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Now that your child has been diagnosed "Gifted" or "High Potential" what do you do?

A parent's attitude & actions are important from this point on. A parent's belief in the high potential of their child and the way they treat their child as a developing person can help develop a strong sense of self and initiative in him or her. In other words, if we believe that the child has a high potential to become a well balanced, intelligent adult with the potential to do great things, we as parents will provide every stimulation that child needs, as well as nurture their talents, encourage and support them along the way. We as parents can design the child's environment to enrich and stimulate them from Infancy, to teenhood.

As an infant we can provide the warmth and security he needs to build his self-image. Giving an infant a feeling of being loved and care for is the most important goal in building a healthy self-image. Infants are also affected by the parents' confidence in themselves, as well as confidence in the child. It establishes feelings of security in the infant. Stimulate your infant by, smiling, talking and lots of eye contact. Read beginner books to him. Make sure your home is childproof, then give him room to move around and explore. Curiosity is the key to growth. Provide imaginative toys, and objects (nesting measuring cups, spoons, bowls, etc.) for hours of play.

When your child reaches toddlerhood you may provide the same stimulations as he/she received during infancy with added activities for language development, intellectual curiosity & loving discipline. Exposure is important at this stage. The more places he plays, the more playmates, more varied experiences he has will develop his foundation for learning. Casual, fun fieldtrips of every kind, and provide opportunities for creative play such as, art, music and invention of all sorts from Legos, to blocks. Play good, harmonious music, and basic rhythm instruments to experiment along with the music. Let the music inspire the child to create his own musical sounds, songs and dance. Make-believe and pretend by dressing up and creating sets in your home or backyard. Read and act out stories. Let them knead bread dough, decorate cookies, frost cakes, and help out in the kitchen. Ask your toddler questions and provide enthusiastic conversation so that he can practice perfecting his language skills. Simple rules are sufficient to cover most discipline problems that arise. Consequences must be enforced in order to provide the child with reasoning of the problem or help him/her to think on the issue he/she is being punished.

During the preschool years, one may well notice that the child will do more of what she likes and does best, following her natural ambition. This talent will need to be properly encouraged, while still being exposed to other skills and talents. For you never know if a second talent, much more stronger than the first, will take the lead in the end. It's important that the child be well-rounded in many areas, not the best at everything, but competent. Sharpen your preschooler’s skills and assist his weak areas with activities you can find in books for gifted education. You should start with Logic/Math first. Then Science, as their are many natural events in life that the child will already question and want answers for on a daily basis. Surround your child with a visual enriching atmosphere and an interesting variety of materials to work with when the creative urge arises. Mapping your neighborhood, talking & discussing elections, your family's cultural and national heritage, reading a research people, holidays, and countries using simple books to encourage social studies. And most of all, allow your child's creativity to blossom.

After toddlerhood on up to teenhood, much can be done towards fostering your child’s talents. Lessons, workshops, conferences, mentors, sports leagues, fieldtrips, study abroad, cruise vacations, etc. can provide all the enrichment a gifted and talented child would need.

Developing the intellectual ability of children truly means helping them to develop physically, emotionally , socially, cognitively and intuitively. Making sure your gifted child has enough planned educational activities & talent programs that will stimulate all of these areas ensures the likelihood of your child reaching his full potential.