May 2021
WATG Mission: To educate about and advocate for the needs of gifted in Wisconsin.
Cory Jennerjohn talks to Dr. Jonathan Plucker in WATG's latest podcast!
WATG Blogs
From the Board - "No Man is an Island"
“No Man is an Island” is both a book, and a selection from the prose quotes of author John Donne. This metaphor illustrates the literal meaning of how an island is separated from other landforms by oceans; it also asserts that humans cannot afford to be islands. We need each other, both literally and figuratively. And so it is with organizations, such as the Wisconsin Association for Talented and Gifted. 
As an organization, we are deliberately reaching out to other individuals, groups, and organizations so that we can share our messages, get new insights, and grow. We are both teaching and learning in these efforts, and we’d like to share some of our most recent work.
(WATG extiende un sentido de gratitud al Dr. German Diaz de las Escuelas Públicas de Milwaukee por ayudarnos con la traducción de este artículo en Español para nuestras familias de habla hispana y nuestros educadores. Esta traducción también se puede encontrar en nuestra página web). 
(WATG extiende un sentido de gratitud al Dr. Martha Lopez de las Escuelas Públicas de Milwaukee por ayudarnos con la traducción de este artículo en Español para nuestras familias de habla hispana y nuestros educadores. Esta traducción también se puede encontrar en nuestra página web). 
Reflections on Gifted Education

Jackie Drummer, WATG Advisory Board Member and Past President
On March 26, 2021, the National Center for Research on Gifted Education hosted an all-day workshop to review findings in our field of gifted education during the past seven years. They reported on much of the data obtained from studies funded by the Javits Grant (the only nationally funded engine for research in gifted education in America).

The best news of the day came very early – Wisconsin had more people registered for this event than any other state or country! Way to go, Wisconsin! It was great “to see” so many of you online.
Ask the Doctor - Spring Learning Fun
Dr. Wanda Routier, Past WATG Board Member

This spring has been a mix of weather, ranging from sunshine and warm temperatures to snow and storms. During a virtual meeting, a few gifted students noted the weather at their home and were comparing it with the weather others had at their home in various locations around the state. The students found it rather interesting that while some of them had trees and flowers with leaves and blossoms, others of them still had “winter trees,” devoid of signs of spring. They decided to track the weather and plant growth for three weeks so they could continue to compare their locations and the rate of spring’s advance in Wisconsin. It was a welcome distraction, given the pandemic and the restrictions of the past year.
GT Meanderings - The Russians!
Ruth Robinson, WATG Past President

Did you ever think that anyone outside of Wisconsin paid attention to WATG or its predecessors? In fact, at the 1990 Annual Conference two representatives were welcomed from the USSR (do you remember the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics?) This was just a year before they changed their name to the Russian Federation. 
Is it ever too early to chat with an astronaut? Have you dissected a cow eye? How would you like to be interviewed by top executives in the engineering field? Maybe competing at nationals in Washington DC is more your style? These are all experiences that my children have had in their Gifted and Talented (GT) class.
People say, why is GT important? I would ask, why is providing a class that supports the needs of any student important? If kids are ready and willing to do extra work and to try new things, why not challenge them? As a parent, I have been astounded by the variety, complexity, and magnitude of what our students can achieve and create in a class that meets for 30 minutes a day. 
Gina Lima, Parent
(WATG desea extender un gran agradecimiento al Dr. German Díaz de las escuelas de Milwaukee por traducir este artículo al español para nuestras familias y educadores de habla hispana. La traducción también se puede encontrar en nuestros blogs de sitio web.)
Dr, Maria Katsaros-Molzahn, WATG Board Member

Unless everyone counts, no one does. Equitable learning environments require analysis of quantifiable evidence when examining all students. Theoretically, this data provides the tools to develop appropriate programming by recognizing both talents and needs. Traditional instruments for identification focus on either math or reading, creating a limited scope of student abilities. On the one hand, this appears logical; schools work primarily in these two academic areas. On the other hand, tools limiting the scope and understanding of abilities foster higher inequity in schools. Utilizing a non-verbal culturally neutral identification tool allows for a greater understanding of student strengths to emerge. 
Budget Motion
Hillarie Roth, Government Action Committee Chair; WATG President=Elect

You may have noticed that WATG’s Government Action Committee has been emailing you a lot recently asking you to contact your legislators requesting support for gifted education in this biennial budget.If you followed the recent budget hearings, you may even have heard several board members testifying. This year, we had seven individuals testify in person and at the virtual listening session, asking for support for gifted education! So why the big push? Why are we hitting this SO HARD this year? Well, we are very pleased to FINALLY announce that we have partnered with the legislative offices of Sen. Bernier and Rep. Petryk in drafting a budget motion for this budget. It has been an absolute pleasure and joy to have worked behind the scenes on this monumental task for the last several months! So what is a budget motion?
Reflections from a Dad
Cory Jennerjohn, WATG Board Member

I have been bubbling with excitement ever since I became a Wisconsin Association for Talented and Gifted board member. The reason is simple; my oldest son is a brilliant learner. He isn’t just a voracious academic, he absolutely loves the process of learning. He relishes school routine and he soaks in the minute details of preparing for exams.

Now, I know many of you are reading this and likely telling yourself, “We’ve heard the same thing over and over before. There are plenty of highly gifted learners in this state.” That’s true. However, Carson is in the fifth grade.