Your Extraordinary Saturday (YES)
For 1st – 4th Grade Students
A New Adventure Every Weekend
Now accepting applications for Winter Session!
MITY's program for elementary students enables inquisitive, high achieving 1st - 4th grade students to continue learning outside of the traditional classroom. Courses are intentionally designed to inspire inquiry, activate imaginations, and engage eager learners in hands on discovery that is not possible within a regular classroom setting. While students are in class, parents are invited to listen to professional speakers on topics related to raising bright children, socialize with other parents, or visit a local coffee shop.
At A Glance
2022 - 2023
- Fall Session: November 5, 12 and 19, 2022
- Winter Session: January 21, 28 and February 4, 2023
- Spring Session: April 15, 22 and 29, 2023
Program Hours: 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM
- Fall Session: Breck School, Golden Valley, MN
- Winter Session: Visitation School, Mendota Heights, MN
- Spring Session: Visitation School, Mendota Heights, MN
Ages: Students currently in grades 1 – 4
Cost: $160 per session; Sibling - $130; Financial Aid Available
- September 1: Applications available for Fall Session
- November 10: Applications available for Winter Session
- February 7: Applications available for Spring Session
- NOTE: MITY accepts applications on a rolling basis
- Students take 2 unique classes every weekend
- Features content not covered in the regular school day
- Experienced and engaging teachers
- 8:1 student-teacher ratio to ensure all students get the attention they need
- Creative individual and group projects in every class
- Mid-morning snack and game break to socialize with new friends
Partnering with Families
- On the first two Saturdays of each session, MITY offers free seminars from esteemed speakers about topics related to parenting a bright and motivated child.
- Families are invited to visit classrooms on the third Saturday.
- Specific course information will be given by the teacher during the session. Parents are encouraged to discuss class content and activities with their child.
Fall Session 2022
November 5: Perfectionism, Passions, Problems, And Possibilities, Pam McDonald
Why do gifted kids think everything should be perfect? School, relationships, the ability to do everything in life well? Is this feeling innate to gifted individuals? Do children develop these feelings from their parents? Do teachers exacerbate the idea? Do gifted children know what perfectionism means and how to become pursuers of excellence? Perfectionism is a multi-faceted topic with many points of view and a good deal of supported research. Come learn about the tenets of perfectionism and how to support your child.
Bio: Pam McDonald attained her BS in Elementary Education from the University of Illinois at Champaign Urbana. She completed her MA with an area of concentration in gifted education from the University of St. Thomas. She has been a speaker and a leader in the field of Gifted Education for over 35 years. She has been a teacher of the gifted, a coordinator of gifted services in a public and private school setting, and an adjunct professor at Hamline University. She is currently doing private family educational consulting as well as sharing her expertise by consulting with school districts across the Twin Cities area. Pam is also a certified SENG (Supporting Emotional Needs of the Gifted) facilitator and is working on her first children's book, The Christmas Heart, that will be available through Fox Pointe Publishing in the summer of 2023.
November 12: A Mind Body Approach to Promoting Wellness for Gifted Kids, Dr. Andrea Johnson
Join Dr. Johnson as she discusses the unique neurobiology of giftedness and how it can impact overall wellbeing. She will share evidence based strategies such as mindfulness, meditation, food/nutrients, aromatherapy, and exercise to address common gifted traits and promote optimal health. Participants will leave with an integrative health lens to view giftedness and new tools to promote wellness.
Bio: Dr. Andrea Johnson is a clinical psychologist with a background in neuropsychology and has been working with kids for 30 years. She has a private practice in Edina, MN and specializes in working with gifted kids and their families. She has worked or trained at Mayo Clinic, the U of MN, Children’s Hospitals in Denver and Minneapolis, and the MN Department of Health. She is certified in Integrative Health through the University of Arizona’s Center for Integrative Medicine. She has been presenting at local and national gifted conferences for 10 years and is also the parent of gifted kids.
Winter Session 2023
January 21: Guiding Principles For Raising Gifted Kids, Dr. Danika Maddocks
Gifted and twice-exceptional (2e) kids have unique needs that require a unique parenting approach. If you've tried traditional parenting techniques with your gifted kids, only to find that they're not helpful, you're not alone. In this presentation, learn guiding principles for raising gifted kids plus concrete strategies and examples to apply each principle at home. These guiding principles are strengths-based, neurodiversity-affirming, and based on research about what works for gifted and 2e kids.
Bio: Dr. Danika Maddocks is a parent coach, psychologist, and former teacher who's passionate about helping parents understand and support their gifted and twice-exceptional kids. She has an MA in developmental psychology from San Francisco State University and a PhD in school psychology from the University of Texas at Austin. In her coaching company, The Gifted Learning Lab, she uses a research-based and neurodiversity-affirming approach to help parents feel more confident raising their intense or sensitive gifted and twice-exceptional kids.
January 28: If Gifted Kids Are So Smart, Why Can't They Just..., Anne Tyler
There are many “simple” daily tasks that can be difficult for some gifted kids. Gifted children and teens may have significant challenges with self-calming, paying attention, initiating non-preferred or challenging tasks or keeping track of their things. This seminar provides research-based parenting strategies about how to coach gifted children to improve their ability to learn and be successful in daily life. Resources and supportive materials will be provided to implement strategies at home and school.
Bio: Anne Tyler, MS, LMFT is a family therapist in the Twin Cities. She specializes in the needs of high potential children, adolescents and adults. She is the creator of MindQuest groups and coaching curriculum that teach gifted children and adolescents how to improve executive functioning and mindfulness to enhance learning and daily living skills. She is a regular presenter to parents, therapists and educators on topics to improve the lives of gifted children and their families.
- "Learning to Learn in 2022" - Tina Van Erp, M.Ed., GIfted Learner Coach, GIfted Education Specialist, and Teacher Trainer
- "Stealth Dyslexia, ADHD, and Other Learning Differences in Twice Exceptional Students" - Dr. Liz Adams, owner of Minnesota Neuropsychology
- "Executive Functioning in Gifted Children" - Jennifer Siebenaler, Gifted and Talent Development Specialist at Cedar Park STEM Elementary
- "Supporting Gifted Students in Schools" - Dr. Melissa Malen, owner of AxyLu Academic Coaching, LLC
- "Intelligence is not Executive Functioning" - Dr. Teresa Boatman, psychologist and president of the Minnesota Council for Gifted and Talented
- "Increasing Engagement and Success Through Creative Expression and Exploration" - Erin Boltik, Ed.S., Director of Gifted and Talented Programs and Services for Bloomington Public Schools
- "Navigating a Gifted Child's Educational Journey: Strategies to Support Parent-Teacher Collaboration" - Dr. Carol Hokanson, Social Emotional Learning Specialist with Mahtomedi Public Schools
What do people say about MITY’s program for elementary students?
"All smiles and excitement about these Saturdays. We loved our experience!"
"MITY delivers interesting, challenging and growth mindset-based education."
"Your teachers are phenomenal!"
"I wish regular school was this cool!"
"I leave each week excited to come back. It’s awesome!"
"I love my teachers and always have fun."