Young brains in high gear

Kids build a LEGO airplane together.

These youngsters didn’t know each other until they had to work together to build an airplane.

It was Sunday, but nobody’s brains were resting at a free all-day educational forum at Annie Wright School in North Tacoma.

For the second year, Scholar Search, based in Connecticut, invited Puget Sound area educators to offer opportunities so “intellectually curious” youngsters and their parents coul spend the day engaged in learning and exploring options for schooling and enrichment.

What this looked like for the kids was classes where they could make clothing out of recyclable junk, learn what makes submarines buoyant and create their own, discuss philosophy, take on a LEGO engineering challenge – and more.

For adults there were sessions on giftedness, the importance of men in supporting academically powerful girls, organizational skills, affording education – and more.

Several local and national organizations had information tables in the Great Hall, including the Center for Talented Youth at Johns Hopkins University, Bricks 4 Kids, Northwest Gifted Child Association, Seabury School, Seattle Theatre Group, Destination Imagination, Seattle Girls School, Annie Wright and University of Washington.

Patsy Kumekawa, who runs Scholar Search with her husband, Michael, said they’ll have five educational forums this school year across the country. The North Tacoma forum event drew about 450 students and parents, she said.

She said they almost always get warm, thrilled responses, such as “this was transformative for our family. This is the first time my child has really lit up.”

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