Developing Talent in Young people by Benjamin S Bloom

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Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

Benjamin S Bloom was born in February 21st 1913 and passed on, on September 13th 1999. He made significant contributions to the classification of educational objectives as well as to the theory of mastery-learning. He was a respected American Educational Psychologist.

Bloom, together with his researchers, conducted a study of 120 young men and women in six different domains. They were concert pianist, sculptors, Olympic swimmers, world class tennis players, research mathematicians and research neurologists. After consulting the experts in the different field, the researchers were able to draft out a set of criteria of which the individuals will be selected on. They were either finalists in international competitions, recipients of prestigious and highly competitive fellowships or prizes or awards, members of the US Olympic team (Swimmers), achieving top ten ranking in the world (Tennis players), their writings were frequently cited in papers published by others and well-regarded by the chairman heads of the fields’ departments of leading universities in America.

There were a lot of reasons why they achieve what they achieved. The research had noted the children who succeeded in sports, had supportive parents who hold in high regards of athletic and academic achievement. Their priority in the family had been to give their kids whatever opportunity that was available in the area of sports. Their first swimming or tennis instructors were able to generate their interest as well as motivation. Once they have reached a certain level, they moved on to the next coach who was able to improve on their techniques, providing training to the individual needs. At a certain stage, the swimmers and tennis players had decided for themselves should they want to be professionals.

Take for instance, the group of mathematicians and research neurologists; they had parents who valued academic achievements highly. Books were readily available at home; the kids will read for pleasure most of the time. As the kids had either parent who was always busy with their work; or they will be engaged in some sort of clubs or societies, attitudes that the parent had encouraged was of constant and diligent learning. It was reported that since young whenever the kids were to asked questions, the parents will answer the kids as if they were adults. Their expectation of their kids was to do well in school.

The summary is just the tip of the iceberg, I would encourage you to delve deeper into research. The kids’ achievement was also mainly due to the parents’ contribution. During the growing up years, they knew what their parents valued and, thus, worked hard to seek their approval. Thereafter at a certain age, they knew what they wanted and worked even harder for their goals, with the help of the professionals, of course. All kids will and can be successful in their own terms. However, during the pursuit of success, please keep in mind the moral upbringing.

What sort of environment are you providing?