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Primary Talent Pool (PTP)

The Primary Talent Pool is a group of primary students (grades K-3) who possess demonstrated or potential ability to perform at exceptionally high levels. These students may be referred to as high-potential learners. The purpose of selecting students to participate in a Primary Talent Pool is to provide early enrichment and intervention for those students whose talents must be nurtured in order for those talents to fully develop.   They must be informally selected as having characteristics and behaviors of a high potential learner and further diagnosed using a series of informal and formal measures to determine differentiated service delivery needs during their stay in the primary program. These students are not automatically identified as gifted once they reach the fourth grade. KDE GT Regulation 704 KAR 3:285

Specialized Programming

All kindergarten students participate in PTP portfolio response lessons from September to February as part of the informal screening process. 

PTP students in grades 1-3 are cluster grouped and receive PTP services delivered at the building level by designated teachers in a pull-out setting. Students leave the regular classroom setting and join other students of similar ability at least three times per month. Lessons are presented in convergent analysis, divergent synthesis, visual/spatial thinking, evaluation and emphasize creative and critical thinking. PTP students are cluster-grouped at each grade level. In addition to classroom services, extra-curricular enrichment is offered through EDGE Saturdays. Teachers of PTP students receive professional learning to study the nature and needs of PTP students and best practices for providing services.

Additional Programming Options & Definitions:

The following may be utilized in addition to pull-out groups to meet the needs of PTP students and may differ among students.

Acceleration: Students are allowed to move through material at a faster pace than age-mates and at a rate equal to their abilities (e.g. compacting).

Cluster Grouping: Students are placed in regular classrooms with a small group of other students who have similar readiness for the purpose of receiving differentiated instruction.

Collaborative Teaching: Instructional Coordinator/GATES Resource Teacher works in conjunction with the regular classroom teacher to provide direct differentiated services to high potential learners.

Compacting: An instructional practice where teachers pre-assess students on content in order to determine what they have already mastered. The focus of study becomes the content that the student does not know. By reducing repetition of content, students are challenged to their full potential.

Consultation Services: Instructional training, materials and other resources are provided to the classroom teacher by the Instructional Coordinator/GATES Resource Teacher in order to provide appropriate and adequate services for high potential students.

Differentiation: Teachers make adjustments instructionally to content (what is taught), process (how it is taught), or product (how students show what they have learned) to meet the needs of individual students.
Enrichment: Students are given learning activities that are more in-depth or from an additional discipline used to supplement their educational experience. 

Flexible Grouping: A differentiation strategy where teachers arrange students in groups according to their readiness level, interests, or learning profile for a period of time. Groups’ members change frequently based on instructional needs determined by the teacher.

Subject-level Acceleration: A form of acceleration where a student does subject-specific work, e.g. mathematics,  on a grade level higher than the one in which they are enrolled. The decision to subject-area accelerate is a collaborative one by the teacher, GATES Coordinator and parent and is based on defined data. 

Common characteristics often noted in primary high potential learners:

  • Express curiosity about many things
  • Ask thoughtful questions
  • Have extensive vocabularies and complex sentence structure
  • Are able to express themselves well
  • Solve problems in unique ways
  • Have good memories
  • Exhibit unusual talent in art, music, or creative dramatics
  • Exhibit especially original imaginations
  • Use previously learned things in new contexts
  • Are unusually able to order things in logical sequence
  • Discuss and elaborate on ideas
  • Are fast learners
  • Desire to work independently and take initiative
  • Exhibit wit and humor
  • Have sustained attention spans and are willing to persist on challenging tasks
  • Are very observant
  • Show talent in making up stories and telling them
  • Are interested in reading