Characteristics of Gifted Children and Talented Children
and Possible Associated Problems  

Characteristics of Gifted Children and Talented Children  

Possible Associated Problems

Gifted and talented children may:

Gifted and talented children may:  

Learn quickly and easily; have the ability to abstract and reason critically; see relationships between ideas and events

Become bored and frustrated; dislike repetition and shallow curriculum; hide abilities to gain acceptance; receive negative adult attitudes to smartness  

Exhibit verbal proficiency

Dominate discussion; have difficulty with listening skills; exhibit manipulative behavior  

Have a high energy level

Need less sleep; become frustrated with inactivity, lack challenge or active inquiry  

Exhibit heightened curiosity

Take on too many activities  

Be extremely persistent; concentrate on tasks of high interest for extended periods

Disrupt class routine; feel stifled by restrictions; resist interruption or schedules; be perceived as stubborn, uncooperative  

Exhibit different learning styles – accelerated; desiring mastery, achievement and/or – enriched: desiring depth of knowledge, the need to experience, emotional investment in subject, imagination  

Become frustrated with absence of progress; be prone to being “overdriven” and/or not be motivated by results; be resistant to interruption; be seen as time wasting or preoccupied

Exhibit unusual emotional depth and intensity

Be unusually vulnerable; feel confused if thoughts and feelings not taken seriously  

Be highly sensitive; be acutely perceptive

Be perceived as immature; try to mask feelings to conform; be vulnerable to criticism  

Be concerned with adult/moral issues; be idealistic

Attempt unrealistic reforms; feel frustrated, angry, depressed; develop a cynical attitude; receive intolerance from age peers

Aim at perfection

Set unrealistically high goals; feel inadequate; feel frustrated with others; fear failure, inhibiting attempts in new areas  

Exhibit independence, nonconformity

Have a tendency to challenge and question indiscreetly; have difficulty with rigid conformity, may be penalized; exhibit rebellious behavior  

Have a heightened self-awareness, feelings of being difficult

Experience social isolation; regard difference as bad, worthless, resulting in low self-esteem  

Have a keen sense of humor

Use humor inappropriately or to attack others; feel confused when humor is not understood; feel rejected by others  

Possess unusual imagination

Be seen as weird; feel stifled by lack of creative opportunities  

Respond and relate to older children and adults

Experience social isolation; be seen as show off, odd, superior, critical; be rejected by older children  

This information comes from the
Queensland (Australia) Association for Gifted and Talented Children, Inc.

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