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Causes of Giftednes

Causes of Giftedness

An Application Paper on Giftedness

Joshua Daughtry

A student of Prof. Verlaque at

Georgia Regents University

Giftedness is when a person has a higher than average intellect then the rest of a

population and require different learning methods then the rest of the population.. There are

many different factors that may contribute to giftedness in a person. The persons environment,
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Causes of Giftednes
and birth conditions may be some of the main contributors. This is an example of the Nature-

Nurture principle, in which it is found that ones environment and the way they were raised

along with their human nature and how they were at birth both affect them.

We will start by looking toward the nature side of the spectrum. The Nature side is the

way a person is without the effects of his environment. The nature side is the starting place for

the outcome child. The unaffected side of the equation that will eventually be shaped by the

nurture side in which the child is exposed to different environments and outside influences.

Though it is probable that there are many contributing factors to giftedness, conditions

inside the womb may be a determining factor in a the giftedness of a child. For instance, one

child may receive more nutrients in the womb when compared to another. Perhaps there are

factors during the pregnancy of the mother that can affect the childs intelligence. Alcohol can

cause birth defects in children if consumed by their pregnant mother.Children that are exposed to

drugs in the womb are even more likely to develop birth defects and have health problems in the

future. One could easily say that there are certain conditions that can increase the likelihood of a

child being gifted. Perhaps the mother taking on a nutritious diet would allow the child to

develop in a way that would result in an higher than average intellect.

Perhaps the genes inherited play a role, another look at the nature side of the equation.. I

believe this may be the strongest contributing factor. The child shares half the genes of its mother

and half the genes of its father. Though a simple factor, I feel it may be the most important.

Depending on the mix of good and bad genes inherited from the parents, a child may be

negatively or positively affected. The genes the child receives from its parents likely play a

strong role in how it develops and in turn its accumulated intellect.


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While the nature side may be the main factor, the nurture side is likely to play a large role

as well. The conditions of the child at birth are key factors, but these factors are changed and

twisted by the nurture side of the equation and these factors all change the sum of the two sides.

On the nurture side, the environment a child is exposed to at a young age may be a strong

factor. For instance, at a young age the brain of a child is still developing, the home environment

and the way it interacts with others may be a strong causation of giftedness. A child who is

abused and neglected during the early years of brain development would likely show evidence of

the negative environment, while a child that is well taken care of and treated with care may be

likely to do better during early brain development.

Another possible factor could be the age at which the child starts its education. For

instance, a child in the early brain development stage may be exposed to certain situations that

stimulate certain parts of the brain. Due to plasticity,the ability of the brain to adapt and change

to suit the individual, the different parts of the brain can function like each muscle of a person

and develop in correspondence with use and stimulation. Exposing a child to certain toys or

activities may help to stimulate a childs brain development in certain areas.

A child who plays with a creative toy such as Lego may develop into a more creative

individual in the future. With a toy such as Lego the child is required to solve problems such as

fitting the blocks together in structural patterns. These seemingly recreational activities may

stimulate a childs brain during development in a positive way.

During this brain development stage, the class of the parents may be a large factor

as well. A child born into an impoverished family may be less likely to show signs of giftedness

due to having harder access to positive factors such as nutritious food or toys that induce brain

stimulation. It would not be surprising to find that a child born into a wealthier family would be
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more likely to show signs of giftedness and a higher overall intelligence than a child that was

born into an impoverished family. Children in a wealthier family may have earlier access to

literature and are more likely to attend preschool. Attending preschool would allow the child to

get a head start at learning and perhaps contribute to their giftedness.

Companionships during early age may be a strong influence. A child who makes friends

at an early age may affect their brain development. A child who meets another child who treats

them well may be more comfortable around people in the future allowing it to think more open

mindedly and be more likely to speak its opinions without fear. This may allow the childs brain

to focus on developing social skills and areas related to intellect. A child that is exposed to a

somewhat hostile child may be less likely to feel comfortable around others and may become

shy. The childs brain may focus development on protecting the child during these conflicts and

cause the brain to spend less energy on areas that may affect intellect and the giftedness of the

child.

While it is hard to determine a definitive answer on the cause of giftedness in

children. It can be definitively said that they are likely many contributing factors that cause it.

These factors can be found on both the nature and nurture side of the equation. The genes a child

inherits from its parents are likely some of the strongest factors, though the childs post-birth

environment, stimulation during brain development, and access to education early on are likely

to contribute to their giftedness.