To best evaluate your baby, it is beneficial to understand age-appropriate infant development first.
Below I have listed qualities observed in infants who were later identified as gifted. While these are noteworthy commonalities, most gifted infants will not show all of these qualities.
Common qualities among gifted infants:
- Stays awake longer. A typical newborn–three month baby sleeps 14+ hours each day. A typical three-nine month baby sleeps 12+ hours each day and usually sleeps for long stretches each night.
- Demands more attention and diversion than other infants.
- Reacts strongly to stimuli by showing strong emotion.
- Shows evidence of remembering things, such as he may start a game of peek-a-boo.
- Shows intense curiosity and often express frustration when unable to engage curiosities.
- Early evidence of recognition of language with increasing complexity.
- Often speaks early.
- Easily frustrated because of advanced cognitive development that enables an increasingly complex understanding of the world around the infant, yet she possesses age appropriate or lagging development in other areas that prohibits communication and/or participation in her world.
Imagine if you were in a very important business meeting, where you are the expert, but you are unable to communicate or participate… This may be similar to what the gifted infant is experiencing.
For more information:
Silverman, L. K. (1991). Resources for parents with gifted children. Child Development Institute. Office of Education, Research and Improvement.
J. Jolly, D. Treffinger, T. Ford Inman, and J. Franklin Smutny. (Eds.) 2011. Parenting gifted children: the authorized guide from the national association of gifted children. Waco, TX: Prufrock Press Inc.