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how to support one of our 3 year olds.


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we have a boy who just turned 3 at our setting, he is reading and writing at home...he reads level 2 reading scheme books which we have at our setting ...he is working with mum on writing and can also do maths work to reception level. We would like some guidance as to what exactly we are allowed to do with him at the preschool. Mum is aware of his " talents" and wants to contine to teach him at home and wants assurance that we will contine this at preschool. We have had chats with mum and underlined the importance of the play based ethos.....that the balance of all areas of development is important....that social skills and psed are just as important as the more academic areas but I am not sure mum is that impressed...she has alread discussed finding him a private school!

so if anyone can point us into the right direction, if there is any one here with experience of working with children who are above expectations, we have had quite a few very bright ones but this is something slightly different.

many thanks.

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What is the rest of his development like?

Children with this sort of precocious academic ability often struggle in other areas of learning so my first action would be to look for areas for development and focus on supporting those. In my opinion PSED is far more important than reading and sums at this age.

You can support all areas of learning and children who are working at all levels by providing imaginative, flexible resources and supporting learning by enhancing their interests with questions and thinking aloud. Children well above the end of the EYFS learn lots through play so he isn't going to be bored.

There is so much more to the world than reading and maths! Let his mum do those at home and you concentrate on offering them as an when appropriate and as a proportionate part of a much wider curriculum.

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He is certainly in the 'gifted and talented' area.

 

We had a child similar to this and found that all of the children's skills improved in their area of interest too (with us it was a child with amazing mathematical ability).

I know its a tough one though, especially if the child's parent is only promoting one area of learning and doesn't see the importance of psed in the same light.

 

Good luck,

Spiral :-)

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What is the rest of his development like?

 

Children with this sort of precocious academic ability often struggle in other areas of learning so my first action would be to look for areas for development and focus on supporting those. In my opinion PSED is far more important than reading and sums at this age.

You can support all areas of learning and children who are working at all levels by providing imaginative, flexible resources and supporting learning by enhancing their interests with questions and thinking aloud. Children well above the end of the EYFS learn lots through play so he isn't going to be bored.

 

There is so much more to the world than reading and maths! Let his mum do those at home and you concentrate on offering them as an when appropriate and as a proportionate part of a much wider curriculum.

 

 

oh I so totally agree! he does lack some social skills, oftern playing on his own as most of his play seems to be to please adults with lots of " look I can do this! he finds playing with his peers a mystery, he does not quite understand how some of them don't know numbers or letters, he has very little interest in small world play, role play is almost non existant! its always number or letter driven! ( and even to the point where it becomes really rather odd!) he is very clever at manipulating staff and for some reason hates anything to do with puppets or masks!

a fasinating little chap indeed! :)

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I would keep plenty of detailed observations on this little one. It could be that he ends up being assessed for High Functioning Autism/Asperger's Syndrome at some point and your obs in his play and social interaction would be helpful.

This whole situation could be tricky if the mother is adamant that you should focus on his areas of strength.

I would use letters and numbers as a way to lead him into different sorts of play. He may find taking a subject he knows into an area where he isn't sure what to do helpful. Perhaps help him to decide on tasks like estimating how many cups of water fill the jug then counting them, writing or painting informative signs for the setting or making letters and words from salt dough. More structured activities with a definite outcome may be more comfortable for him.

Certainly the best way you can serve him is to help him to start to relate more to his peers using explanations, role modelling and social stories. He may find playing with his peers very challenging if he is keen on rules and order and need the support of an adult to help him learn the give and take involved in cooperative play.

I've been exactly where this mother is so please pm me if you'd like to.

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I would keep plenty of detailed observations on this little one. It could be that he ends up being assessed for High Functioning Autism/Asperger's Syndrome at some point and your obs in his play and social interaction would be helpful.

 

This whole situation could be tricky if the mother is adamant that you should focus on his areas of strength.

 

I would use letters and numbers as a way to lead him into different sorts of play. He may find taking a subject he knows into an area where he isn't sure what to do helpful. Perhaps help him to decide on tasks like estimating how many cups of water fill the jug then counting them, writing or painting informative signs for the setting or making letters and words from salt dough. More structured activities with a definite outcome may be more comfortable for him.

Certainly the best way you can serve him is to help him to start to relate more to his peers using explanations, role modelling and social stories. He may find playing with his peers very challenging if he is keen on rules and order and need the support of an adult to help him learn the give and take involved in cooperative play.

I've been exactly where this mother is so please pm me if you'd like to.

 

love love love the idea of making signs for the setting! he rarely goes for mark making unless its number work! lol will start with signs for the toilets! thanks for your brilliant replies x

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Hi If he is reading at home how is his comprehension? Often word knowledge has been encouraged but understanding of how texts develop has not been considered which can cause problems later on. Talking about the books he is choosing to read and share with others is really important and may help him to understand the story line fully. Think about what might happen and how characters may be feeling after different events in the stories. You mention that he doesn't like puppets and masks, does he ever access role play at all as this can help his understanding of story development.

Helping him to understand how books work may keep him interested in mark making as well as help many other skills. Can he work with some others to help make an information book about your setting for new children?(developing his understanding of other people) i.e take photographs of different areas (using his ICT skills) number the pages (keeping his interest in numbers going) label the pictures with support. Does he have any friends that he could work with?

Hope it helps a little, wouldn't work for all but I know we have one little boy with us that this has worked brilliantly and he is beginning to relate to others as he was keen to show other what he had done and share his book.

Good luck

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Hi If he is reading at home how is his comprehension? Often word knowledge has been encouraged but understanding of how texts develop has not been considered which can cause problems later on. Talking about the books he is choosing to read and share with others is really important and may help him to understand the story line fully. Think about what might happen and how characters may be feeling after different events in the stories. You mention that he doesn't like puppets and masks, does he ever access role play at all as this can help his understanding of story development.

Helping him to understand how books work may keep him interested in mark making as well as help many other skills. Can he work with some others to help make an information book about your setting for new children?(developing his understanding of other people) i.e take photographs of different areas (using his ICT skills) number the pages (keeping his interest in numbers going) label the pictures with support. Does he have any friends that he could work with?

Hope it helps a little, wouldn't work for all but I know we have one little boy with us that this has worked brilliantly and he is beginning to relate to others as he was keen to show other what he had done and share his book.

Good luck

some fantastic ideas to think about there......will share with my team at work x thanks for your reply x

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The child in our setting who is highly motivated by numbers and letters ( yes, he is reading too) makes most of our signs now............and often, without being asked.......'cakes and buns'.......'apples are yummy' in the shop etc!

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  • 1 year later...

Has anybody got a gifted and talented policy they could share as a new little boy has joined with the same skills mentioned above, but also presents with lack of understanding of rules, major melt down and screaming if asked to share. Emotionally I feel he thinks he is being told off, if asked to share, and then wants a cuddle as reassurance that all is now alright.

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himum why do you need a policy? In my experience a child presenting with above average 'gifts and talents' but also with social communication difficulties may well need the - assess, plan, do, review - cycle, which of course is the SEND assessment. As he has just joined you why not let him settle in.....have a few targets and see how he progresses? You can support his additional abilities with an individual learning plan.

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Agree , a g& t child comes under SEN but it is very common for those children to struggle with PSED which can often be misdiagnosed as Autism/ aspergers .

We had a child when i first joined , he struggled immensely with boundaries, social situations and displayed some OCD , mum was struggling and we had a chat to see how to support them all. Unfortunately mum changed tactics and decided to have him assessed by Mensa , we did a lot of work with him , encouraging social games but where he could use his ability of numbers .

 

He went off to school and they were fully prepared and advanced quickly and his social skills caught up .

 

Search www.nace.co.uk

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it is very common for those children to struggle with PSED which can often be misdiagnosed as Autism/ aspergers.

Is this backed up by some research or other evidence you could share with us? I would be very interested to see it.

 

Thanks

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Hi Upsy Daisy there is lots of research out there and I came across this when I was researching above child, there are real similarities between those children / adults with autism/ aspergers as there are with some gifted and talented children , it made me think twice as all the evidence factors lent towards a child with aspergers or on the spectrum for autism. For gifted children their cognitive working often overtakes the development of their social development

https://sengifted.org/archives/articles/counseling-multiple-exceptionality-and-psychological-issues

 

This is not the original site I used but makes very interesting reading .

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It's interesting to read Mr Amend's letter but I can't find any evidence that lots of children are misdiagnosed. In fact, I would argue with some of the points he makes, particularly the one about social and emotional reciprocity in children with AS and I know at least two members of our CAMHS team who would agree with me.

 

There is a huge crossover between Autism and giftedness and the two are not mutually exclusive. Hyperlexia, for example is thought to be more common in children with AS than the general population. Indeed, both of my daughters have been identified as gifted and as well as being diagnosed as having Asperger's Syndrome. The diagnostic process we experienced for both girls was long, drawn-out, cautious and open minded and I feel sure that it would have quickly and effectively weeded out any child whose difference was solely that they were gifted.Maybe that is not the same in Mr Amend's country.

 

I'd be very interested if anyone can link me to some firm evidence that a significant number of children in the UK have been misdiagnosed in this way. It would be useful to know how reassessments are being carried out and by whom.

Edited by Upsy Daisy
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