal interests and set individual agendas
  • Self-confident
  • Reflective
  • Learn through observing
  • Use metacognitive skills

Bodily Kinaesthetic:

  • Use ones’ body to communicate and solve problems
  • Remember through bodily sensations
  • Learn best through physical activities
  • Find it difficult to sit still for long
  • Have gut feelings about things
  • Is adept with objects and activities involving fine or gross motor skills
  • Play sports and be physically active
  • Use body language and gesture
  • Do crafts and mechanical projects
  • Dance, act or mime
  • Mimic easily


  • Think in words
  • Use language and words in many
    different forms to express complex meanings
  • Tell jokes, riddles or puns
  • Like to read, write or tell stories
  • Use an expanded vocabulary
  • Play word games
  • Have a good memory for names, places, dates, poetry, lyrics, trivia
  • Create poems and stories using the sounds and imagery of words
  • Find spelling easy


  • Approach problems logically
  • Understand the number
  • See patterns easily
  • Like abstract ideas
  • Recognize and solve problems using reasoning skills
  • Work out sums easily in their head
  • Work with numbers, figure things out and analyze situations
  • Know how things work
  • Ask big questions
  • Exhibit precision in problem-solving
  • Work in situations win which there are clear black and white solutions
  • Like computers
  • Devise experiments to test things out
  • Think in categories and see the relationship between ideas


  • Sensitive to non-verbal sound in the
    environment, including melody and tone
  • Aware of patterns in rhythm, pitch, and timbre
  • Listen to and play music
  • Match feelings to music and rhythms
  • Sing, hum, whistle and move to the music
  • Remember and work with different
    musical forms
  • Create and replicate tunes
  • Like to listen to music when working

Social and Emotional issues in the development of gifted children:


At times there can be the perception that children who have been identified as gifted or talented (gifted and talented children) are blessed with special qualities and advantages that will help them to succeed and make life easier for them. However, there is growing recognition that being gifted can bring with it challenges for social and emotional development, and those who are gifted are just as much in need of support as their peers in dealing with emotions, self-perception, behavior and in looking to the future.

Several studies have collected a checklist of the most frequently occurring socioemotional problems:

  •  Difficulty with social relationships; isolation from peers
  •  Conformity pressures; hiding or down-playing talents to gain acceptance from peer group
  •  Anxiety; depression
  •  Difficulty in accepting criticism
  •  Nonconformity and resistance to authority
  •  Excessive competitiveness
  •  Difficulty in understanding the nature and significance of intellectual differences
  •  Intellectual frustration in day-to-day and life situations
  •  Confusion and stress in considering a future vocation or career, especially where the student has a diversity of interests and talents
  •  Difficulty in developing a satisfying philosophy of life.

– Delisle (1992); Landrum (1987); Silverman (1983) –


Girl know how things work
Girl know how things work

Using Questions to promote effective learning and critical thinking

Questions that seek clarification:

  1. Can you explain that…? Explaining
  2. What do you mean by…? Defining
  3. Can you give me an example of of…? Giving examples
  4. How does that help…? Supporting
  5. Does anyone have a question…? Enquiring

Questions that probe reasons and evidence

  1. Why do you think that…? Forming argument
  2. How do we know that…? Assumptions
  3. What are your reasons…? Reasons
  4. Do you have evidence…? Evidence
  5. Can you give me an example/counter-example…?Counterexamples

Questions that explore alternative views

  1. Can you put it another way…? Re-stating a view
  2. Is there another point of view…? Speculation
  3. What if someone were to suggest that…? Alternative Views
  4. What would someone who disagreed with you say…? Counter argument
  5. What id the difference between those views/ideas…? Distinctions

Questions that test implications and consequences

  1. What follows from what you say…? Implications
  2. Does that fit with what we said earlier…? Consistency
  3. What would be the consequences of that…? Consequences
  4. Is there a general rule for that…? Generalizing rules
  5. How could you test to see if it were true…? Testing the truth

Questions about the question/discussion

  1. Do you have a question about that…? Questioning
  2. What kind of question is it…? Analyzing
  3. How does what was said help us…? Connecting
  4. Where have we got to…? Summarising
  5. Who can summarise so far…? Summarising
  6. Are we any closer to answering the question…? Drawing conclusions


Sources: Adapted from Teaching Thinking – Philosophical Enquiry in the classroom by Fisher (1998) –
Characteristics of Gifted Learners, SEVA Council of Gifted Administrators
Gifted and talented children in (and out) of the classroom, A report for the Council of Curriculum, Examinations and Assessment (CCEA)

Written by

Irena Canji

I am a teacher in kindergarten. I have been working with children aged from three to seven since 2000. Also, I am a mother of two kids. My son is a teenager and my daughter is going to kindergarten. My main goal through the website is to show that the process is more important than the product. In childhood, kids need to play, have fun, learn through their experience.

The content of this website is an interesting activity for children. You don't need special skills, lots of money or too much preparing.

Just smile, only positive energy, and goodwill!