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Seven signs of a gifted child

Seven signs of a gifted child

posted by Karen Quinn, The Testing Mom - October 15th, 2014

There are so many gifts and talents that include creativity, sports, music, arts but an IQ test evaluates a child’s academic gifts. IQ scores that put children in the gifted and talented range for academics are:

  •     131 – 145 – Moderately Gifted
  •     146 – 159 – Highly Gifted
  •     160 – 179 – Exceptionally Gifted
  •     180+ – Profoundly Gifted


Not only with IQ, there are other ways a gifted child can be identified. Here are the top seven signs of a gifted child:

  • Reasons well (good thinker)
  • Learns rapidly
  • Has extensive vocabulary
  • Has an excellent memory
  • Has a long attention span (if interested)
  • Perfectionistic
  •  Prefers older companions or adults
  • Source:  Gifted Development Center, Dr. Linda Silverman (site: Gifted Development)

Note: There are several more characteristics beyond those listed above.

NYC Gifted and Talented test

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Since Testing Mom launched we’ve helped tens of thousands of parents across the country with preparation for the gifted and talented test. For parents who had a child score in the 99th percentile gave us their tips on how they prepared their child. Here are a few of the many tips we’ve received:

  • We always kept our test prep fun and playful!
  • We worked on building test-taking skills as much as we worked on the abilities that were being assessed.  It took a while for our son to understand that he really had to listen to and remember the questions being asked and that the pictures represented answer choices.  We taught him to listen to the instructions, look at all the answers, and eliminate what was clearly wrong.
  • At first, my son could only sit still and focus for about 10 minutes; every day we added a few more minutes to our practice until he could focus for almost an hour!  We would set an egg timer each time we worked, which my son loved.
  • We spent a lot of time working on our son’s listening and following directions skills because that was so important for test taking.
  • When questions were hard for my daughter, I talked through the logic with her so that she would ultimately know how to solve each problem.
  • I often pretended to be stumped by a question myself and let my child help me.
  • When my daughter resisted, it was usually because the questions were getting harder.  Then, we’d back up and do easier questions to give her confidence to tackle the harder ones.
  • We never called it test prep – We called it “Zany Brainy Games” or “Puzzlers.”

Start today with 100 free practice questions on Testing Mom!

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3 Responses


If your child is truly gifted you don’t need to prepare them. They are inquisitive and already will score highly.


I agree 100% with Mary. Gifted children excell on the gifted test on their own. I’m sure bright children can be taught to learn how to tackle test questions. However, in my experience, if you try to prepare a gifted child for the test, it could have an opposite effect; they may instead under-perform.


I’m a 4th/5th grade gifted teacher with a masters in gifted education. I have seen children pass the tests after being coached, but then struggle in gifted classes. There is a difference between being gifted and being smart. Not all gifted children make the best grades and just because you are smart does not make you gifted. It is ok if you child does not make it into a gifted program. The biggest disservice is placing you child in a program not fit for them. They can become discouraged very easily.

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