Help for schools, playgroups, childcare and after-school care
It is exciting for every child to go to a new place. But for a gifted, more gifted or highly sensitive child, such a change is often extra drastic. Because she or he feels , thinks and is different . All those new impressions can be so confusing that such a child does not understand.

She (he) searches far too much behind the things that happen. Relates everything to itself. It must be me. Want to do something about it. But how, but what? The others understand something I don’t understand. Don’t want to be different from the others at all. Feels lonely and unsafe. Want to be part of it too. Observes the others closely, tries to imitate as a survival technique. Loses himself…

The stress of not understanding creates all-consuming uncertainty, even panic. Such a child will quickly make (parts of) itself invisible. Ignores his (her) developmental advantage and suddenly shows behavior that is too young, problem behavior or frustration behavior.

Scratched instead of clear drawings. Much less initiative, less autonomous, not knowing things anymore. Suddenly wet pants again. Smooth talking turns into gibberish or some kind of baby language. Quieter than before, crying a lot, withdrawn, dreamy or with outbursts, angry, aggressive or clownish behaviour. Can not sleep. Bad grades. Contrary at school and an angel at home. Or vice versa, at school an example for others and at home a sad, angry, frustrated pile of people.

How do you deal with it as a professional supervisor?
That is quite difficult. Especially because giftedness, giftedness and high sensitivity are not so common. As a result, you as a teacher, counselor or IS person do not immediately think of it. If a child can’t keep up, it’s usually less gifted, right? Both the questioned child and the questioned child can show the same behavior.

So you are more likely to ask less of the child than more . However, this is disastrous for these children. It aggravates their impotence. They should be given more depth, not less. The cause of their behavior lies (unconsciously) in not being addressed at their level. They feel held back, suffocated. Both in cognitive and personal development.

It’s brewing inside. When the frustration becomes too great, it erupts into fight, flight or freeze. And then there’s the problem behavior. Supervisors usually pay a lot of (well-intentioned) attention to that problem behavior. But usually overlook the initial development lead, when that is an important indication that there is more going on. After all, a child who is ahead for years does not suddenly stop.

  • Every child needs time to get used to it
  • But becoming invisible is never the intention.
  • Watch for signs of underperformance (going back in development).
  • Is your child throwing out all the frustration at home? And not at school? This is an alarm signal.
  • Tip: discuss this with the teacher as soon as possible.
  • It only takes children a few weeks to hide their giftedness or sensitivity.

Try and get lost
In the school career of these children, a wave pattern can often be seen. There are better and worse periods. The child then tries again and again and gets more and more lost. Sometimes there is little friction with one teacher and a lot with another.

Good interaction with the teacher is crucial. Also, having at least one boyfriend can make a big difference. Nevertheless, vigilance is required, because the boyfriend or the sweet teacher only helps the child survive temporarily. Without proper help, he or she continues to duck. And that usually does not end well, at some point this child is presented with the proverbial bill.

​Signals for parents
Parents see that their child constantly collides with one or more teachers. Or the child is less and less eager to go to school, until it simply refuses to go. Some children do not speak out but are masters at getting up too late, taking twenty minutes to make a sandwich and so on. While those tasks go wonderfully smoothly if, for example, they go to the zoo for a day.

There are also children who are completely exhausted after school. Their energy is all about holding their own in an inappropriate environment. Some then get the crying fits and screams at home that they feel bubbling up all day. Sometimes parents request a meeting with a surprised teacher only to hear from him or her that their screaming, stamping feet, refusing everything at school is an angel…

Signals for teachers and supervisors
If a child is only concerned with standing up, he is more or less starved at a developmental level. It really needs a challenge at a level, so that the development can continue. Otherwise it will underperform.

It even happens that it doesn’t even perform according to the group standard. We call that absolute underperformance . Performing below one’s own level but within the framework of the group is referred to as relatively underperforming . In both cases, the child is actually completely trapped.

  • They lose their motivation for school
  • Are confused about who they are and what they can do
  • Often develop performance anxiety
  • Experienced feelings of despair, powerlessness and hopelessness
  • Feeling left out, lonely
  • are sometimes bullied
  • Feeling not seen, not understood
  • Show disruptive behavior (dreaminess, frustration-anger, varying commitment)
  • Flight into a dream world (sometimes through games)

Are you in doubt? Would you like to consult?
Professionals at schools, play groups, childcare and after-school care can always contact us to discuss or discuss. You may also (anonymously) submit a case to us. We also offer practical training for teachers and supervisors. Call our location manager Esther Wolters-Ouburg directly on 06 22 24 18 93 , or send her an email .