Minnesota Council for the Gifted & Talented

Connections. Advocacy. Resources. Equity. Support.

CHOICES Chapter Valentine’s Day Activities

This year CHOICES is commemorating Valentine’s Day with a celebration of our friendships and community. Please choose whichever of the activities listed below best suit your family’s needs and schedule.  We are offering the two classes requested most often, in the most requested age ranges, on our recent survey free for CHOICES Chapter members.

The registration deadline for these classes is 5pm on Tuesday, February 9. Registration instructions for both classes are below the class descriptions.  

A Peek Inside the Heart, with Melissa Lamb, on Thursday, February 11 from 3:00pm – 4pm We will discuss the anatomy of the heart and what makes it tick! Can you die of a broken heart? How big is your heart? Is blood really different colors in veins and arteries? What causes a heart attack? We will answer all of these questions and more in this fun one-hour class! Kids should bring two pieces of blank paper and red, blue, and black writing utensils (e.g. colored pencils, pens, crayons, or markers). Students may be 6- to 11-years-old. Parents may attend with their child if they desire. Melissa Lamb has a M.S. in Medical and Translational Research and has carried out extensive research on pediatric CPR devices. She currently works as a freelance medical writer and homeschools her three inquisitive children.

Valentine’s Inspired Arts & Crafts, with Cassandra Monson, on Friday, February 12 from 10:00am – 11:00am
 Cassandra will teach two different art projects: (1) Scandinavian heart weavings using paper or felt, and (2) Jim Dine inspired heart paintings using watercolors, colored pencils and wax crayons. The class will begin with 2 minutes of movement meditation, arm stretches, and deep breaths to calm participants’ nervous systems and get their bodies ready for sitting and making art. In order to support students in much-needed community discussion, Cassandra will open the virtual classroom 15 minutes before class and stay 15 min after. Students may be 6- to 11-years-old. Parents may attend with their child if they desire.    Cassandra Monson is a professional artist and a freelance art teacher with a BFA from the College of Visual Arts and 20 years of teaching experience. Learn more about her work at http://www.cassandramonson.com/. Example images of each project are below.  


1) To register your child, please verify that you are a current member of the CHOICES chapter of MCGT. You may join MCGT and the CHOICES chapter for $40/year at https://mcgt.net/joinIf you are a member of MCGT but belong to another chapter, you may add the CHOICES chapter for $18/year by contacting Jennifer Farner at info @ mcgt.net (without added spaces).

2) Please verify that your child meets the age minimum in February. All of the students registering are gifted and will be working 1-3 years ahead in their curriculum.

3) Email Stephanie Surles (CHOICES Board Member at Large) at stephsurles @ gmail.com(without added spaces) with your selected class or classes, child’s name, age, and the name listed on your CHOICES membership.

4) Once registered, Zoom login information will be sent to the associated email address.

Sharing Valentine’s Day Cards 

Practice drawing, writing, addressing envelopes, and correspondence while practicing empathy by sending a Valentine’s Day card to friends, isolated seniors, or veterans in Minnesota.

The mailing address and instructions for sending Valentine’s Day cards to seniors is available at https://www.giftsforseniors.org/cards-for-seniors and to veterans at  https://www.minneapolis.va.gov/giving/downloads/MVAHCS_Guidelines-for-Cards-to-Veterans_2020.pdf.

Once you have mailed a card (or ten!) to a friend, neighbor, senior, or veteran, let us know by emailing stephsurles @ gmail.com (without added spaces) and we will send you a thank you containing Valentine’s-themed jokes, printable cards, and stories.

This activity is open to all MCGT families so the included material ranges from preschool to high school.  

Please note 

that the activities mentioned above, while developed based on the recent survey results, do not have to be all that are offered! If you have younger or older kids and would like to facilitate another offering, please reach out by emailing stephsurles @ gmail.com (say it with me now, without added spaces).

We are always happy to serve any age where we have enough kids to reach critical mass. 

Happy Valentine’s Day!The MCGT CHOICES Chapter Board