Kindergarten – Second Grade AIG Service Project

Kindergarten through second grade students participating in the AIG program picked up trash on Monday, May 13, 2019.  This was their service project that they chose to do.  These young service minded students walked from our campus to the park and picked up litter all along the way.  They were very excited to beautify the area!

Students Go “Robotic”

Kindergarten through eighth grade students at The Learning Center Charter School are no strangers to technology. They regularly use everything from computers to 3D printers. However, students are especially excited to become more familiar with the school’s brand new Sphero Mini robots.

A Sphero Mini is an app-enabled device about the size of a ping pong ball. Students are able to use the Sphero Mini app to draw paths for the robot to follow, write their own JavaScript text programs, and use actions, controls, operators and more to give their robots commands.

Monica Matthews, an Academically and Intellectually Gifted (AIG) licensed educator at the school, loved introducing the robots to her AIG students. They explored how to use drag and drop code to make each robot move in the direction they wanted.  The kindergarten through second grade aged students used the drive function and practiced controlling the robot to knock over mini bowling pins.

“Our Sphero Mini robots provide a toolset that has unlimited potential to weave hardware, software and community engagement together,” said Matthews. She added that while computer coding is a key 21st century skill, the robot and its app go beyond code by incorporating robotics and technology with collaborative STEAM – science, technology, engineering, art and math – activities.

“These robots are proving to be a whole lot of fun and a fantastic tool to nurture students’ imaginations,” said Matthews.  “I look forward to seeing all the creative ways teachers across campus use them in their classrooms.”

AIG Helped Our School Celebrate World Kindness Day

Last semester, students spread kind notes around campus in honor of World Kindness Day. They discussed acts of kindness and talked about how a kind word from a friend can lift your spirits. Students then wrote kind messages on sticky notes and then posted them around  campus. Locations included all Pre-K-8th grade doors, office, dining commons, staff doors, and gym.

AIG in Action for the 2018-2019 School Year

Academically and intellectually gifted (AIG) students receive enriched educational offerings by participating in specially designated AIG time during each week.

Under the direction of Monica Mathews, these AIG students are diligently working on researching topics of their choosing and collaborating on group projects. Stay tuned to see their work at our annual School Maker Faire in the Spring.

What is AIG?

What is AIG?

AIG stands for Academically or Intellectually Gifted

What is the AIG Program at TLC?

Many students at TLC! work at a level that is considered AIG. We strive to support their continued pursuit of excellence by providing many opportunities to work above and beyond their grade level, as well as taking on leadership positions. 

This year our program will focus on Independent Studies for students. Students or small groups of students will be able to choose a topic they are interested in and dive in deep! Students will research, synthesize, and share what they have learned with others. Students can share what they have learned in a variety of ways including pamphlets, presentations, digital stories and Maker Projects.

How can students be part of the AIG Program?

Teachers, staff and parents may all play a role in determining if a student belongs in our AIG program. A number of criteria is used. If you think your student should be considered, contact his/her teacher.

As Seen in the Cherokee Scout School Round Up Edition

Murphy – The Learning Center Charter School, a tuition-free public charter school, continues to break ground with high-quality offerings in 21st century education. On-going facility improvements are designed for rich academic opportunities on this “future-ready” campus.

The Learning Center Charter School offers an E-STEAM (Entrepreneurship, Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts/Agriculture, and Math) learning environment.  Students are exposed across the curriculum to 3-D Printers, robotics and coding. The school’s education philosophy includes the belief that all young learners have the right to experience a broad, rich, and rigorous range of academics during the formative K-8 years. Additionally, the school offers an award-winning nutrition program, daily P.E., unique electives and extra-curricular opportunities. The school’s emphasis on healthy living, community involvement and high academic standards is designed to produce future-ready citizens. This tuition-free public charter school (K-8th) has NO district restrictions and accepts students across all counties.

The Learning Center’s Montessori Blend Kindergarten program has proven to be a strong approach to instruction for even the youngest learners. “We’ve had consistent success with the feeder Montessori Program that is located on our school campus,” said school director, Mary Jo Dyre.

The school’s programs include Compacted Math classes for accelerated math students, daily PE for all grades, a highly developed drama program, and frequent garden-based learning opportunities across campus and in the school’s Outdoor Learning Center. The upper grade’s CREW Program, in its third year of operation, promotes character development, goal setting and responsible behaviors.

More extras including National Junior Honor Society, Odyssey of the Mind teams, ARTrageous and artists-in-residency program, “Mini and Middle REAL” young entrepreneur program and AIG After School Program provide students with the opportunities to become all they can be.

Designated as a “USDA Healthier U.S. School” (Silver Level), The Learning Center Charter School places a strong emphasis on its nutrition and exercise programs. The school also has a free breakfast and lunch program available for ALL students.

The charter school serves approximately 200+ students and is open to both in and out-of-county students. There is no tuition for grades K through 8th. The school also features a Montessori private preschool, serving ages 3-5 years. After school programs are available for all ages. Summer Enrichment Programs such as Innovation Tech Camp and intervention programs are also offered.

AIG Wraps Up for Year

The AIG Makers After School Program is a place for academically and intellectually gifted (AIG) students to receive enriched educational offerings.  This year these students worked on long term projects with guidance from teachers and community members and presented them at the annual School Maker Faire back in March.

To celebrate the great success of their Maker projects, the group wrapped up their year with a party where they dyed hard boiled eggs.

AIG — Bean Bag Making


The AIG Makers After School Program is a place for academically and intellectually gifted (AIG) students to receive enriched educational offerings.  This year these students are working on long term projects with guidance from teachers and community members with the goal of presenting them at the annual School Maker Faire in March.


However, they make time for play as well as hard work.  Here they are seen with the bean bags they made using fabric scraps and beans. The tin can is what you aim for when tossing the bags.

Click >>>HERE<<< to learn more about the long term projects AIG students are working on for the School Maker Faire.

Gifted Students at TLC Start “Maker Projects”

AIG students at TLC

The Learning Center Charter School teachers, Monica Gatti and Melisa Paul, know that academically and intellectually gifted (AIG) students should receive enriched educational offerings. That is why these students at the school participate in the AIG Makers After School Program.

Within the program, each student is doing their own “Maker Project.”  A maker is an umbrella term for independent designers, inventors and tinkerers. Technology has made it possible to learn, connect with others, and distribute ideas and products without middlemen like manufacturers and these Makers are finding ways to share ideas worldwide. AIG students at The Learning Center are independently joining this Maker Movement with their projects.

Gatti and Paul are facilitators that help each student through the process of brainstorming, researching, planning, creating and presenting. Students will document their process and present at the school’s annual School Maker Faire in the Spring. Additionally, each student will be connected to someone in the community that is knowledgeable on the specific project content or idea.

To date, these gifted students have chosen Maker Project topics that range from stop motion animation to in depth studies of Leonardo DaVinci.

Gatti says, “I am so excited that the students are choosing a Maker Project based on their own interests. This will allow the students to dive deep into a topic they are interested in and then share it with the public at our School Maker Faire in March. These projects will help students learn how to search for information, seek advice from experts, and learn to overcome challenges along the way. These are all qualities and skills the students will use to be successful for the rest of their lives.”

To learn more about AIG at TLC, click >>>HERE<<<.