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What is my son's talent? Types of talent and how to promote it in children

Talent is an innate ability that makes us stand out in a certain area. There are children who have an innate talent for music, for example, or for mathematics, artistic tasks, sports…

In this article we will learn about the four types of talents that exist (as we will see, others can be derived from them), what their characteristics are and how to promote talent in children.

It is important to know, yes, that all children are good at something, but in this case we are talking about a very specific innate ability , through which children especially excel in a specific area.

Therefore, all children stand out and are good at something, but not all children have a specific talent , and that’s okay, since talent is an extraordinary ability.

What is a talent?

Talent can be defined as an attitude or an ability to perform or exercise a certain activity.

Talent is linked, although not only, to intelligence and creativity . It is also often understood as an innate ability, although talent can also be trained and improved.

Gifted children show high performance or proficiency in a specific area of knowledge, skill, or behavior (for example: math, reading , social skills, art, science, etc.).

Thus, they are children “experts” in something, who also show that ability in a natural and innate way.

But what types of talent exist?

“We are all geniuses. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its entire life believing that it is stupid.”

-Albert Einstein-

Children with some talent are “experts” in a certain area of knowledge; this can be mathematics, music, sports…

types of talent

According to an article by C. Sánchez López, we find four types of talent:

1) Creative talent

Children with a creative talent stand out for having great abilities when it comes to solving unusual problems. This is regardless of how well they perform in a given area.

They are children with divergent thinking, a type of thinking that allows them to generate creative ideas through the exploration of many possible solutions to the same problem.

Creatively talented children put their skills to the test by exploring hypothetical questions; To do this, they generate a wide variety of possible responses to situations (real or imaginary) and quickly perceive relationships between ideas.

2) Social talent

Another type of talent that we can find in childhood is social talent, also called leadership capacity. We are talking about a complex talent, since it includes different capacities:

  • intellectual abilities
  • Creative thinking
  • Peculiar personality traits

All this allows the child to interact in a particularly effective way with his group.

According to Genovard and Castelló (1990), the most important characteristic of students gifted with this talent is their “non-preference for classical intellectual activities”.

This gives rise to a certain intelligence of a social nature . We are talking about children with charisma, who are respected and followed by the majority.

Children with social talents are charismatic children with a “leadership” spirit.

3) Artistic-visual and representative talent

These types of talents entail in the child skills related to perception, representation and artistic execution. That is, it is related to arts such as photography, painting, crafts , plastic arts , theater or music.

Children with such a talent often pursue and hone their interests in settings outside of the school context.

This is so because when, from school, a gifted or talented student is identified, they usually see the need to make an adaptation of their curriculum , and for this reason they dedicate more to the areas considered “most useful”, leaving aside all the areas related to the artistic area.

That is why these children usually have to go elsewhere to satisfy their desire to cultivate their talent (for example, specialized courses or schools, extracurricular activities, etc.).

4) Psychomotor talent

Finally, psychomotor talents imply motor-type skills, which are related to fields such as sports , dance or art .

This type of talent, although it is largely forgotten in the educational field in general, is also very important to be able to cultivate if the child so wishes.

How to promote talent in children?

The first step when promoting talent in children is to accompany them in the discovery of their talent, favoring the child’s self-knowledge.

Encouraging him, for example, to try different activities , asking him what he thinks he is best at… And once that talent has been identified, see if he wants to enhance it and above all, if he enjoys it.

If this is the case, we can now start working on that talent promotion , not so much because our son stands out more or less in something, that is, “the best”, but so that he can cultivate something that, naturally, he is given Well, with all the learning that this entails.

But how do we do it? A study published in 2016 in Nature suggests that there are some necessary points to raise a child with talent and abilities. Among these points are:

  • Expose the child to diverse experiences (enrich him).
  • Give you opportunities to develop your talent.
  • Support their intellectual and emotional needs.
  • Help him develop a “growth mindset” through positive reinforcement (praising his efforts and ability).

What else can we do as parents to enhance our child’s talent?

Motivate him to improve himself and reinforce him

Positive reinforcement is key to working on different important elements for the development of our child, such as self-esteem. But also, to promote learning and motivate children .

Motivate your child to improve himself (this will help him not to compare himself with others, but with himself); yes, we must approach it as a challenge, not as a pressure that generates insecurities.

Promote values such as effort

On the other hand, there are certain values that can help your child enhance their talent, the most important being : effort , tenacity, practice and perseverance.

And it is that, to enhance a talent, even if it is something initially innate, it is essential to practice . And if you educate your child in these values, it will be easier for him to find his talent and build “something” from there.

“Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working.”

-Pablo Picasso-

Motivate you to enjoy

Nor can we forget the importance of children having fun while cultivating their talent. We must approach the activity itself as a game and a pleasure for them; yes, without stopping encouraging them to improve their technique, to continue training to improve, etc.

without pressing

Finally, we must bear in mind that the label of “talented” in a child can suppose an extra emotional burden that he does not have to assume or know how to manage. Therefore, do not pressure him if he does not know what he wants or if one day he is unmotivated.

Photos | Cover (freepik), Image 1 (freepik), Image 2 (freepik)

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