Gifted and Talented Services at Merrill
Merrill provides gifted and talented services to the many students who are identified in need of such enrichment. Every teacher at Merrill, whether “Honors” or traditional provide differentiated curriculum for every student in the school. Differentiated curriculum can be described as programming that provides extensions or individualized help to the standards based curriculum in every classroom. In the case of identified gifted and talented students, one can expect opportunities to delve deeper into subjects and produce higher-level products. Teachers adjust rubrics to meet the needs of the gifted and talented students and find connections for “passion learning” in the standards based curriculum.
Several elective classes are designed to meet the needs of gifted and talented learners at Merrill. Service Learning is a class designed specifically for GT students and involves students taking part in school programs such as Merrill Recycles and creating events for the school and community such as Merrill Movie Nights. Technology provides advanced computer programming for GT students and allows students to work at an accelerated pace as they produce original technological designs. Creative Writing is a new elective offering this year at Merrill and students who are adept at writing explore the creative tools of poetry, memoir and fiction writing as they bring one or more original pieces to publication.
Several avenues for identifying gifted and talented students are used at Merrill. Many of the students are identified through formal testing in the early fall. Parents or teachers recommend students for formal testing based on characteristics they observe in their children, such as unusual creativity, accelerated learning in one or more subjects, unusual socio-emotional needs, and general sophisticated reasoning across the curriculum are a few examples of indicators of possible giftedness. Other data points are also evaluated, such as CSAP and/or interim testing or SRI, creativity tests and Ravens scores are some ways that GT students are identified as well. Parents are encouraged to discuss possibilities of identification with teachers and the gifted and talented specialist as questions arise regarding your child. If your child is identified, a letter will come home with information regarding student strengths and sometimes recommendations for further testing are suggested.
6th Grade Honors
Earth Sciences Project
Students were asked to create an informational piece that would encourage visitors to their Colorado location. Students read books and used the internet to access newspapers, magazines, maps, and interviews to research and develop their piece about a location in the amazing state of Colorado.
Click on the below links to view finished projects.