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Bloomington Public Schools
Gifted & Talented Newsletter
Fall 2022

Please click at the bottom to expand this newsletter in its entirety.
Back to School Picnic
A great turnout for our back to school GT picnic!
A beautiful evening and happy students enjoying their classmates!
Families Unite!
If you would like to collaborate with other GT program families, click on the appropriate link and add/edit your contact information on this directory. Parent efforts are being made to create small "base groups" so students can have personal interaction with a few classmates on a regular basis to do homework or other school projects. Feel free to use this directory to reach out to one another for support and to plan activities this school year! Please know that this is optional and it is up to parents to monitor and manage.
Testing information for 2022-23 GT Programs
No need to apply!
The GT Dept. will be looking at MAP data for all first, fifth, and eighth grade students to determine who is demonstrating a need for advanced programming at the next level of their schooling. Parents and guardians will be notified regarding having their child tested for a gifted program. Most testing will take place at the school during the day sometime before winter break (elementary and middle school). A similar process will be conducted for 8th graders, with the PreACT test being offered for free on Friday, February 3, 2023.

If you have not received information from our department for your first or fifth grader, please complete the short nomination form linked below if you would like them considered for programming. The nomination form should not take more than a few minutes to complete.

Students interested in DAHS STEM, DAHS Humanities or HS Nobel should complete this short nomination form. DAHS applicants will also need to submit this narrative essay.
Important Dates

  • December 7, 2022 DA Hight School Stem and DA High School Humanities info. mtg., 7:00-8:00 p.m. Virtual Meet Link:

  • December 16, 2022 First nominations due (out-of-district students, or in-district students in grades other than current first, fifth, eighth)

  • January 20, 2023 First nominations due for high school programs: DA HS STEM, DA HS Humanities and HS Nobel

  • Feb. 3, 2023 PreACT testing for DA HS (transportation provided if needed)

  • March 24, 2023 Second round nominations due

  • August 4, 2023 Final round nominations due
Educational Opportunities for GT Families
2022 MCGT Annual Conference
On December 3rd from 9 - 12, the MCGT Annual Conference is back IN PERSON this year with children's and adult programs. Registration for children's programs closes on November 25th. The conference is at Capitol Hill Magnet School in St. Paul with exciting sessions for both kids and adults.
Jillian Stockmo Chapman
Jillian began her educational journey teaching first and second grade in Minneapolis, followed by developing partnerships with districts and coaching teachers to maximize success in their schools. In her most recent role, she partnered with and evaluated the impact of educational non-profits and initiatives. After graduating from Minneapolis Public Schools, Jillian went on to pursue a B.A in Religion and Anthropology from Amherst College, an M.A in Teaching (K-6) from Hamline University and is currently pursuing her Doctorate in Education as a part of Hamline’s Ed.D program. 

During the pandemic, Jillian moved to Bloomington and is excited to connect more deeply with her community through its school system. As a mother and a woman of color, Jillian finds it incredibly important to see the Jacob K. Javits Grant and Renaissance Project Coordinator role work to expand equity in Bloomington Public School's Gifted and Talented Program. While diversity is vast and must be intersectional, Jillian brings her lived experience as an elementary gifted and talented student in Minneapolis Public Schools to Bloomington. Jillian says “My educational journey was just that – mine – and every such student has their own journey. I am so excited to build meaningful relationships with our students, parents, staff, teachers, and community as I grow to understand and impact gifted and talented programming in Bloomington Public Schools”.

Elementary News
Oak Grove Elements
We're Over the Moon!
OGE’s 2nd and 3rd grade have been studying lots of space topics. They’ve been making scale models of the solar system, creating constellations, and turning off the lights to study shadows!
Ridgeview Elements

Map Makers
Elements students are noticing and wondering about maps all over the world. They are making, reading, and learning about maps of Ridgeview Elementary, the state of Minnesota and our new world atlases during social studies.

Ridgeview DA Scientists
Students built ‘wind-resistant’ structures on the heels of Hurricane Ian!
Oak Grove DA Scientists
We partner with Science from Scientists every other week for students to learn from adults who work in varying science fields. This lesson was about oil spills and how we can better protect our planet’s water. Students had to work together to come up with a plan to remove the most oil without removing ocean water using models of real oil spill clean-up tools.
DA Language Arts
DA students mentoring 1st grade book buddies
The GT Dept. Hosts 5th Grade Creativity Day
The GT Dept. Hosts Creativity Day
District fifth graders were nominated to join the GT department on Wednesday, October 19th for a day of creative exploration!
Students worked in teams to design their original Oreo cookie product.
Using some unusual materials, students had to make a "jitterbot" that would win a race.
The Works Museum led a pinball game & maze-making design session.
Rainbow Oreos, anyone?
How do we get our bot to jitter?
With hot glue and a variety of items, students designed their own game!
Middle School News
DA Research at Richardson Nature Center
Dimensions Academy students in 7th grade science have been busy doing authentic field research at Richardson Nature Center. The gifted & talented department partnered with staff at Richardson to teach students about authentic research and conducting work in the field. Students visited the center twice this fall, learning various data collection techniques, formulating research questions, and collecting original data. Students will return to Richardson Nature Center one more time in the spring to collect final data. 
From pond to prairie and flora and fauna in the forest, our students engaged with nature.
The expert staff at RNC led our teams of researchers.
Nobel Hits the MN Zoo
Through exploration of the Tropics Trail, students were challenged to use problem solving, observation, math and data collection tools to analyze the positive impact the MN Zoo has in addressing the problems facing animals in captivity. Students were able to see evidence of creative solutions used by the zoo with and for their animals.
"The Outsiders" Mock Trail
After reading The Outsiders, DA language arts classes went deeper and more complex by imagining what would happen after the book's story came to a close. The death of one of the main characters at the end of the story was spun into a mock trial. The students prepared for and took on all roles inherent to a trial including the plaintiffs, the defense, and expert witnesses. Students prepared statements, submitted evidence, and performed their roles during a three-day "trial." A small group of students from another class served as an impartial jury and ultimately ruled on the three-day case. Mr. Becker served as clerk of court and Mr. Hildebrandt moderated the trial as the honorable judge.
Nobel Fundraisers:
Savory Soup and Sweet Potato Comfort Pie
One in nine children in Minnesota live in poverty.

Every night in Minnesota, nearly 5,000 youth experience homelessness and do not have a safe place to sleep.

Nearly 21% of the MN homeless population are living unsheltered.

Nobel students held their annual shoe drive and Empty Bowls fundraiser, raising both awareness about those in need in our community and also to collect shoes and money for Good in the Hood, which is a local organization whose mission is:

To influence, inspire and impact individuals, families and entire communities for good!

Thanks to our Nobel 8th graders who are making a difference in our local community!
Collecting Donations
Cooking and Serving the Soup
BPS Board Members toasting their soup bowls to the Nobel students' efforts!
Meet Rose McGee
Nobel 6th graders were fortunate to have a virtual meeting with Ms. Rose McGee during their Social Studies class. Rose shared her story of creating her non-profit business, Sweet Potato Comfort Pie, whose mission is to advance racial justice and equity, heal damage caused by race-based trauma and elevate marginalized voices and experiences. Rose's message was very inspirational and the students were excited to use her recipe to make their own pies! In Language Arts class, Nobel students wrote their own inspirational messages to be tucked into the pie boxes for each lucky recipient. Pies were auctioned off to BPS staff with all proceeds going to local charities!
A Recipe for Change
“Sweet potato pie is the ‘sacred dessert’ of Black people, and it has power. Not only does it give us energy, this pie links us to history, it soothes our spirits and renews us for the much-needed work.”
~ Rose McGee
DA High School
We had a trial to determine if Genghis Khan was guilty of crimes against humanity. 
Genghis Khan was found guilty on 3 out 4 charges. 
While he was not found guilty of excessive brutality, he was found guilty of crimes against humanity, murder and rape. 
Congratulations DA Teacher
ArcGIS Teacher Video Challenge

Olson Middle School social studies teacher Laurie Bohn won a teacher video challenge, showcasing how she uses ArcGIS Online technologies within the classroom. Bohn's 8th grade Dimensions Academy students placed first in the Minnesota on the Map ArcGIS student competition and represented Minnesota in the National competition in June.
High School Seniors Honored
BPS seniors were awarded the National African American Recognition award for academic achievements and outstanding scores in Advanced Placement (AP) exams by the College Board National Recognition program. The award is used by colleges to identify academically competitive underrepresented students.

For award eligibility, students must have a GPA of 3.5 or higher and excel on the PSAT/NMSQT, or earn a score of 3 or higher on two or more AP Exams; identify as African American or Black, Hispanic American or Latino, or Indigenous; or attend school in a rural area or small town.
Congratulations to Kennedy High School students Ahmed Dualeh and Sadia Mohamud (pictured above) and Jefferson High School students Gabrielle Denniston, Kayla Garrett and Amal Mohamed (pictured below) who were given this academic honor!
GT Team Attends National Association for Gifted Children Conference
Indianapolis served as the host of this year's NAGC convention, held from November 17-20.

Internationally renowned experts presented on their latest research and shared best practices. A large team of BPS GT teachers attended!
Nine BPS teachers gathered to share their various learning opportunities with each other each day.
Free Family Fun
 at Richardson Nature Center
Sign up to enjoy these great opportunities!
12/4 1:00-3:00 Birds and Bird Mobiles
12/11 1:00-3:00 Winter Coats
12/18 1:00-3:00 Little Luminaries

More each month. Don't miss out!
For more information

Erin Boltik - Director of Gifted Talented K-12
Phone: 952-681-6497
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