Dear Students and Parents,
Welcome to Lewis and Clark Middle School – home of the Trailblazers. My name is Melissa Shrago and I am the Gifted Facilitator
at Lewis and Clark. I look forward to working with you during the school year.
Lewis and Clark Middle School has maintained an
outstanding record of academic excellence. Students who attend Lewis and Clark are well prepared to meet the academic rigors of high school. Our
mission is to provide a rigorous academic experience that is based on
research and best practices and enables all students to achieve their
The goal of the Gifted and Talented program is to offer a
differentiated rigorous curriculum by providing curricular and
instructional adaptations that address the unique needs of high ability
learners. At Lewis and Clark Middle School, the program is
organized to address these needs through a combination of the following
o Advanced Classes
o Enrichment Activities and Clubs
Our Gifted and Talented Program at Lewis and Clark is based on best
practices. We want to support your high ability learner. We will be
making sure our courses are differentiated. We will support staff
through collaboration and professional development and by planning and
providing opportunities for your child. In this packet you will find
detailed information about our Gifted and Talented Program. Please read
through the information provided. I have also included a Student
Planning Sheet for students to use as guide to plan activities they
would like to participate in this year.
Should you have any questions throughout the year, please contact Mrs. Shrago at 402-557-4300 x 7303 or firstname.lastname@example.org
A strong partnership between school and home is vital to the success of
our children. Thank you for supporting your child academically, which
has resulted in their sterling success.
Mrs. Melissa Shrago
Lewis and Clark Middle School
Goal of the Gifted & Talented Program
Lewis and Clark offers
many academic courses and activities to enrich the curriculum
established by the Omaha Public Schools. Our Gifted & Talented (GATE)
program is designed for students who wish to be challenged
through academic competition, honors courses, special activities,
and programs. We believe that all students need high expectations and
challenges based on individual needs. Our classroom teachers
use differentiated instruction in their lessons to meet the needs and
interest of all levels of learners. Students are expected to
develop self-discipline by meeting deadlines, asking questions, and
acquiring organizational and study skills as they strive to become
both independent and successful at the middle level and beyond.
The Omaha Public
Schools’ method of identifying gifted and talented students is modeled
after the NAGC (National Association of Gifted Children).
Identification includes performance at 130 or above on IQ assessments
and 95% or above on any sub-tests of the California Achievement Tests.
Selection for the
Gifted and Talented Education (GATE) program at Lewis and Clark can also
be determined by a student’s performance in certain courses.
Identification encompasses the following five areas: Intellectual, Academic, Creative, Leadership, and Visual/Performing Arts.
Middle school is an opportunity for students to self-select areas that
allow them to explore and capitalize on their strengths, display their
talents, and excel. Whether it is found in their coursework, a
competition, a contest, or an extracurricular activity, a student’s
giftedness and/or talents can blossom and develop at Lewis and Clark Middle School.
Wondering what gifted and talented education at Lewis and Clark Middle School or OPS is all about? Click on the title:
Lewis and Clark Brochure District GATE Brochure
Gifted and Talented Education (GATE)
Coordinated by the Office of Gifted and Talented
The newest program of the United States Academic Decathlon for middle
school students was created to provide opportunities to experience the
challenges of a rigorous team and individual competition in five events:
Language and Literature, Mathematics, Music, Science, and Social
Studies. The Pentathlon theme parallels that of the high school Academic
Decathlon program. (currently optional for a school to participate)
Book Blasters is a district-wide competition that involves a team of
students who are responsible for reading approximately 12 selected
novels. Teams then compete to see who reigns supreme in knowledge of the
Duke Talent Identification Program (Duke TIP): The 7th
grade talent search through Duke University provides an opportunity for
high ability students to pursue an above-level testing experience.
Poetry SLAMS: Each
fall and spring student poets from each middle school take the stage
and share their writing with their peers. SLAMS provide an outlet to
express feelings, thoughts and ideas with an audience that yearns for
Quiz Bowl: Quiz
Bowl is an academic competition. A four-member team competes against
the clock answering questions from various disciplines. Skills, such as
teamwork, cooperative group discussion, problem solving, and reaction
time, are enhanced through practices and competitions.
Read to Succeed (R2S): Middle
Level schools with fifth and six grade students may compete in this
elementary competition. Students read 10 novels (Big Ten) and compete in
a team approach to gain a spot in the Super Ten competition. The
contest was designed to promote and encourage the love of reading. (middle schools with 5th and 6th grade students)
Seventh and Eighth grade students (selected) for the Scholars program
engage in activities that are goal-oriented. Students learn more about
themselves, support on another, and achieve success at school. Various
events are planned to prepare students for their high school years and
beyond i.e., College Campus tours, Gallup Strength Finder, ACT prep,
etiquette course and more.
Think Tank: Think Tank is a competitive problem-solving event for 7th and 8th graders held on the UNO campus. This day long event features a game that involves creative problem solving.
Lewis and Clark Middle School
Gifted and Talented Enrichment Activities and Competitions
Book Blasters is a district-wide competition that involves a team of
students who are responsible for reading approximately eighteen to
twenty selected novels. Teams then compete to see who reigns supreme in
knowledge of the novels’ content.
All Buffett students participate in a written geography test.
Participants with the highest scores move on to Buffett’s oral Geography
Bee. The winner of Buffett’s Geography Bee takes a written Qualifying
Test for the state Geography Bee.
Buffett students in Grades 6, 7 and 8 have the opportunity to
participate in the Nebraska History Day Contest. Each year there is a
theme that presents students with many fascinating opportunities to
explore history. Students choose one of eight categories to participate
National Junior Honor Society:
National Junior Honor Society is open to 7th and 8th grade students
with a 3.75 cumulative grade point average or higher. Acceptance is
based on scholarship, leadership, service and character. Induction of
new members takes place in the spring.
The Spelling Bee is sponsored by the Omaha World-Herald. All Buffett
students take a written spelling test to determine the field of eligible
Talent Identification Program:
The 7th Grade Talent Search through Duke University provides an
opportunity for highly able students to pursue an above-level testing
experience. Eligible students to take the ACT or SAT must have scored
at the 95 percentile or higher on a grade level standardized achievement
test which for OPS is the California Achievement Test.
Think Tank is a competitive problem solving event for 7th and 8th
graders at UNO. It features a game that involves creative problem
Math contests/competitions are available for all grade levels throughout
the year. Students in Grades 5 and 6 are selected to participate by
classroom performance and teacher nomination. Students in Grades 7 and 8
must be a member of MATHCOUNTS to participate in competitions.
Quiz Bowl: Quiz
Bowl is an academic competition for students in grades 7 and 8. A four
member team competes against the clock answering questions from various
disciplines. Skills such as team work, cooperative group discussion,
problem solving and reaction time are enhanced through practices and
MATHCOUNTS Competition is a national middle school coaching and
competitive mathematics program that promotes mathematics achievement
through a series of fun and engaging “bee” style contests. It is
supported by the National Society of Professional Engineers at the state
and local levels.
African American History Challenge:
The AAHC is a national educational program designed by the 100 Black
Men of America, Inc. to enhance the study of African-American history.
The goal of the local competition is to encourage pride, self-worth, and
an appreciation of the African-American legacy and culture in Omaha
Science Bowl is a fun, fast-paced, tournament-style academic competition
that challenges and recognizes middle school students’ knowledge of
science and mathematics.
The newest program of United States Academic Decathlon for middle
school students, grades 6-7-8, was created to provide opportunities for
students to experience the challenges of a rigorous team and individual
competition in five events: Language and Literature, Mathematics, Music,
Science and Social Science. The Pentathlon theme parallels that of the
high school Academic Decathlon program.
Future City Competition: This
program offers students a fun way to build their math and science
skills and learn about engineering by solving the real-world problems in
designing cities of the future. Grades 7-8 can compete, 6th graders can participate.
7th and 8th Grade Leadership Team:
Students who have demonstrated the positive qualities of a leader are
nominated and chosen from each grade level. Students attend selected
activities and workshops sponsored by the OPS Gifted and Talented
7th and 8th Grade Scholars:
The students in the Scholars program are an association of
goal-oriented students who strive to learn more about themselves,
support one another and achieve success at school.
Office of Gifted and Talented Education
Middle Level 2015-16
PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT, PROGRAMS AND EVENTS
Second Semester 2016
January 14 12:30-3:25 Middle Level Staff Mtg TAC Room 5072
January 21 Pentathlon Practice Competition @ buildings
January 26 9:00 - 12:00 Scholars (7th grade) Gallup University
February 6 8:00- 1:00 SCHOLARS ACT Test (various locations)
February 8-11 Parent Teacher Conference week
February 16 12:30-3:25 Middle Level Staff Mtg TAC Room 5072
February 4 Pentathlon Essay for Regional Competition
February 23 Pentathlon Regional Competition @ buildings
February 25-26 8:30 – 4pm NAG Spring Conference
March 3 Pentathlon Essay for State @ buildings ( OPS date)
March 15 12:30-3:25 Middle Level Staff Mtg TAC Room 4-189/190
March 24 8:00-2:00 QUIZ BOWL FINALS UNO
March 31 Pentathlon State Competition @ buildings
April 12 12:30 – 3:25 Middle Level Staff Mtg TAC Room 4-189/190
April 14 9:30 – 1:00 UNO Tour (7th Grade Scholars) Bev, Buff, King, Bryan
April 19 8:30 – 11:30 Pentathlon SUPER QUIZ @ TAC Board Room
April 22 8:15-12:00 Book Blasters – Skinner Elementary
April 28 Pentathlon Essay for Nationals @ buildings
May 3 8:15-1:30 Tour of Omaha Marrs, McMillan*, Bryan, Davis
May 5 8:15-1:30 Tour of Omaha Hale, Monroe, KSC*, L&C
May 6 8:15-1:30 Tour of Omaha Morton, Norris*, Buffett, Beveridge
May 10 8:15-12:00 Poetry Slam @ Pizza Shoppe in Benson
May 12 12:30-3:25 Middle Level Staff Mtg.TAC Room 4-189/190
May 20-21 Pentathlon National Competition Boise Idaho
Honors Language Arts
Gifted and Talented