Advanced Learner Programs in grades 3-5 is designed to engage all students in the learning and application of concepts and skills at greater depth and complexity. Advanced Learner Programs are designed to provide all students with increased opportunities for advanced instruction. In addition, they assure that students identified through the AACPS Gifted and Talented Identification Process receive daily instruction in curriculum designed specifically for highly advanced learners.
All students in grades 3-5 will participate in one or more of the following:
Hands-On Equations: This is a unique program that provides students with the foundational beginning of algebra in the 3rd, 4th, and 5th grades. Hands-On Equations performs the essential function of demystifying algebraic notation through its unique visual representation of equations using pawns and numbered cubes. Students are expected to complete levels I-II of Hands-On Equations between grades three - five.
Jacob's Ladder: This reading comprehension strategy was developed by the Center for Gifted Education at the College of William and Mary. It targets specific skills by moving students from basic understanding to critical literary analysis.
ALPs Single-Subject Language Arts, Grades 3-5: In addition to AACPS Literacy Curriculum, students identified as Gifted and Talented or Advanced in Language Arts will also participate in the ALPs Language Arts Curriculum in Grades 3-5. Appropriate instructional strategies will allow for differentiated instruction among the levels of gifted and advanced learners. Additionally students will have the opportunity to participate in the following:
- Crosswalk: a curricular alignment designed to link advanced learning opportunities to the grade level reading curriculum in which students participate in hands-on real-world experiences as they research engaging topics.
- William and Mary: emphasizes literature, higher-level questioning, persuasive writing, oral communication, and language study with a strong emphasis placed on developing an understanding of the concept of change with increased depth and complexity.
ALPs Single-Subject Math, Grades 3-5: Students identified as Gifted and Talented or Advanced in mathematics will participate in the ALPs Math Curriculum in Grades 3-5. These students receive "compacted" instruction of on-grade level mathematics. Compacting is followed by the full implementation of M3: Mentoring Mathematical Minds (commonly known as M-Cubed).
- M3 - Mentoring Mathematical Minds: is a mathematics curriculum designed for advanced learners in grades 3, 4, and 5. This curriculum emphasizes critical thinking, creative problem solving, and discussion about math and its real-world applications. Learners engage in investigations, projects, and simulations to involve students in active problem-solving. Throughout the course, the development of rich verbal and written mathematical communication is included to enhance learning and promote higher order thinking skills. Students work as practicing mathematicians using journal entries to deepend their understanding. The use of Hint Cards and Think Beyond Cards allow for differentiated instruction among the levels of advanced learners.