Who are the genius children of the world? How much would the world benefit if we could train them with the help of the best educators on the planet? These are the questions that led to the creation of a startup in Palo Alto, California, which has already discovered some extraordinary children.
According to the creators of the Californian startup, policymakers are only concerned with 20% of students worldwide and that the top 10% are being ignored. Geniuses around the world need the right education for them not to get lost.
Karina Oakley, 3, has an IQ similar to Stephen Hawking
Karina is Charlotte Fraser’s only child. I live in Surrey, England. Charlotte found a psychologist on the Internet and, a year ago, took her daughter to London for an IQ test. “Karina has an unusual air of maturity for someone so young,” said Professor Joan Freeman, and suggested she has an IQ of 160, the same as Stephen Hawking and 0.03% of children her age. Asked in these tests what do we do with the eyes Karina said we put contact lenses in them. She looked at a picture of a kettle without a handle and said the picnic mat was missing. She was shown a picture of a glove that was missing a finger and said that the other glove is missing. The mother discovered that the little girl did not suffer from a “strange way of thinking”. She does not know where her language precocity came from. Karina attends a local preschool and spends much of her time playing.
Megan Ward is 10 years old and has already invented the anti-smoking keychain
When Paula and Rory Ward are not running a plumbing and drainage company in Kent, England, they are busy organizing the lives of their 5 children, aged between 6 and 19. Megan, their 10-year-old daughter, is preoccupied with inventions. A year ago, he had to make an anti-smoking poster for a school project. Rather than a poster, she came up with the idea of creating a pair of lungs containing brown food coloring to show the average amount of tar a smoker collects from just four packs of cigarettes. Megan doesn’t want to go to university and likes inventor Trevor Baylis. She keeps her pink bedroom tidy. Paula is amazed and a little confused by her daughter, who is a quiet but slightly demanding presence in their hectic household. “Everything has to be decided ahead of time,” says Paula. “Her siblings are adapting on the fly, but Meg needs to be told exactly what the schedule will be.”
Dylan Toh is 12 years old and his passion for algebra has made him the envy of students in Singapore
From an early age, Dylan Toh had an unquenchable thirst for knowledge. Bored with the school math curriculum, Dylan scoured his local libraries for more challenging material. Later, Singapore’s Ministry of Education approved his math acceleration, helping him take lessons from a high school teacher to study material several levels above that of a typical 12-year-old. Looking for challenging math problems on the Internet, he discovered an organization that gave him the chance to find another mentor, from the University of Michigan. During sessions with a mentor, Dylan studied abstract linear algebra and demonstrated skills that would place him at the highest level of scholarship offers at top American universities. Farrell Wu was impressed by the clarity of his solutions, saying, “Most students would envy Dylan’s ability to present his ideas.” Dylan is also training to compete in robotics, maths and table tennis competitions in Singapore.
Farrell Wu started doing math at one year old
Wu’s thirst for knowledge led him to read an encyclopedia while waiting for his parents to pick him up from school. He recently placed third in the Philippine Math Olympiad despite being only 12 years old. In 2013, he met a math professor at the University of Michigan and took private tutoring sessions to study linear algebra at the undergraduate level. Wu plans to continue his studies in mathematics in the US and pursue a career in investment banking.
Phoebe Cai is 15 years old and works in data analysis for a medical school in Pennsylvania
At 15, high school student Phoebe Cai is already engaged in college-level research, helping analyze data for a research project at the University of Pennsylvania. Last fall, Cai placed 8th in the Girls’ Mathematics Prize competition at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), a research university, and was awarded a bronze medal at the Girls’ Mathematics Prize Olympiad. Cai also qualified for the USA Math Olympiad this year and is a two-year member of the Lehigh Valley Fire team that won first place at the 2012 Princeton University Math Competition. Cai hopes to study science at college.