I recall hearing that children are tested at age 6 at school and would like to learn more about this. Is the testing done at all schools, and are all children tested or do I have to request it? How long does the testing take and what information does it produce? I have a gifted son with some minor behavioural issues and a teacher who tends to try to disprove the gifted assessment. Will the 6 yr test at school confirm his abilities? Thanks in advance!
The test at six years is called the 6 year net. This test is designed to screen for any problems with reading and therefore find out if the child needs reading recovery.
No...... this test does not confirm his abilities in fatc my mod gfted son came out as below average which was waved under my nose when I suggest he may be gifted.
All six year olds have this test.
Thanks Ali. Isn't it frustrating how teachers expect all gifted children to excel at reading, in fact to excel at everything! Next question then - on what basis do teachers nominate children for One Day School - if the teacher is this way inclined? Or should parents self-nominate?
hey c's mum...it is frustrating what teachers think " giftedness looks like"
they dont see it as potential
at my sons school i was talking with a relief teacher about him and said he was gifted and she said she would never of guessed, but there are other kids she sees as possibly gifted due to their advanced reading and maths ( ironically my son is on their level, but in another classroom)..
but that isnt what makes them gifted ARRGH..
our teacher never suggested our son for ODS. in his nets he was getting 8and 9's they score on a scale of 1-9
so for him scoring a 9 was meaning he was in the age range of 8.2-8.7mths and for other things he was in range for 8yr old
now he is 6 and her comments were, as u can see he is doing pretty well!!!!!!!!!!
so we independtly have enrolled for ODS and his teacher politely filled out the form and we gave her his ed psych report to read, she said it was good to know things about him..and that there were lots of bright kids in his class!!!!!
so YES u can self nominate ..i just let the principal know what we were doing, she felt our son wasnt old enough but heard my reports on how i had to deal with lots of behavioural stuff at home with a frustrated child., so said do what we think is best.
This is slightly off-topic but a response to something you, 'concerned parent' wrote...."...that there were lots of bright kids in his class"
I am often hearing comments like that and would love to know how to deal with them. We find that activities (at school and outside school) that are suitable for those my daughter's age clearly are not suitable for her - her mental age is so much older than her chronological age. Something we'll all be familiar with. I recently tried so very hard to explain, without sounding arrogant, ignorant or boastful, why I wanted our 5yr old daughter to do an extra-curricular activity with 7yr olds instead of 5yr olds (we suspect that even the 7yr material wouldn't have been challenging enough) and it was so hard. I heard "oh we have lots of bright kids here". How do you handle that? It may sound arrogant or full of it but I wanted to explain that it was unlikely she had a class full of children who are gifted let alone 'as gifted' as our daughter. Perhaps her class *was* comprised of such children but statistically it was very unlikely. I have no clue how to approach comments like that.
i wish i knew what to say
i get sick of the whole oh there are many bright kids here...as gifted and bright are 2 different things
i think teachers measure brightness on achievements at school and put giftedness in that category, rather than seeing gifted as potential to learn and learning things very quickly
it is hard aye
i too would love to know how others explain the difference
I have 3 girls 12,10 AND 3 the 2 older ones have been formally accessed as being gifted. Oldest has a visual learning style and so does well in things like 6 year net - which checks on children literacy and numeracy schools and is a govt. requirement - teachers don't geneerally get to pharsed about it as they usually know the child by this stage. But is does pick up children for need extra support i.e. reading recovery so I would suggest its in your child's interest to have it done - in saying that you really don't have a choice. My 2nd g is audio perdomninant so her 'gifts' weren't even applicable to the 6 year net other than for self correction during the read aloud section. And well miss 3 - is just blowing me away with what she's already doing - And as kindergarten teacher i have seen a lot!
THE 6 YEAR NET - IN BRIEF; basically the child is given a read aloud book which has quite a few mistakes e.g. there is one page where the text is upside down - so as you can see the govt really are looking for basic literacy skills, they are testing for a presrcibe range of skills for statistical purposes - NOT what you child can do or might know.
There seesm to be a confusion in some schools between 'gifted' and 'academic acheivement' - one does no necessarily imply the other - as most of us will have learnt along the way. One approach to get your teacher on board is to ask them if they are interested in lerning more about it? - Lets face it none of us would have really understand the difference conigtive development and lateral thinking that identifies a child as "gifted", if we didn't 'have one or more' in the family. With our 1st g we heard for the first 3 yrs of school 'oh shes so bright' - which really didn't have any impact on us - we want them all to become self determined learners and have changed to a school that pormotes this by using the ACE system - its been the best thing we ever did for them particulalry as our GATE programme has folded.
Don't get hung up about reading levels etc - as its really the comprehension indicate=ors that are important long term, as heaps of children learn to read really quickly (especially if the are visual learners) but their comprehension is way behind.
Addressing you question on what basis do teachers nominate children for ODS - the simple answer is that they don't. ODS nominations are made by parents, and very few of those will have had a teacher suggest ODS for a child. The Gifted Kids Programme is the one where teachers make the initial nomination and that only if the school is part of the cluster. Teachers in the cluster schools receive training in identification of gifted children to help them keep their eyes open for children who may be gifted. For both organisations, the nominated child will go through an extensive profiling process before being accepted into their respective programmes.
There is an excellent article by Bertie Kingore available on her website, www.bertiekingore.com, which gives a table of differences between bright, gifted and creative children. It is better than the table often used which only shows bright and gifted. Check it out.
Our six year old is not in the our schools TAG programme ( because her teacher last year disapproved of it!!!!) and she is not disruptive in class but is an angel. All the children in the schools tiny programme are generally troublesome and therefore are mostly boys. There are about 20 children in the programme in a school of 500 of which I think about 15 are boys. So the girls are completely neglected.
Anyway, her teacher suggested that we send her to one day school instead!!! We were really surprised by that the the school knows and admits that she needs extra extension but can't be bothered doing anything.
Ask the school if they will pay the $60 a week fee for her to attend ODS!! It is a Govt requirement under NAG 1 that the school provide an education suitable for her needs. It is acceptable for them to use outside providers if they are unable to do it themselves and if they are suggesting it, then I should think they should be willing to foot part or all of the cost. (Of course, pigs might fly too!)
It might be of interest to 'anon' that if she is going to bring up the idea of the school covering the cost for ODS that some schools are happy to do this. Our school paid for the initial assessment and then pays 50% of the fee. Good luck.
I am a teacher and a parent and I can clearly see that my son fits the gifted category. It's not what he knows, it's the things he understands without having to be taught or what is taught and no practice is needed to remember it. He is just 6 last week and has not had a 6 year net done yet but I struggle with his teacher (who works in the same school as me) as she "prides herself on not getting too close to her parents" I find this hard because she doesn't treat me as if I know anything and sees my enthusiasm for my son's abilities as threatening. I am sure she deliberately holds him back for spite... i dunno but feels yukky. So even as a teacher myself in the same school this relationship is strained between 'parent and teacher'. I understand levels, I understand achievement, assessment, indicators, national standards, yet I am still treated like a laccy idiot. FRUSTRATING. I want him to be part of an extension programme but am not really sure yet how to go about it. There is very little offered for one so young in my area. :(
Your situation sounds really challenging. You are being walled out ~ it feels a bit like a power play. You will be dancing the dance in so many ways, needing to maintain professional relationships at the school yet probably wanting to go to bat for your child at the same time.
I have experienced exactly the same treatment from my son's teachers (he has just turned 6 also). We ended up getting him assessed, but it hasn't made any difference in how they teach him. They read his ed psych report, and picked it apart. The seemed to enjoy taking me down a few pegs. His 6 year net testing showed he was indeed advanced though and it correlated with his ed psych report (99%). They agreed to put him up a reading level in the next class but it hasn't happened.
I saw very clearly that they want to keep him learning at the same level as everyone else (I think they think skipping ahead causes problems for future teachers and upsets the system), and don't want me to ask questions, or to be involved at all. No parents volunteer in this classroom ever, and they even have something taped over the glass of the door so parents can't see in. It feels antiquated, and I know I am not welcome.
What I decided to do was to enrol our son at the Gifted Online school (GO school), and he takes Fridays off and learns at home with me. The school agreed to this luckily, and I am fortunate to be able to take the time to do this. I have seen a positive change in my son being away once a week, and I feel empowered, knowing that I can and will do something for him, even if they won't. The principal has told me several times that my son may not qualify for the enrich programme offered here when he is seven; what he really means is that he won't be recommending my son as they don't think he is gifted. We are changing schools! You have your job to consider here, not so easy.
I don't think teachers should have this power over us or our children. We should be able to have an honest discussion about learning needs and style. Why are they so threatened? Who says they are right? My son's teachers and the principal had never heard of 'twice exceptional', or '2e' kids! If they knew even a little bit about giftedness, they would have heard this term. They don't know what they don't know - so why are we giving them the power to make really important decisions about how our child learns? One gifted educator I spoke with recently said she thinks these sort of teachers, deep down inside, can't accept, or don't want our gifted kids to do better than their own. And tall poppy is rife.
I fully understand your problem, my sister is having a very similar problem at her school with her 9 year old, she is a teacher too and has just taken over a class for the rest of the year, in the same syndicate that her son is in. He is not gifted but labelled "naughty" and his teacher totally bullies him. So my sister is at a loss how to handle it with his teacher, she has had meetings and the teacher totally lies about how she treats my nephew.
I think these teachers are threatened by you (and my sister), you are both obviously very good teachers and have a very good understanding of the kids and she is threatened by this. I'm sorry I don't have any answers for you, but when I next talk to my sister I will see what she has done so far to help the situation.
It's hard enough for us parents of gifted kids to 'advocate' for our kids, but being a teacher at the school, privy to all the 'lunchroom' talk, must be very difficult.
Hope you can get this sorted for your son. Unfortunately it seems lots of school don't do much to cater for 6 year olds. As for my ds we ended up putting him into one day school at the end of year 2 as his school couldn't do much to extend him at that age (other than put him into a year 3 class for reading). ODS is great for these kids. Or GO online if you don't have a local ODS.
IME - it has been more "normal" for teachers to regard me as completely ignorant or an imbecile than to regard me as a "partner" in the education of my child (or grandchild as the case may be). Fortunately that isnt the case at my grandsons current school!
If I had relied upon the "extensive experience of teachers" I doubt anyone in our family would ever have been identified as gifted!
As for "many bright children in this class/school" - well statistically speaking there are indeed a comparatively large number of children in the population who will be bright ergo there is, statistically speaking a high probability of having quite a few or even many bright children in ones classroom! And statistically speaking its also highly unlikely that many of those bright children, if any will be gifted! If distribution is "even" then then chances are between 1-2 children in the classroom would be gifted out of a class of 25 irrespective of how many "bright" kids there are. However, in my grandsons NE class there were 3 including my grandson who I would pick as gifted. 1 who stood out as exceptional in some academic areas and melts down routinely another who didnt perform well academically at all but I could easily see one day representing nz in sport of some kind and was def sharp of mind - and my "must I really drag myself away to attend to the tedium of literacy and numeracy grandson.
Not a "golden child" amongst them.
At my grandsons prior school the Principal informed me that "research shows very clearly that until the age of 8 or 10 gifted children need to focus on literacy and numeracy and extension and enrichment are not only not necessary they slow the childs learning"
I have absolutely no idea where he got THAT gem from but there you go!
What a shame he hadnt been so honest and forthcoming BEFORE I enrolled my grandson in his school!
Conversely, a notice recently come home from his current school speaks of research that suggests that we are thrusting literacy and numeracy in particular upon children, especially boys, far too early (in response to the suggestion that children should be starting school at 4 rather than go to kindy/preschool). The cognitive skills that support those particular tasks kicking in (generally) around 8 years old.
In some families and some individuals those specific skills never really kick in at all and it becomes a matter of which of them are able to develop "alternate strategies" to achieve the same result or at least a sufficiently similar one.
My grandsons current teacher has only been teaching for 2 years and regards himself as "only just beginning to learn" AND he has a backrgound in microbiology (or something like that - science anyway) - has very eclectic personal interests and tends to "throw himself into" things - especially if they are a bit novel. Its a match made in heaven lol.
My grandson took in some axolotl eggs (they left here alive but travelled by bus with my grandson and didnt survive to hatch). So his teacher was keen to acquire some live ones - they now have 7 babies (one of which doesnt look as healthy or well developed as the others) - everything they need to grow a daphnia colony to feed them, microworm cultures AND he informs me he has also purchased an adult (with tank, pump etc) off trade me so the kids get to see them at every stage of development.
He certainly isnt threatened by a "parent" with some knowledge and experience and no one questions whether my grandson is "really" gifted or not - they are far more focused on figuring out HOW he learns, what engages him and generally meeting his needs.
If we could keep him in the same class next year, I dont think he would necessarily NEED ODS in terms of "topical learning and engagement" - but he still may benefit socially.
Hell would have frozen over before I got a single penny out of my grandsons former school towards anything to do with ODS infact they marked him down as ABSENT (justified) rather than technically in attendance but not on the school grounds (eg the same code as is used for school trips). They went along with my INFORMING them that my grandson would be attending ODS on as a "trial" and signed the permission form accordingly - but they certainly didnt approve of him attending.
The Principal told me point blank (Hampden Street School - Nelson) that he didnt believe the results of any assessment done on behalf of ODS because it was in their FINANCIAL interest to have a child test as being gifted ..... I believe the very same Principal is head or chair or something of the "Principals association" (regional?).
I have a friend who is also a teacher who also had similar experiences as described above when it came to trying to work WITH the teacher of her 2e children.
I was told that VS/GT being my specific area of experience and knowledge was "the problem" by my grandsons former school .... and it was implied that him being anything other than a very ordinary and average child was purely a figment of my imagination ..... even when test results clearly supported my perspective.
As Nikki so well put it "they dont know what they dont know" .... and I am not sure that is ENTIRELY their "fault" and even if it is, that wouldnt solve the problem.
Normally I am NOT a fan of "more legislation and more formal education" but in this particular instance we are talking about educators - who logically should be well suited to being governed very strongly by "rules and regulations" and who themselves learn well through conventional formal educational methods (well one would HOPE so!) so it does seem appropriate.
1. We need to better educator our educators on what they DONT know and are NOT currently aware of.
2. I believe that we need to legislate that while schools are not required to restrict themselves to the results of a formal assessment of cognitive skills/educational abilities - they MUST accept a formal assessment conducted by someone with the appropriate qualifications as absolute evidence of giftedness if the person it pertains to tests as being gifted in ANY area or area/s.
3. Failure to do so will result in being HELD TO ACCOUNT.
Hi Sue I have just read the article you mention and would like to know if there is a chance my highly gifted 7 year old son ( Woodcock Johnson assessment) could be all three but at different times? He definitely gets very caught up in his ideas sometimes and doesn't listen to the teacher. In his first year at school he got known as the one who always had the answers. Now he seems obsessed with not boasting and understanding he can't be the best all the time and doesn't always have to win. ( a desire he has had from a very early age)
Sue another related question; He did ODS last year but had a rather unhappy year in class ( his teacher didn't cope with it at all well and I think I got a bit of a bad reputation). This year he seems to be flying under the radar and just wants to be doing what his friends are doing. Is this normal?
If I just leave him for a year and don't expect any extension from the school what are the likely longer term consequences?
I want to do the right things for him as a parent to bring out his potential but if he is happy flying below the radar for a year is this a bad thing? Maths extension seems pretty non exsistent however I do feel as though he is doing all sorts of social learning that of course there is no test for other than the biggy LIFE.