These gifted children out of step with their real age

Gifted children are most often endowed with a surprising maturity of mind, so surprising that we do not discern it for what it really is. A particularly relevant remark is then attributed to all sorts of causes: chance, or else the child repeats a sentence heard, he has forgotten its author and he would repeat it in all good faith because he liked it, without grasping it. the deeper meaning.

The stubbornness of some adults to remain convinced that a child cannot think beyond his age is remarkable. : the gifted child thinks he is normal and coherent; His reasoning has followed its logical course, his ideas have come to him quite naturally, he shares them with those around him, in an exchange that he expects to be peaceful, interesting, sometimes enriching. And now his interlocutor, whom he imagined able to talk to him, sends back an absurd answer, unrelated to the subject discussed, giving the flabbergasted child the feeling of having uttered a profound idiocy. The idea that he is thought capable of stating such stupid ideas is very vexing, henceforth the gifted child will be wary of that person obtuse enough to believe that children can say such enormities. Dialogue is impossible, nothing can be expected from it, the child will then content himself with discussing with this interlocutor the weather which is getting cooler or the days which are getting longer, in this way he will avoid misunderstandings.

Diverted paths to be heard

Gifted children find themselves in the same situation as pretty women: you can’t imagine that both can come up with original and interesting ideas. They are then forced to resort to all sorts of roundabout ways to make themselves heard and to have their remarks taken seriously, even if it means claiming to quote scientific imaginations or fictional authors. But it is rather a process used by adults, children, even gifted, are not devious enough and most often still trust the intelligence of their interlocutors. The words of the gifted child are then not heard at all, or else they are given the wrong meaning or else we imagine that they are repeating sentences that they do not understand, but, in this way, they would adorn themselves with a veneer of intelligence or culture that they cannot yet possess. Sometimes, they are taxed more simply with insolence, when their remarks, which are of simple common sense, seem to harbor a shadow of criticism, whereas it is a question of a lucid observation, but such lucidity in a such an inexperienced child would be inconceivable.

Relief through testing

The gifted child wanders from misunderstandings to misunderstandings, he feels constantly out of step, yet he never thinks that reason is on his side, on the contrary, he wonders if he is normal. What a relief then when he takes a test: he finds that his answers are appreciated, that his remarks are taken into consideration and, marvel!, that he is considered capable of grasping a humor usually considered as the prerogative of adults. There is no more lag, the exchange is fluid, pleasant, relaxing, since he is no longer on his guard. He understood that his words will not be interpreted in an absurd way that mortifies him.

The gifted child is delighted to be considered as an interlocutor to be taken into consideration, the hierarchy is no longer a straitjacket, he readily admits that he does not have the infused science. Il rejoices at the thought of all the knowledge, alluring and enticing, that he is about to discover and sees all the roads to explore, under the guidance of adults who will be able to accompany and guide him. Everything is in order.

Jean-Charles Terrassier, who knew and understood them wonderfully, very early on spoke of “dyssynchrony” to evoke the discrepancy between the real age of gifted children and their intellectual maturity, which may be different from their motor development or their affectivity. This is often stamped with a hypersensitivity which makes them seem immature, whereas it is only a matter of amplified reactions to the aggressiveness they perceive in certain interlocutors, annoyed by so much sagacity. Their very insight is baffling.

Dyssynchrony, a miraculous key

This notion of dyssynchrony is a miraculous key that opens the understanding that we have of gifted children, so often seen as disconcerting, yet they are marvels of consistency when it comes to reasoning. Moreover, their motor development is often that of children of their age, or even not quite when they are dreamy children, sometimes lost in the constellations, which they can know perfectly, or in the subtle elaboration of a story that they will write one day or even in complicated scenarios featuring their friends and a few elves. For them, we all live on the edge of enchanted forests, even when we are in a city full of sounds and movements. No wonder they seem clumsy when going through these changes of space and time. In these forests, in these spaces, they find real or fictitious friends whom they would like to have as friends, people they love and who are far away or have left for good. The landing can be rough, they need time to find their daily reality and resume the rhythm, however reassuring, of a routine without unpleasant surprises. So sometimes they fall, they bump into each other, they don’t know how to tie shoelaces or what books to bring to class the next day. Some are so much more at ease in their universe, that they want to dress in accordance with this refined world. They are then of a sometimes obsolete elegance which gives them a particular charm, seductive for romantic souls. A choice of clothes, a language with its chosen words, centers of interest, often passionate: there will always be disconcerting elements in the gifted child, but they will not surprise those who know them well and who, precisely, appreciate their already so rich personality.

Advice: never forget that gifted children present a different development according to the domains, generally, moreover, their parents realized it well, it goes hand in hand with their gifts, this dyssynchrony is not surprising, it defines them.

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