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The other side of high achievement

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Replies to: The other side of high achievement

  • intparentintparent 36291 replies644 threads Senior Member
    Ah... why don't we start slamming Mensa members and people with high standardized test scores... does that make you feel better? Now you know why people don't like to share that information.
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  • linden202linden202 24 replies3 threads New Member
    edited June 2014
    The other side is what exactly? How people react to your obnoxious faux coy bragging? Uncouth and embarrassing. Act like you've been there before. Perhaps if 3 of your kids are well adjusted and going Ivy you have reason to boast. One precocious kid doesn't make you some rock star parent. Talk about your own professional accomplishments.
    edited June 2014
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  • EllieMomEllieMom 1872 replies11 threads Senior Member
    "Another" charmer with ties to UMich. Swell. :-<
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  • intparentintparent 36291 replies644 threads Senior Member
    Not sure who you mean... I went to Michigan. But I believe linden202 has ties there as well...
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  • EllieMomEllieMom 1872 replies11 threads Senior Member
    edited June 2014
    No, not you @intparent ! I'm talking about the not-so-dearly departed adolescent provocateurs (dm and stmarys, for two) who have been playing "poke the parents" lately. I'm seeing some similarities in style and theme beginning to show through with another poster this evening.
    edited June 2014
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  • NJSueNJSue 2843 replies18 threads Senior Member
    Ah... why don't we start slamming Mensa members

    I'm not slamming MENSA members per se. I'm trying to point out the futility of test score pride in the absence of other significant achievement. I have a particular person in mind here, not every single member of MENSA. If this person had more in his life besides a high score, I doubt he'd feel the need to tell everyone about it. He latched onto that number, that score, and it gives his life meaning well into adulthood despite his extremely ordinary life. He's an extreme cautionary example of how overemphasis on standardized aptitude tests can distort a smart person's self-perception to the detriment of that person.
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  • TheGFGTheGFG 6007 replies213 threads Senior Member
    Do you really know many average students of average intelligence who score high on the SAT and ACT? The NMF's from my kids' years were all both very bright AND very studious. There was only one boy who was kind of a "surprise" in that he was not known to be in advanced classes, but other than that the kids could have predicted in advance with reasonable accuracy which classmates' names would be found on the lists of commended scholars or NMFs. If it were so easy to score high, why the proliferation of prep services?
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  • emeraldkity4emeraldkity4 34785 replies1076 threads Senior Member
    If it were so easy to score high, why the proliferation of prep services?

    Well, one thing about Americans, if they see an angle to make a buck, like nervous parents/students, they will take it.
    Also, not everyone has heard of the Xiggi method.
    ;)
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  • TheGFGTheGFG 6007 replies213 threads Senior Member
    In our affluent suburban high school we get about 8-15 NMF's per year. While I know there are some public and private high schools who do better, there are plenty of others who do worse. Still, it's not as though most schools are crawling with top scorers, such that one would say it's no big deal to score a 2350 or 2400.

    Regardless, as in the case of the OP, score information was spread in a way that was not the parent's or child's intention. There are other ways this information gets out without anyone being discreet or immodest!

    So perhaps the attention should be focused on those who are easily hurt and offended, or who can only be happy if they or their child is "the best"? Heck, the day after my friend's S got named captain of the high school soccer team, 2 moms turned a cold shoulder to her. She had done nothing other than be the mother of the kid who got what they wanted for their sons. Sure there are obnoxious, braggarts out there, but other times a family is just the victim of someone else's jealousy, hurt, or insecurity. I've had parents bitterly complain to me that my D's name was in the newspaper too much and it wasn't fair that she got all that attention. Given that I was not the sports reporter or the coach, and given that reporters tend to write about notable events and their children hadn't yet done anything notable, was this my fault? They thought it was. In their minds, D and by extension her parents had "made them feel bad."
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  • emeraldkity4emeraldkity4 34785 replies1076 threads Senior Member
    edited June 2014
    Is the goal a high SAT score or to be accepted to a good selection of colleges?
    Test scores and even grades are just a piece of the package.

    My kids didn't study for admission tests, but they still were accepted to all the schools they applied to.
    They were able to show that they were much more than numbers with their essays & interviews.
    edited June 2014
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  • amiableamiable 35 replies1 threads Junior Member
    edited June 2014
    OP, I read in another thread that your daughter took the ACT twice before and scored a 27 both times, and that you strongly encouraged her to take it again to attempt to hit the 30 mark even though she didn't want to take it a third time. Forgive me if this sounds harsh or it is not the case--but it sounds like you actually want to have bragging rights. Why keep taking the test when the first score was more than acceptable? If you are really concerned about people feeling "uncomfortable" about your daughter's accomplishment, why don't you just tell them that it took her three tries and lots of preparation to achieve that score?

    The fact is that this is not YOUR achievement. It's your daughter's. And she is the only one who should get to decide whether or not to talk about it. We've always let our son take the lead when it comes to disclosing his test scores or awards or anything else along those lines. He's very humble about his accomplishments. He's 17 and a senior now, and recently a few friends of his were flipping through the photos in his wallet when they came across his Mensa membership card. They asked him when he got it. He replied, "When I was in third grade." They were flabbergasted--said they have known him for years and never knew this about him. They wanted to know why he had never mentioned it to them that he was accepted into Mensa at the age of 8. He just shrugged and said, "Why should I? It doesn't matter to anyone but me. And it doesn't make me a better person." I was never more proud of him than I was at that moment.
    edited June 2014
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  • turtletimeturtletime 1246 replies12 threads Senior Member
    Well, this thread very accurately expresses why a parent would want to keep their young child's test scores under wrap. There is always some ugliness. Someone always has to play the "scores don't mean and thing... it doesn't mean you are special... I didn't score that high and I was smarter than all the kids in college.. it's as big an accomplishment as brushing your own teeth in the morning" sort or angle. Of course, always has to end with a "why did you even let your kid be tested.. you must be a hot-housing, helicopter mom." I've watched it played out time after time.

    Truth is, there are lots of good reasons to let your child test. We don't live in a society that takes people at face value as a rule. When your kid needs help, you have to prove it... even when everyone actually associated with your kid is screaming... "this kid needs something different!" Is it stupid? Of course. But for the time being, if you have a kid anywhere outside the little window of "normal" (whether it's gifted or LD or BOTH,) there is a certain level of game playing that just comes with the territory.

    Are test scores a gateway to your future? Of course not. They are a snapshot to help you make some decisions in life. Is it anyone else's business? No. Can it help to share with a handful of trusted individuals who know your child and can help you make sense of it? Yes. Is a parent allowed to be surprised and amazed by their own kid? Frankly, you'd be a suck parent if you never felt a little twinge of "got get'm kid" pride when they do something cool.... and getting a 30 on the ACT prior to high school... that's cool. Like I said earlier though... it's a cool best kept to grandparents because A) the pressure a kid can feel to "live up" to early expectations can be too much and B) people will always sour on anything special you share about your kid eventually.
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  • PoemePoeme 1329 replies0 threads Senior Member
    I think it's totally reasonable for kids I participate in talent searches, I did myself when I was in 7th grade. However, I don't think my mom would have ever thought about mentioning this to other parents. It's really not relevant for other parents to know your kid's scores. You should be able to take pride in their accomplishments without bragging about them to other adults.
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  • mathyonemathyone 4193 replies34 threads Senior Member
    I'm not at all fond of the talent search concept. "My wife's friend said her son participated in Duke TIP and made a 17, and when he heard my daughter had made a 30 (as an eighth-grader) he was so upset he cried because his score was so low." I feel sorry for all concerned. They are kids. Why are adults pushing them into this? They will grow up and have to deal with it soon enough, why ruin their last few years of childhood with unnecessary stress? Unless you need the test scores because you want to attend a program that requires it, what is the purpose of pushing a 13 year old through college admission tests?
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  • emeraldkity4emeraldkity4 34785 replies1076 threads Senior Member
    edited June 2014
    I think test scores can really hold you back.
    I had super high iq test and for years was trying to force myself into white collar work because " I was so smart".( my mom and other relatives, as well as teachers advocated for this)
    But I am much happier working with my hands and I haven't noticed that the overall intelligence of coworkers is any lower than an office job.
    A test score is just one piece of info & actually not a very important piece, although you can learn alot from a well written interpretation of your iq test scores.
    edited June 2014
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  • TheGFGTheGFG 6007 replies213 threads Senior Member
    Why does the concept of bragging keep getting mentioned on this thread? Does telling one good friend, who lives 30 miles away and whose kids don't attend the same school, constitute bragging? That's what the OP admits to, as I understand him.
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  • intparentintparent 36291 replies644 threads Senior Member
    I'm not at all fond of the talent search concept. "My wife's friend said her son participated in Duke TIP and made a 17, and when he heard my daughter had made a 30 (as an eighth-grader) he was so upset he cried because his score was so low." I feel sorry for all concerned. They are kids. Why are adults pushing them into this? They will grow up and have to deal with it soon enough, why ruin their last few years of childhood with unnecessary stress? Unless you need the test scores because you want to attend a program that requires it, what is the purpose of pushing a 13 year old through college admission tests?

    We didn't even know what opportunities would be available to our D2 as a result of her testing, but it was honestly the best thing we ever did for her. It opened up an opportunity for her to join an online community of gifted middle and high school kids through a program run by CTY that gave her a much-needed set of intellectual peers when there was no one around in person who was interested in the same topics or at the same level she was. And got her on the list to receive mailings from the Davidson THINK program, which gave her the really steep academic challenges she craved for a couple of summers during high school and helped her form some deep friendship with other kids like herself. So you can be as "not fond" of it as you like for your own kids, but don't knock it for kids who find very few others like themselves in a normal school environment. It can be really lonely to be a profoundly gifted kid, and I think the talent searches are a true blessing for those kids.
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  • mathyonemathyone 4193 replies34 threads Senior Member
    @intparent, That may be but if you have a child like that you are already well aware of it by middle school. The vast majority of kids participating in this are not getting scores that would indicate they have no one around to talk to. Why was the boy who got the 17 tested, did he really need all that?

    Your child attended some programs based on this testing. Most families are not going to pay for such programs and why dangle that in the face of a kid when they aren't going to go? I looked into this and as far as I could tell, my child could get invited to participate in a campus ceremony to tell them they were smart and had gotten a good score. If there is another benefit they weren't advertising it. Or they could take CTY classes, which would be a good reason to participate but it wasn't something we were going to do. I suppose an online community would be a benefit for a kid so inclined, but there are places like Art of Problem solving where kids can connect based on shared interests, not just test scores.
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  • EllieMomEllieMom 1872 replies11 threads Senior Member
    My daughter never would have participated in the talent search if it weren't for the classes. Just never crossed our minds to do it. She's bright, but not "gifted". She found a class she wanted to go to, and she arranged to take the qualifying test herself. I was called in when she needed my credit card to pay for it online and her dad drove her to the test. That was our only involvement. Honestly, we were surprised when she qualified. But she enjoyed the course and her self-confidence got a boost when she realized that she fit in with a group that she thought would be her intellectual superiors. It did change the way she saw herself.
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