At a glance
Information about 'gifted and talented' children and the support available to help them.
What does 'gifted and talented' mean?
'Gifted and talented' is a term used in schools to describe children who have the potential to develop significantly beyond what is expected for their age.
'Gifted' refers to a child who has abilities in one or more academic subjects, such as English or maths. 'Talented' refers to a child who has skills in a practical area such as music, sport or art.
How do I know if my child is gifted and talented?
A gifted child will tend to:
- develop speech and vocabulary early
- ask lots of questions and be very curious
- read early
- learn quickly
- have a good memory
- be good at puzzles
- enjoy problem-solving and reasoning
If you think your child is gifted or talented, talk to their teacher. Explain why you think so and have some examples to illustrate your points.
What support is available?
Schools have to meet the needs of all their pupils. They are required to provide more challenging lessons and other opportunities for gifted and talented children. As well as your child's class teacher, you should talk to the teacher specifically responsible for gifted and talented pupils.
Schools register their gifted and talented pupils in their annual school census. They identify them based on test results, work quality and teachers' and parents' views. They need to demonstrate that they cater properly for these children's needs.
Gifted children often need more support at school, but not necessarily more structured activities. They may need more freedom to learn at their own pace, and/or more guidance.
Schools need to nurture their pupils' all-round development as well as their intellectual development. Sometimes gifted children need extra help to develop their social skills such as working well in groups.
The National Association for Gifted and Talented Children runs a support network to help parents - www.nagcbritain.org.uk