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Q:

My gifted child is underperforming in school, what can I do to support them?

Hi there,

I am a concerned parent whose child has been identified as gifted but is currently underperforming in school. My child is currently in the fourth grade and has always excelled academically, but this year their grades have dropped significantly. They used to love going to school, but now they seem disinterested and unmotivated.

I have spoken to their teacher, and they have expressed concern that my child is no longer being challenged enough in the classroom. However, they also mentioned that my child has been struggling with time management and organization.

I am looking for advice on how I can support my child and help them regain their love for learning. I want to make sure that they are being properly challenged but also have the necessary skills to succeed. Any suggestions for resources or strategies would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you in advance for your help.

All Replies

omarquardt

Hi there!

I can relate to your concerns as I have a gifted child who also struggled with underperformance in school. When my child was in elementary school, I noticed that they were bored in the classroom and not being challenged enough. As a result, they became disinterested in learning, and their grades started to slip.

To help my child, I first talked to their teacher to make sure that they were being challenged in the classroom. I also looked for extracurricular activities that could challenge my child's interests and help develop their strengths. For instance, my child was gifted in math, so I enrolled them in afterschool math classes to give them more advanced materials.

Beyond that, I also taught my child time management and organization skills to help them stay on top of assignments and prioritize their tasks. We used a planner to map out assignments, deadlines and test dates, and we made sure that my child had enough time to work on each task. These strategies helped my child regain their love for learning, and they eventually improved their grades.

Overall, I found that having open communication with my child's teacher and focusing on supporting their needs and interests ultimately led to their success in school.

tswaniawski

Hello,

I can understand your concerns as I have a gifted child who also struggled with underperforming in school. My son was identified as gifted in second grade, and his teachers had huge expectations from him, but he wasn't performing as expected.

I realized that the issue was that my son was bored with the curriculum designed for his grade level. I spoke to his teacher, and we decided to give him some tasks that were more related to his interests. For example, he loved mathematics and puzzles, so we gave him some challenging math problems and puzzle books, which made him more interested and motivated to learn.

Another thing I found helpful was to talk to other parents of gifted children. I joined a support group that was designed for parents of gifted children, and it was a great place to ask questions and get suggestions from others who had gone through similar experiences.

Finally, we also tried to find ways to motivate him for regular school work. For example, we broke down the work into smaller sections and gave him rewards for completing them. This way, he was more focused and less overwhelmed.

Overall, it was a learning process, and we tried different approaches until we found what works for our child. It's important to keep trying different things and finding the right balance that works for your child to help them reach their full potential.

zetta24

Hi there,

As a parent of a gifted child who struggled with underperformance in school, I can certainly relate to your concerns. My daughter was identified as gifted in third grade, but as she progressed through elementary school, her motivation and interest in learning seemed to wane.

In our case, it turned out that my daughter was experiencing some anxiety and pressure to perform. She felt as though she was expected to be the "smartest" one in the class all of the time, and this was causing her undue stress. We worked with a therapist who specialized in gifted children to provide her with tools to manage this anxiety.

Along with this, I tried to take a more relaxed approach to her learning. I let her take the lead when it came to her interests, even if it meant straying from more traditional academic topics. For example, she became obsessed with paleontology for a while, and we spent a lot of time reading books and watching documentaries on the subject.

We also discussed how important it is to change the mindset about "failure" and "mistakes." I want my daughter to know that it's okay not to do well sometimes; what's important is learning from our mistakes and improving. We focused more on celebrating the process rather than the outcome.

Overall, it was a matter of finding the right balance between challenging her academically while providing her with emotional support. It takes time and effort to find the right approach, but with patience and perseverance, it is possible to help our gifted children reach their full potential.

pouros.amos

Hello there,

As a parent of a gifted child who also underperformed in school, I can understand your concerns. My daughter was identified as gifted in elementary school, but as she started middle school, she seemed disinterested in school, and her grades dropped.

I found that my daughter was not being challenged enough in the new school environment. I talked to her teachers to understand what was going on and found that their approach was more to teach to the middle level students, which wasn't enough for my daughter. I had a meeting with the principal and the school district's gifted and talented coordinator to discuss how we can create an environment that would successfully challenge her skills.

It was agreed that she would take high-level courses, and we arranged for her to take Advanced Placement courses. Within a few weeks, her grades improved significantly. However, I also found that time management was a struggle for her, and she would often forget about assignments and fail to turn them in.

To help her with her organization skills, we created a plan to manage her assignments better, which included a to-do list every day. At the end of each day, we would review her homework and plan for the next day. This strategy tremendously helped her, and she began turning in assignments on time, and her grades improved.

In conclusion, I found that understanding your child's needs and working closely with their teachers to create a challenging learning environment is crucial. Also, helping your child to develop essential skills like time management and organization can supplement their academic success.

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