Gifted and Talented

As an EL Education School, we believe that Gifted and Talented instruction is for all students. It is an inclusive practice that our teachers are well-versed in implementing. Please see the EL Education Core Practices on Delivering Effective Lessons and High Quality Work for more information on what GT looks like every day in EL Education classrooms. We also have support from a district Gifted and Talented teacher.

GT Identification and Testing FAQs

My child is identified as gifted and talented (GT) or highly gifted and talented (HGT). What does GT programming for identified gifted students look like at Centennial?

Centennial’s GT/Enrichment teacher consults with teachers to provide them with support in extending the core curriculum. In addition, classroom teachers provide challenges for advanced learners, GT, and HGT students in the form of content extensions when unit work is completed or mastery of content objectives is achieved.

Our GT teacher and classroom teachers collaborate which allows our GT teacher to pull or push in for groups of gifted and talented students, curriculum compacting, enrichment opportunities, etc. In all cases, our GT teacher supports the classroom teachers in differentiating instruction as appropriate for gifted students.

In order to provide the opportunity for all students to receive early support in the most appropriate environment, all DPS students in grades kindergarten and 2nd are automatically screened using the Naglieri Nonverbal Ability Test (NNAT) in the fall during the district universal screening testing windows. Centennial classroom teachers in all grade levels work hard to meet the needs of advanced students. Regardless of GT identification, all ECE – 5th grade students participate in small group instruction, in which students are grouped with students of similar abilities to ensure they are appropriately challenged.

What do GT/Enrichment services look like in grades K-2 at Centennial?

The GT/Enrichment teacher consults with K-2 grade-level teams and individual teachers to help with planning and to provide additional challenging resources and materials when appropriate. Your child’s classroom teacher will make accommodations to meet your child’s learning needs in the classroom using differentiation strategies.

What is differentiation?

Differentiation is the way that teachers modify the existing curriculum for students who need something qualitatively different. There are three main ways to differentiate the core curriculum. The GT/Enrichment teacher and classroom teacher collaborate to insure that students are getting appropriate differentiation. Teachers can modify the following:

  • The content – what students are learning
  • The process – how they are learning it
  • The product – how they show what they have learned
What’s the difference between advanced learners, gifted and talented, and highly gifted and talented students?

GT and HGT students have met the district criteria for identification as defined by the DPS Gifted and Talented Department. The district GT department analyzes test scores along with other pertinent data to complete the body of evidence for each student.

Advanced learners are students who have not qualified for/or been tested for GT/ HGT services but have demonstrated content mastery and require challenging curriculum and instruction in order to engage them in the classroom.

What other communications or supports can I expect as a parent of a Gifted and Talented student?

Identified students receive a formal Advanced Learning Plan (ALP) in the fall. An ALP provides information on how the school plans to meet the needs of identified gifted and talented students. The ALP is written for all demonstrated areas of strength. It identifies the setting and strategies for supporting student growth in those areas of strength. Parents are encouraged to participate in discussions about their child’s ALP. Required by the state, ALPs are generally written and/or updated yearly, in the fall, and sent to parents for their information. Classroom teachers are very adept at finding student strengths and providing appropriate curriculum for them. Identified gifted students who transfer to a new school during the school year will have their ALP updated and/or modified to reflect the resources available at the new school.

What are some resources I can access to better understand higher level thinking skills?

Bloom’s Taxonomy offers a way to nurture higher level thinking. Bloom’s Taxonomy of thinking skills can also be applied to technology and digital learning, which we all know is vital for students’ success in school and beyond.

How do I nominate my student for GT/HGT?

If you think your child may meet criteria for GT/HGT and would like to nominate them for further evaluation, please fill out the Google Form below.

Link for English Parent checklist:

Link for Spanish Parent checklist:

Links and Additional Resources

While we have answered a few questions about testing and identification, please use DPS’s Gifted and Talented Department site for more information.