ALERT Family Orientation
Welcome to Active Learning Experiences in Resourceful Thinking, the Richland 2 gifted and talented program! I feel fortunate to be learning with this year’s fifth-graders from Lake Carolina Elementary Upper Campus, the Center for Achievement, and Lonnie B. Nelson Elementary.
Every activity in ALERT is linked to moving forward on project-based learning that is designed to foster creativity and critical thinking. ALERT is not a graded course; students assess their progress in narrative reflections to their families at the end of each unit, so taking academic and creative risks at the edge of their skills is encouraged.
In the fall, students have the opportunity to create an architectural model and give a presentation about Humanity’s Habitat. They may choose to focus on engineering, the details that make the house an example of a specific style, or the events taking place in the historical period of the house.
In the winter and spring, classmates will have the opportunity to take on the roles of national leaders, business people, and bankers in the World Peace Game, a junior United Nations simulation. Students may choose to focus on a biography of an exemplary world leader, research a country or culture, investigate a crisis in the world and suggest solutions, or use materials in class to design their own game that addresses events in the world.
In the spring, students will have the opportunity to explore Nature’s Habitat and the human impact on ecosystems through cause-and-effect, interdependence, inventions, service learning, or advocating for laws to support sustainable living. Students usually choose either to invent a device from recyclable materials or brainstorm a service project to aid a local habitat.