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Four-year-old genius accepted into Mensa
She has an IQ of more than 150 – and she hasn’t even started school yet.
Mensa member Heidi Hankins.
And though aged just four, Winchester girl Heidi Hankins was accepted into Mensa last week after a test showed she has a genius level of intellect.
While the average IQ for an adult is 100, Heidi’s is around 159 – making her one of just 90 children under ten to join Mensa UK.
Dad Matthew, 46, a lecturer at the University of Southampton, said: “We always thought Heidi was bright because she was reading early. I happen to specialise in measuring IQs in children and I was curious about her and the results were off the scale!
“I got her the complete set of the Oxford Reading Tree books when she was two and she read through the whole set of 30 in about an hour. It’s what you would expect a seven-year-old to do.”
Heidi can already add and subtract, draw figures and write in sentences.
Mr Hankins, of Stockbridge Road, Winchester, said: “She was making noises and trying to talk literally since she was born and by age one her vocabulary was quite good.
“Now it is really good. The other day I gave her mash and fishfingers for dinner, something quite boring, and her response was ‘That’s impressive,’ so she has a sense of humour, too.”
He added: “The thing is, she is not precocious, she is just a little girl who likes her Barbies and Lego but then you will find her sitting down and reading a book. We are really proud of her.”
Mr Hankins said he decided to test Heidi after her nursery in Winchester told him they had no activities capable of challenging her.
Challenges John Stevenage, chief executive of British Mensa Limited, said: “Heidi’s parents correctly identified that she shows great potential. We wish them well, and are pleased that they have chosen to join the Mensa network for support, where we aim to provide a positive environment for younger members to develop.”
Mr Hankins and his wife Sophy, an artist, moved to Winchester a year ago from Lewes to be closer to their son Isaac, nine, a chorister at Winchester Cathedral who boards at The Pilgrims’ School.
The pair are now looking at schools for Heidi and are hoping to skip a school year to make sure Heidi is challenged.