difficult child's in gifted programs


New Member
after seeing another thread this thought popped into my head.

seeing that a lot of our difficult child's have tested with-high iq's do any of you have difficult children in gifted program? difficult child was tested with-a 123 iq just shy of gifted in our area.

our school doesn't have one but the area does. the school psychiatric asked if we might be interested. i was like "ahh he can't even handle regular school right now"

i know part of his problem is boredom but also i think he puts too much pressure on himself to do well. besides he is only 6 and in first grade.

just curious.


New Member
My son was tested for the gifted program in second grade and made it. This was before the "major" problems started up. He did well up until 5th grade with the academics, but in third grade he was having major issues with the teachers and other students. In 4th grade, the gifted teacher took him under her wing and worked diligently with him. In 5th grade he only kept up his grades because the teachers sent his work home to be completed. In 6th grade he started stimulants, and everything went downhill from there. He started failing everything in 7th grade. We got him the IEP at the end of 6th grade. We did not do gifted classes in the 9th grade...we knew that he could not handle it, even with his high IQ. He is now in a therapeutic school and finally working again. He failed most of ninth grade this year. I am interested to see how does in school now that the medications are working.


My son was in a countywide math/science program for highly gifted middle school students in 6th grade. He felt extremely stressed out from the pressure of the program and dropped out after a year. My sense from watching my own kids is that gifted children with emotional or learning differences need a nurturing supportive environment where they are academically challenged without being overwhelmed. Honestly, it's hard to find the right balance in a public school.


My son tested into the gifted program, housed at another elementary school. We chose five years ago to have him advance a grade. (skipped 2nd grade). thought he would be more challenged. He is now in 7th grade. Socially it is a disaster. We thought at the time he would be fine socially, but not the case. His state tests just came back and he scored advanced in the areas tested for his grade.(and he is a year younger). Other kids are developing more, growing taller and this is upsetting to him. Other 7th graders just won't deal with the way he acts. He has issues. even though he has a very high IQ, he failed three classes a year ago. Made honor roll this year(2nd qtr). This quarter he just decided he isn't going to do any classwork/homework. He thinks he should know it already, and when he doesn't, he refuses any help, and refuses to do it. When he gets frustrated, he shuts down. We were offered advanced classes, however there is just too much homework, too much frustration. We do have teachers who he has who also teach advanced classes. They do give him more challenging work when he "is in the mood". So frustrating for us. Trying to do the right thing, often turning out to be the wrong thing. If he decides to apply himself and does well the next few years, he will be entering his senior year of high school at age 16. That is scary.



I do not want you to take this as a criticism, but allowing a boy to skip a grade is rarely a good solution to "being ahead " intellectually. It is very difficult to be the most immature, shortest, etc. boy in a middle school. About the only good thing I can think of that might come of this is YOU will have control of him all the way through h.s. No turning 18 in the middle of the school year that sometimes mucks things up.

I empathize with your having a difficult child who is "different" in positive as well as negative ways. It makes it difficult for others to understand that just because his performance is there one day, does not mean it will be there the next. It is good to have teachers who recognize that his work production varies with his mood.

I worked really hard to keep my ex-gg in high school to graduate with his class. I was lucky in that in the grade he entered in Kdg, he still didn't turn 18 until May of his senior year, leaving very little time to exercise his "adulthood." He could have been and early entrant to conservatory but I thought he did not need to go to college at 17--too many maturity questions and basically, there is no supervision at all, even in residence halls that I can detect for my two kids--or studetns at the university I work for.

One other thing that happens to SOME boys who have a terrible young adolescence: if they are not too hurt by the bullies, and avoid drugs, many get a bit better around 16. I know that seems forever away for you, but it is a goal to work toward: a relatively "reasonable" difficult child at 16 can make progress in my opinion as long as you continue to be aware that the mood disorder will always make things "different." It is easier to be a mood disordered young adult than kid--there are fewer people telling you what to do at the worst times. At least this is what I believe and have experienced with a child who has a long Hx of depression and self-destructive behaviors--however, no overt problems after age 15.5

I hope you can find a way to get your difficult child through middle school. I know it is very hard.



He was advanced when he was 7 years old. After all the meetings and testing it was decided that it would be best for him if he would be challenged more...

Five years later (NOW) is where we see the social aspect. It was never an issue or thought to be one five years ago. If we were to do this over again, knowing what we know now, we would NOT have advanced him. Not quite sure what we would of done as the enrichment/gifted school was not an option since there was no transportation.


Well-Known Member
I have two kids who are gifted acedimcally, but due to a heads up on boys, slow maturation and social issues, I held them both out a year. They had late birthdays (late August was one, November was another--back then the deadline for kindergarten was Dec. 1st). It worked out well to hold them back and neither was a behavior problem due to giftedness. I think, in my opinion, it's unecessary pressure to put on a child who is already struggling. In my decision to hold the boys back (both with IQ's over 130), I read a lot of literature and was surprised to find that the older the child is, regarding his classmates,the better he did in school. As for the gifted program, both of my kids were in it, and it was a lot more homework!


New Member
you really need to look at what the "gifted" program really is. A LOT of gifted kids do NOT do well if it's just an advanced program - these kids need to be taught differently, not just have more work thrust on them.

NL attended a gifted school for 2 years (7th and 8th grade) and it was the best thing we could have done for him. He got his confidence back. He found out there WERE others like him.

He's in a highschool now that you need to test to get into (not my choice - his bio-dad's). He's doing ok (IF he can remember homework!), but he's still socially pretty much a misfit. He does enough other things that it's not really a problem, but he doesn't have any close friends at school.

I hope you can find a good fit for your child. It's really, really hard to make people understand that just because they are intelligent doesn't mean they don't need extra help.


Well-Known Member
My difficult child is not gifted (just a gift) but he is a smart kid when he doesn't allow his moods to interfere.

His standardized testing and his grades made him eligible for the IB program in our city school system (which in our district is offered only at one middle school) next year for middle school. While it was quite an honor to be asked to attend, it never was an option for difficult child.

I know, that while he is a smart little boy, the stress and anxiety of being in a highly competitive academic enviornment would not be a good fit for my son.

I think you need to look at each case individually and look hard at the needs and temprament of your child.



My difficult child's elementary school, counselors, teachers were wonderful. Even though there were no "challenging" educational classes for him, they sat husband and I down and told us that difficult child processes information differently. They (gifted children) do not realize this and assume everyone process information this way. The older they become the more they realize they are "different". Not wrong. Middle school is such a struggle. Others think he is "weird" for his way of thinking, his way of processing. classes are set up for the "normal" child. We remind him quite often that he may think and process information in a different way, that does not make him wrong. A lot of anxiety goes with this. We see more and more of it as the years progress. He is at his best when in a regular class, and a teacher willing to give more challenging work.


New Member
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: skeeter</div><div class="ubbcode-body">
I hope you can find a good fit for your child. It's really, really hard to make people understand that just because they are intelligent doesn't mean they don't need extra help.</div></div>

how true is this statement!

thanks for all the imput on this. it really makes me realize that my difficult child doesn't necessarily need advanced class but an different style of teaching. the bad news is that he will not get that in our sd.

Karen & Crew

New Member
My difficult child isn't in the gifted education curriculum but he is in a school for advanced studies. He's a 2nd grader but all of his work is a 3rd grade level and until the last 3 or 4 weeks he has been making mostly straight A's & B's. We placed him there because we had 2 different psychologists and a developmental pediatrician tell us it would make a huge difference to be in a school where he was mentally challenged and I honestly agree. He certainly has more friends where he is. I also see a higher percentage of kids in his class with problems similar to his though not as extreme.

As it is the principal, his teachers and the gifted education coordinator are pressuring us to screen him for actual placement into the gifted program where he would have to work even harder and right now I'm not seeing where that is a good thing. I'm getting to the point where I'm not so sure this isn't too much for him despite the fact he's doing (well, was) very well in school and the approach in the regular classroom seems very low pressure.


Well-Known Member
easy child/difficult child, like four of his cousins in Florida, tested out and
joined the gifted program. There was a HUGE difference in the
so called programs for gifted. Where we live, our son had two
periods a day with wonderful "think outside the box" teachers
in elementary. In middle school they cut the "program" back to
three hours a week and THEN...unbelievably...to sharing lunch in
the media center once a month!! Good Grief! The other boys had
either halfdays of gifted education or a full day at a central
school once a week.

Sad to say....all five of them have had "issues" with pot and/or
booze and only three graduated. High IQ does not promise success
or happiness. The key in my humble opinion is who is running the program and
what goals are they setting. Good luck. DDD