Challenge and Choice for Highly Gifted Learners
Ignite! is a unique full-time gifted program that combines a challenging core curriculum with flexible choice offerings to provide highly gifted children the opportunity to ignite their passion for learning. Ignite! is housed at Oak Hills Elementary to qualifying students across the district. Students begin the Ignite! program in third grade and move through the program with the same classroom of students through fifth grade. Ignite! students participate in the Oak Hills learning community through specialists’ classes, lunch, recess, grade level and whole school activities. Transportation to Ignite! is the responsibility of the family.
Ignite! offers a complex and accelerated core curriculum. The Ignite! curriculum provides an in-depth exploration of grade level and extended standards with an emphasis on inquiry-based learning.
- Literacy: Individualized reading instruction is based on student choice and teacher/student goal setting.
- Language Arts & Social Studies: Thematic instruction is offered using College of William & Mary curriculum from the Center for Gifted Education. The curriculum is designed specifically for the gifted population. Units include “Changing Tomorrow: Leadership Curriculum for High Abilities Learners,” “Systems of Civilizations,” “Literary Reflections” and “Building a New System: Colonial America.”
- Mathematics: Accelerated instruction with small group enrichments are available at each grade level. Ignite! core math instruction uses math materials one year ahead of grade level peers.
- Science: Inquiry-based STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) program with an emphasis on hands-on activities.
Engaging Student Choice
Student choice is integral to the Ignite! experience. Throughout the year, students participate in a variety of small group investigations based on their individual interest. These options vary from year to year depending on student interest and instructor availability. Some of our more popular choice units include:
- Lego Robotics
- Stock Market Game
- Project Wild
- Class Act
- Go Green Engineering
- Smart About Art.
For more information about the Ignite! program, please view the 2023 Ignite! Parent Information Meeting.
Ignite! Identification and Selection Process
The Ignite! program starts in third grade. During students' second grade year, all students are screened for possible identification for the Ignite! Program. If a student is found eligible, that student's family will be notified in February. Family members will be invited to an information session in early March. Prospective students and families are invited to an interactive Ignite! Open House in mid-March. Families interested in the Ignite! program need to register by the deadline near the end of March. Families of students who do not receive a letter of eligibility may appeal eligibility status for Ignite! by completing a Home Observation Inventory and an Ignite! application. These must be submitted by the Ignite! appeal deadline. Families are encouraged to contact the Gifted Education Specialist at their child’s school with any questions about the appeal process.
Transferring to Ignite!
Limited spots are available for students wishing to enter Ignite! after the third-grade entry point. Interested families should contact Kierstien Fetzek, email@example.com for more information regarding qualifying criteria and space availability. Applications for students entering grades 4 and 5 should be submitted by the application deadline. Mid-year transfers to Ignite! are handled on a case-by-case basis for highly qualified candidates.
Out-of-district candidates may apply to Ignite! and will be placed if space is available. Qualifying students living in the ISD 194 attendance area will be given first preference. Out-of-district candidates include homeschooled and Lakeville Area Public Schools attendance area students not currently enrolled in ISD 194.
Student performance in Ignite! is closely monitored. While these programs provide opportunities for challenge and success for most students, they may not match the needs of every student. If a parent, Ignite! teacher, gifted specialist or student voices a concern regarding the student’s placement in gifted services, the ISD 194 Exit Guidelines will be used to determine the appropriate next steps.
There are separate Ignite! applications for students already enrolled in Lakeville Area Schools and students from outside the district.
- Ignite! Application for In-District Candidates - *This application will be available starting in February 2024
- Ignite! Application for Out-of-District Candidates - *This application will be available in January 2024
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I know if my child is eligible for Ignite?
If my child does not receive a letter of eligibility, can we still apply?
Can students enter Ignite! after the program starts in third grade?
How are students selected for the Ignite! program?
Where is Ignite! located?
Is transportation to Ignite! provided?
Can students from out of district apply to Ignite?