When Eve asked to feature my children in her article about social prodigies, I asked her for the definition of “prodigy” because different words can mean different things to different people, and I have never thought my kids belong to that category. Her answer was “to do things ahead of his peers”.
Being a bit more cautious, I checked the dictionary, and it says, “to be endowed with exceptional abilities”, and in that case, there are many people who are prodigies, because every child is indeed endowed with a different exceptional ability. If you were to ask me what is the exceptional ability this daughter who is featured in this article has, I’d tell you she is a social butterfly, very good with people, and super observant. When those things are in place, she manages to get her things done in effective ways, and her friends will run to her rescue when she needs them. The university is a mini society and to have friends to look out for you makes things a lot easier, that’s why even when we were apprehensive to send her to university at fourteen, we were at ease after her first semester for whatever she lacked ‘intellectually’, she more than made up for it by working and learning together with her friends.
So here. This daughter is special (a social prodigy?) because she is very hardworking and tenacious, extremely sociable, sensitive and empathetic. Those qualities I believe are much more important than being gifted in one or even a few academic areas. You can read the article and interestingly quite a few of the parents there echo my views. 🙂
Read more about my experience sending my kids off to university early here.