The boy who knew too much: a child prodigy

This is the true story of scientific child prodigy, and former baby genius, Ainan Celeste Cawley, written by his father. It is the true story, too, of his gifted brothers and of all the Cawley family. I write also of child prodigy and genius in general: what it is, and how it is so often neglected in the modern world. As a society, we so often fail those we should most hope to see succeed: our gifted children and the gifted adults they become. Site Copyright: Valentine Cawley, 2006 +

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Tiarnan interprets for daddy

The day before yesterday we were walking in a park-like area in the evening. The only available light was that thrown by nearby buildings across the darkened expanse of tree and grass.

Into this expanse, Tiarnan, fifteen months, who was walking beside us, pointed and said: "Tidur" (if I have the spelling right - I have mispelt it before as "tido").

I knew what that meant and I searched for the animal that it must have been referring to. Though I peered as intently as I might, I could see nothing in the gloom that might correspond to this "tidur".

"What is tidur?", I asked, Tiarnan, thinking another question to the one he logically answered.

He turned at once, in seeming exasperation, at me and said, sharply: "Sleeeeeeep!", in a tone that it made it most clear what he thought of my question: surely you know THAT one, daddy, he was essentially saying.

It was a revealing moment. It showed that he knew my language preference, knew which word to use with Daddy - which for others. It also showed his growing mastery of language - for him, the question had so obvious an answer that it exasperated him to hear it asked.

It was funny to see him take that stance and tone with me. Refreshing.

I never did get to see the sleeping animal he had pointed out: I think his night vision/visual perception must be better than mine.

(If you would like to read more of Tiarnan, fifteen months, or his gifted brothers, Ainan Celeste Cawley, seven years and five months, or Fintan, three, please go to: I also write of gifted education, IQ, child prodigy, intelligence, child genius, baby genius, adult genius, savant, the creatively gifted, gifted children and gifted adults. Thanks.)

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posted by Valentine Cawley @ 10:35 AM 


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