Due to the COVID-19 crises our upcoming IQ tests have been cancelled for now. As soon as we can again see how things will evolve, we will display the new dates here.

The intellectual precocity in children

Contrary to what many people believe, to be intellectually precocious or gifted does not mean to be smarter than others, but "to function with a different way of thinking, with a different structure of reasoning. The intelligence of the gifted child is atypical."

Jeanne-Siaud Facchin, clinical psychologist, specializing in gifted people in "The Over-Gifted Child, Helping them to grow up, help them to succeed", Odile Jacob, 9/2002 ", ISBN 2-7381-1159-9

How do I know if my child is intellectually precocious?

The only way to know if a child is intellectually precocious or not is to have it sit through a IQ test administered by a professional.

There are many different tests, the good choice depends mostly on the age of the child.

The earlier the precocity is detected, the better. Indeed, precocity which has not been identified as such can lead the child to difficulties with parents, teachers and other children.

Schooling of gifted children

Statistically, if 1/3 of gifted children have no problems, 2/3 can meet more or less serious academic and social difficulties due to:

  • a difference in behavior with children of their age,
  • incomprehension by adults, professionals and parents,
  • often a negative self-image,
  • a gap between the pace of personal development of the child and the pace set by the school system,
  • a school system which is unsuitable to the functioning of the brain of the child,
  • sometimes a delay in psychomotor and graphomotor development

The child may react with boredom, disinterest in school, passivity, and sometimes revolt.

Skipping a grade is one of the solutions offered to gifted children. It has the advantage of reducing the problem of boredom which is often the cause of disciplinary problems.

Since 2009, the Luxembourg primary school system (LINK TO THE SITE), organized in teaching cycles, allows to adjust to the progressing speed capabilities of the child. Indeed, each cycle normally lasts two years, but a student may, in exceptional cases, take a cycle in one year.

Moreover, there are special schools for gifted children abroad (link to page useful addresses, schools section).

Emotional and social problems possible

As Jeanne-Siaud Facchin said, "to be gifted (...) is also growing up with hypersensitivity, intrusive emotions that mark the personality."

The intellectually precocious child has a heightened sensory perception ("hypersensitivity") often paired with an extreme sensitivity. It is "equipped with multiple sensors permanently connected to its surroundings" and shows an "amazing ability to feel with great finesse the emotional state of others."

"A true sponge, the gifted child has always been literally assailed by the emotions, sensations, and multiple pieces of information so much that it is often difficult for him to live, to integrate and to develop."

"This hypersensitivity is both an asset, due to the fine perceptual environment that it allows, but also a source of suffering and emotional hurt."

Thus the gifted children may experience emotional and social problems (social adjustment problems, depression, eating disorders, school phobia, etc..).

You may find more information about the associated problems (www.douance.be/douance-troubles-accueil.htm) on the site of the douance.be asbl.

What should I do to help them?

Here are some tips to help your child:

  • identify the precocity of your child,
  • explain its particularity (indeed, the gifted child need to be aware of its difference to be able to accept it. Moreover, for a child that has failed or is suffering, this gives him back self-confidence and allows him to bounce back),
  • accept its peculiarities,
  • trust him, give him confidence, a sense of value,
  • help him to benefit in his school from a differentiated instructional approach that respects his differences of thinking,
  • offer him extra-curricular activities that are suitable to his capacity,
  • let him meet other gifted children,
  • support his development.

This test is intended for children between 6.5 years and 9.5 years, children from 9 years of age may participate in the adult test.

Mensa Luxembourg regularly organizes an IQ test for children. The test will take place between 10 and 12 am (depending on age group) in Luxembourg, 35, rue de Bonnevoie.

To register, please read the "Registration" section of the main article. Registration is compulsory for the children's IQ test.

For additional information, please contact: mensakids@mensa.lu.

Mensa organizes, twice a year, a group IQ test for children aged 10 and over (children aged 9 and over can participate on request). This is the regular Mensa IQ test which adults also take part in. More information is available below.

For children aged 6.5 to 9.5 years, another group IQ test takes place twice a year, which is also monitored and graded by a psychologist.

For younger kids (less than 6.5 years old), a group test would not work. However it is possible to have them tested individually by a psychologist (from +/- 4 years old, it doesn't make sense before). A list of psychologists whose scope of practice includes the intellectual giftedness of small children is available on request (Email mensakids@mensa.lu).

Mensa IQ Test: General Information

The Mensa IQ test is a standardized and multi-phase test which is supervised by a psychologist, and which is primarily aimed at finding gifted people. A score greater than or equal to that of 98% of the population confers you the right to become a member of Mensa (www.mensa.lu and www.mensa.org). This test does not contain any question on general culture. It rather tests the logical and mathematical skills and abilities (the speed of information processing, analysis and synthesis , attention to detail, etc..). If the candidate fails to obtain the required score to become a member of Mensa Luxembourg, he may try the test a second time free of charge.

This test is organized twice a year by Mensa Luxembourg. The date and place can be found on this site, in the yellow box on top of each page. It is not necessary to register in advance for the Mensa IQ test for adults and young people over 10 years old.

Special Information about the IQ test for children (6.5 to 9.5 years)

This test is intended for children aged from 6.5 to 9.5 years on the day of the test. Children which are older than 9 years may take, on request, the adult test.

As this test does not contain any question on general culture and does not take into account the academic nor the verbal knowledge of the child, it gives equal opportunities to "good" and "bad" students. There is no need for preparation nor training. The child does not need to be able to read or write. The explanations are given in Luxembourgish and, if needed, translated to German, French, and English.

The test takes about half an hour. This test is graded by age brackets and is taken in 2 groups. The distribution into the groups depends on the age of the children and on the number of registrations, thus the starting time of the test can only be communicated after the closing of the registrations.

The price of 40 € is payable in cash on the spot, before the test.

The results will be mailed within 2-4 weeks after the test. It's useless to ask for results on phone or e-mail

Compulsory Registration for the kids' IQ test.

Registration is required (only at the email address kidstest@mensa.lu). During registration please provide the following information:

  • Last name and first name,
  • Gender and date of birth of the child,
  • Full postal address for mailing the results,
  • Name of the parent(s), phone numbers, mobile phone number of the parent who brings the child to the test,
  • Email address of the parent(s),
  • Mother tongue and other languages ​​that the child understands,
  • the nationality of the child,
  • Has the child ever taken an IQ test before?
  • If yes, which one, when was it, and what was the result?
  • Useful information about your child, if these could influence the proceeding of the test (for instance, child doesn't hear well or only on one ear, must take medications, or other peculiarities...).

Additional information is available by email mensakids@mensa.lu.

Mensa Kids has been created in 2010 through the initiative of a group of parents of gifted children.

The parents (and sometimes the teaching staff too) found that certain children acted/reacted differently than their classmates and wanted to find out why this was the case. This can have many causes, for example the kid may be intellectually gifted. For those children for which the cause is indeed intellectual giftedness, it is of inestimable value to meet other children who are in a similar situation.

Mensa Kids wants to offer them an interactive platform for collaboration. The idea is to organize every few weeks a meeting, as well as other activities: workshops, (guided) tours, etc., but also IQ tests for children, parents' meetings, lectures or discussions with interested and/or affected parties, teaching staff, psychologists, etc.
During these meetings, the parents too can benefit from the experiences of other parents.

Your ideas and suggestions are welcome!

You can reach us at the e-mail address mensakids@mensa.lu.

The activities of Mensa Kids (planning and organization) are made possible by the work and the dedication of a very small number of volunteers.