Thursday, November 18, 2010

Gifted or hyperlexic?

Knowledge Helpfulness Timeliness Politeness 
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Comment: thanks M Kay you are right I am analyzing her too much the thing is that her speech is so delayed and my husband's sister is autistic that's why my concern and is better to reach for help earlier than late thanks for your opinion I am enjoying my daughter by I cannot help when I struggle everyday with her feeding (at all times) and wonder if this is normal for a child... god bless you

Questioner: Elsa

Subject: gifted or hyperlexic?

Question: thanks before hand for your answer I want to ask you about my 2 year old she has reach her milestones on time or before for example mastered using a straw at 6 months, walking at 11 months old, recognizing favorite cartoons by 10 months singing the cartoon song by 13 months, now she sings various songs (not the words but the melody with excellent intonation) she has great memory when I read her books and stop for her to complete the sound or word she knows it and even in which page is whatever I am saying (I now know the books by memory too because she likes me to read them several times a day) even if she doesn't see at the book and I start reciting the story she completes what I don't say in purpose, since 8 months she knew when the books where upside down and fixed them in the correct form she knows almost all the alphabet (since about 22 months) and counts to 10 in English and Spanish she knew our apartment number pointing and naming it at around 22 months.

She has being interested in other people and sensible when watching cartoons and something sad happens she cries or even when singing a sad song she would cry when I sing it like opera or with certain sad intonation, she has excellent categorization skills putting together toys of different kinds without mixing them (cars with cars ducks with ducks or shapes with shapes balls together etc..) when categorizing she counts out loud the toys, she is very curious and active opening drawers and looking at the signs on the street and letters and numbers on the pavement and spelling them out loud.

However, she has only over 80 words in her speech and still is not putting them together she is a picky eater refusing sometimes to feed herself because of sensitivity to the food textures and not yet using a spoon, she does not follow two or more words commands but had her hearing tested OK, she is very sensible when somebody touches her feet or ears, she has been put on the autism spectrum disorder test waiting list!!! but I don't think she is autistic her eye contact and social interest and interaction is OK actually she always looks for the people face and says hi to them she has pretend play and does not flap her hands or rock or have repetitive behaviours.

Could she be gifted or hyperlexic due to her lack of speech and delay in fine motor skills while feeding herself with a spoon? (if it is ice cream she would use the spoon correctly!!)

I was a gifted child reading at 2 1/2 by myself(my parents knew it because I asked them what the word "transportation" meant? when I read it in my older brother"s cartoon) I started elementary at 4 years old (the school system in Mexico allowed me to do that) postgraduate in Certified General Accountant with honors all "A" scores (without studying hard for tests, actually it was on high school that I remember starting to read for the test I never did it before so I passed all the grades by remembering what was said on the class)my literacy and spelling skills were always above my peers and I always interacted with older kids at least 2 years older than me in the classrooms, my social skills and speech were fluent at an early age my family used to nickname me the "artist" because I would sing and entertain everybody in family reunions parties etc at a very young age...

Sorry for talking about me it is about my daughter but I wanted to let you know just in case there is a genetic link between gifted parents and daughters

Thanks for your time and answer it is much appreciated

Answer: Dear Elsa:

I am not an expert in genetics. However, I do have a suggestion for you. Find the paperback the Highly Sensitive Child. The author discusses different types and intensities of sensitivity. You child could just be sensitive by nature.

Also, you seem so immersed in her progress. Have you considered just relaxing and playing with her without focusing on what she is or is not doing? I was amazed at the analysis you are doing of her behavior and found myself wondering if you both benefit from in the moment experiences?

Also, I am not an expert on autism. I suggest when parents are worried they consult experts for consultations and assessments. My job is to know when to refer people back to their physicians.

Feel free to call me if you would like to speak in person.

Best Wishes!

M Kay Keller

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