The TMFMS Center for Gifted Studies was founded in 2009/10 with an inaugural 6th grade class of approximately 130 students. Each year a grade level was added with a full 6-8th grade program in place in 2011/12. TMFMS is one of three gifted middle school magnets in Pinellas County and the only one combined with a fundamental school.
The program is designed to meet the unique academic and social/emotional needs of adolescent gifted students. A challenging and rigorous, interdisciplinary curriculum is delivered through instructional strategies that promote creative, critical and complex thinking. Personal strengths and weaknesses are developed through differentiated instruction, independent research, and extracurricular activities. Classwork and homework include both individual and group assignments.
TMFMS is on a block schedule and middle school students take 8 classes. The gifted program in 6th grade offers 6 accelerated classes in Math, Language Arts, Social Studies (US History), Science, Literature, and Independent Research. Additionally, students take PE/Health and one elective – Band/Orchestra, Art, Drama, Chorus, or World Languages. TM Gifted Students have the opportunity to spend time with traditional fundamental students in PE/Health, electives, and at lunch.
Combined with the fundamental school guidelines, the TM Gifted Center offers a unique program in academics, student discipline and responsibility, and parental involvement. Requirements include student behavior standards, homework with parent signatures, and mandatory parent attendance at PTA/Gifted meetings.
A variety of after school activities and clubs are offered at school and in the gifted program (subject to change). Examples include STEM Girls (Math, Science and Technology Club for girls), Gifted Science Club, Chess Club, Multi-cultural Club, Student Council, Golf team @Twin Brooks, and more.
The philosophy of the Middle School Centers for Gifted Studies is grounded in the belief that gifted students require comprehensive and on-going differentiated curriculum and instruction in order to develop their abilities appropriately. The curriculum is integrated across the broad concepts of change, systems, and models, and uses an interdisciplinary approach. Rather than learning each subject as a separate entity, students discover how they are connected, thus promoting in-depth learning and creative, critical, and complex thinking.
"The Pinellas County gifted middle school magnet program is a very progressive model, not just for Florida but for the nation in its provisions to their best learners. It also represents excellence in collaboration and communication among teachers, parents, principals, and central office staff. I expect them to be highly successful with these new, research-based programs."
Dr. Joyce VanTassel-Baska, Professor Emeritus
College of William and Mary
The program’s Gifted Magnet Coordinator is Mrs. Ashley Orvik. For more information, please contact Mrs. Orvik at firstname.lastname@example.org. Entry into the gifted program requires a Gifted Education Plan.GIFTED CENTER STAFFTeachers in the gifted program are certified gifted teachers or must become so within 2 years.
- National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC)
NAGC has great resources for understanding and supporting gifted children.
- Florida Association for the Gifted (FLAG)
FLAG has many resources to help understand and support gifted students.
- Supporting Emotional Needs of the Gifted (SENG)
SENG provides resources to understand and support gifted childrens' social and emotional needs.
- Davidson Institute for Talent Development
Davidson's Institute has an extensive collection of resources for gifted students and their families. These resources include: testing, support websites, schools and universities, associations, books and more.
- Hoagie's Gifted Education
Hoagie's has a wide range of resources for parents of gifted students.