Child Genius Recap: Tiger Dad’s Gone Wild

Child Genius Adrian

This week on Child Genius, my homeboy Adrian is out to get cute little Claire! Tonight’s subjects are US History and Logic. I suck at US History, I blame growing up abroad, and well just basically hating history. I like logic a lot and did really well on it on the LSATs, so just like Yolanda Foster, I be one them intelligent womens. :)  I would need to be able to use pen and paper for logic though.

Homeslice and his foreign mother sure get lots of airtime. Oh wow! Adrian’s father showed up. His mother says he was probably just working in the area and wanted to be on TV decided to stop by. Oh this is not going to go well. The father says he flew in to LA because he is an American so he can help with American history. Mama is not happy he is there. Adrian likes to work alone and Daddy is drilling him a lot. He brought his own study notes which he thinks should supersede Adrian’s list. In his talking head, Adrian says he almost never sees his dad.

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We haven’t seen much of Sam. He is 12 and from Texas. He’s adorable and loves astronomy. I love him. He used to want to be an astronaut until he discovered all the risks, including cancer. Now he wants to be an astronomer. In his parents talking head, his father says he can be anything he wants to be as long as he is a doctor. His mother says, “Exactly.”  His mother is Ukrainian and his father is Lebanese. Sam has a Russian tutor. I imagine he has an Arabic one as well. His parents are very strict. Sam says they are friendly but they  value hard work more than games.  CHILD GENIUS CHANCELLOR

Taylora, Chancellor’s mom says there is a wide spectrum of parental coaching styles. Gianna’s mom Sarah is worried she is not doing enough and feels judged by the other moms. Because she is being judged by them.  They show Drake’s mom one upping her about study time. Selah’s parents are driving her nuts. Selah doesn’t like US History and is horrible at it according to her.

US History

Sam had really hard questions (they will probably all be hard for me) he got only 4/10 but neither of his parents are American so that is a disadvantage for this round. If there is a European History competition, he might do better.

Adrian is up. He doesn’t want to disappoint his father and US History is not his strongest subject. Poor thing. He rarely sees his Dad. Where what he when he got perfect scores last week?  He managed to get a respectable 7/10. His dad is proud of him. He credits his fine tutoring.

Claire comes in very confident. Claire practices piano for six hours a day (or 8 if they are preparing for competition). She’s only allowed to stop to pee. OMG! Claire only got 5/10. Thankfully there are no knives in the auditorium or both of her parents would have committed hari kari. I have no idea if they are Japanese, but I still think they were thinking about it.

Arnav  did great and got a 9/10. Poor Sam is rocking back and forth sticking his fist in his mouth.

Iris (who?)  is 11 and from Texas. She has an IQ of 144 and speaks “Shakespearean” which is apparently an actual language. I get the feeling she is homeschooled and studies mostly Shakespeare and cello while skipping barefoot through fields of flowers. Her mother is a whackadoodle nature freak as well. NTTAWWT.  She got a 5/10.

Gianna got a 4/10.

Jaden got 3/30.  I think he is the Paleo diet kid. He might have done better if he had eaten a Snickers.

child genius 3

Vivek has been having lots of problems with stage fright. He got a perfect score on the ACTs. His hero is Steven Hawking. His parents are from India. They are really nice and encouraging and not at all overbearing. He got 6/10. His questions were easy. But I think these questions are only easy if you know them. I mean, obviously, but it’s just random facts so either you get lucky and get stuff you studied or you don’t.

Selah probably should have NOT eaten the Snickers before this comp and done the Paleo diet. Her parents have little faith in her this round. She didn’t really want to study. At least she knew what the underground railroad is. Maybe she can tutor Porsha Williams. 2/10

Chancellor’s mother always underestimates him. But he fulfilled her prophecy. 2/10 He’s on the bottom with Selah but should beat her in logic.

Parental Shaming Intermission

Claire is dejected. Her parents up their pressure. Gianna’s dad says it’s not that serious. She’s a kid. Pass the snacks. Sam is screaming that he wants to jump off the balcony. His mother tells him they are on camera and to please stop saying that. Selah’s dad is becoming a tiger dad. Selah is making simple math mistakes. I think she is sandbagging because she wants to go home. Selah’s dad is having a meltdown. Selah’s parents fight. Selah is now missing two digit math problems. She is totally sabotaging this competition. Chancellor’s mom pushing him way too hard. It’s not really possible to study for logic during the intermission and have it make much of a difference. I would have sent my kid to tip toe through the tulips with Iris.

Logic

Adrian 8/10 Adrian’s dad says that the greatest gift is anytime he (the father) shows up. UGH. He needs to go away.

Iris got 5/10

Claire got an amazing 10/10 with some really hard questions.

Arnav got 9/10 I thought his questions were a lot easier than Claire’s.

Sam got a 10/10 YES!!!!

Vivek got 9/10

Selah got 6/10

Chance needs at least 7 to stay. he got 9/10

Adrian tied for first overall so he must have gotten a 8/10 in logic.

Adrian, Claire and Vivek tired for second. Arnav is in first.

Selah went home. Selah fake cried for the cameras. She so threw that.

23 Comments

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23 responses to “Child Genius Recap: Tiger Dad’s Gone Wild

  1. Cat

    Yikes. Are these kids ever able to just be kids?

    • tamaratattles

      They aren’t just kids and most of them have nothing in common with kids. That is why these sorts of things are acutally good for them. That said, I wish they would stop over coaching the during intermission.

      The kids need the intermission to go outside and get some air and smoke a cigarette and check their emails for fucksake.

  2. Nat

    What did Jaelen or Gianna get in the logic round? I don’t think they ever said. Hmmm

    • tamaratattles

      They don’t always tell us all the scores. As the kids dwindle down and they don’t have to do introductory packages anymore they will have more time. But the kids are almost irrelevant. It’s the parents that the show is really about. :)

      • Nat

        Yeah but this means Jaden had to get at least 5 in the logic round and Gianna had to get 4. And we don’t know if that is what happened. Maybe they edited it so it looked like Selah lost when really she wanted to leave. It is just interesting they didn’t show the scores of the contestants that potentially could have gone home. Something about it just seems fake and edited.

    • Of course it’s all edited, but that kind of tends to be their MO — they often just focus on a few kids throughout each episode, and some other kids just recede into the background. Their scores were probably fine but not exceptional — just enough to keep them in the game.

  3. I don’t really think Selah threw it. She’s underperformed the entire time; she’s just not strong in this kind of competition.

    Again, these are bright kids who are good students, etc., but few if any of them display true “genius.”

    Adrian’s dad did seem like kind of a douche, at least on camera, but I have to admit, I was kind of glad to see that he does have another somewhat involved parent. His relationship with his mom seems too much like a marriage. Kind of creepy. The kid needs a dad.

  4. My favorite moment of this episode was when the cameras caught the super-serious Sam singing a little ditty about farts, just like a “normal” 12-year-old boy. Fart humor truly is universal!

  5. NewMom1982

    I might have missed this in the previous episodes, but didn’t know there was a baby on the show!! Happened to notice Vivek’s younger sister on episode 3 and she is sooo cute. Being a new Mom myself, I think it is going to drive his parents nuts to take care of the baby and handle all the craziness that is associated with the show. I guess that is why only one of Vivek’s parents are in the audience. I guess the other one is taking care of the baby. She looks young, may be 3-4 months. I am not really looking forward to see that family breaking down. I hope they will say strong. But seeing other parents and how the pressure is going up, I am worried.

    I am going to miss Selah and her family. They were funny!

  6. KidsRkids

    Yippee, Adrian has a “dad”, now that being said he can go away since he obviously is not really involved in that childs life. I loved hearing a little backgound on both Sam and Iris. Viveks parents are great with their approach, he has an adorable baby sister. Nice job on giving your mom a heart attack Chance. Congrats on your win, Arnav. Gianna you can do it girl! Jaden has a sweet soul but that Paleo and Unschooling crap of his mother’s is not impressive.Claire’s mother is relentless. I was very impressed with Selah after the competition, she greeted all her fellow competitors and wore her medal proudly. Much success to you little darling!

    • Nicole S

      Ditto to all of your comments!!! It’s like we are comment twins this week.

      • KidsRkids

        So happy to hear we think alike! I am usually out on an island by myself – of course getting in trouble with my unedited mouth. This week, however, I behaved myself. Cheers to you Nicole.

    • Nicole S

      I cannot stop laughing at your description of Adrian’s dad! The crossed out sentence. Lol. I hope Adrian isn’t holding out hope that his dad is going to become an angel. He seemed so glad for the chance to impress him outside of skype. I hope dad is genuine for your homeboys sake.

      • TT’s “be on TV” characterization of Adrian’s dad is perfect. Everything his dad said was self-congratulatory. His mom looked as if she could chew nails, as in, “There’s a reason I divorced you – go away!” I’m glad he supports Adrian and his mom financially, but he is so “It’s all about ME.” It’s good, though, for Adrian to see his dad in person, but Dad better remember: his son is a genius and already has his number.

  7. GrubPubert

    I fail to see the genius. Genius is not this erratic, it does not involve studying or memorizing, it does not have such huge gaps of scoring 0 then 9 then 5 then 10 then 2. It is an innate across-the-board brilliance. Perhaps it’s linkage to I.Q. should be re-thought. Michelangelo, Leonardo, Einstein, Thomas Edison, Mozart, Sir Isaac Newton, Stephen Hawking are geniuses. Normal, very bright kids could have studied these categories and performed much more consistently and much better. These kids have flashes of extraordinary brilliance. But most of them would not make it to the end of “Are You Smarter Than a Fifth-Grader?”

    • Agreed — these kids are not actual geniuses. True geniuses aren’t just good students who can regurgitate facts. True geniuses use their brilliance in innovative ways; the true geniuses are the think-outside-the-box game changers. But it’s not the case that genius has to be across the board — you can be very strong in one area and not at all in others. Genius can be selective. But in your area, you should be consistent.

      (And, of course, one can be a genius and also have some learning disabilities.)

  8. Wallace

    Sweet baby Jesus, I finally saw the first episode which I’d missed and I am ready to kick some Silicon Valley mom behind. What a pretentious, awful person.

    I do love the little Peachtree City boy. He is joyous about his life and interests.

  9. tamaratattles

    MENSA should hire you guys to assign IQs to children. You know so much more about it than they do! I think you should let the ACT testing panel know that average 10 year olds are making perfect scores on their college entrance exams, You might also want to let Carnegie Hall know to keep mediocre kids from performing there multiple times and for God sake tell these colleges to stop letting these average children in to their STEM degree programs!

    Everyone could learn a little something from random commenters on a website about the IQ of children they have seen for a collective 12 minutes on a TV show.

    • I think the point is more that a show like this has nothing to do with displaying actual genius. It is mostly kids regurgitating facts that they clearly don’t even understand and just learned in order to spew them out on stage. Cramming history facts, participating in spelling bees, etc. — none of this has anything to do with testing or displaying actual genius. They aren’t asking these kids to invent things, advance theories, change the landscape in any way. They are asking them to puke out memorized study sheet material. .

      Most of these kids, from what they show, seem like bright specimens/good students, but the format of the show just doesn’t actually allow them to display anything that points to true genius. However, it makes for great television.

      • Also, Vivek, with his perfect ACT score, could barely handle simple addition during the math portion of the test. I know he had stage fright, but it just seemed — odd.

        Same with Adrian — he’s doing college-level math when he’s at home, but he couldn’t handle many of the simple problems in the math round. Just — strange.

  10. bella

    I agree that these kids are bright for sure but are just kind of “average smart.” None of them are geniuses but only about two appear exceptionally smart (as in on par with THE smartest kids across the country). This season, the kids mostly seem to be strong in certain areas and very deficient in others. Last season, at least, you had about 3 or 4 who were strong in pretty much every topic. So what gives? Why not really search for the smartest kids out there. They’re given a book each week to study, as they are in school, and they still get so much factual stuff wrong. It shortchanges the intention of the show. I for one would like to see more truly exceptional students like Vanya, for example than run of the mill A/B students.

    Vivek did NOT get a perfect ACT score. If you look at his certificate he got a 25 composite score. The highest ACT composite score is a 36. What Vivek took was the ACT Explore which is a diagnostic test for 8th graders. So he got a perfect score on a test for 8th graders. Great. But not impressed.

    I also think it’s strange that none of these parents seem to be too intelligent or highly educated. My favorites are Olga, the single mother, and Gianna’s mother who looks like a late-night diner waitress – who both seem to be compensating for the fact that their kids come from broken homes or something. I think Adrian is smart but at least with Gianna, leave her alone. She is nowhere in the stratosphere of a genius or gifted child. I think her father knows this and can’t stop his crazy ex. Just leave her alone. She is a cute girl who seems socially well-adjusted. Why does the mother have to prove some fruitless point through her daughter who can’t live up to those inane standards. I won’t even bring up Drake’s mother bc the day she figures out she birthed an average child, and has been in denial about it, I fear she might lose it.

  11. KidsRkids

    Hey TT- really missed your recap on the most recent Child Genius (episode four). Hope you have not given up on your delightful insight on this show, i look so forward to it each week.

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