Since I’ve been throwing the word asynchronous around a lot to family and school I decided to find some more info on the idea. I found an article/opinion piece that was really relevant to our situation. It really applies to any child who is not a “good fit” in a same-age classroom for whatever reason. It was a little alarmist, but basically told us that it’s going to be very hard for school to take care of Violet socially and emotionally right now, and that it is crucial that those needs be met, right now.
Here’s a taste:
The gifted child, because of his asynchronous development, cannot identify with the peers he finds in the local school. He usually does not share their interests and may find their behavior puzzling. He may be unable or unwilling to respond to his peers as they expect; or to conform to the school’s expectations. He may not be ready to cope with this new environment and, thus he may be unable to complete a basic developmental task. If so, he will suffer social and emotional complications that could profoundly affect his future.
If there were a place to meet peers with whom he could identify, with adults who understand how to help him cope and with the intellectual stimulation he craves, he could thrive. Is this overprotective? Will he be dependent on these interventions the rest of his life?
I believe many gifted children are irreparably damaged socially and emotionally in the first few years of formal schooling. Given that the environment in which we develop has a profound, physical affect on the development of the brain, it is no less urgent that we care for a child’s social and emotional health than their physical health.
Like I said, a little alarmist. But the basic ideas are interesting and useful for our current situation.
The source is a nonprofit called SENG: Supporting Emotional Needs of the Gifted, which has a database of research and articles on the subject.