Question 1: What kinds of services does a gifted student get at SSS?
The first layer of services occurs in the classroom. Teachers should be differentiating for students and collaborating/consulting with me to help the students move at an appropriate pace.
The second layer of services would be pull out programs and enrichment services.
I pull PTP students once a week for an hour. We have studied different topics, including the solar system, mythology, and how our brains work. We do creative thinking activities, STEM projects, and building/creating in the Maker Space.
I pull 4th grade for 1 hour per week. I am working on increasing that time.
I teach a 7th and 8th grade combined advanced ELA class known as ATLAS.
For grades 5-8, they may select my classes as an Extension option. Depending on which course they choose, I will see them between 90 minutes and 3 hours a week. Last year, I offered the following;
Literature-based courses centered around Chasing Vermeer, The Wright 3, and A Wrinkle in Time.
A course on innovation in which we read Anthem by Ayn Rand and created Shark Tank-style projects
Law and Justice- First Amendment Issues
National History Day project course
Genius Hour Projects
KYA and KUNA
This semester, I am teaching Future City and Journalism.
Question 2: What qualifies a student as gifted and/or talented?
Grades K-3 are not formally identified.
Primary Talent Pool(PTP) in grades K-3 seeks to identify and serve the top 25% high-potential learners from the entire student population.
According to KDE, “high-potential learners” learn and comprehend at a faster pace and more complex level than their age peers and often acquire skills earlier and progress at an accelerated rate.
I currently have 23 Primary Talent Pool students, with several in the process of being identified. We are low in kindergarten and grade 1, but that is to allow some time for them to adjust to the way school works.
In grades 4-8, we use formal measures to officially identify students as “Gifted and Talented’ in one or more of the following areas
General Intellectual Ability (usually 95%ile or above on an IQ test- we use CoGAT in 3rd, and this year 6th grade)
Specific Academic Area (95%ile or above on a nationally normed math, reading/language arts, science, or social studies test)
In addition to test scores, we collect student work samples, teacher/parent recommendations, behavioral checklists, and other pieces of evidence to support the student’s giftedness.
A committee meets to evaluate the evidence and determine the services needed, if any.