The Mastery Club News

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3rd Grade

Math- Math Quest

We are finishing our Math Quest unit and we will soon be working on the unit Algebra into the Unknown. The students enjoy using the math quest board, so we will incorporate the game board into our Algebra unit as well. During the math quest unit we worked on ways to solve math problems and this should prove helpful as we head to the EOG's

Reading- Who are my neighbors?

During this unit students have worked hard to understand that we live in a diverse country. Students have read articles on the topic of immigration and we will have a seminar on this topic this month. We have read many poems about immigrants and immigration. The one students really liked was " Eyes of an Immigrant".

4th Grade

Math- Our next unit will be Geometry Challenge. This unit will prove to be fun and challenging. Students will look at shapes and their properties. We will use angles to create different designs,

Reading- The power of literate people continues to be our unit for May. Students have began working on their leadership project related to this unit. I have been impressed with the ideas students have come up with.

5th Grade

Math- Our unit for math is called the stock market game. This unit will have students buying and selling stocks as they try to have the most money by the end of the unit. Students are very excited about this unit.

Reading- During this art unit, students have grappled with this issue of arts in schools. The students have decided that they want to get an afterschool arts club for Erwin. They have been researching different programs, costs, advantages and disadvantages. The students want to make a presentation to Dr. Parker when they have completed their project.

Your Gifted Child: Help your gifted child reach his academic potential both at school and home

The word gifted has become so loaded. Does it mean "genius"? Does it mean "really bright" or "book smart"? Or is it an overused phrase that has no meaning at all? Isn't everyone's child a "gifted child" in some way or another?

There are different types of gifts, educators agree. Some have "schoolhouse giftedness" or "high achieving giftedness," measured by high scores on standard tests of intelligence or by their advanced knowledge and analytical skills. Others have "creative/productive giftedness" meaning they excel at the arts, in dance, in sport, or in music. In either case, your job as a parent is to help nurture those gifts both at school and at home.

At School

What your school does to help gifted children (and how it determines which kids are eligible) will depend on where you live. Some districts have established gifted and talented programs, while others handle such children on a case-by-case basis.

If you or your child's teacher requests an evaluation of your child, the process may include intelligence tests, a review of your child's past work and standardized-test scores, and an evaluation of his social and emotional development. After you all have a better understanding of his needs, the school may offer options such as:

  • Differentiated approaches to learning: Well-trained teachers will tailor lessons to kids based on their abilities, which in most classrooms will be varied.

  • Pull-out programs: Children attend special classes for math or reading or some other specific skill.

  • Push-in programs: A resource teacher comes to the classroom on a regular basis to provide enrichment in a particular subject area.

  • Acceleration: If your gifted child is in 4th grade but capable of 9th grade math, the district may arrange for him to take math at the middle or high school.

  • Curriculum compacting: Before beginning a new unit, a teacher offers a pre-test, allowing students to demonstrate their knowledge of the subject.

  • Grade skipping: Though this practice has fallen out of favor, it is regaining momentum in some places. The trick is proper evaluation of a student to see that he is ready to move ahead both academically and socially.

    Your school district may also have programs for children whose gifts are more artistic in nature. Look for clubs, after-school activities, and special classes that honor the talents of artistically gifted students.

    At Home
    Having a gifted child who loves to learn doesn't mean you need to be running a little schoolhouse at home; far from it. Help your child to soar by creating an environment that honors the gifts you know about — and tickles the ones that are just below the surface.

  • Provide opportunities, resources, and encouragement: What interests your gifted child? Dinosaurs? Space? Art? Take him to museums, movies, plays, and other events that allow him to learn more about what he already loves.

  • Share her gifts: Showcase your child's talents in front of "relevant audiences." Don't make Susie perform in front of the family if doing so embarrasses her. But find a class where performance is key.

  • Allow for unscheduled time: It sounds silly, but giving your gifted child time to dream, reflect, sit alone, and ruminate is truly important if you want to inspire creativity.

  • Learn from others: Connect with other parents whose kids are like yours — find them via the National Association for Gifted Children.