British Indian schoolgirl with an IQ higher than Einstein

British Indian schoolgirl with an IQ higher than Einstein

Twelve-year-old schoolgirl Anwita Patil likes what any other Year 7 kid does – be it reading ‘Harry Potter’ with friends, learning Bharatnatyam or going swimming. What is far from ordinary, however, is her score of 162 on a Mensa IQ test, which is one of the world’s oldest high-IQ societies. Mensa is an IQ society for those with an IQ in the top 2 percentile of the general population.

Although Anwita’s scores were surprising to herself, her family and her teachers, her mother, Anu Patil, feels that in retrospect, there were always signs that Anwita was a gifted child.

“It was around the time of her 11 plus exams that I realised that she understood things really quickly. She also used to go to the ‘Northwest gifted and talented’ club via her school and that is when the penny dropped. The puzzles they would do, with Junior Maths Challenge for example, had very challenging questions. While I used to be thinking about how to go about it, she would already have the answer,” explained Anu, who herself holds a PhD in Mathematics.

Growing up Anwita would solve maths puzzles and quizzes with her mother for fun and perhaps it was these activities that enabled her to hone her maths skills even further.

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Once her parents realised that their daughter may be very talented, they took Anwita for supervised exams to determine her IQ. Anwita’s score puts her higher than the results of renowned physicists like Albert Einstein and Stephen Hawking.

When asked about which other subjects she enjoys, Anwita explained: “Biology is very interesting because you learn all about life and the natural world. And physics is like a higher form of maths, which can be applied to complicated things like space-time. But when thinking in terms of a career, it would ideally be something related to maths because I think I'm strong in the subject and it's very intriguing to me.”

Apart from encouraging her extraordinary capabilities in maths, Anwita’s parents make a concentrated effort to provide her with as normal an upbringing as possible.

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“I myself didn't know I was good at maths until I was about fifteen, so you never know what potential a child has or what is to come later in life. Some children might do well early on and some later,” explains Anu when asked about what advice she would give to parents whose children are talented and show signs of potential.

“It's never good to compare kids based on what others are doing. It is critical to give them time, allow them to grow, preserve their confidence and encourage them to do all the activities, not just studies. The overall development is so important at this age.”

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Speaking of what Anu hopes for Anwita’s future, she emphasises the need to be a good person above all.

“I just want her to continue to use her potential, make something out of it and give back something to the society. And most importantly, be kind because you don't know what others are going through. Be kind. That's one of the most important virtues that I would like her to have,” Anu concludes.

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