Talented and Gifted
John R. Jerome, Executive Director Teaching & Learning, 6-8
Since 1940 the Brockton School Department has shown a commitment to the education of the talented and gifted by providing programs intended to insure the academic success of such students. In its current form, the school system provides a substantially differentiated program which takes into consideration the individual learning styles, special abilities and interests of our most able learners. Brockton's Talented & Gifted Program offers an observably different academic setting and instructional program for those students who can excel beyond the normal expectations of students of the same grades.
Over the years, Brockton's Talented & Gifted Program has grown from a single multi-graded classroom to one or two classes per grade in one school. The program then expanded from the single classrooms in grades four through six at the Dr. William H. Arnone Community School to additional locations in the Joseph F. Plouffe Elementary School, Louis F. Angelo Elementary School, and the Gilmore Academy. Currently approximately twenty-five students per class attend the program in one classroom each in grades four and five at the above named elementary schools and three classrooms each of grades six, seven and eight at the Gilmore Academy.
The Talented & Gifted Program brings together students from throughout the city in a full-time program. Each classroom teacher's specific and sole charge is to teach the program for the Talented & Gifted. The subject areas of English language arts, reading, mathematics, science and social studies are the responsibilities of the teachers in the program.
The services of specialists in art, music, physical education, health, and the Instructional Resource Centers, as well as administrative support services, are provided through the general resources of the schools. Students in the Talented & Gifted Program are most often integrated with the rest of the school population for these services. Other opportunities exist for frequent integration through special projects and field trips planned by all teachers of a given grade level, through instrumental music, band and chorus, and in daily lunchroom and recess activities in each school.
In order to encourage students to take an active role in their learning, teachers in the Talented & Gifted Program must establish an environment in which students can investigate and experiment in authentic ways. Teachers will, therefore, provide students a wide variety of models, materials, activities, demonstrations, games, investigations, interesting problems and conversations in the content being explored in areas within and beyond the Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks. Thus, students will spend daily sustained time engaged in authentic learning activities. Students will work cooperatively to share ideas, solutions and strategies and confirm that there are multiple ways to communicate and to solve problems. An appreciation of the importance of learning from one another and the importance of reflection, guided by the teacher, will enhance the learning process.