Skinner Middle School staff and students are engaged in a single-minded pursuit of high academic achievement for all. Teachers provide differentiated instruction for gifted learners that is rigorous and engaging including the use of extension activities for their subject areas to ensure students are challenged individually.
Skinner uses the Upstream Curriculum to support all students in their social emotional learning which helps to strengthen resilience, reduce anxiety, and enhance overall well-being. Additional targeted supports are offered by the mental health team, outside organizations, and through the GT resource teacher.
The GT resource teacher at Skinner consults with all stakeholders to create meaningful and effective Advanced Learning Plan goals for gifted students that help guide classroom teachers in their instruction. Other services include identification and development of gifted and/or talent pool students, targeted collaboration to build capacity of teachers to provide differentiated instruction, providing enrichment opportunities to students and families which can help meet the academic and affective needs of gifted learners, universal screening for all 6th graders, individualized GT testing (by request), partnering with mental health providers at the school, and providing resources for above grade level learners.
For more information about gifted programming, please contact Skinner’s GT coordinator, Ms. Becca Glosser via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Visit the DPS Gifted Education website
Gifted and Talented Programming at Skinner includes:
Skinner offers differentiation for gifted students through advanced curriculum in this core subject area. Placement in these classes require teacher recommendations in addition to test scores. Curriculum includes grade level academic standards while working at a faster pace to include depth and complexity in the various subject matters. These classes are designed to meet the goals of the ALP (Advanced Learning Plan).
Grade level acceleration is available for those students who require advanced instruction in math. This path places 8th grade students in 10th grade Integrated Math II, taught on campus by a Skinner teacher.
Skinner offers differentiation for gifted students through advanced curriculum in this core subject area. Curriculum includes grade level academic standards while working at a faster pace to include depth and complexity in the various subject matters. These classes are designed to meet the goals of the ALP (Advanced Learning Plan).
Gifted and Talented children are present in all student groups, regardless of gender, disability, English language proficiency, economic status, ethnic or cultural background.
All Skinner Scholars compete in the school science fair. Students receiving high scores for superior projects are able to advance to the Metro Science Fair held at Auraria Campus in Denver. Skinner has had several students win distinguished project awards at this event, including scholarship money. Skinner has had scholars advance to the State of Colorado Science Fair to showcase their projects.
Skinner scholars are able to differentiate elective classes by interest and choice. Classes include drama including participation in the DPS Shakespeare Festival, yearbook, woodworking, STEAM, advanced Spanish class for native speakers, and choir. The jazz band performs in venues around Denver in addition to concerts at school.
Skinner employs a full time STEAM teacher who works with all three grade levels. Students are able to advance through the curriculum at their own pace and increase base knowledge levels by choice and interest. The teacher collaborates with the science teachers to develop and implement STEAM lessons that use multidisciplinary techniques.
Girls Engineering STEM Convention. This convention is held every May for 7th grade girls. The Society of Women Engineers sponsors this event. Students attend hands-on sessions in a variety of STEM activities to explore careers they may have not considered.
NHD’s core program is its competition in which students in grades 6–12 choose a topic and dive deeply into the past by conducting extensive research in libraries, archives, and museums. They then present their conclusions and evidence through papers, exhibits, performances, documentaries, or websites, moving through a series of contest levels where they are evaluated by professional historians and educators. Through this process, students develop skills in communication, project management, and historical thinking.
This program is sponsored through the Community Resources program and is designed to pair students with a mentor in a career field the student is passionate about. Previous Skinner students have had mentorships with architects, web designers, songwriters, psychologists, and engineers.
The GT coordinator helps teachers acquire guest speakers and/or programs throughout the year to provide students with exposure to different topics of interest. Past speakers have included a nuclear engineer, an astrophysicist, a nurse, Skyping from McMurdo Station in Antarctica, and authors for reading/writing workshops sponsored by local bookstores.
Websites for GT Resources: