The CHOICES Chapter of the Minnesota Council for the Gifted and Talented has been an active community for years. We were long known as The Homeschool Chapter, and our monthly meetings were a staple of support for families of gifted homeschoolers in Minnesota. In 2019, we expanded our mission and updated how we serve.
CHOICES stands for:
Charter and Private School
Enrichment and Experiential Learning
We’ve seen a natural expansion over the years in the ways families approach education, as opportunities have broadened. Families with all of their children in public school are often served very well by their local MCGT chapter. But the CHOICES Chapter is increasingly attracting other families who take a very dynamic year-by-year, sibling-by-sibling approach. They might not consider themselves homeschoolers because one or all of their children attends a school, whether it’s charter or private, part-time, community college, or online. We welcome any family that uses their educational “choices” to their advantage!
The CHOICES Chapter is a resource for you when:
- You have gifted kids who need something besides or in addition to your local public school district.
- You’re looking for a community of families who curate their kids’ education with all sorts of tools. You consider public school, private school, online schools, homeschooling, microschools, learning pods, PSEO, higher education, and more to all be on the table. Your family may be learning during the traditional school day, or it may be at night, on weekends, and over the summer.
- You’re homeschooling gifted kids. Or you’re homeschooling, can’t make “Third Grade in a Box” programs work, and conversations about curriculum with homeschooling friends get awkward.
- You’re stumped in finding your kid’s educational fit because some simple things are too hard while some complex things are too easy. Your kids may be quirky in a way that doesn’t quite fit in with other kids.
- You live with your gifted kids outside of the Twin Cities and don’t have a local community of families with gifted kids.
- You’re an educator or professional seeking resources for your classroom or office, and connections for your families.
- You’re a group leader for homeschoolers, co-ops, microschools, interest groups, academic teams, and other communities of learners.
If you are a friend of our community, you are welcome to:
- Join our groups.io page. Post, read, and respond to conversations on our message board, or contact our organizers for support. This is our primary method of communicating with our CHOICES community, and all board-related business including meeting announcements and minutes are posted to that site.
- Browse our calendar for events hosted by the CHOICES Chapter, MCGT, and other organizations. The calendar is public, but you may need to join the groups.io page for more information or to RSVP for an event.
- E-mail us at [email protected] with questions about navigating gifted kids’ education, building community, supporting parents and kids, and more. No question is too big or small, especially about homeschooling!
- E-mail us at [email protected] to tell us about your organization or resource and inquire about collaboration.
- Attend our quarterly in-person meetings (third Monday of the month in May, August, and November, and third Tuesday of February) and other events that are open to all.
- Suggest events or activities and share resources to support families like yours.
- Follow the public MCGT Facebook page.
If you are a member of any MCGT chapter, you are also welcome to:
- Watch the panel chats about homeschooling and making learning choices for gifted kids. This is a great resource when you’re looking for support at 3AM!
- View and contribute to the scholarship resources page and view curated resources.
- Join the members-only MCGT Facebook group.
- Enjoy all of the benefits of MCGT membership including MCGT members-only events.
If you are a member of the MCGT CHOICES chapter, you are also welcome to:
- Bring home materials from our curriculum library. We have Beast Academy, Life of Fred, Story of the World, Michael Clay Thompson, enrichment materials from Critical Thinking Company, and more.
- Join the members-only MCGT CHOICES Facebook group.
- Participate in CHOICES members-only events, have priority registration for the most in-demand events, and attend some events at special prices.
- Vote on member business at monthly board meetings (The board meets virtually during the months without a quarterly meeting. Meeting links and agendas are posted to the groups.io forum.)
What are examples of past and upcoming events?
- In-person field trips (iFly, SkyZone), tours (Minneapolis Central Library, Twin Cities stadiums), and classes (The Swordcasting Guy).
- Virtual classes (NaNoWriMo, The Stock Market Game, Shakepearean Youth Theatre), field trips (Toucan Rescue Ranch in Costa Rica), and events (pi day crafts, social chats) for kids.
- Family events (Math with Bad Drawings with author Ben Orlin), park dates (Summer Passport Series), meet ups at events (Renaissance Faire) and casual gatherings
- Study groups, teams, and hosting for events like the Geography Bee, the National Mythology Exam, and MOEMS.
- Resource Fair, with used curriculum sale, vendor hall, speakers, and more.
- Book club discussions for parents
- Speakers for parents
How can I help?
- Join our primary source of communication on Groups.io and follow our Facebook page. Events and announcements are placed on both forms of media. Also contact [email protected] with any questions.
- If you haven’t already, join MCGT and our Chapter for $40 per year. Your MCGT membership includes one local chapter, and can either select us as your local chapter or add us as a second chapter for an additional $18 per year.
- Come to an event and invite another family to join you. Start by looking at our calendar.
- Volunteer to join a committee or help with a project. We have board members working on technology and communication, the library, and several different types of events and gatherings.
- Support the broader gifted community by making a donation to MCGT.
- Reach out with questions and ideas.
For more information, contact [email protected]. We look forward to meeting you!