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     Mrs. Ross, Pathways Teacher
     
     
    Welcome to Mrs. Ross's Pathways class.  
    I am excited about the new school year in Pathways.  We all know that things will be a little different this year, but I feel sure  we will learn to love our new way of doing school. I always have
    lots of exciting, interesing things for my Pathways students to do each year and this year is no different.  My students will learn about things that they don't learn about in their regular classrooms. They will experince learning in a different way.
     
     
    The Gifted Educaton program in Mississippi focuses on these areas:  Thinking Skills, Creativity, Information Literacy, Communication Skills, Affective Skills, and Success Skills.  Everything we do in Pathways is tied to one or more of these six competencies.
     
    Metacognition (thinking about your own thinking) is the overreaching competency for the intellectually gifted program.  Students will become more aware of the mental processes they use while they are engaged in learning.  Students will have a wide variety of experences that will help them to sharpen their thinking skills.
     
    My students will learn the steps in the Creative Prolem Solving process.  Given a real world situation, students will use the CPS model to solve a problem.  This model is sometimes used by businesses and corporations as a way to generate new ideas to solve problems.
     
    All Pathways classes will begin the year with lessons which address the social-emotional needs of gifted children.  My third grade students will begin with an activity called " A Precious Gift" that will help 
    them better understand "giftedness" and how they came to be in Pathways.  The 4th & 5th grade students will complete activities from The Gifted Kids Survival Guide.  These activities are designed to
    help students better understand what it means to be "gifted" and how it  affects their behaviors and feelings.  They will be able to use that knowledge to identify their strenghts and weaknesses and set goals for the year.
     
    My students will also learn the Components of Creativity: Fluency, Flexibility, Originality, and Elaboration . The research states that creativity skills can be learned when children are given opportunities to learn and apply the creative thinking processes.
     
    In conjunctiion with the focus this year on The Growth Mindset at Highland Elementary, Pathways students will study a unit about the brain.  They will learn about how the brain works, how to strengthen
    their own brains, and how to better approach learning.
     
     
    Pathways students will  continue to work logic problems and play a variety of games that require them to use their thinking skills in a fun, nonthreatening situation.
     
    Chess is always an important component of the Pathways program.  Students learn about the history of the game, the pieces and how they move, and, eventually strategies that help them improve their game.
    Chess is important for many reasons.  It exercises both sides of the brain, improves memory,  and reinforces critical thinking and  problem solving skills that are a core part of the Pathways program.  Some studies have shown that playing chess can actually increase  IQ scores.   So, if  you play chess, please practice with your child.  There are websites where you can play on line as well as numerous CD’s that teach how to play chess.
     
      
      
     

    Pathways fees are $25.00. This money is for purchasing the things we use in Pathways.  

    Please pay your child’s fee on your School Bucks as soon as you can or send cash with your child to me at Highland Elem.

    My e-mail address is siross@madison-schools.com.  You can also contact me at Highland at 601-853-8103.

     Please email me so I will have your email address on file in case I need to contact you.

      

    Thank you,

     

    Sibyl Ross,

     

    Pathways teacher