Budget cuts have left many gifted programs struggling to serve the brightest students. There are no mandates to provide gifted programs, so they are frequently cut, leaving teachers with few resources and opportunities for training.
In Beth Winton’s eighth grade gifted education class at Jefferson Middle School, students enjoy original joke day. Students write their own jokes and select the best to share.
“What do you get when you put Taylor Swift in a freezer?” asked Stephen Quackenbush. “A POPsicle.”
Winton believes that while writing jokes isn’t a typical middle school a activity, it helps her students focus, and build confidence. It’s a little beyond their comfort zone.
For five weeks her 120 students write and perform original skits, jokes, and parodies while learning about writing and comedy.
“If you have to stand up and tell us a joke and can’t quite get there, there is no way you will be able to do a school presentation,” said Winton to the class.