Amana’s gifted program is designed to address the unique learning characteristics, interests, personal needs, and capabilities of our gifted students. The program emphasizes these students’ need for interaction with intellectual peers. Emphasis on the individual highlights the fact that there are differences among gifted students and a need for specialized educational experiences to meet these differences. 

Basic to the philosophy of this program is the idea that no one teacher, resource, or instructional method can meet the needs of gifted students. Education for gifted students is viewed as a cooperative endeavor characterized, facilitated, and realized by the efforts of numerous individuals in the schools and community. 

In Elementary School, this looks like a combination of a collaborative model and a resource model. In the collaborative model, Amana’s TAG Coordinator collaborates with grade-level teachers to provide resources and extensions during regular and/or advanced subject area classes. In the resource model, students receive gifted services daily in a resource class with the TAG Coordinator. The content and pacing are differentiated to the degree that the activities are clearly instructionally appropriate for gifted students at that grade level. While the student participates in a gifted resource class, assignments in general education classes are modified depending on the student’s academic strengths. 

In Middle School, TAG is realized through advanced content classes. Students are eligible for these courses on the basis of achievement scores, past academic performance, and teacher recommendations. 

High School Courses Offered at Amana Academy

9th Grade Biology

This class will satisfy a science graduation credit if students pass both semesters. Topics: Relationships between structures and functions of living cells; role of DNA/RNA in biological traits; increasing complexity in single-celled and multi-celled organisms; interdependence of organisms and the flow of energy; natural selection and the theory of evolution.

9th Grade Algebra

This class will satisfy a math graduation credit. Students will explore the characteristics of basic functions using tables, graphs, and simple algebraic techniques; operate with radical, polynomial, and rational expressions, solve a variety of equations, including quadratic equations with a leading coefficient of one, radial equations, and rational equations; use the language of mathematical argument and justification; utilize counting techniques and determine probability; use summary statistics to compare samples to populations; and explore the variability of data; represent and operate with complex numbers; use numerical, graphical, and algebraic techniques to explore quadratic, exponential, and piecewise functions and to solve quadratic, exponential and absolute value equations and inequalities; use algebraic models to represent and explore real phenomena; explore inverses of functions.

10th Grade Physical Science

This course will satisfy a science graduation credit. It is designed as a survey course in chemistry and physics. This curriculum includes abstract concepts such as the conceptualization of the structure of atoms, motion and forces, and the conservation of energy and matter, the action/reaction principle, and wave behavior. Students investigate physical science concepts through experience in laboratories and fieldwork using the processes of inquiry. Major concepts and skills include classifications of matter, atomic theory/configuration, periodicity, bonding/nomenclature, chemical reactions, Law of conservation of matter, solutions, acid/base chemistry, phase changes, Laws of motion and forces, energy transformation, electrical/magnetic forces, and wave properties.

Introduction to Digital Technology

Introduction to computers, multimedia graphics, databases, web design, and programming. This is the first course in Computer Science & Game Design Pathways.

Introduction to Graphic Design

This is the prerequisite course for both the Graphics Production and Graphics Design pathways. The Graphics and Design course provides students with the processes involved in the technologies of printing, publishing, packaging, electronic imaging, and their allied industries.