Norristown Area School District

Gifted Education - October/November 2016

East Norriton Middle School - Ms. Strickland

The first trimester at ENMS is currently moving full speed ahead. The 5th graders are currently learning how to forecast a winter storm and make predictions as a meteorologist as they prepare for their eMission coming up in December. They have also just begin communicating with students their age in Brazil through an ePal project. The 6th graders have been paying close attention to the recent hurricanes that have been forming in the Atlantic as they learn how to track hurricanes in preparation for their upcoming eMission in November. The 7th graders are dreaming up ingenious, multi-use purposes for public space for the Future City project. Students in 8th grade are putting on their thinking caps as they study some of the most popular myths, mysteries, and legends in society trace back the origin of the stories. These students are also currently working on enhancing their writing as they craft stories for our school newspaper.

Cole Manor, Marshall Street and Gotwals Elementary Schools - Ms. Raieta

This year’s focus for grades 3 and 4 is Exploration. Students have shared places and objects that they have explored. We learned about explorer Christopher Columbus’ voyage to what he thought was India. We compared accounts of the journey through a poem and entries from his log. We are reading the novel, Chasing Vermeer by Blue Balliet, which involves explorations of pentominoes, secret codes, art, and mysterious events.

Grade 2 is investigating Cycles and Patterns. In Round Trip by Ann Jonas, students glimpsed an unusual cycle with the illustrations in the book. You begin the book in the typical way reading it front to back. At the “normal” end, you turn the book upside down and read backwards to complete the trip. The pictures turn into something different when turned upside down. We have just finished mobiles showing the seasonal cycle.

Norristown Area High School - Ms. Faylor

It was an awesome start for the 2016-17 school year for the 9th, 10th, and 11th grade gifted classes. To start off the school year the students created presentations about themselves and focused on setting goals for the year, both personally and academically. The creativity was flying! Who knew that one’s goals could be compared to a bowling game or song lyrics. Besides setting goals, the students have been using their skills to analyze the election through readings, videos, discussions, and political cartoon analysis. I look forward to a year filled with creativity and wonderment!

Hancock, Paul V. Fly & Whitehall Elementary Schools - Ms. McGeehan

The Paul Fly, Whitehall, and Hancock Discovery students are very busy! Some are investigating and working through a mysterious art crime, while others are exploring the outdoors and investigating all the wonders that the change in seasons has to offer. In other grades, kids are learning about renewable and alternative energy sources and what it means to “Going Green.” Last but not least, the Paul Fly Discovery students are continuing with the

“Gardens Help Kids Grow” project, where they are involved in hands on science and gardening, school based community service, and a collaborative learning experience across all grade levels throughout the Discovery program. They recently conducted a taste test with some of the vegetables they grew in the garden including eggplant, basil, and tomatoes!

Eisenhower & Stewart Middle School - Mr. McNeil

5th Grade has begun examining natural disasters by looking at the science behind them and their global impact. This will culminate in an Emission at the administration building on November 30th 2016.

6th Grade has wrapped up their study of how various governments work and are currently working on how rival societies form. They are currently analyzing three of the major cultures (Athenian, Spartan and Persian) at the Battle of Thermopile.

7th Grade is currently working on the logistics of developing their future city through the Sim City game and classroom instruction. Any donations of recyclable goods and model parts are greatly appreciated.

8th Grade is studying the media, how it is covering the main events in the news and how to develop an argument for a specific audience. They will begin to put on their journalistic hats and cover several major historical events from the perspective of a reporter.

Dates: Week of 10/24/ 16- Presentations for initial research projects.

November 30th: 5th Grade Hurricane Emission.

Norristown Area High School - Mr. DiNenno

Students in the Gifted Seminar IV class have been working on several projects as the year has begun. First, student have been developing collaboration and oral communication skills through participation in Socratic Discussion. Rather than a debate, where individuals challenge and compete, Socratic discussion allows for participants to build upon the ideas of others. In addition, students are working on a project wherein they will take on the role of lobbyists, advocating a position on behalf of an independent organization. Students are working in teams to argue the benefits or hazards of Hyrdaulic Fracturing in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to a panel of teachers and administrators. Finally, students are currently working on proposals detailing their ideas for a service learning project on a topic of their choosing. Students have developed projects, both in and out of school, with topics ranging from helping the homeless and advocating for a stronger school climate to organizing fundraising events to benefit a particular cause.


Students enrolled in the Gifted Seminar Independent Study program have been meeting to discuss and develop their project ideas. They are encouraged to select topics of personal or academic interest and will spend the semester developing research and project goals, meeting with their project mentor and gifted advisor, and developing presentations which will be made before teachers and administrators.