Skip to main content

Decatur City Schools

Mobile Menu Toggle

Thrilling Adventures for the Gifted!

Maybe school is out for the summer, but that doesn’t mean the learning has to stop! This summer, our Talented and Gifted (TAG) program is taking students on all sorts of learning adventures.

Last week, 14 students traveled to Birmingham, where they visited the Southern Environmental Center and Sloss Furnace.

Walking through Birmingham Southern’s ecoscape, Dr. Roald Hazelhoff showed them how to use lemon balm to repel bugs, how to paint a ceiling to confuse wasps, and how to make a giant wind chime out of fence poles and a bowling ball. Throughout the walk, he demonstrated the vast diversity of environments within Alabama. Students got to see how Dr. Hazelhoff and his team converted the old planetarium into a geodome, where they learned about the importance of not just recycling, but reusing and reducing waste. Finally, they flushed themselves down the drain in the model house at the Southern Environmental Center and learned that everything leads back to our water systems.

After a morning of fun and learning about Alabama ecology, we got back on the bus to head over to Sloss Furnace and learn a little bit about why Birmingham is nicknamed “Magic City” and “The Pittsburgh of the South.” 

Students discovered how iron was once made and how the industry sprang up in Birmingham before heading out to explore the old furnaces! Now you could ask any one of those kids why the furnaces called their product “pig” iron, how they cooled it off, or where you can find water in the middle of Birmingham without looking for a river.

We learned all kinds of things on our first summer TAG adventure of 2018, but there are still more to come! If your child is a part of the Talented and Gifted program and has just completed fourth through eighth grade, they can still join in on adventures we have remaining for this summer!   

June 20: Exploring Art with a variety of mediums and play. 9:00 – 2:30 @ Leon Sheffield. Limited to 50 students. Total Cost: $25.00

June 27/28: Students will participate in a Harry Potter “Potions” class at Huntsville Steam Works. Then we will explore other artists with live demonstrations at the Flying Monkey. Limited to 24 students per day. Total Cost: $30.00

Email Johnnie Renick for more information about joining this summer’s TAG adventures.