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Gifted students

Gift and talented programs

Miami State School optimises every student’s opportunity to achieve their potential. Students may display talents in specific areas other than academics. Our vision for our students who are gifted or highly capable is that they are valued in a learning environment which both challenges and supports them to pursue excellence and develop a passion for life-long learning. Our programs allow each student to excel in their individual area. Please read our enrichment brochure (PDF, 353KB) for further information.

Opti-minds challenge

The opti-minds creative sustainability challenge is an inclusive team challenge which empowers participants to think, create and communicate. Opti-minds is a creative problem solving program for teams of up to 7 participants. Teams are required to solve demanding, open-ended challenges from one of the following categories:

  • Language literature
  • Science engineering
  • Social sciences

The opti-minds challenge is an opportunity for all those with a passion for learning and problem solving to showcase their skills and talents in an exciting, vibrant and public way. In 2014 we had 4 teams from years 4 – 7.

ICAS

The international competitions and assessments for schools (icas) are independent skills-based assessments with a competition element. Commonly referred to as the unsw tests, icas is unique, being the most comprehensive generally available suite of academic assessments and school tests for primary and secondary school students. The assessments comprise eight computer skills tests, eleven English tests, eleven maths tests, eleven science tests, five spelling tests and ten writing tests. In 2014 all students from years 2-7 were given the opportunity to participate in the assessments.

Year one critical literacy

Our year one co-ordinator loves to take her group of high performing year one students each Wednesday for critical literacy. The students studied toys and included gender constructions in toy advertising. As a culminating activity, the children presented their persuasive speech on why their toy was or was not gender specific.

Year three philosophy

Philosophy in schools involves developing a ‘community of inquiry’ that is based on the values of care and respect for all its members, and which consequently generates its own rules for operation. Philosophical inquiry:

  • Enables children to participate in facilitated philosophical discussions about the big questions of life
  • Provides children with the skills to share ideas, thoughts and beliefs
  • Assists in the development of thinking and social skills
  • Encourages children to develop hypotheses, give examples and reasons, build on each other’s ideas, justify decisions and recognise inconsistencies in arguments
  • Values the ability to change one’s mind in response to a justified reason
  • Helps children to think deeply, make reasoned judgments and deal appropriately with conflict
  • Allows children to apply their knowledge more effectively.

Miami days of excellence

Students were invited to participate in the Miami day of excellence where they engaged in critical thinking and problem-solving. In teams of 3, students were invited to participate in the Miami day of excellence where they engaged in critical thinking and problem-solving. In teams of 3, students:

  • Researched bridge designs
  • Constructed their bridges
  • Calculated the costs of their bridges
  • Evaluated and modified their designs for their final presentation

Catherine Egan, a civil engineer from URS in Brisbane, was onsite to work with the students. She assisted teams on the day with professional advice and mentoring.

Days of excellence with brainways - Writing.

Identified year two and four students had the opportunity to participate in a day of excellence with brainways. This is very exciting as we work closely with brainways to offer students some great workshops.

Our year 2 students participated in playthings – creating characters from playthings. This fun, action-packed, hands-on workshop introduced students to the basics of fictional character creation. Students were guided through the important steps of creating an interesting and dynamic character from a visual stimulus, and discovered and coloured their character’s story and world using their drawing and/or writing abilities.

Our year 4 students had the opportunity to participate in i am a camera – imagery in creative writing. This creative writing course gave an opportunity for the students to work in the company of like minded peers, to stimulate and challenge each other, and be guided by award winning writers to enhance their writing techniques in creating imagery that is fresh, original and evocative. Practising to look at life through a sharply focused lens, students learnt how to capture effectively the essence of that experience.

The quest 2014 is here! The most anticipated academic competition in south-east Queensland is ready for the enrolment of school teams and is at Miami State School. Providing the grounds for Queensland's brightest students to contest against one another, the quest develops students’ abilities and knowledge, and, through the competitive atmosphere, results in heightened awareness, stronger focus and more brilliant concepts. The learning areas of science, humanities and mathematics form the basis of 2014’s contest, with the over-arching theme of myths around us, challenging students from year levels 1-3, 4-6 and 7-10.

STEM

The gold coast kids’ STEM convention provided an opportunity for some of our highly capable year six students to participate in a science conference, extended investigation and forum. Students chose an investigation of personal interest in response to the issue of science – sustaining food for the future. They conducted individual or small group investigations and presented their findings at the forum. he gold coast kids’ STEM convention provided an opportunity for some of our highly capable year six students to participate in a science conference, extended investigation and forum. Students chose an investigation of personal interest in response to the issue of science – sustaining food for the future. They conducted individual or small group investigations and presented their findings at the forum.

Photography wet process group

Each term, a group of students are selected from year 6 and 7, who have shown a keen interest and/or aptitude in their multimedia classes. Craig Tuffin (P.E./Multi-media teacher who is also a national award winning photographer) takes the group into the world of historic processes by shooting, developing and printing in the schools’ own darkroom.

Currently, Miami State School boasts Australia's first ever 19th century photographic processes class. Wet-plate collodion photography was published in 1851 and was only the second stage in photography after the daguerreotype and callotype. Rather than only read about these incredible processes, selected students get to sensitise and develop glass plates using exactly the same procedures as they employed over 150 years ago.