DEAR AMY:

My 7-year-old daughter just had a psychological/educational assessment and her results put her in the 99.6 percentile in cognitive ability. We had her tested because despite her being a very bright toddler, her teachers were labeling her as a poor reader. We were not expecting the results we got. She’s reading at an eighth-grade level. We think maybe she was labeled early on at school. What do we do with this information? We don’t want to make any hasty decisions and put her in a gifted program. We want her to be happy. We want her to accept herself and to remain humble.

— Concerned Mom

DEAR MOMMY:

Your focus should not necessarily be on how to get your 7-year-old to remain ‘humble,’ but on how to encourage her to ‘own’ her intellectual abilities with confidence and compassion. The world does not need another little girl who hides her bright light under the cloak of humility. Pretend she is a brilliant little boy, and take it from there. Work with her teachers and the school to make sure any ‘labels’ placed on her are removed or corrected. Ask for their advice about enrichment programs. Research the gifted program for consideration for next school year. Don’t feed her information about test scores and reading levels. Offer her a multitude of opportunities to play, explore, learn and grow outside of school. Keep in mind that your child’s life unspools one day at a time. She is the same child today that she was before these testing results came in. No matter what her reading level, you should continue to read aloud to one another until she leaves home for MIT.

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