Gifted testing and ADHD

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-04-2003
Gifted testing and ADHD
Mon, 08-04-2003 - 10:56am
--Cross posted on Gifted board--

My 8yo son was diagnosed with ADHD last year in 2nd grade. The tester recommended that we have him evaluated for the gifted program at his school, as he was only a couple of percentage points short of the 95th percentile cut-off. The tester (a psychologist) felt that after his medication was stabilized he should do very well. When we met with the school, they recommended waiting until after the usual spring standardized tests were given to have him evaluated. We agreed because it took that long to get his dosage set. But after some problems with the standardized tests, they decided not to give them at all last year. So we got no gifted evaluation either. This year, in 3rd grade, they begin placing gifted students with certain teachers (or at least they did a couple of years ago with dd) and I'm afraid he'll be left behind. We WILL have him tested this year, but he's a kid who adjusts slowly to change and it may take him a month to get settled into his new school routine. I'd like to be sure he gets the best chance to do well no matter what. How would you handle this if it were your child? Any suggestions welcomed... school starts later this week!!

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-03-2003
Mon, 08-04-2003 - 11:21am
You might check out the postings on a recent topic on this board about ADHD & Giftedness. There are lots of thoughts and comments expressed there about this topic. But, more specifically for your situation....

We had our DS tested last summer with a child psychologist (prior to 1st grade) - he tested in the gifted range for IQ. We put him on 18 mg of Concerta this Spring and started the testing again after he'd been on the meds about 1 month - and our DS has scored in the high gifted range this time - even the psychologist was surprised at the difference. He thinks with the meds, our DS is able to concentrate better and recall better than last year without meds. So - for us, we were lucky because we just happened to get the right meds at the right dose and it wasn't too long after that we did all the testing again.

Our DS is going to 2nd grade - but he's in a private Catholic school. There is no gifted program in this school, but I think most of the kids are probably in the gifted range and the program is geared towards that and they do a lot of neat stuff. Plus, we supplement at home A LOT. Our DS loves science and nature - so, we got a family pass at our local science museum and we go there a lot. We buy him lots of books (I usually hunt the bargain racks at the local bookstores - nice books CHEAP), or go to the library and let him check out the books he likes. He is interested in bugs right now and a relative gave him a very inexpensive "bug kit." He's always exploring in the backyard or at the park - looking at bugs and talking about them. He likes space, so we invested in a good, but the cheapest we could find - telescope. He enjoys looking at the moon and planets. We also go camping about every other month - the whole family enjoys that.

In other words, gifted program or not, we like to see both of our kids' needs met as much as we can right here at home. Our other DS loves art, so we have a little art table set up for him stocked up with paper, crayons, markers, paints, etc. He can sit down whenever he wants and "express himself!"

As far as going to the new program - I hope that your DS will find his place - and I bet the gifted program can meet his needs better. We put our DS in a science daycamp for a few weeks over the summer - he loved it and there were a lot of kids like him - kind of a mutual respect and shared interests thing going on...maybe your son will find that too when he gets to the gifted program?

Hope this helps some...