Several more specific characteristics are associated with gifted individuals that appear in the literature regularly, aside from demonstrating increased potential or advanced accomplishment in particular content areas. There are so many variables involved when discussing gifted children that any of these characteristics may be present or absent. Moreover, these cognitive and affective characteristics do not constitute a comprehensive list.
There are several mental attributes common to gifted individuals, including:
- An above-average level of general intellectual ability
- Strenuous and unusual problems can be found and solved
- Fast processing and learning of information
- Multiple perspectives, connections, and relationships can be seen
- Conceptual ability to understand abstract and complex ideas
- A detailed memory with a great deal of information
- The love of reading is intense
- Communication and vocabulary skills are advanced
- There are many aspects of curiosity
- An insatiable curiosity
- Passion sustained in one place over time may change
- Concentration for long periods on projects that interest you
Research has consistently concluded that gifted students are no more vulnerable or flawed than any other student group and are equally well-adjusted. However, Robinson et al.’s (2002) landmark compilation of research examining gifted students’ social and emotional lives revealed common effective traits. Talented individuals may exhibit the following characteristics:
- Having a sense of what makes you different as well as being aware of it
- Behaviors that are nonconformists
- A desire to achieve their full potential
- Preoccupation with understanding and mental stimulation
- Aspiration to perfection
- An introverted personality
- Having anxiety
- An increase in emotional intensity and heightened sensitivities
We’ll discuss these effective characteristics in a future blog, including why supporting gifted learners who exhibit them is so important.
Is there such a thing as giftedness?
As a technical definition of giftedness, it is being born with tremendous natural ability, but there is much more to it. One would not expect it to be so difficult to define. Rather than being directed by someone else, gifted children choose what they want to experience.
More post: Can you take back a gift? Is it legal
Rather than being influenced by someone else, gifted children decide what they want to experience themselves.
My tiptoe-walking son would not necessarily be gifted if we had taught him to walk that way at 20 months by coaching, coaxing, and leading him. His natural curiosity or ability to do so on his own makes him gifted.
Giftedness is often associated with good grades, high test scores, and better behavior than other students. However, many gifted students may go unidentified by these parameters, even though they signify giftedness.
Unruly students who have attention problems and aren’t interested in completing homework or participating aren’t generally considered gifted over those who are. For example, when Albert Einstein was a child, he was considered dumb and set apart from his peers.
There is more to earning the label gifted than high scores and good grades. Children must be creative and proactive in their interests, in addition to good memory and data analysis skills.
What is the difference between high achievers and gifted learners?
The following differences are apparent between high achievers and gifted learners
- Different people develop differently. A high achiever’s physical, cognitive, social, and emotional domains may grow faster than an average student, but they still move harmoniously. As gifted learners’ mental and emotional parts develop more rapidly, they show asynchronous development.
- There is a difference in motivation between them. The cause of high achievers is extrinsic. Generally, these students make good grades, please their teachers, show interest in assignments, understand and memorize easily, and thrive on knowing the answers. The intrinsic motivation of gifted learners is strong. A meaningful, individualized, and passion-related activity usually attracts their interest and results in a good performance. The gifted learner prefers to ponder ideas, look at multiple perspectives, and ask questions rather than answer them.
- There is a difference in how they perceive and react to the world. In addition to being intuitive and sensitive, gifted children also display a greater awareness, sensitivity, and emotional intensity than non-gifted children. The degree makes a difference. Generally, gifted students intuitively understand situations, people, and behaviors better than their peers and overreact to situations.
- Their energy is replenished in different ways. Gifted children tend to be more introverted and find groups distracting, especially when it comes to their peers of the same age group. Average and high-achieving youth are likely to recharge and thrive when spending time with others: studying in groups, calling friends, and hanging out with friends.
Would You Consider Yourself Gifted?
See for yourself by checking out the list.
Intellectually gifted adults are more sophisticated, more global thinkers who can generalize and understand complex relationships.
Those who are gifted are more likely to appreciate the beauty and wonder of our universe. In nature, human relationships, and literature, they see beauty in the richness of the world.
Gifted people enjoy exchanging ideas with others, and many enjoy engaging in intense intellectual discussions.
Adults with giftedness feel guilt if they cannot fulfill their expectations, even if no one else does.
A characteristic of gifted adults is their sense of humor, which often consists of subtle jokes, intricate teasing, or puns. But, sadly, talented people often find that their marks are ignored because they are not understood.
There are many areas of life in which gifted adults have strong feelings. However, their ability to see the foolishness, unfairness, and danger of many actions in public and private may make it difficult for them to understand the inconsistent and shortsighted behavior of others.
There is a particular awareness of problems among gifted adults. Their abilities include predicting consequences, seeing relationships, and foreseeing potential problems.
It may take longer for a talented person to decide whether to take a risk because they know more about what’s at stake.
It is common for gifted adults to develop their method of learning and grasping concepts, which can lead to conflict with others who do not understand or use their method.
Inadequacies, anxiety, and a need for self-care are common feelings experienced by gifted adults. However, they struggle to get their needs met and cared for like everyone else.
What Is the Process of Becoming Gifted?
Giftedness is not always a matter of luck, as popular belief holds.
Giftedness is primarily determined by genetics. The brains of talented people are thought to process information faster. However, it is equally important to consider one’s surroundings. A combination of nature and nurture determine some traits, while others are acquired.
Parents and teachers should actively participate in their lives to find out what a child is interested in. The environment in which a child grows up can enhance or develop their abilities, regardless of whether the parents are gifted.
I come from a musical family since my mother’s side is very musical. All the people on the immediate side of the band played a musical instrument at some point, and there were a few band directors and music majors.
As someone who listens to various musical genres, it makes sense that I also have an affinity for music. My mother cultivated it for me with the help of my father. In 4th grade, my mother bought me a little metal fife that shaped my life as a flute player.
I may never have decided to pursue music if she hadn’t pulled out her old, dusty clarinet a few years later. Of course, as someone gifted in music, it is likely that I would have sought out music for myself, but my environment greatly influenced me.
Neurology of the Gifted
Neurotransmitters allow us to communicate by transmitting signals through the brain’s nerves, neurons, and chemicals. Dendrites are the branches along which neurotransmitters travel. Synaptic points in the brain are where dendrites seek out other neurons. The brain has more components and ends, which allows us to learn better.
When the brain is used more, more neurons are activated, which results in more dendrites and helps the brain function even better. In gifted students, synapses are thought to be more concentrated in the areas where their talents lie. Developing the more complex root system in talented minds depends partly on the environment in which neurons are stimulated.