Gifted Program Expands to Include Multiple Schools

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Gifted children need relationships with others of similar abilities, and this need is being realized as a gifted program expands to include multiple schools for connections.

The curriculum comes from the Wisconsin Center for Academically Talented Youth. It takes the place of the students’ reading and language arts classes.

Jordan Backe, 11, said they just completed a nine-week project on the Amazon rain forest that challenged them to determine if humans can be a part of the rain forest without destroying it.

Classmate Lydia Fielder, 11, said at first she thought, “Yeah, I get to skip class.” That notion quickly changed.

“It took a lot more work than I thought it would,” she said.


Trevor-Wilmot students worked cooperatively on the project with students from Brighton, Elkhorn and Union Grove, communicating online and meeting several times throughout the project.

Students were assigned a role to explore, such as that of a cattle rancher, a mining contractor, a cultural preservationist or an energy company executive. They debated the question from those perspectives and were required to write a persuasive essay, among other assignments.

Riley Hagberg, 10, said she especially liked the mixed-grade environment. She said she liked hearing what the older kids had to say about her ideas and her writing.

Expanded gifted and talented programming

Curriculum director Tracy Donich said opportunities such as this will be available to identified students in all grades as a result of expanded gifted and talented programming approved by School Board.

Donich said a key part of this plan includes making program coordinator Pam Sorensen full time in the fall.

A variety of opportunities will be offered to students in and out of class, based on standards outlined by the National Association for Gifted Children.

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Gifted Program Expands to Include Multiple Schools

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