Northwestern University Midwest Academic Talent Search Parent Info Meeting- NUMATS

Thursday Oct. 3,  7 pm

Programs available for students in grades 3-12.

Location : 10 Mile building 32789 W. 10 Mile Rd.

Northwestern University’s Midwest Academic Talent Search (NUMATS) is a research-validated program that utilizes above-grade-level testing to help you understand the educational needs of your gifted child. We also help you interpret test results, advocate for an appropriate learning environment and access quality resources and programs to ensure your child is receiving the differentiated instruction needed to keep pace with gifted peers.  In addition practice and early exposure to above-grade-level testing builds confidence when testing for high school placement (EXPLORE®) or college admission (ACT® and SAT®).  These tests can also pinpoint areas where your child may wish to concentrate study.

Beyond testing, participants reap many other benefits. 
They gain self-confidence. They’re more willing to take on challenges. And they start to think more about what they can achieve not only in school, but in life.

Join Kathee McDonald who served over 8 years as the director of the Office of Gifted and Talented Education at Michigan State University (MSU) and others in our region to learn how your child can participate in this great program.

Kathee McDonald served over 8 years as the director of the Office of Gifted and Talented Education at Michigan State University (MSU). Her duties include providing academic-year and summer programming for highly academically able students in grades 7 through 12. She also acted as an academic advisor for high school students applying as dual enrollment students at MSU. She continues to serve on the Capital Area Science and Math (CASM) Committee providing scholarships for STEM programs for teachers and students in mid-Michigan four county area schools. Kathee worked in public education for 27 years as an elementary, middle and high school teacher. The only grade she hasn’t taught is fifth grade! Along with teaching, she was a gifted and talented coordinator at Laingsburg Community Schools and technology coordinator at Laingsburg Elementary School. A strong supporter of math and science careers for women, she has coordinated girls’ math-science conferences on a county level and currently serves on the girls’ math-science conference committee for Ingham, Eaton, Shiawassee and Clinton counties in mid-Michigan. She has coached Future Problem Solving and Odyssey of the Mind. A strong supporter of the arts, she was President of MSU’s Friends of Kresge Art Museum and served on a charter committee of educators at the MSU Wharton Center for Performing Arts.
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MAGC Fall Conference – for Educators and Families



Fall Conference Flyer (QR) Landscape

Kids events for fall conference, Oct 2013

The Michigan Association for Gifted Children is hosting their fall conference on October 12, 2013 in Auburn Hills.

Key topics include identifying gifted students (especially minorities, using a non-verbal test to include ESL learners), cluster grouping as a financially-savvy strategy for districts to meet gifted needs, perfectionism, dual enrollment, 2E, social/emotional needs, and more.

A full day of children’s activities will also be available: balloon sculptures, circus skills, robot building, First Lego League, and more.

For information, see attached flyers or call MAGC at (616) 365-8230.

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Elementary Book Club – during School Year

For the 2013-2014 school year, TAL ( in partnership with Farmington Community Library),will organize the monthly book discussion for elementary school students. The program is called  ‘Read it & Build it.’  Many thanks to Triman Jagdev for organizing and leading this!
Students will discuss the book and make crafts related to it.
 Our first book discussion is on Sept 18th @ 6:30 PM in children’s meeting room ( main library). More information and registration link can be found at FCL  Registration is required and there are limited seats. Hope to see you there.
Activity program for elementary students based on selected book of the month.,
Sept. through April 6:30 pm; June, July 2 pm
 Farmington Hills Main Library- 32737 W 12 Mile Road
Schedule for Year:
September 18th Tut Tut by Jon Scieka
Oct. 16 Jim Dandy
Nov. 20 Gooseberry Park
Jan 15 Year of the Dog
April 16 Poppy and Rye
June 18 Sar in the Storm
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Speaker Bios Added for Back-to-School Readiness Event

There is still time to join us for the Back-to-School Readiness event!  For information on our speakers and details on the location and time, click here:

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What is Destination Imagination? (Video)

DI logoCheck out this video made by a Farmington-based Destination Imagination team that has gone to Nationals!


For more info, see the DI website here:

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Late Summer TAL Events

Happy Summer TAL members!  We have many events going on in August:
Tues. August 6th– Voting Day for school bond- If you want it to pass, please make time to vote!
• Tues. August 6th – 7pm There’s a Tarantula In My Purse Book Talk at Farmington Hills Library Grades 2-4
• Wed. August 7th – “Destination Imagination” get together 6 pm Riley Park, prior to 7 pm performance “The Amazing Clark”, please email for DI if new.
Tues. August 13th – 7 pm grades 4-6 Phineas L. McGuire Erupts Book Talk at Farmington Hills Library
Sunday August 25th – 6 pm “Back to School Readiness, Taking Care of You!” , fireside talks with local social workers/marriage family therapists. 33900 W. 13 Mile Road see below
Leadership get togethers Aug. TBD, one during day, one at evening (email if you would like to join the TAL leadership group)
• Book Club for 1st graders in the works—library will help us get books if we have an interest for any age group!
Math Acceleration—Appeals are still possible. If you feel your child needs to be accelerated please go to websites below. FPS recognizes that tests may not be the only measure. Please follow your instincts and the protocols below.
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Back to School Readiness – Classes August 25

“Back to School Readiness: Taking care of you”

Sunday August 25th, 6 pm

33900 W. 13 Mile Rd. Farmington Hills

Preparing for a successful school year takes more than just supplies. We welcome all community members to five mini classes by grades and a special adult class.

Adults, K-2, 3-4, 5-8, 9-12

Mini classes taught by local social workers, marriage and family therapists Joseph Tenney, Stephanie Carbajal and Melissa Aldrich.

To customize these sessions please respond to survey by Wednesday August 14 at or email

View segments from last year: or

Sponsored by Farmington PTA Council, Together for Accelerated Learners and partnered with the Farmington Hills congregation of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.


The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints                               

33900 W. 13 Mile Rd, Farmington Hills.

Topics include: How to make the beginning of school a littler easier, making and keeping friends, dealing with expectations, fears and anxieties about starting school, how to identify and work through those fears. How to use their personal strengths and previous successes to find confidence in themselves in new situations. Adult class: Helping our children, motivation, expectations, balancing time and expectations, helping sibling competition and parenting strategies.

Flyer: Click Here

**NEW** Speaker Bios:

 Joseph D. Tenney is the Counseling Manager, of the Michigan LDS Family Services.  He provides individual, marriage and family therapy, oversees the Addiction Recovery Program, Group Therapies, the Strengthening Marriage and Family Workshops, Community Resource Development and supervises local counselors.  He is a graduate of Brigham Young University with a master’s degree in social work.  He has also directed Social Work at a nursing home, a hospital and a Domestic Violence/Substance Abuse Facility.  He spent two years as a missionary in Caracas Venezuela, He and his wife Alisha live in Farmington Hills and love their four sons.

Cynthia Reynolds LMSW, BCD is a  licensed Clinical and Macro Social Worker in the state of Michigan. Mrs. Reynolds has a Bachelors degree in Psychology and a Masters degree in Social Work. She is also a Certified School Social Worker and a Board Certified Diplomat (American Board of Examiners in Clinical Social Work). Her areas of expertise include: children, adolescents, families and couples counseling. She has worked in several areas in the human services field including: mental health, child welfare, substance abuse and school social work for over 25 years. Mrs. Reynolds has testified as an expert witness for Post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and she frequently appears on WDIV channel 4 news as a mental health expert.

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Michigan Tech University Summer Youth Programs

MTU_summeryouthpgmsMichigan Tech University offers summer programs for students who have completed grades 6-8 and 9-11.  Programs include computing, engineering, photography, forensics, video game programming, and more.

For more information, see 

The programs run about $845 for the week  with lodging and food included.

Some scholarships are available.


Transportation options include: 

  • They have a bus that comes to 275 and 8 mile Meijers parking lot to pick up and return kids for $250.
  • Greyhound bus Indian trail bus service 800-292-3831, info
  • Fly Skywest United Airlines 800-864-8331 to Houghton County airport
  • Drive 10 hours by car


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TAL Summer Activities

summerIt is exciting to prepare for summer! There are several activities in the works. Two are scheduled in June.

1. Tuesday June 18th 7 pm 10 Mile Building: Destination Imagination Meet and Greet and Mini Reception for our 1st place Global Winners! Join us to meet others who are interested in Destination Imagination for the 2013-2014 school year or just curious about DI! Try out Instant Challenges and Celebrate our national award winning 1st place team.  No commitments required at this time.

2. Monday June 24th 7:30 pm 10 Mile Building : Math Acceleration Discussion

All are invited to attend a Math Acceleration Discussion on Monday, June 24 at 7:30 p.m. at the Ten Mile Building, 32789 West Ten Mile Road, Farmington.  This discussion would focus on questions and answers regarding the District’s Math Acceleration Process.  A district representative will be in attendance.If you have questions about the process, please send them to the TAL email below to be sure that we are able to get the answers to the questions you may have.This discussion is sponsored by TAL- Together for Accelerated Learners. All welcome to attend. Questions may be directed to or visit our website at

The new FPS protocols for math acceleration can be found at:

In the works: Maker Faire, Summer Enrichment-from recent meeting, Book Talks at library specifically tailored for TAL and our group’s needs, looking ahead to lifelong learning- Sunday afternoon “Fireside and Forum.”

If you are willing to help with any of these activities please email so we can make them reality!


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Important Advocacy Needed by Tuesday 3/5

An urgent message from the Michigan Association for Gifted Children is shown below, followed by a suggestion for an email that you can use as the basis for asking our legislators to fund gifted education THIS WEEK.


February 28, 2013
Dear Families with Gifted and Talented Children and Youth in Michigan:

A joint meeting of the House Appropriations and Education Committees is taking place
next Wednesday in Lansing at the State Capitol Building to discuss allocations for the
State Aid Act that funds education in Michigan.

Since there is no funding for gifted education in Michigan, only children whose families
can afford private gifted schools or those fortunate enough to reside in the few school
districts that offer gifted programs receive an education commensurate with their

The Michigan Association for Gifted Children (MAGC) asked the House Appropriations
and Education Committees to approve an allocation of 1% of the Michigan education
budget for gifted students. The money would ensure:

  •  Teacher training in gifted education for public school teachers,
  •  The development, implementation, and assessment of gifted and talented programs that take place during the school day for gifted and talented students,
  • High quality gifted and talented materials, resources, programs, and services for gifted students in grades K-12.

Please contact them immediately and let them know how much the 1% allocation would mean to your own and other gifted children. Briefly, share your stories with them; tell them what it has been like for your children and families without access to gifted education.
In addition, please ask family members, friends, teachers, and administrators to do the
same. Every person you know who is 18 years of age and older, including different
members of the same household, can and should send a separate communication,
because each person is a separate constituent. This increases the number of letters
legislators receive and therefore multiplies and underscores the importance and
urgency of this issue.
Together we CAN change the future for gifted children in Michigan!
With Appreciation,
The Michigan Association for Gifted Children Advocacy Committee

Email addresses to send to (members of House Appropriations and Educations Committees):,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, 
Example email body text:
Dear Members of the House Appropriations and Education Committees:
As you consider education funding, please act in favor of MAGC’s request to address the unique and currently-unmet needs of gifted children.  The Michigan Association for Gifted Children (MAGC).  MAGC asked the House Appropriations and Education Committees to approve an allocation of 1% of the Michigan education budget for gifted students. The money would ensure:
-Teacher training in gifted education for public school teachers,
-The development, implementation, and assessment of gifted and talented programs that take place during the school day for gifted and talented students,
-High quality gifted and talented materials, resources, programs, and services for gifted students in grades K-12.
Presently these students are neglected by our public schools, which leads to behavior problems, emotional instability, and a substantial number of students being told that they should settle for being average.  Michigan’s schools can do better than this.
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