Project GEMS (Gifted Education in Math and Science) was a five-year (2008-2013) joint venture between The Center for Gifted Studies and the Warren County Public Schools in Bowling Green, KY. Partially funded through the Jacob K. Javits Gifted and Talented Student Act (2008-2011), Project GEMS' goal was to design and implement a model demonstration project that would increase the number of elementary children who are advanced in science and math and to foster their interest and achievement in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. This goal specifically targeted children from low-income backgrounds and minorities who were underrepresented in STEM careers.
Project GEMS was multifaceted:
- OBJECTIVE 1: Establish a protocol for recognizing and identifying advanced ability in science and math among elementary children.
- OBJECTIVE 2: Implement a problem-based curriculum in science and math, incorporating problem-based science units from Javits projects atThe College of William and Mary Center for Gifted Education and problem-based math materials from the Javits project Mentoring Mathematical Minds or M3 developed at the University of Connecticut.
- OBJECTIVE 3: Develop, implement, and assess problem-based science/math units.
- OBJECTIVE 4: Develop, implement, and assess business partnerships to foster an understanding of technological and scientific application in the world of work.
- OBJECTIVE 5: Develop, implement, and assess a parent/community plan to build support and encouragement for high-level science and math instruction and opportunities.
- OBJECTIVE 6: Collect research data comparing achievement and interest in science and math among an experimental group who will go to a science and math magnet one full day a week and students who are matched in ability who remain in their home schools and are engaged in problem-based science and math, and students who are not involved in problem-based learning in science and math.