The below descriptors recognise students who are exceptionally skilled in a subject area. Although this is mainly applicable for the practical subjects we have recognised that a student may be Talented in an academic subject but not currently fall into the description of Able (Ignite) at Mayfield. All subjects have therefore created Talented descriptors.

This document contains the descriptors created by subjects to highlight who their Talented students are. Each descriptor contains a number of statements. Students will not necessarily demonstrate every quality listed within a descriptor.

How is this information used?

  • Information of talented students is placed on SIMs to aid staff in recognising these youngsters and differentiating lessons accordingly. Parents are also informed of the categorisation of their child to allow further support to be provided at home.
  • Departments maintain responsibility for identifying Talented students and monitoring their progress and celebrating achievement.
  • Achievement will also be recognised through House and Whole school assemblies and on school noticeboards and the webpage.

Department responsibility?

Departments should inform RIH of any examples of outstanding work or achievements made by Talented students. These achievements may have been in or out of school.

Departments should email TTE should they need to amend the list of students identified as Talented in a subject.

Departments should email RIH is they need to amend their Talented descriptor at any stage in future.


Subject Descriptor of Talented Students
  • Enjoy Mathematics
  • Tenacious at problem solving and happy to investigate
  • Prepared to fail and try again
  • Able to assess whether they are succeeding and identify areas for development (self-correcting)
  • Independently research a topic or area of mathematics they are interested in
  • Spot patterns and look to investigate these, find and test rules
  • Able to make cross curricular links
  • Able to solve a range of problems independently
  • Solve Mathematical problems without the need to show every step (but still achieving correct solution)
  • Grasp new concepts easily
  • Tackle problems in a creative way
  • Will ask challenging and inquisitive questions
  • Not waiting to be told how but will look to work out the solution for themselves
  • Requires less input from a teacher
  • Be an outstanding, dedicated and avid reader
  • May demonstrate exceptional leadership skills
  • May be outstanding orators
  • May have an outstanding dramatic flair
  • May demonstrate flair and creativity in their written communication and original writing
  • May write stories and poetry for fun
  • They learn more quickly
  • They ask searching questions based on prior scientific understanding
  • They challenge accepted theories
  • They are autonomous learners
  • Divergent thinkers – they look for the unusual and draw conclusions from more than one source of evidence
  • They often display a keen sense of humour
  • They have a vivid imagination
  • Category 1 - Be an elite performer in at least one sport – This would be identified by recognition in that sport by outside achievement and selection. For example, achievement of a scholarship at Portsmouth FC.
  • Category 2 - A person can also be identified if they are classified as outstanding at school level in at least 2 sports. This would realistically identify the top 5% in any year group. They would normally represent in school teams and stand out in lessons when that activity is being delivered.
  • Pupils will not need to fit into both categories.
  • Pupils are normally identified as player or performer but could also be considered as a coach, official, organiser or choreographer is appropriate.
  • The able Historian will be able to work thematically and will understand the implications of the chronological framework surrounding the theme.
  •  The able Historian will be able to put events into the context of the time and articulate, verbally or through writing, different representations of events.
  • Historians that are more able draw upon a wide number of themes and events to explain why events occurred in certain ways.
  • They have the confidence to express and justify a belief that may not necessarily be accepted by their peers or the teacher.
  • Curious to find out the minor details.
  • Ability and desire to find alternative or additional representations of the past in order to fully satisfy themselves.
  • An insatiable desire to prove everything.
  • High Powers of reasoning.
  • Able to draw upon general historical and political knowledge to substantiate responses, or to divert attention to areas of a greater personal interest.
  • Good spatial awareness, able to name parts of the globe
  • Able to apply abstract ideas, such as map data or geographical models, to the real world
  • Have good cross-curricular understanding, can link other studies to Geography and vice versa
  • Keeps up to date with current Geographical stories and can link these into their work
  • Be able to identify bias and link this to their work
  • Can show empathy for other people and those from other cultures
  • Able to analyse places using social, economic and environmental indicators
  • Independent enquiry skills that can be used to design enquiries and field work.

They may:

  • Show high levels of insight into and discernment beyond the obvious and ordinary
  • Make sense of, and draw meaning from, religious symbols, metaphors, texts and practices
  • Understand, apply and transfer ideas and concepts across topics in RE and Philosophy and into other religions and cultural contexts.
  • Empathise with other cultures, religions and situations.
  • Be prepared to challenge stereotypes and support with reasoning
  • Accept differences
  • Make links to current affairs
  • Question the reliability of sources and accepted texts.
  • Enjoys speaking another language both for pleasure and to communicate with others.
  • Is an enthusiastic learner who sees connections between foreign languages and his/her own.
  • Is able to spot patterns, form rules and applies them to his/her own language as well as the target language.
  • Probably finds remembering words easy and takes pleasure in learning new words and phrases.
  • Is eager to recycle language and use it in different contexts.
  • Is not afraid of mistakes or over worried about perfection, just wants to communicate his/her message and experiment with previous learning and independent learning.
  • Has a good ‘feel’ for the language and it is his/her flair and intuition which makes him/her a successful linguist, not necessarily hard work and/or commitment.
  • Might follow interests and enthusiasms via websites such as foreign language versions of YouTube, Google, Linguascope, or via magazines.

Students and teachers will use the below student friendly descriptor to assess is students are talented in technology.

Generate Ideas


I can IDENTIFY CONFLICTING DEMANDS on a product and respond CREATIVLEY to my BRIEF. I can EXPLAIN how my ideas address these demands.


I can calculate TIMINGS for each STAGE of MANUFACTURE.

I can ORGANISE my work to carry out each PROCESS ACCURATLEY EVERY TIME.

Applying Knowledge & Understanding

I can work with a RANGE of TOOLS, MATERIALS, EQUIPMENT, COMPONENTS and PROCESSES, which I full account of their CHARACTERISTICS.



I investigate FORM, FUNCTION and PRODUCTION PROCESSES before I communicate my ideas; I use a VARIETY of MEDIA when I do so.

I use my understanding of other people’s designs by INTERPRETING I into my own DESIGNS.

Working with materials

I ADAPT METHODS of MANUFACTURE when situations change and, as I need to SOLVE TECHNICAL PROBLEMS. I EXPLAIN any CHANGES I make from my original designs.

I ORGANISE my work so that I can carry out each PROCESS ACCURATLEY and CONSISTENTLY, I use tools, equipment, materials, and ingredients with PRECISION.


I can select appropriate TECHNIQUES to show how my product would perform in use. I can MODIFY my product after my EVALUATION IMPROVE its PERFORMANCE.


  • This person would have a natural interest backed up by significant abilities. This might be in one of many areas: 3d Modelling, Programming, Robotics, Web Design, Electronics, Gaming, Computational Theory (often just a mathematical ability), Online Profile, Graphic Design.
  • They would have significant personal interest in developing their ICT skills across a broad range.
  • They would have to be self-taught (perhaps a family member might help) and be a rapid learner.
  • They might showcase their work online or in some other groups. They would be able to transfer their knowledge across disciplines.
  • They might enter competitions.
  • They program at home, have shown web design skills and have a very strong interest in computing.
  • They know the Computing and Programming language.
  • They display a passion for the art form
  • Produce interesting , original and challenging choreography
  • Shows a good understanding of dance skills and devices
  • Has the ability to pick up technical sequences quickly
  • Displays a keen sense of musicality and an innate sense of style
  • Seek ways to extend their skills and experiences within the subject .
  • Take opportunities both in school and extracurricular to experience different aspects of dance.
  • Uses their knowledge to benefit group work and analyse and feedback to peers.
  • Pupils with a high level of personal, social and emotional intelligence who can lead and contribute to  groups effectively
  • Good communication skills
  • Understanding of use of drama skills and devices
  • Confidence in performance
  • Perceptive feedback and evaluation evident
  • Shows a passion for the arts
  • Commits to rehearsal and performance equally
  • Ability to develop and manipulate tasks beyond target level
  • Think and express themselves in creative, original ways.  They want to follow a different plan to the other pupils, challenge the  tasks given, or extend the brief in seemingly unrelated or fantastic directions.
  • Have a strong desire to create in a visual form.  They are driven by ideas, imagination, flights of fancy, humanitarian concerns, humour or personal experience; they persevere until they have completed a task successfully, with little or no intervention from the teacher.
  • Push the boundaries of normal processes.  They test ideas and solve problems relating to concepts and issues; they explore ways to depict ideas, emotions, feelings and meanings; they take risks without knowing what the outcome will be; they change ideas to take into account new influences or outcomes.
  • Show a passionate interest in the world of art and design.  They are often interested in a specific culture (possibly relating to their own cultural background or sense of identity), particular art forms, contemporary culture or youth culture.
  • Use materials, tools and techniques skilfully and learn new approaches easily . They are keen to extend their technical abilities and sometimes get frustrated when other skills do not develop at the same time
  • Initiate ideas and define problems .  They explore ideas, problems and sources on their own and collaboratively, with a sense of purpose and meaning .
  • Critically evaluate visual work and other information .  They make unusual connections between their own and others' work;  they apply ideas to their own work in innovative ways
  • Exploit the characteristics of materials and processes.  They use materials and processes in creative, practical and inventive ways; they explore alternatives and respond to new possibilities and meanings
  • Understand that ideas and meanings in their own and others' work can be interpreted in different ways .  They use their knowledge and understanding to extend their own thinking and realise their intentions; they communicate original ideas, insights and views .
  • Shows a sustained interest in music and performing
  • Is self-disciplined
  • Responds discriminately to rhythm, melody, harmony
  • Can perceive fine differences in musical tone (pitch, loudness, timbre)
  • Shows commitment in arts area
  • Can sing in tune well
  • Is self critical; sets high standards
  • Shows sensitivity to aesthetic elements of music, mood, style
  • Remembers and reproduces melodies with ease and accuracy
  • Can express emotions through sound or music
  • Has a high degree of tonal memory
  • Is highly creative
  • Shows confidence in performing
  • Enjoys moving to rhythms and music
  • Evokes emotional responses from audience
  • Can identify a variety of sounds heard at a given moment
  • Is gifted in academic areas