Talent Development



A great diversity exists among learners, necessitating different expectations for each. Therefore, the educational community has a responsibility to identify and develop the talents of those children who are gifted and talented in the areas of general intellectual ability, specific academic ability, creativity, artistic ability and leadership. Through Elmbrook's Gifted and Talented Program, qualitatively different experiences and opportunities are developed for such students. The primary objective is to develop the unique talents of each student.


Several beliefs form the basis of Elmbrook's Talent Development Program:

  • The needs of the Talent Development student are primarily met through differentiation by the classroom teacher in collaboration with support staff.
  • Early recognition of student needs is essential.
  • Identification of student capabilities is ongoing and continuous.
  • Multiple criteria are used to identify student needs.
  • Communication between the parent and classroom teacher regarding the child's learning needs is essential.
  • To help support this mission, Elmbrook is a member of PAGE (https://sites.google.com/site/cesa1page/). PAGE is a consortium of parents, teachers and educators from CESA #1 districts working together to improve gifted education. PAGE annually provides speakers, organizes an opportunity fair (Cool Stuff for Kids), provides fun learning opportunities and donates books on gifted issues to area libraries.

Talent Development Identification Process

Identification is an ongoing and continuous process to develop awareness of student capabilities and needs. All students are considered for identification at all grade levels, and all students are considered for identification in any one or more of the five categories of giftedness recognized by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction. Those areas are:

  • Intellectual
  • Specific academic
  • Visual/Performing Arts
  • Creativity
  • Leadership

Several factors may trigger the formal identification process such as standardized test performance and parent or teacher nomination. Depending on a child's grade level and area of giftedness, standardized tests will be administered. In all cases, a student must meet multiple criteria to be identified as gifted. For more details, please see the identification flow chart and/ or the district policy and practice statement on identification.


Elementary TD/Blog

Monthly Newsletters

October 2017

Elmbrook Reading and Writing Workshop

- Summary of Elmbrook's reading and writing workshop, K-8.

Bridges in Mathematics

Bridges in Math logo

On Wednesday, November 9, 2016 the Elementary Teaching and Learning Specialists presented to the GT PAO on our new K-5 math resource. View the GT PAO Bridges Presentation.

Middle School TD/Blog

High School TD/Blog


Talent Development Coordinator Contacts

Talent Development District Contacts


stack of books

Lending Library! Please contact Dr. McClain at mcclainr@elmbrookschools.org if you are interested in borrowing any of the following GT/Talent Development books. And please check back regularly - I hope to keep adding to the list.

TED Talk: As discussed at the GTPAO 9/18/17, here is the link to the TED Talk: How to raise successful kids - without over-parenting, by Julie Lythcott-Haims. Julie served as Dean of Freshmen and Undergraduate Advising for more than a decade at Stanford University, and wrote the best-selling book: How to Raise an Adult.Quote by Julie-Lythcott Haims


  • GAMES Picture that reads: Game Time- We talked about the power of playing games for improving executive functioning skills. Here is the start of a list of games for all ages - I'm sure it is the tip of the iceberg! Know of a game that should be on this list? Email me at mcclainr@elmbrookschools.org
  • APPS for Improving Executive Functioning - Picture of 12 phone apps side by side Here is a listing of apps that can help with executive functioning. It is arranged alphabetically; categories are embedded. If you come across a new one, please let me know: mcclain@elmbrookschools.org


Talent Development Parent Advisory Board (G/T PAO)

The Talent Development Parent Advisory Organization (G/T PAO) serves as a communication link between parents of identified children and the School District of Elmbrook. Visit their webpage for more information, meeting dates and G/T PAO family representatives at each school.


Elmbrook school district belongs to Partners for the Advancement of Gifted Education, an active committee of parent volunteers and educators collaborating to provide educational and enrichment opportunities in the greater Milwaukee area. All parents and children of member districts are welcome to attend their events.

District Documents

  • Parent Teacher Conference Suggestions (updated 10/09) - This document lists potential questions and topic areas to help everyone get the most from parent/teacher conferences.
  • District Policy 5127, Graduation Separation
  • District Policy 6142.1, Gifted and Talented Identification Procedures

Gifted Learning Links offered through Northwestern University, are enrichment courses offered throughout the year. Students have the opportunity to interact with online instructors and other students to complete collaborative projects and online discussions. Classes are offered in many subject areas. Click here to visit the Gifted Learning Links website.http://www.ctd.northwestern.edu/gll/


Partners for the Advancement of Gifted Education is sponsoring Trivia Night on Monday, November 6th! This year's host district is the School District of Waukesha: Les Paul Middle School

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