A two-year-old girl has become the youngest member of Mensa, the society strictly for geniuses.
With intelligence far beyond her years, Elise Tan Roberts can name 35 capital cities and identify the three types of triangle. Her IQ is 156 – higher than Carol Vorderman’s, the maths expert and former Countdown host. The average IQ in the population at large is 100.
The toddler, from Edmonton in North London, can already spell her name aloud, read the words “mummy” and “daddy” and recite the alphabet. Mensa accepts the top two per cent of the population based on IQ and normally only tests children over 10 years old, but the society made an exception and welcomed Elise based on a standard intelligence measure.
The child is in the top 0.2 per cent for her age, according to Professor Joan Freeman, the child psychologist who used the Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scale to test Elise. John Stevenage, head of Mensa, said he was always delighted to welcome a new member.
“Elise’s parents correctly identified that she is an exceptional child. They now realise they have an interesting challenge on their hands as she grows up.
“We wish them well and look forward to seeing Elise develop in the coming years.”
Elise’s mother Louise, 28, said she realised her daughter was different as soon as she was born.
She took “an unusual” interest in her surroundings, uttered her first word aged just five months and took her first steps at eight-and-a-half months. The little girl was born in London in December 2006 and has heritage in England, Malaysia, China, Nigeria and Sierra Leone.
Fiona Phillips thinks this identification is a bad idea.