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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 +

Monday, October 22, 2007

Singapore Book of World Records

Today, Ainan, 7, is front page of the Berita Harian, Singapore's leading daily Malay newspaper.

The breaking news is that Ainan Celeste Cawley is, now, officially the youngest person ever to take an O level exam. The Singapore Book of Records, Singapore's answer to the Guiness Book of World Records, has officially recognized that it cannot find anyone younger than him, who has passed this level of examination, at anytime. It is an official record.

Ainan's record entry is entitled: "Youngest to attain an O level certificate" and will appear in the new edition of the Singapore Book of Records, in January 2008. Ainan was seven years and one month old when he sat the O level paper in January 2007.

For those who do not know, the O level Chemistry exam that Ainan took is at or above American High School graduation standard. Indeed, by observation of the first year courses at such Universities as Berkeley it is above first year University science courses that I have seen, in America. American Universities recruit O level students directly onto their courses.

So as to preserve the article, I am posting it down below.


Singapura : 22 Oktober 2007


Mudah cetak

BUKU REKOD S'PURA IKTIRAF BUDAK PINTAR

Oleh Halifi Hussin

BUDAK pintar yang lulus mata pelajaran Kimia dalam peperiksaan GCE 'O' tahun lalu pada usia tujuh tahun telah dinobatkan sebagai pelajar termuda Singapura yang berjaya berbuat demikian oleh Buku Rekod Singapura.

Ainan Celeste Cawley diberi pengiktirafan itu selepas mendapat Gred C bagi subjek tersebut, walaupun ketika itu dia baru berusia tujuh tahun satu bulan.

Rekod tersebut telah pun disiarkan dalam laman Internet Buku Rekod Singapura dan akan diterbitkan dalam bentuk buku Januari depan.

Dibentuk dalam 2004, Buku Rekod Singapura mempunya matlamat untuk memberi `peluang kepada warga Singapura mencatatkan rekod dunia.

Ainan merupakan anak kacukan keturunan Irish dan Melayu.
Kepintarannya dalam subjek Kimia mula disedari selepas dia sebelum ini berjaya menjawab buku latihan subjek tersebut, walaupun masih setahun jagung.

Bapanya, Encik Valentine Cawley, 39 tahun, yang merupakan ketua jabatan Bahasa Inggeris di Sekolah Linguaphone Education di sini, mendaftar anaknya dalam peperiksaan itu sebagai calon privet di British Council setelah mendapat tahu tentang kepintarannya.

Ditanya perasaannya tentang rekodnya itu, Ainan, anak sulung tiga beradik dengan tersipu-sipu menjawab: 'Saya gembira dan bangga.'

Ibu Ainan, Cik Syahidah Osman Cawley, 28 tahun, adalah seorang artis yang dapat melukis dengan kedua-dua belah tangannya.

Selain Ainan, pasangan tersebut mempunyai dua lagi anak - Fintan Nadym, empat tahun dan Tiarnan Hasyl, satu tahun.

Namun, bagi Ainan, pencapaiannya itu tidak berhenti setakat peringkat GCE 'O' sahaja.
Pelajar darjah dua yang menuntut di sebuah sekolah kawasan Bukit Timah itu kini mahu pula memecah rekod sebagai pelajar termuda yang lulus mata pelajaran Kimia peringkat GCE 'A'.
Encik Cawley berkata, persiapan telah pun bermula tetapi Ainan menghadapi hambatan sedikit kerana kurang latihan praktikal di makmal.

Namun, untuk mengatasi masalah itu, Raffles Institution (RI) dan Maktab Rendah Raffles (RJC) telah menawarkan Ainan peluang untuk melakukan kerja-kerja praktikal di makmal kimia mereka.

'Kami telah membuat persiapan seperti dahulu, iaitu belajar di rumah. Tetapi masalah sekarang adalah kekurangan latihan praktikal di makmal, namum kami yakin Ainan mampu mencapai kecemerlangan,' kata Encik Cawley.

(If you would like to learn more of Ainan Celeste Cawley, a scientific child prodigy, aged seven years and ten months, or his gifted brothers, Fintan, four years and three months, and Tiarnan, twenty months, please go to: http://scientific-child-prodigy.blogspot.com/2006/10/scientific-child-prodigy-guide.html I also write of gifted education, IQ, intelligence, the Irish, the Malays, College, University, Chemistry, Science, genetics, left-handedness, precocity, child prodigy, child genius, baby genius, adult genius, savant, gifted adults and gifted children in general. Thanks.)

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posted by Valentine Cawley @ 9:41 PM 

8 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Congratulations to Ainan on his record!

3:35 AM  
Blogger Valentine Cawley said...

Thank you for your warm words. I will get him to read your post.

Best wishes to you.

9:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Congratulations to Ainan! I hope Ainan will pass the A level.

from, Laila bte Jappar n family(woodlands)

8:11 PM  
Blogger Valentine Cawley said...

Thank you Laila.

Contrary to some of the news reports, Ainan will actually be taking the A level in the coming year, because we were given the wrong entry date information by the British Council staff. Thus, we missed the entry for this session's A level (which is rather a pity).

The staff, of course, would do nothing to correct their error: typical.

Best wishes to you in Woodlands.

11:06 PM  
Blogger jewelhenna said...

congratulations to ainan and family. this is definitely a newsworthy and proud moment for singaporeans in general and your family and malay/irish community specifically. i'm in awe of his talent. one day, insya Allah, when i have kids, i would love to learn more about accelerated learning (for babies and children) and perhaps could also produce such children prodigies. congrats again!

3:26 PM  
Blogger Valentine Cawley said...

Dear Jewelhenna

Thank you for your well wishes - they are good to receive. It is pleasing to hear something of what people think of all this.

However, I do think that the kind of gift Ainan (and the others) shows is a gift resident in the genes. I do not think that special accelerated learning techniques will turn an ordinary child into a prodigy. A prodigy is a child with an innate gift. To ensure such a child, you have to get the right genes into the mix in the first place. Half will, of course be yours - the other half will, of course, come from your chosen partner. You have no control over the first category - but you do have control, to a great degree over the second category: that part is up to you and your choices in life.

I wish you well on the children you will one day have.

Best wishes

6:27 PM  
Anonymous MamaFiza said...

Dearie Ainan,

Congratulation sayang ^_-

I am so proud of you!

I always read this blog; you had such an amazing passion plus a superb talent, great father, gorgeous mother, sweet siblings. What a blessed family.

Auntie (me), always told my own kiddies about you and your lovely family as their inspiration.

We will always pray for your happiness :)

May you have a good day.


Yours truly,
Auntie MamaFiza

5:21 AM  
Blogger Valentine Cawley said...

Thank you Mama Fiza...and blessings to you and yours, too.

It is good to know that you enjoy what I write and take pleasure in what I observe.

Best wishes to you and your family.

6:58 AM  

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