How to track your child’s progress
By Kristelle Bechayda
There is nothing that excites us parents more than seeing our children reach a milestone, especially when we realize the talents that they have and want to develop them. During the launch of Promil Four’s i-Shine Talent Camp season 7, the president of the Philippine Center for Gifted Education Dr. Leticia Penano-Ho shared some insights on what parents can do to further develop their children’s gifts.
Nurturing is crucial
As Britannica encyclopedia would define it, a gifted child is someone “who is naturally endowed with a high degree of general mental ability or extraordinary ability in a specific sphere of activity or knowledge.”
In her talk, Dr. Ho stressed the importance of nurturing a child’s talent upon discovery, as this will only end up becoming latent when not developed. “Giftedness is developmental. It is something that you have to nurture. If there is no nurture, it doesn’t die but it will not develop,” she explained.
She added that nurturing a child’s gift is a collaborative effort and parents should develop them not just for their own benefit, but also that of the others. “You develop it so that the gifted is able to give back. That is what we need in the Philippines,” she said.
Documentation is also important
Nobody knows our children more than we do and even Dr. Ho agreed that we are the best judges of their potential. Apart from nurturing, she also stressed the importance to document their progress. “You collect the child’s work at various stages. It’s a tool for communication because it tells a story about the child.” she explained.
She added that these collected works also show what our children can do. These can also serve as basis for why we think our children are gifted, especially when presenting these to key persons who will be able to help like the teachers. Here are the steps on the documentation process as shared by Dr. Ho:
1. Observe and collect.
Observing means you watch. You practice this with your spouse. Just look, but don’t make it obvious that you’re observing. After you observe and after you watch your child doing something, you collect.
You collect the child’s works but only keep those that show your child is gifted at a particular age. But sometimes they don’t become evident at a very young age. What would be evident are the talents and interests. These are the things that you develop because they can become it. You help your child practice and you nurture it, then it becomes a gift.
Since you collect, what does this show you? What can you conclude about your child? What are the reflections that you have? Those reflections become your basis for planning.
You plan whatever is best that will give your child a chance to play. It is during playtime that you’re able to find a lot of other gifts that you don’t notice when you are trying to teach the child.
It’s talking and exhibiting the collected works to the people who matter: The teachers, the psychologist, and people who can help you develop the child.
This year’s i-Shine Talent Camp features workshops on art, music, dance, and its new additions theatre and ballet. For more information and slot reservations. visit promilnurturethegift.com.ph.