Gifted and Talented Topics and Issues

List of Opportunities


Gifted/Talented Department Opportunities


Grades K-2

Tomags Testing – The Tomags Gifted Math Assessment is administered to 2nd grade students who have scored in the 96%ile or above on 3 or more STAR tests or have been recommended by their classroom teachers as having outstanding math ability.

Enrichment Math – Enrichment materials based on Common Core math standards are provided to teachers for use in the classroom.

Individual Referrals – In some cases, students who appear to be extraordinarily advanced are referred for subject or grade acceleration.

Grades 3 – 5

Enrichment Math – Open to all grade levels.  Enrichment materials based on Common Core math standards are provided to teachers for use in the classroom

Math 24 – Open to Grades 4-5. Practices are held for several weeks leading up to a district tournament.  Six students are chosen at each grade level to travel to a Regional Math 24 Tournament held in Reedsburg.

Math Meet – Open to Grade 5. A Math Meet Screener is given to students that score above 95% on STAR testing. The top 20 students are chosen to attend Math Meet practice. After several weeks, the team is chosen by the math meet coach.  These students then travel to a Regional Math Meet.

Creative Arts Festival – Open to Grade 5. Students are chosen by art and music teachers, using the following guidelines: Gifted children usually move through the stages of visual development at a faster than normal pace. Students are usually self-directed, respond uniquely to light, color and sound, and are very creative and flexible. These children also think outside the box and demonstrate technical control, which results in a more elegant finished product.

VISUAL ART checklist:

  • Elaborates on other people’s ideas and uses them as a jumping off point as opposed to copying from others
  • Shows unique selection of art media for individual activity or classroom projects
  • Has unusual and richly imaginative ideas
  • Composes with unusual detail and skill
  • Displays compulsive artistic pursuit
  • A student may be artistically gifted if he or she has an unusual ability for expressing self, feelings, or moods through art, dance, drama, or music, exhibits creative expression, or has an unusual ability for seeing and observing things in detail.

Weekly Challenge Math – Open to anyone that wants to participate.

Young Authors’ Workshop (YAC) – Open to any student in grades 3-5 – Two students per grade level are chosen by a panel of judges for poetry, personal narrative, and creative writing or persuasive writing. Writing is evaluated for unique use of vocabulary, sense of humor, and abstract and complex thinking using the following guidelines:


  • A beginning that entices the audience to read more
  • An ending that makes readers think, feel or do
  • Logical and easy-to-follow organization
  • Descriptions that that show, not just tell
  • A voice and resulting tone that is appropriate to the subject and resonates with your audience
  • A voice that sounds like a real person
  • Strong feelings and honest statements
  • Strong verbs that show how actions are performed
  • Words that make ideas more specific
  • Words that are meaningful and memorable
  • Sentences that start in different ways
  • Correct spelling, including proper nouns
  • Punctuation that makes the writing easy to understand
  • Proper usage, particularly of technical terms

TOMAGS Gifted Math Assessment – Gifted math testing is administered to students that score consistently above 96%ile  on STAR math and is available to individual students based on classroom teacher or parent referrals.

Accelerated Math – Students who have needs that are not consistently met in the classroom may need to have a differentiated math plan that includes compacting math during. Students are chosen using the TOMAGS Gifted Math Assessment (111-120 or above), STAR math scores (consistently above 97%ile), advanced state standardized testing, and teacher recommendation.

Spelling Bee – Open to all – Students are selected by classroom teachers to participate in a school-wide bee.  The top spellers, based on the number of classrooms participating, advance to the Regional Bee held in Portage. (This is not run by the GT dept.)


Grades 6-8

Builders Club, Art Club, Game Club, Forensics, Battle of the Books, School Plays, Spelling Bee, Show Choir – All students can participate. Forensics and Battle of the Books are coordinated by the GT Department.

Math 24 – Open to Grade 6 – Practices are held for several weeks leading up to a district tournament.  Six students are chosen to travel to a Regional Math 24 Tournament.

Challenge Math – Open to Grade 6 – Challenge Math sheets are made available to any student interested in participating.  Students are able to earn points that are redeemable for small incentives.

Math Meet – Open to Grades 6, 7, and 8. A Math Meet Screener is given to students that score above 95%ile on STAR testing. The top students are chosen to attend Math Meet practice. After several weeks, the team is chosen by the math meet coaches.  These students then travel to a Regional Math Meet.

6th Grade math screener – This screener is given to students that score 90%ile or above on the STAR Math assessment, along with their teacher’s recommendation, and have an A in math. The score on the screener, along with STAR math scores, and grades in math, are used to choose students for the 7+ math class.

7+ Math – Students are chosen for 7+ math by the 6th grade math screener, STAR scores and math grades.

Leadership Day –  Grade 7. Twelve 6th grade students are nominated by their team of 6th grade teachers in the spring of their 6th grade year. These students attend a leadership day in September of their 7th grade year:

 Leadership Checklist:

  • Well-organized and organizes others
  • Recognizes skills and abilities possessed by others
  • Interacts with others easily showing social skills
  • Recognizes and can articulate the goals of a group
  • Articulates ideas clearly
  • Listens to others empathetically
  • Understands how people feel and how groups function
  • Gives directions clearly and effectively
  • Exercises authority reliably and responsibly
  • Adopt non-leadership roles within a group
  • Establishes the mood of a group
  • Supports others in a group when appropriate
  • Coordinates the work of several individuals
  • Is often asked for ideas and suggestions
  • Is looked to by others when something must be decided
  • Knows what needs to be done

Student Council Open to Grade 8 (This is not run by the GT dept.)

Promega Science Day –  Grade 8. Students are chosen by the science criteria used to determine science acceleration and by teacher recommendation. Chosen students spend the morning in the laboratory at Promega in Madison.

8th Grade Mentors – These students are chosen by the mentor leader using  teacher recommendations.(This is not run by the GT dept.)


Music, AP Courses, Visual Arts, Performing Arts, FBLA, FFA, Forensics,  and other opportunities for higher level learning are in place at the high school level.  In addition to these, the Gifted/Talented Department provides:

“Lunch Bunch” – Several times a year G/T staff meets during ARP with students who have been grade level accelerated or referred by classroom teachers. These meetings center on:

Grade 9 –

Student Concerns


Long Range Planning

Goal Setting

Grade 10 –

Student Concerns

PSAT Testing


Youth Options

AP Classes


Grade 11-

Student Concerns

PSAT Testing

Youth Options


Early Action and Early Decision Admissions

College and Scholarship Applications

College and Scholarship Letters of Recommendation

College Admission Essays


Grade 12

Student Concerns

Scholarship Letters of Recommendation and Deadlines

College Resources – Faculty Webpages, Counseling Offices, Writing Labs, Financial Aid

Debriefing – What do you wish someone had told you or helped you with early in your high school career?

College Visits

Students are given the opportunity to visit and tour college campuses. Each year students are surveyed to see where the group is interested in going. Some of the past trips have been to: The University of Chicago, University of Wisconsin campuses at Madison, Milwaukee, Platteville, Whitewater, and Baraboo, along with Edgewood College, and Marquette University.

One-on-One Mentoring – Occasionally, students are referred to the GT Department for individual services.  In those cases, conferences are set up with the student and parents


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