Middle School Newsletter

Northland Innovation Center

Middle School SAGE News

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Welcome Back

The middle school teachers want to welcome all of our gifted students and families back for an exciting 2019-2020 school year. You will be receiving a gifted newsletter quarterly throughout the year. In this newsletter, it is our hope that we are able to achieve multiple goals:


First, we hope that this newsletter will provide you with valuable information about your child's gifted experience as the year progresses.


Second, we will be able to provide information about upcoming events, allowing you to update your kitchen calendar and ensure your attendance to any gifted events, either during school hours or at night.


Lastly, we will be providing online resources, articles and books that will support you as a parent of a gifted child.


As always, thank you for being an integral partner in your child's gifted education. We look forward to you enjoying the following newsletter as we start the new school year!

Program Goals

  • To provide curricula that focuses on more elaborate, complex, and in-depth study of major ideas, key concepts and themes that integrate knowledge within and across disciplines and encourages the use of higher-level thinking skills.


  • To provide curricula that sets high standards and that demands rigorous expectations for student work and performance demonstration.


  • To provide instruction that allows for the development and application of productive thinking skills and enables students to re-conceptualize existing knowledge and/or generate new understandings that deal with real-life problems and issues.


  • To provide instruction that is flexibly paced and matched to the student’s ability, pre- assessment data, learning style, interest, and motivation.


  • To provide opportunities for students to develop leadership and group interaction skills that allows student-centered discussion and Socratic questioning.


  • To require project based learning of gifted students that represents application, analysis, and synthesis of knowledge.


  • To encourage an environment that fosters a positive attitude toward creative challenges, investigative activity, and knowledge creation.

What day does my student attend SAGE?

Regular Middle School SAGE Days:

  • Monday - 7th & 8th grade (New Mark)
  • Tuesday - 7th & 8th grade (Northgate & Maple Park)
  • Wednesday - 7th & 8th grade (Antioch, Most 7th/8th grade Private and Home School students)
  • Thursday - 6th grades (Gateway/Explorers, Marvels, Eastgate, 6th grade Home & Private School students)
  • Friday - 6th grade (Gateway/Ambassadors, Champions, Lobos, Pirates & PEGS)

SAGE Lunch Time

6th, 7th, & 8th grades - 11 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.

Upcoming Events

Middle School (6th-8th grade) teachers will be visiting each school’s Back to School/Orientation Nights over the next few weeks. Feel free to visit with the MS SAGE teachers at these events.


Aug. 19th&20th Gateway

Aug. 20th Eastgate

Aug. 20th&21st Antioch

Aug. 20th Maple Park

Aug. 20th Northgate

Aug. 29th New Mark


K-8 SAGE Center Open House


Please Mark Your Calendar for K-8 SAGE Center Open House and

PAGS Ice Cream Social


Tuesday, August 27th from 4p.m.-7 p.m.

Fall Semester 2019 Course Descriptions

2019-2020 6th Grade Units of Study Descriptions

Battle of the Brains

Students will compete in a challenge to design a new exhibit for Science City at Union Station as well as work to creatively solve selected community-based problems.

Biomedical Engineering

In this hands-on unit, students will review human body systems and use the engineering design process to develop prototypes that improve function for the human body. Much of the work is done with a small group, with the frequent option to work independently. Students will build a lower-leg prosthetic, analyze and build DNA based on phenotypes, perform a simulated coronary angioplasty and stenting, design a cast or splint for a broken bone, design an enteric coating for medication, and other exciting challenges.

Da Vinci Mechanical Engineers

Students will create working models of Leonardo da Vinci’s greatest inventions. Through this work we will study and get to know Leo in a new way. We will even try our hand in painting a fresco.

Destination Imagination

This unit is here to inspire and equip students to become the next generation of innovators and leaders. Each year there are seven new standards-based Challenges in STEM, Improv, Visual Arts, Service Learning, and Early Learning. Each Challenge is open-ended and enables student teams to learn and experience the creative process from imagination to innovation

Students will have fun and gain confidence in their ability to solve any challenge. In working to solve the Challenges, teams will learn 21stcentury skills (creativity, critical thinking, collaboration, communication, citizenship and courage) to build on their unique strengths.

Digital Communications

Students will learn a variety of digital communication skills, including filming and editing skills, storyboarding and scripting, special effects techniques, and on camera presentation skills. They will create short films, news stories, personal narrations and commercials using digital film cameras, green screen technology, and Adobe editing software.

FLL

FIRST LEGO league teams will research a real-world problem and are challenged to develop a solution to address the problem. The theme changes for each year. Students must design, build, program a robot using LEGO MINDSTORM technology, and then compete on a table-top playing field.


Forensic Science

Students will work a simulated crime scene and use the tools that a real forensic scientist would use to help solve the crime. They will work weekly on labs designed to help them understand the career of forensic science. Students will study subjects such as: fingerprinting, bone identification, blood and fluid identification, blood splatter, ballistics, and much more.

Future Cities

Students will work together to research the real-world challenges facing the cities of tomorrow. They will use design software to virtually create their own ideal community that provides solutions to today’s problems. Their team designs will be submitted to a national competition where their skills as city planners and managers will be measured.

Game Makers

Students will learn to use the tools in the Fab Lab to create a new game of their own design. Create recess games for the SAGE center and adapt games for all abilities.

Graphic Design

In this course, students will learn the basic elements of graphic design and how they are used in various formats to create graphic art. Students will then learn how to use professional graphic design software programs, Adobe Illustrator and PhotoShop, along with implementing basic design elements, to create a variety of computer generated art projects.

Infinite Universe

In this hands-on unit, students will learn about the moons of Jupiter, and apply what they learn to develop a settlement on each of Jupiter’s moons. They will deepen understanding of the invisible universe, including the electromagnetic spectrum. In addition, students will learn how various wavelengths can be used to “see” things we cannot see with our eyes-allowing scientists to detect and image objects, phenomena, and sources of energy far off in space. Finally, students will study fascinating aspects of the Sun and Earth and the critical connections between the two.

Interior Design

Interior design students will build the skills necessary to create inspiring spaces, by taking an interdisciplinary approach that draws from art, architecture, and digital design.

Kitchen Chemistry

Students will look at cooking from a scientific basis. Students will conduct an edible experiment and look at the science behind how it all works. Not only will chemical principles be examined, but also biochemical, biological, microbiological, and maybe even a little physics.


Photography

In this course, students will learn about the history of photography, basic photography terms and concepts, the science behind how cameras work, the parts of a DSLR camera, and how to properly use one. Students will discover how photography has evolved from documenting moments in time to become a form of art, then transfer this knowledge and their skills into composing a variety of photographic art.

Simulated Adventures

On the first adventure, students will plan a trip to the top of Mount Everest. They will study the climate and run tests to determine the type of clothing they will need. Students will calculate the load a bridge can hold before crossing over a dangerous crevasse. Students will also need to create an escape plan for when altitude sickness overtakes a team member. The second adventure involves survival skills needed when crashing into the South Pacific, including building a simulated shelter and purifying water.

Special Effects

Students will learn how to edit and add effects to film. They will learn how to edit film speed, add transitions and lighting effects, add special effects to make people look like holograms, add light sabers, and much more using Adobe Premiere Pro and Adobe After Effects. Filming will be done outside of SAGE time or students will use videos supplied by the teacher.

2019-2020 7th & 8th Grade Units of Study Descriptions

Battle of the Brains

Students will compete in a challenge to design a new exhibit for Science City at Union Station as well as work to creatively solve selected community-based problems.

Chain Reactions

Students will explore the inner workings and functions of an automaton, study gears, and put them into practice in a unique project. Students will apply their skills to create automata machines and climbing wooden toys.

Destination Imagination

This unit is here to inspire and equip students to become the next generation of innovators and leaders. Each year there are seven new standards-based Challenges in STEM, Improv, Visual Arts, Service Learning, and Early Learning. Each Challenge is open-ended and enables student teams to learn and experience the creative process from imagination to innovation

Students will have fun and gain confidence in their ability to solve any challenge. In working to solve the Challenges, teams will learn 21stcentury skills (creativity, critical thinking, collaboration, communication, citizenship and courage) to build on their unique strengths.

Family History and Makers

In this class, students will research their family tree. During this research, students will also help transcribe valuable data for future generations of fact hunters. We will also extract your DNA and create a family tree to be shared with your family. *Please make sure your family is ok with you digging in their past before taking this class.

FLL/FTC

Teams in FIRST LEGO League (FLL) will research a real-world problem and are challenged to develop a solution to address the problem. The theme changes for each year. Students must design, build, program a robot using LEGO MINDSTORM technology, and then compete on a table-top playing field.

The FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) teams are required to develop strategies to build robots based on sound engineering principles. Students will also be challenged to participate in community outreach, design, and other real-world accomplishments.

Future Cities

Students will work together to research the real-world challenges facing the cities of tomorrow. They will use design software to virtually create their own ideal community that provides solutions to today’s problems. Their team designs will be submitted to a national competition where their skills as city planners and managers will be measured.

Graphic Design

In this course, students will learn the basic elements of graphic design and how they are used in various formats to create graphic art. Students will then learn how to use professional graphic design software programs, Adobe Illustrator and PhotoShop, along with implementing basic design elements, to create a variety of computer generated art projects.

Infinite Universe

In this hands-on unit, students will learn about the moons of Jupiter, and apply what they learn to develop a settlement on each of Jupiter’s moons. They will deepen understanding of the invisible universe, including the electromagnetic spectrum. In addition, students will learn how various wavelengths can be used to “see” things we cannot see with our eyes-allowing scientists to detect and image objects, phenomena, and sources of energy far off in space. Finally, students will study fascinating aspects of the Sun and Earth and the critical connections between the two.

Interactive Fiction

Students will study, design and create their own Interactive Fiction games and narratives. Interactive fiction can take the form of video games & board games (either adventure, role playing or quest/hero narratives), digital gamebooks, and graphic/visual novels using narrative software. The reader or player is given choices at different points in the text; these decisions determine the flow and outcome of the story. Students will write, design and create art for these stories. This is the class for students who have lots of creativity & stories to tell!

Interior Design

Interior design students will build the skills necessary to create inspiring spaces, by taking an interdisciplinary approach that draws from art, architecture, and digital design.

Kitchen Chemistry

Students will look at cooking from a scientific basis. Students will conduct an edible experiment and look at the science behind how it all works. Not only will chemical principles be examined, but also biochemical, biological, microbiological, and maybe even a little physics.

Laser Etching

Students will be using the Epilog Laser Cutter/Etcher, along with Adobe Illustrator, to design and create multiple projects. Some projects include a wooden notebook cover, tile coasters, a wooden puzzle, an acrylic keychain, and/or repurpose glass jars. Students will learn how to convert images using SVG transfers, design using the shape tools, and much more.

Photography

In this course, students will learn about the history of photography, basic photography terms and concepts, the science behind how cameras work, the parts of a DSLR camera, and how to properly use one. Students will discover how photography has evolved from documenting moments in time to become a form of art, then transfer this knowledge and their skills into composing a variety of photographic art.

Sports and Exercise Science

Sports and exercise science concentrates on the study of human movement from developmental, mechanical, and motor control. Students study everything about the human body, from bones and muscles. They will research exercise movement, use measurement tools to collect data on physical development, and also partner with Gladstone Community Center to create a science-based fitness program.

Textiles Studio

Students will learn how to use new sewing skills including zippers, gatherings, casings, and decorative stitches to create unique designs. There will also be a collaborative part of the unit where students will work together to design a textile product for a cause they care about. Any student can take this class, regardless of any prior experience.

Special Effects

Students will learn how to edit and add effects to film. They will learn how to edit film speed, add transitions and lighting effects, add special effects to make people look like holograms, add light sabers, and much more using Adobe Premiere Pro and Adobe After Effects. Filming will be done outside of SAGE time or students will use videos supplied by the teacher.

38th Annual GAM Conference

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Awards and Scholarships nomination due Sept. 1

Through awards and scholarships, the Gifted Association of Missouri celebrates the efforts of many educators, parents, and friends as they continue expanding the promise of gifted education. Colleagues may nominate individuals for awards and submit letters of support to the Scholarship and Award Committee. This committee makes their recommendation to the GAM Board of Directors. Award recipients are honored in October at the annual Missouri Conference on Gifted Education. GAM award and scholarship recipients must be GAM members and attend the GAM Fall Conference on Gifted Education. Applications and nominations for these awards and scholarships should be submitted online or mailed on or before September 1to:

Gifted Association of Missouri Executive Secretary – Awards & Scholarships

P.O. Box 3252

Springfield, MO 65808

THE DEDE SMITH FRIEND OF GIFTED AWARD

​Dede, one of GAM’s founders, served as GAM president and editor. Under her insightful guidance, the Missouri Scholars Academy was established. Dede initiated and served as Director of Drury’s Center for Gifted Education until her untimely death in 1991. The Dede Smith Friend of Gifted Award is awarded by nomination.GAM invites nominations of individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the field of gifted education in Missouri. An individual who is eligible to be a recipient of this award will belong to one of the following categories: legislator or other elected official, administrator, counselor, regular classroom teacher, media person, business person or mentor. (Click PDF above for instructions)

THE DELMA JOHNSON OUTSTANDING EDUCATOR OF GIFTED AWARD

The Delma Johnson Outstanding Educator of Gifted Award is for educators who have made outstanding contributions to the field of gifted education in Missouri. GAM invites eligible nominees who belong to one of the following categories: teacher of gifted, coordinator of gifted programming, or college professor directly involved with gifted students or teachers of gifted. (Click PDF above for instructions)

THE NORINE KERBER PARENT OF GIFTED AWARD

The Norine Kerber Parent of Gifted Award recognizes parents who have made outstanding contributions to the field of gifted education in Missouri. GAM invites nominees who belong to one of the following categories: parent, step-parent, or guardian of a gifted child in the state of Missouri. (Click PDF above for instructions)

THE BOB ROACH SCHOLARSHIP FOR NEW TEACHERS Sponsored by Drury University

In 1999, GAM created the New Teacher Scholarship to promote the certification of teachers in the field of gifted education. In 2007, the award was renamed the Bob Roach Scholarship for New Teachers in honor of the continuous commitment of gifted educator, Bob Roach. In 2010, the gifted community lost this life-long educator and friend. GAM honors Bob’s passion for Gifted Education with a $250 scholarship awarded annually at the Gifted Association of Missouri Conference. To apply, applicants must be in the process of obtaining certification in gifted education and in their first or second year of teaching gifted. (Click PDF above for instructions)

NICHOLAS GREEN DISTINGUISHED STUDENT AWARD

The Nicholas Green Distinguished Student Award is awarded to one student each year from Missouri. Recipients are given a $250.00 scholarship along with a Certificate of Excellence by the Gifted Association of Missouri (GAM). Students selected for the award are between grades 3 and 6 and have distinguished themselves in academic achievement, leadership, and/or the arts. Nominations, application, and parental release form for the Missouri NGDS Award must be postmarked by June 1 to:

Gifted Association of Missouri Executive Secretary - Nicholas Green Award
P.O. Box 3252
​Springfield, MO 65808