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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

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My daughter had perfect pitch, or something close to it. Somewhere in elementary school, her violin skills were such that the local college string professor wasn't up to her as a student. She may have been ADD-- there were certainly suggestions, but the local school kids were medicated for ADD at about 3X or more the rate that ADD should be found in the population, and I resisted.

We got through all of that. She's now happily working as an architect, and has a very nice violin she doesn't play much if at all.

I'm not sure my daughter could have been, fully, a prodigy, but there are a lot of reasons to think she was close. When she started to make decisions for herself (and pull away from music), I was a little sad and hoped she didn't lose the skill she had. But she found her own way, got to a good place on her own (her own decisions).

She was clearly not a duck in a row in school and it was a problem. Letting her figure it out for herself, ultimately, was the right way to go. Pushing her to be a prodigy in the area she first showed great talent? Perhaps wrong. Although I've wondered if the circumstance of being in a bit of a backwater skewed that.

Louisiana has a Gifted & Talented program administered along the same lines as the program for disabled students. I had the experience of having children in both along with a couple of "normal" children.

The thing I noticed through the years (with my children and their friends) was that mental ability, talent, interest, and physical ability must all be present for anything near prodigious success. No doubt there are many other factors in play also.

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