Jacob Barnett

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Meet the extraordinary Jacob Barnett. As a child Jacob was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome and specialists thought Jacob would be incapable of speaking and reading, however, he was later discovered to have an IQ higher than Einstein. At 15, the extraordinary teenager is now taking his Master’s Degree in Physics at Waterloo's Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics. “In order to succeed, you have to look at it on your own unique perspective” - Jacob Barnett.


Why Jacob Barnett is Extraordinary

Jacob Barnett is extraordinary in more ways than one. First, he was given up for hopeless due to his mild to severe autism. Teachers and specialists have tried to dissuade his mother from believing that he would ever learn to read. He wouldn’t even learn how to tie his shoelaces! But Kristine, his mother, would not have any of those nonsense. Instead, she showered her son with love and let him see the world in his own perspective. And that’s when she discovered Jake’s gift. With an IQ believed to be higher than Einstein, her Jake will never learn how to tie his shoelaces but he could always wear flip-flops.

Jacobs’s Extraordinary Childhood

Before his second birthday, Jacob abruptly stopped speaking. His parents noticed that he couldn’t make eye contact. After consultations with several specialists, they discovered that Jake has Asperger’s Syndrome. Their first born was diagnosed with mild to severe autism. To shield them from getting frustrated, teachers and doctors advised them to quit having high hopes for their son. He will never learn how to read and might need their help with the simplest tasks like tying his shoelaces.

That did it for Kristine. If teachers and doctors are giving up on Jake, she figured it’s when her boy needs his mother the most. She pulled Jake out of special education and gave him simple puzzles to keep him still. To their surprise, he completed the puzzle in no time. We’re talking about a two-year-old here. Then they had to get him jigsaw puzzles. Still, they were a piece of cake to him. Even tangrams did not fluster the young boy. At three years old, Jake was doing complicated equations and reading a college-level astrology book.

Through it all Kristine was there, giving Jake as much support he needs. She calls it the concept of “muchness.” Contrary to what is done in therapy sessions where a child is forced to do tasks normal children are expected to do, Kristine took the path yet to be travelled. She gave Jake what he wants and did not force him to be like everybody else. This she describes in more details in her book inspired by her autistic son, "The Spark: A Mother's Story of Nurturing Genius."

Jake Takes His Master’s at 15

To the chagrin of psychiatrists and experts, Jake completed his undergraduate studies from Indiana University—Purdue University Indianapolis before he turned 15. Their family moved to Ontario, Canada while Jake studies at Waterloo's Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics. So far, Jake is busy with his dissertation and if luck favors him, he might become the youngest Nobel Laureate. Well, he’s already the youngest Astrophysics researcher now. Because Kristine refused to give up, Jake learned more than just reading.

Kristine was not only able to get her son back, Jake has found a way to find himself in the process. May their story be an inspiration to parents who are facing a bleak future having to rear an autistic child. Had Kristine lost hope, we might not have met the Einstein of this generation.

Top Reasons why Jacob Barnett is Extraordinary

  1. At two years old, Jacob was able to arrange his crayons based on the rainbow sequence.
  2. When he was three years old, he was already reading college-level astrology book. Prior to that, his mother was told he was never going to learn how to read.
  3. He was able to answer a professor’s question about the shape of Mars’ moons using gravitational logic at the age of three.
  4. He doesn’t forget any equation he sees.
  5. He could recite pi to 200 places forward and backwards.
  6. He’s believed to have an IQ higher than that of Einstein.
  7. At 4 years old, he learned to play the piano by ear.
  8. He began sitting-in in advanced Math classes when he was eight.
  9. He was able to complete his undergraduate studies before he turned 15. He’s currently taking his Master’s Degree in Physics at Waterloo's Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics.
  10. At 11 years old, he came up with his original theory. He might become the youngest Nobel Laureate in Physics if he keeps at this rate.

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