Taking the ACT is enough to stress out high schoolers, but for a local fifth grader it was no sweat.
Math and science always seemed to come easy for Isaac Chang, who whizzed through his fifth grade homework on the educational game “Prodigy”.
“And one day my parents saw that I was doing grade level problems that were much higher than my actual grade level,” explained Isaac.
Doing so well and loving to learn, led Isaac’s parents to get their son to take an assessment for above-grade-level students out of Northwestern University called NUMATS.
Through the program Isaac took the PSAT for eight and ninth graders and was a top scorer.
“I wanted to test how much I had learned from these games so I just took the test and I did really well on it,” he said.
Then Isaac decided to continue testing his knowledge by giving the ACT a try.
“So I wanted to test exactly how much I had learned,” said Isaac. “But other than that purpose mostly it was my own curiosities. I wound up taking it for fun.”
After walking into Neuqua Valley High School with that positive attitude, Isaac walked out with a score of 35 out of 36, ranking in the top 99th percentile range.
“And I really wasn’t under much pressure to do well, I just wanted to do my best and have fun” he said. “ So I just relaxed and actually I didn’t study too much but I did well.”
Even as he’s currently enrolled in an eighth-grade-level math course out of Gregory Middle School, Isaac is still your every day 9-year-old. He loves playing in little league, taking piano lessons, and collecting rocks and minerals. And as for his future studies…
“Well I really hope to pursue a science major, engineering or physics. Currently my favorite thing to do is study black holes. I really like warps and physics,” Isaac added.
Isaac says he’s definitely proud of how well he’s done on the act at his age and sees his future as limitless.
“I really don’t take age as my definition since I like to dream big,” Isaac said.
It’s that outlook that inspired the song Isaac wrote and composed called “Dream Big”. It’s a personal motto that guides him to learn while having fun.
Isaac wrote and sang his song “dream big” with the help of his Clow Elementary music teacher Mr. Henry and you can listen to it on Soundcloud.
Naperville News 17’s Christine Lena reports.