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Welcome to the Middle School Center for Academically Talented Students (C.A.T.S.) 

Welcome to the new 2016-2017 school year!! I hope everyone had a wonderful summer vacation. My name is Liz McClure and I am the teacher for the Center for Academically Talented Students (C.A.T.S) for Woodridge Middle School and Valley Middle School. This will be my 12th year as a C.A.T.S. teacher and my 17th year of teaching. I am excited to start the new school year and look forward to meeting each one of you. I want to also give a warm welcome back to the 7th and 8th-grade parents. I look forward to working with you again this year. In order to make sure the communication between teacher and parent is available, please review the contract with your student, sign it and have them return it to me. If you would like to receive news and information through email, please fill it out on the contract. I like to send information and classroom updates electronically when possible. It will also help with communication since I will be at WMS on in the 1st, 2nd and 3rd hour and VMS 5th, 6th and 7th hour.


Our program will focus on higher thinking skills and affective needs. Students will participate in group activities and individual projects that meet the needs of the individual. Each student should have a 2 pocket folder and notebook for CATS class. They will need these items each day for class.


The following list describes the objectives for the C.A.T.S program:


1. To emphasize higher-level thinking skills.


2. To understand and apply the creative problem-solving process and creative thinking skills.


3. To develop basic research skills by utilizing the library and other resources.


4. To develop communication skills to improve the ability of self-expression.


5. To incorporate affective learning related to the special needs of the gifted child.


6. To develop the ability to become an autonomous learner.


This year there will be many chances for the students to develop critical thinking skills as well as applying their creativity which includes a state competition for both the 7th and 8th grade. Please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns at by phone or email (