Sarvesh pulled out a mobile phone from his bag, turned on a slideshow of flags and started naming the countries

Little Sarvesh brought a book of flags of countries across the world and placed it before him on the table. He then smiled, throwing a challenge to point to any flag in the book and prompt came his answers. Once he had done with the book, Sarvesh pulled out a mobile phone from his bag, turned on a slideshow of flags and started naming the countries until he had identified the flags of 115 countries.

Four-and-a-half-year-old S. Sarvesh from Singanallur, an L.K.G. student of Air Force School, Sulur, who can barely identify words surprises everyone as he accurately points to around 40 countries on the map. From South Sahara to United Kingdom to Afghanistan, Sarvesh identifies the flags though their names might prove a bit tough for a four-year-olds’ tongue.

His mother T. Ramya, senior programmer in a private company, said, “When he was two-years-old, we observed that he could remember names well. He showed more interested in flags. When we introduced flags of more countries he could remember them without much effort.”

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Sarvesh adds a few bits of information as he names countries and continents. “China is next to Russia you know! Antarctica is all covered with ice,” he says.

Sarvesh’s father S. Sakthivel, an engineer, said, “It has become a game that we play daily. He enjoys it and gradually we introduced him to flags of more countries.”

The boy also names around 25 car brands when he is shown their logos apart from traffic signals and a few famous historic monuments and places.

Psychologists say that identifying the flags of over 100 countries was a rare feat and recognition would encourage the child to develop the skill further, but it should be done without pressurising him.

“We can call this a special aptitude towards a specific activity that helps the child to excel in a particular area. Parental support and environment in which the child grows up have an immense influence on such skills. Exposure and its frequency also matters,” says B. Selvaraj, Associate Professor of Psychology at Government College of Arts.

Keywords: special skills

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