Talent Development and Advanced Learning
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At Whittier, we believe that all students have academic talent. We also recognize that students vary in their needs throughout the day, in different subject areas, and over time as they grow from kindergarteners to 5th graders. Students with advanced learning needs may require learning experiences that are deeper, more complex, or at a faster pace.  Our goal at Whittier is to use our rigorous IB programming to ensure that all students discover their unique talents and strengths, while also ensuring that our students receive a differentiated curriculum to feel truly challenged all day, every day. Achieving that goal requires a lot of teamwork and collaboration!

We are very fortunate at Whittier to have a staff of incredibly talented teachers who work in collaboration with our three-person team devoted to advanced learning needs. Our team consists of:

·      Dianne Skoy, Advanced Learner Interventionist for primary grades. Dianne works with identified advanced learners and other high-ability students within the classroom in collaboration with the classroom teacher.

·      Ford Campbell, Advanced Learner Interventionist for grades 3-5. Like Dianne, Ford works with identified advanced learners and other high-ability students within the classroom in collaboration with the classroom teacher.

·      Maggie Smith, Advanced Differentiation Specialist.
Maggie supports Whittier staff in meeting the needs of advanced learners and developing academic talent throughout the school as an academic coach. She provides professional development, collaborative planning and teaching for advanced learners and high ability students.

Throughout the year, our team will be working with students and teachers to provide consistently challenging learning opportunities for students with advanced learning needs. We’ll be offering our parent community a few opportunities to learn more about advanced learner programming at Whittier this year and we’d love to see you there. A couple of upcoming opportunities are:

·      Literacy Night and Book Fair, October 27th at 4:30pm
We’ll be offering activities and information about advanced learner services at Whittier.

·      Parenting  Advanced Learners groupDate TBD
This is an eight week course, meeting once a week, for parents of advanced learners. The group focuses on the social and emotional needs of advanced learners, and provides education, support, and opportunities to connect with other parents. A concurrent group for advanced learners will run in a separate room. If you are interested, please fill out the attached form and return to Whittier.