Are Prodigies Born or Made?

Topics: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Child prodigy, Chamber music Pages: 3 (1058 words) Published: January 7, 2011
Are Prodigies Born or Made?

A child prodigy is a person who shows his/her extraordinary abilities in early age. These children usually are very good at different things; however, especially their amazing skills in a certain area make them be prodigies. For example, Abigail Sin, a Singaporean young pianist, is also very good at math. Nevertheless, she won in international math competition; Abigail is called a wunderkind because of her unusual musical talent. As other wonders, she discovered her talent at her early age. Afterwards, she constantly practiced playing piano. Some people think that Abigail and other wunderkinds are born, while others argue that they are made. I agree with the latest viewpoints because of the reasons, such as results of American researches, prodigies’ opinions about this issue, and examples of wonders with different talents. It is not a guarantee that children with IQs above 140 will do something special in the future. Oliver James in his article Family under the microscope (2009) maintained about American researchers that studied four hundred children with high IQs. Their results were surprising. Those intelligent kids did not do anything exceptional in their later life. Furthermore, some of them also did not get high marks on exams. The reason is their laziness or inability to develop own talents. Another eloquent testimony to my words is A.R. Jensen's book, Bias in Mental Testing, 1980, p. 113, which states, “Beyond IQ 115, the IQ level becomes relatively unimportant in terms of ordinary occupational aspirations and criteria of success.” Afterwards, the author explained that it is not significant whether a person have IQ up to 150 or IQ up to 180. A person will have achievements or not depends on his/her personality and character. Grady Towers also had his mathematical experiments. The results were unexpected: “The very highest level of real world accomplishment is not made by those with the very highest level IQs....

References: 1. Oliver James, 2009, Family Under the Microscope, The Guardian
2. Henry T. Finck, 1922, Are Musicians Born – Not Made?
3. Grady Towers, 1999, IQ and the Real World Success
4. Grady Towers, 1999, The Empty promise
5. A.R. Jensen, Bias in Mental Testing, 1980, p. 113
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