Program Description:

    The Before School Gifted and Talented program is offered to eligible students within grade levels 2-5. Utilizing multiple sources of data in accordance with the state and National Association for Gifted Children, selected students have the opportunity to engage in a variety of challenging, interest-based projects. The program will begin in October and run through the month of May. Participants will be eligible for either one or both of the two types of classes or “Paths”. The two Paths are: 1) Language Arts / Social Studies Path 2) Science Technology Engineering Mathematics (STEM) Path. Both Paths will include projects and activities that dive into a wide-range of content and themes that support student interest and will develop their abilities beyond the classroom instruction. While the program may shift direction based on the interests of the students, they will be consistently challenged through meaningful and engaging projects.



    Participants - Eligible students from grades 2-5.

    Paths - 1) Language Arts / Social Studies Path

    2) Science Technology Engineering Mathematics (STEM) Path

    Dates - Students meet in grade level groups according to the Path(s) in which they are eligible.

    Schedule -

                 Monday – Grades 2 and 5 - ELA/SS Path

    Tuesday – Grades 2 and 5 - STEM Path

    Wednesday – Grades 3 and 4 - ELA/SS Path

    Thursday – Grades 3 and 4 - STEM Path

    Duration - Program will run from October through May.


    Topics - A wide variety of opportunities involving STEM, language arts, and more steered by the interests and motivation of the students.

    Van Derveer continually differentiates all programs and instruction to best meet the needs of every student. While enrichment opportunities will continue to challenge students within their classroom setting, the before school G&T program offers additional specifically differentiated opportunities to promote student engagement and development.



    GRADES 6-8

    The main focus of the Middle School program is STEM based.  Mr. Petronko involves the students in real world problem solving activities that involve skills in math, science, engineering and technology.  
    • The students begin with small building activities (marshmallow building challenge, constructing weight bearing structures with paper) which lead to larger comprehensive bridge building project.
    • The students are also taking on a school beautification project in which they are proposing a plan for in a new garden at the Middle School.  Students are responsible for the design, fund raising and potential construction of the project.  They are in the beginning stages now.  The project process and implementation is a great experience for the students.
    • Mr. Petronko has planned the construction of water bottle rockets which will be launched to test the structure’s soundness.  The test flight will also include a safe landing element in which a fragile object (i.e. and egg) can land safely without breaking. 
    • 6th grade meets Wednesday mornings in the Science Lab 
    • 7th and 8th grade students meet Thursdays with 16 students in the program
    • All programs run from 7:30 - 8:30am.