When you think of a someone with a high IQ, who many may consider a genius, certain names may come to mind: Albert Einstein, Stephen Hawking, Isaac Newton. However, children are not immune from have a genius-level IQ. One 5-year-old in Tennessee, for example, is the latest member of Mensa, the oldest and largest high-IQ society in the world.
Amogh Banagere may just be heading into the first grade, but he already reads at a fifth-grade level, WREG reports. After his teachers at Dogwood Elementary School in Germantown, outside of Memphis, recommended that he be tested for gifted programs, everyone learned just how smart he was. At just 5 years old, Amogh has an IQ of 148.
Even before this knowledge, Amogh's parents, Pradeep Banagere and Swathi Jayanth, always knew he was a smart kid. He started reading at age 2 and by 4 had advanced to chapter books.
"When he was like 4 years old, he put together the 7-year-old Lego set, and then I started slowly increasing it," said Jayanth, Amogh's mom. "Whenever we feel like he's doing something different, we give him other resources like either Legos or electronic circuits or books. You know he can solve a 9 by 9 Sudoku puzzle."
According to WREG, out of Mensa's 50,000 members, fewer than 100 are ages 5 and under. Mensa, a non-profit organization for members with high IQs, doesn't test children until they are 14 years old; however, the group accepts tests administered by schools and private psychologists.
After learning about the group, and thinking it would be good for Amogh to be around other kids like himself, they sent in his test. Unsurprisingly, it didn't take long to hear back.
"We thought it was really amazing," said Jayanth. "We didn't know anything about the high IQ society. We did some research. We thought, OK, they need 130, and his score is 148. So let's apply and see if he gets it, and within two days, we got approval, and we were over the moon."
Even though he may be a genius, Amogh is still just a child, experiencing life like all the other kids his age.
"All said, he's still a 5-year-old kid," said Banagere. "He's silly, [he's] cranky sometimes. He's like a regular 5-year-old kid, and I think that's one reason we didn't feel like with his intellectual abilities, he's extremely focused on certain things. He's just an all-rounder, right. But he's still a 5-year-old kid."