Southeast Michigan Mensa Regional Gathering May 2nd – 4th

Hey, have you thought about attending our upcoming Southeast Michigan Mensa Regional Gathering?  We have a ton of great activities planned (see descriptions below).  We’d love to see you there!

Here’s our registration page: Online registration is available this year. If you do not have a family member who belongs to Mensa, but would like to attend and see what it’s all about, contact us at prior to registering so that we may sponsor you as our guest.  And here’s our grid of activities:, plus a detailed list of kids’ activities:

• Weekend long Lego building and Life Size Minecraft Block building.
• Weekend long Lego Building Contest, winner awards to be presented at Sunday’s presentation of prizes.

6-7 pm – Mystery Icebreaker and Pizza
7-8:30 pm – Minecraft Programming with GameStart School: – Learn to program Minecraft mods using the Python programming language.  This is a great intro to programming class that will appeal to many kids who already love Minecraft!
8:30 pm – Kids’ Ice Cream!
8:30-9:30 pm – Kids’ Pool Party!

9-10:30 am – Kids’ Take-It-Apart Party – A number of people have volunteered to bring “old junk” in for this event.  We’ll have basic electronics, computer equipment, etc., and we can always use more.  Bring your old junk to find out what is inside of it!  We will have our special head screwdriver set and some other tools available, but please feel free to bring your own wrenches, screwdrivers, pry tools, socket wrenches, nut drivers, adjustable wrenches, hex drivers, or pliers, if you would like.  Please do not bring dangerous tools such as hatchets, hammers, razors, chisels, saws, etc. to help us insure everyone’s safety.  Thank you!
10:30 am – noon – Kids’ First Lego League Mindstorms Mission Models Programming – This is your kids’ chance for a crash course in Lego Mindstorms programming used to solve real First Lego League missions!  We will have a full set of mission models on site ready to challenge the kids to solve the missions!  It’s great preparation for future participation in FLL.
1:00 – 1:30 pm – Learn to Make Origami – Learn how to perform this ancient Japanese art and take some colorful origami creations home with you!
1:30-2:30 pm – Kids’ Karaoke – Does your kid like to “ham it up” at home?  Does she/he love to sing and/or dance?  Come to our Kids’ Karaoke Workshop and have some singing fun!
2:30-4:30 pm – Harvard Intro to Neuroscience Crash Course and Backyard Brains Labs – We will learn basic neuroscience via excerpts from the Harvard Fundamentals of Neuroscience edX Course with labs created by Backyard Brains.  We have lab equipment and lab animals and your kids will get to first learn the theory and next do actual neuroscience lab experiments!
4:30 – 5 pm – Arts & Scraps Workshop – Let’s learn to finger weave and make some great hippy headbands!
5-6:30 pm – Vault of Midnight Strategy Gaming – The Vault of Midnight Comic and Gaming Store in Ann Arbor is lending us some great strategy games for our kids’ gaming event.  Games for younger and older kids will be provided!
7:30 – 9:30 pm – Kids’ Saturday Night Pajama Party – Wacky Shakespeare Theme, plus “Champagne” (aka sparkling water) and hors d’oeuvres reception afterward – Come in your pajamas to our fabulous Shakespeare production of  Act 2 scene 1 of the play, Much Ado About Nothing, produced and directed by our kids!  The younger kids will be the opening act.  Bring weird and wacky costume items (and or theatrical improve) to spice up the production!  Every effort will be made to honor your child’s request to play a particular character!  He/she may enjoy practicing and/or learning about the play prior to the RG!  Cast and crew will be honored and congratulated at the closing reception.

11 am – noon – Lego Project Judging – Be sure to have your child’s Lego project ready for judging in the Kids’ Room at this time!
11 am – noon – Bricks 4 Kidz Lego Engineering Workshop – Bricks 4 Kidz: presents Lego workshops that use real engineering principles with themes such as space, amusement parks, etc.  Our local Ann Arbor Bricks 4 Kidz owner, Lori Stevens, specializes in Lego workshops that don’t use computers, but instead use pure child imagination.
Noon – Prizes Ceremony – Lego contest prizes to be awarded here!

We’d love to see you there to share in the fun!  Sign up on our facebook event, if you can, to see which other families will be attending with you!

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End of Year Testing NUMATS Deadline Approaching

Only Two More Opportunities to Test

Registration Deadline is May 6
for the
June 7 SAT®
June 14 ACT®

Dear NUMATS Advocate,

You are in a unique position to help gifted students and, particularly, to identify low-income, high-ability students for gifted services.

There are very good reasons to register for Northwestern University’s Midwest Academic Talent Search (NUMATS) and take the ACT and/or SAT in June:

  • Research shows that low-income gifted students perform best at the end of the school year.
  • Students have received a full school year of instruction so it’s a great time to measure both cognitive ability and academic growth.
  • Students who qualify for free or reduced-price lunch can test at no cost.

Remember, testing is just the first step.  The true value of NUMATS comes in the follow-up information, tailored resources, and planning tools that educators and families receive in their password-protected, online NUMATS Toolbox account.

So please encourage students in grades 6-9 to register now at

For more information:

We look forward to hearing from you!

Best regards,
Rhoda Rosen, PhD
Associate Director        

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“What is a Gifted Child?” Mini-Conference Saturday

What is a Gifted Child? 
SPARCler Mini-Conference
Saturday, April 5 from 9:00 a.m. to noon at Steppingstone
Parents, there will be valuable information even for those who already recognize that their child is gifted.  We ask that you attend to support others and be a resource for those who are new to the subject of being gifted and gifted education.    Your experience and knowledge may help someone find the best education solution for their gifted child. 
What to Expect:
  • 4 experts will examine and discuss the behavioral characteristics of the gifted, IQ Testing and School Selection.
  • Audience members will have an opportunity to ask questions.
  • Register for one on Eventbrite and bring your spouse or significant other for free.  You can also register by calling the school at (248) 957-8200. 
  • Continental breakfast will served.
  • Registration begins at 8:30, speakers begin at 9:00 a.m.
On the Agenda:  
  • Katherine Okla, psychologist, on General Characteristics and Needs
  • Dr. Adam Plotnik, psychologist on Specific Characteristics, ADHD and Learning Disabled
  • Pat LaPat, psychologist on Demystifying IQ Testing
  • Heather Gutterman, teacher on How to Pick a School for your Gifted Child. 


Please contact Donna Coffin or Kiyo Morse with any questions about the event.  Phone:  (248) 957-8200.  We hope to see you there! 
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Weekly Online Current Events League for Grades 4-HS

*NewzBrain Introduces “1st Ever” School District, State and National Weekly Online Current Events League for Grades 4-HS

*Absolutely NO TEACHER PREPARATION! Students Use Their Technology!

* Designed for gifted teachers who see their student once a week or every other week!

*The league activity designed to assess a student’s general knowledge of current events on an ongoing weekly basis. The league weekly activity can be taken on laptops, student iPhones and iPads, in school or out of school!

$100 discount to homeschool groups

Your students will love it! Fun Learning, Global Thinking Enrichment!

The league (a 20-multiple choice assessment) test takes a student 8-10 minutes to complete each week.
Grades 3-5 Students Take a Level I League Assessment. Grades 6-12 take a Level II League Assessment. Student league scores will be compared by Grade level.

Weekly stickers and certificates for your students! All your student scores are tracked in a grading folder set up for the teacher. Awards are for weekly School District Top Scores State and National rankings and participation!

Very affordable to your school! District pricing is even better for you! Any or all your students can play in the league every week for a minimal cost to your school of $7 per week. As an added benefit, NewzBrain will also provide teachers with a weekly classroom group activity Interactive White Board game, called NewzBrain Weekly! (see samples at site)

To sign up for next school year, go to ORDER in the menu. You sign up your school. For great savings to your participation look at the District License form!

Call Peter if you have questions, 402-944-7300!

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Michigan Supreme Court: Exploring Careers in the Law Summer Moot Court Program

The Michigan Supreme Court Learning Center is pleased to announce that the application for Exploring Careers in the Law summer moot court program is now available at
July 21-25, 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
Michigan Supreme Court Learning Center, Lansing
For students entering 10th-12th grade (fall 2014) and 2014 graduates
Description: This program allows students to learn first-hand what lawyers do by presenting a moot court case, similar to arguments before the Supreme Court. Participants play the roles of attorney, justice, and other major players in the case. They meet with justices, lawyers, judges, and other legal professionals to prepare their arguments and opinions. Limited to 22 participants. Application:; deadline May 30, 2014.
Press Release
Please feel free to share information about this challenging program with your members. Thanks!
Rachael L. Drenovsky
Learning Center Coordinator
Michigan Supreme Court Learning Center
P.O. Box 30205
Lansing, MI  48909
Phone: 517-373-5027
Fax: 517-373-7615
Tours: 517-373-7171
Posted in Educational Opportunities for Gifted Kids, Main | Leave a comment

Workshop: Understanding the Smarter Balanced Assessment & Common Core State Standards


April 3, 2014

7:00 p.m.

Birmingham Covington School (BCS)

1525 Covington Road * Bloomfield Hills, MI 48301

Your kids will be impacted by this in 2014-15!  Dr. Joseph Hoffman, Assistant Superintendent for Instruction of Birmingham Public Schools will tell you what it is and answer all your questions about this new method of testing approved by the state of Michigan for all students.”The Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (Smarter Balanced) is a state-led consortium working to develop next-generation assessments that accurately measure student progress toward college- and career-readiness. Smarter Balanced is one of two multistate consortia awarded funding from the U.S. Department of Education in 2010 to develop an assessment system aligned to the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) by the 2014-15 school year.”

For more information contact Kathy Sinclair-Pearson at or 734-678-6200 or visit 


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Free Parent Discussion Group Thursday March 27th, 6:30-8:40PM

Roeper is hosting SENG Model Parent Facilitator training at the Roeper School, Bloomfield Hills location on March 27th and 28th.  These fledgling facilitators need practice with real parents to complete their training!  Please sign up for free to participate in a practice parent group, details here:  This is a great chance to meet other parents of gifted kids in a group discussion format and get some free SENG facilitation-in-training in the bargain!   Plus you will be helping out new facilitator parents that can help you out later with local regular SENG parent support groups!

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