This post has been a long time coming. The story begins two years ago, the night we went to our very first parent’s night (parent-teacher conferences) at the Boy’s school. At that point in time we knew the boy was bright. When your child starts reading things they’ve never ever seen before at just over two, you tend to pick up on it. However it wasn’t until we sat down with his reception teacher, Mrs W, that those three little words became irreversibly attached to the Boy. You may know the ones I mean, ‘Gifted and Talented’.
I’m sure there are many parents in the world who would love to hear their child’s teacher utter those three little words about their offspring. I’m not sure I’m one of them. I spent most of the Boy’s reception year praying he didn’t get bored and become disruptive. Halfway through that year he began to go spend time in the year one class for mathematics (sorry I’m American and ‘maths’ still just sounds wrong to me!) lessons. In the beginning he liked the challenge, but he disliked missing the fun education through play atmosphere of the reception classroom. It wasn’t a success, but it wasn’t a complete failure. In many ways it made the following year a little bit easier as Mrs D already knew what he was capable of.
That’s not to say that he didn’t get bored. I distinctly remember him getting in trouble on two different occasions for having drawn all over his desk. Once again halfway through the year or so he started going up a year for mathematics lessons. Thankfully, this time around it worked a little better. The Boy now had friends in the class above him, so moving up for lessons wasn’t as socially stressful as it previously had been.
Fast forward to the first parents evening of this year where to year two teacher, Miss B, uttered the phrase ‘GCSEs at 11’ to us. Immediately we knew that we’d reached the point as parents where we no longer felt prepared to handle it all on our own. Which lead us to Potential Plus (formerly NAGC) who thankfully were holding a Big Family Weekend not too far away from us in the West Midlands.
We went with open minds and although the Boy absolutely loved it, Hubby and I found the sessions we attended a trifle disappointing. I would have loved the opportunity to network with parents who had children of a similar age and intellect, but neither the schedule of the weekend or the mealtime facilities really allowed for such things to occur.
For now we will continue playing things by ear, making sure that the Boy is challenged where he needs to be. We will not be *those* parents, you know the pushy ones I mean, but we won’t let the Boy’s questioning intellect die either. It’s quite a tightrope to walk.
I love to hear from other parents with similar children. What have you done? What do you plan on doing?