SEARCH is part of Loudoun County’s gifted program and is delivered through lessons to ALL students in grades K-3. The lessons focus on higher-level cognitive skills.
SEARCH lessons continue throughout the year for all students in kindergarten through the third grade. During these lessons, your child will participate in activities designed to optimize the development of his/her thinking style and interest in learning.
How Does Search Work?
¨ Resource services and materials that support the classroom teacher.
¨ Demonstrations, lessons and activities that encourage questioning, higher level thinking and creativity.
- Group activities which enhance cooperation, listening and problem solving.
Contrary to popular belief, the Search teacher does not decide who makes it into the next step in Loudoun County’s gifted program, “Futura”. The SEARCH program serves all K-3 grade students. Once achievement scores and ability scores are received from the state testing services in third grade, the identification process begins. Future newsletters will discuss in greater detail the complete identification process. Please understand that there are specific criteria students need to meet. It is not merely a teacher’s choice. We will give every student the same opportunities to meet the county standards for identification.
Encouraging and assisting your child gives him or her the message that learning does not stop at the school door. One method for linking the school and the home is to ask your child the following questions:
1. What is one thing that happened today that you enjoyed?
2. What is one thing that you could have made better today?
3. What did you think about at school today?
Such inquiry helps to support the concepts covered in the classroom. Another way to enrich your child’s education is to provide opportunities where he/she can communicate outside of the home. Have your child ask a question at the grocery store, pay for things at the checkout counter, or order for the family at a restaurant. Developing oral skills is one area often overlooked, yet it is one of the most important when enriching achievement and ability performance.
The Search Curriculum
SEARCH curriculum is problem solving based and founded in gifted education research. The curriculum spirals developmentally through five components:
Each grade level learns about each component at increasingly more complex and abstract levels. These components are presented to students in grades K-3 as “keys” to higher level thinking. Ask your child about the SEARCH lessons and the “keys” that unlock his or her “power thinking.”
Here’s a chance for the whole family to get involved with thinking!
¨ Get construction paper, markers and crayons to create a board game about your family. This will give you a chance to discuss relatives, ancestors, careers, social organizations, and other topics specific to your family.
¨ Read a book only half way through. Each member of the family then creates an ending for the book and shares it with the rest of the family.
¨ Plan a weekly menu as a family. Encourage your child to remember to include all of the ingredients for each item.
¨ Try a new restaurant. Before the meal, explain to all members not to discuss what they think of the food. Order a different meal for each person and share all of the entrees. Upon returning home, each family member writes a review of the meal much like a food critic. Share each critique together. You could also do this activity with a movie or play.
¨ Using a map, have your child record and explain the shortest route to an actual place you are going. It could be a vacation, job, school, or relative’s house.