India is the world's largest film-producing nation, releasing over 900 films every year. One Indian film industry is the Mumbai-based Bollywood, which produces movies in the Hindi language. In addition to introducing students to basic conversational Hindi, this workshop also aims to use Bollywood as a platform to better understand Indian culture. We will pose and probe questions about portrayals of gender, sexuality, religion, and caste in Indian films. Grab some popcorn, and get excited to explore India through Hindi film.
Humans are living longer today than ever before. Currently, demographers predict that the majority of babies born after 2000 in the United States will survive past the age of 100. However, is the human race prepared for this unprecedented longevity? The scale of change is so dramatic that it requires future generations of citizens to understand the widespread implications of aging. This workshop integrates biology, psychology, and sociology to study how longer lives will impact the body, mind, and society. Topics of discussion include chronic diseases, neurodegeneration, aging mindsets, and changing demographic trends.
Ever wondered how electronics, well, work? Wish you could do something practical, and most importantly, fun with all that theory you learned in physics? Whether you’ve already built a few circuits or have never heard of the word voltage before, this class is for you! We will start from the basics, learning how voltage, current, and resistance all relate. You’ll learn how to use the most important tool in a maker’s toolbox, a Multimeter. We will then use this knowledge to supplement a variety of practical projects, including building your own temperature sensor, OLED screen, and light sensor. We will end the class by building a basic weather station, utilizing all of the skills we learned in the class.
This workshop will overview some basic approaches to songwriting. We will focus particularly on: how music theory can help songwriters find new creative choices; the art of being an active listener and “borrowing” from other music; the importance of believing in your art even in the face of self doubt; and certain “habits” to stick to as a songwriter (for example, writing something every day). Students will produce short compositions (under a minute, and played on any instrument) to share with the group.
The Earth and the systems on it have been evolving, getting increasingly more efficient and cohesive, for 4.5 billion years. In contrast, humans have 14,000 years of experience engineering, designing and building, tools and technology. So who would you trust? The world around us is full of answers to the greatest engineering problems of our time, all we need is to turn over stones to look. In the class, we will look to nature as a design source of inspiration, a budding field called Biomimicry, and we will explore what are problems and potential solutions that fall in this field.
Biophilic design explores the natural connection between people and their environment. Sometimes your built environment can play a role in your health, so one of the goals of biophilic designs is creating healthy spaces for people. Learn what it means to design with nature in mind and how we can design the built environment by connecting people and nature -- through biophilic design!
Technology is undoubtedly changing our world practically by the minute. With apps, sites and services growing to influence nearly every aspect of our lives, shouldn't we be taking the time to think about how exactly these products are changing the world around us and if all those changes are for the best? Our relationship with such a strong force of change cannot be passive - technology is a tool created to serve human progress, so let's hold it to that! In this seminar we’ll analyze popular technology products like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Tik Tok and more, lifting the curtain on their inner-workings and revealing their questionable hidden impacts. You’ll also have the opportunity to think like an entrepreneur and explore the infinite ways new technologies can be created to solve existing problems and improve human life. Together we'll envision and design a more ethical future for technology.
Artificial intelligence will change our economy, our politics, our culture and even how our own bodies and minds operate. Do you want to take part in this revolution? Learning to code is an important first step in acquiring your own agency in our technological revolution. In this class, we will learn college level coding using Python. We will build a foundation in programming by working on self-designed and guided projects. We will do several fun projects, including making our own hangman game, inventory tracker and finally our own rock-paper-scissors game. We will integrate discussions of the future and ethics of AI through additional readings, podcasts, and group discussions, as we code. Join me in learning and defining the language of the future!
In the US alone, the cosmetic industry makes 93.5 billion dollars each year, a number that with constant rebranding and innovation will continue to expand. Whether it’s new makeup, skincare, and hair products etc., the constant pursuit of beauty feels inexhaustible. So what are they really selling us? How often do you pick up a bottle and truly read its ingredients? How much is based on scientific research vs. top-notch branding? In this class, we will talk about premier active ingredients like niacinamide, Vitamin C, Retinols/Retinoids, and more. We will discuss the vanguard of cosmetic chemistry as well as its ancient past. We will approach skincare health from an aesthetic and practical perspective. The goal of this class is to elucidate the reality of the beauty industry and to educate ourselves about the products we use. We will culminate in a twofold research presentation on one innovative product, marketing initiatives, or company commitment and one failed or misguided beauty fad.
Sharing stories is a fundamental human characteristic. It’s how we understand each other, and reflect upon ourselves. This course, designed as a discussion/workshop-based seminar for high school students interested in developing their own writing voice, will begin to unpack and explore the following questions: what is interesting, puzzling, or hilarious about human nature? What is it like to be a particular human, with a particular set of strengths and challenges? What does it look and feel like to do the right thing, to succeed, to make a mistake, or to fail utterly? If you’ve ever felt frustrated by the confines of your English class assignment, thought about pursuing creative writing but didn’t know where to start, or just have a story to tell — this class is for you!
Journalists are working on the frontlines of democracy around the world — in areas where press freedom is not only restricted but criminalized, through disaster zones and mass protests, withstanding assaults from police and threats from authoritarian regimes. Explore the state of press freedom in the Americas and around the world . In this workshop, students will learn about the vital role of the free press in upholding democracy by looking at case studies of individual reporters, investigating maps of global press freedom violations, and following the critical stories published by journalists at risk. When press freedom is not prioritized, democracy gets weaker. Students will explore journalists’ constitutional right to document history happening now, and learn to recognize unprecedented attacks on press freedom at home and abroad.
This workshop will explore environmental chemistry in three case studies: acid rain, smog, and coral bleaching. By approaching each of these topics using key chemistry topics, students will be better equipped to understand the many e
In this workshop, we will talk about environmental justice, which highlights the importance of access to clean air, water, and land, regardless of who you are. We will think about what it truly means to be an environmentalist, and how this shows up in our own lives and communities. We will explore local and global activist movements to advocate for a greener, more sustainable, and more just future. The younger generation (you) is so critical for the fight for environmental justice!
This workshop will be taught as an interactive seminar where students will bring their hobbies and passions to the classroom and use these interests as a framework for understanding how businesses and entrepreneurs flourish. The class will conclude with students collaboratively pitching their company idea to a panel of venture-capitalists-in-training (their classmates), using their learnings to present a compelling pitch and field questions about their plan. Not only is this the perfect class for any students who has an interest in building things, leading teams, or being creative, but also it will give students the tools they need to continue learning about business and entrepreneurship long after the session has concluded.
Who are we? What are our stories? For generations, the histories and perspectives of people of color have been erased from traditional history classes. Learning the histories of POC guides us in building a critical consciousness to recognize the historical canvas that current injustices are painted on. In Ethnic Studies, we will learn about the historical struggles of different communities and the powerful movements that have brought us all closer to liberation and justice. How does oppression exist within institutions of education, economy, and government? Where do these systems of oppression stem from? How have Black, Latino, Filipino, and Indigenous communities fought oppression? How can we continue to resist? In Ethnic Studies we will deeply reflect on the identities that we each hold and the positionally we have. Learning ethnic studies lifts the veil to a more truthful past and present. Students will gain a critical consciousness about systems of oppression and the responsibility we all have in continuing to advocate for justice in every community. Come join the Ethnic Studies movement, a space dedicated to solidarity, empowerment, community, and justice.
The workshop will cover a variety of ethical issues related to modern food consumption including animal rights, farm workers rights, climate change, food access, and food waste. The final project is a response paper based on a food journal that students will keep during the course.
Many of us have big questions that we have either never asked, or never found the answers to: What is the meaning of life? Why does the world exist? Is there really such a thing as right and wrong? If these questions have occurred to you, and you have never found the place to address them, then philosophy is for you. This workshop will provide an introduction to the diverse and varied field of philosophy in an interactive setting. Based on student interest, we will take an introductory look at the fundamental questions of the different sub-areas of philosophy including epistemology, metaphysics, logic, ethics, and history of philosophy. The focus will be on sparking students’ interest in the profound questions they may not have had the chance to explore in a high-school setting.
Do we have the freedom to make choices according to our will, or are all of our actions predetermined? This question has troubled philosophers, artists, scientists, and theologians for centuries. It is a question that every person has considered in some way or another. In this workshop, we will consider the question of free will from many interdisciplinary perspectives. We will look at the historical origins of the concept of free will, and its application both to Eastern and Western thought and religions. We will trace the way that philosophers have approached and answered the question of free will, from John Locke and Thomas Hobbes, to modern-day philosophers like Daniel Dennett. We will also explore how the free will vs. determinism debate has inspired art by analyzing paintings, poems, and movies. Finally, we will address the question of free will from a scientific standpoint, investigating concepts in cutting-edge fields like quantum mechanics and theoretical physics, and their relation to free will. As a final project, each student will choose their stance on the question of free will, and express their position either in the form of a philosophical paper, an artistic creation, or a scientific research paper. Take this course; it’s your destiny, after all!
“To make a great film you need three things – the script, the script, and the script” – Alfred Hitchcock. Take it from the best, every facet of film production relies on a clear and captivating script no matter the film’s genre or budget. Curious about what it takes to write a screenplay that will inspire directors, convince producers, and wow audiences? Together we will learn about film theory and practice independent writing. We will finish the workshop with a completed short film screenplay and treatment for a feature length screenplay! We will also learn ways to discover storytelling inspiration, as well as take a sneak peak into the next stages in film production such as directing and cinematography. This workshop is perfect for film enthusiasts, aspiring writers, and students wishing to break into the industry, our deep dive into narrative techniques, dramatic structures, and creative individuality will prove beneficial and inspiring for students in their writing and beyond.
Congress—and in particular, the House of Representatives—is invested with the “power of the purse,” the ability to tax and spend public money for the national government. Where exactly does that money come from? More importantly, where does the money go? In this workshop we will analyze government spending and see how budgets are often times used as political leverage to push through partisan agendas. Government spending is broken down into three categories: mandatory spending, discretionary spending, and interest on the national debt. Several subcategories lie within each category: healthcare, military, social security, transportation, education, and more. We will look at each of these sectors and try to answer the pressing questions that face American society: Do we need to expand Medicare and Medicaid or should we implement universal healthcare? Will Social Security payments run out? Should we be spending $716 billion dollars in one year on our military? Does congress need to pass another COVID-19 stimulus package? What is the future of the Affordable Care Act? Are companies like Amazon paying their fair share with the current corporate tax rate? What is the military industrial complex and why is it a problem? Government spending may seem mundane to most, but the power congress wields over “the purse” profoundly impacts the daily lives of millions of Americans.
To most people, the sky's the limit. In this class, the sky will become our home, as we learn the theory and physics of flight. Through hands-on activities and real world examples, we will study fluid flow, aerodynamics, Bernoulli's principle, and different propulsion systems that lead to the lift, drag, thrust, and weight that can help suspend a medal machine thousands of feet in the air. We will also explore how companies in Silicon Valley and around the world are innovating and changing the field with autonomous aircrafts, electric propulsion, and other ground-breaking technologies. This class will end with students working individually and in teams to address a specific problem in an aircraft design case study.
When I was in high school, science was always taught prescriptively rather than descriptively--more "whats" than "hows". Because of this, most people would describe physics as "interesting" or "useful," a far cry from the more flattering "beautiful" that most physicists would say. In this course, nominally about quantum mechanics, I hope to show you how real physics is done, how pretty it can be, and most importantly, why you should care. We'll start with how scientists discovered quantum physics in the first place, walk hand-in-hand with Bohr, Einstein, and Heisenberg as they laid the foundations for the theory, and end with an examination of consequences of quantum mechanics.
Are we a product of nature or nurture? What guides our actions - our biological blueprints or our free will? Which part of the brain is responsible for your weak impulse control? Why are highly symmetrical faces associated with attractiveness? Take this course and learn how to approach complex normal and abnormal behaviors through biology. Discover how to integrate disciplines including sociobiology, ethology, neuroscience, and endocrinology to examine behaviors such as aggression, sexual behavior, language use, and mental illness.
Game Theory is a field with endless applications: it can tell us what moves to make in anything from card games to sports, explain evolutionary phenomena, and even predict the decisions of millions of people on a global scale. In this workshop, we will learn the fundamentals of Game Theory, in particular, how we can use mathematical models to understand the behavior and decisions of rational agents. We will begin with simple games like Hawk-Dove, Tic Tac Toe, and The Prisoner’s Dilemma. Students will learn to create payoff matrices to determine winning strategies and how to find a Nash Equilibrium. Using these principles, we will study more complex games, and investigate the implications of Game Theory on Economics, Psychology, and Evolution. As a final project, students will create a game theoretic model for a topic of their choosing, explaining its applications and limitations. The skills developed in this course– the mathematical analysis of rational decision-making– are applicable in all parts of everyday life!
Logic underlies everything we do: the way we think, communicate, reason, and perform math and science are all governed by the laws of logic. But what is logic really? In this workshop, we will look at the inner-workings of logical reasoning. We will study, from a technical standpoint, what it is that makes certain arguments logically valid and not others. Students will learn to use logical notation and truth-tables to assess the validity and truth of arguments, as we tackle the deep questions about the structure of our knowledge.
What are the goals of education? Is it to equip all students with a set of homogenous facts? Is it the culturing of civic virtue? Socialization among peers? Is it to learn how to learn? How do the goals of education shape education policy? These are some questions we will explore in four sessions alone. We will constrict our study to K-12 education in the United States. Over the course, we will talk broadly about different schools of thought for educational theory including equality, adequacy, and community. We will then discuss modern debates surrounding access to education for children from low-income communities, communities of color, and children with disabilities. At the end of the course, students will complete a short paper presenting a solution to an issue of access using one of the theories discussed.
In with a boom and out with a bang--welcome to the golden age of Latin-American literature. A handful of writers in the 1960s and 70s wrote stories full of fantasy, politics, heartbreak and soul. These tales would shake up the literary world. For the first time celebrated writers were not just from Paris, London or New York--they were from Buenos Aires, Bogota and Montevideo. This workshop will serve as an accelerated pathway for students to master Spanish beyond the conversational level, whilst giving them the opportunity to read and discuss some of the seminal Latin American literature of the 20th century. It will include the reading, discussion, and analysis of famous short stories from authors including: Jorge Luis Borges, Julio Cortazar, Horacio Quiroga and Mario Benedetti. Historical context will enrich each student’s understanding of Latin America as a continent and its recent history. Students will read and discuss four short stories in this seminar-style workshop.
Interested in learning about the law? Legal Eagles will address your burning questions! For example: how do cases make it to the Supreme Court? How are precedents established? Which justice is notorious for asking the most challenging questionings in oral arguments? What are the most infamous cases? What is the Lemon Test and why have Christmas and the First Amendment had a tumultuous relationship? And, why all the fuss about the notorious RBG? This course delivers a broad overview of the rule of law and includes supplemental podcasts and films to enhance your understanding. Sign up and learn how the Supreme Court has shaped America.
Artificial Intelligence has long been a loaded term, inciting fears of robots surpassing the intelligence of humans and eventually taking over the world. Thankfully, the pop-science picture of AI is fairly disconnected from what it actually does. In reality, AI is an all-encompassing term for a variety of model-making tools that have proven to be extremely effective for nearly every tech company in the world. Even more interesting, one can sum up many of the fancy techniques that are done within AI as just learning a model from data. This workshop will focus on Machine Learning in particular, which is by far and wide the most applicable subfield of AI. We will build our intuition for what ML does from the ground up, starting with fitting curves to data, and finishing with the extrapolation of these ideas to high-level discussions of how ML is used in our phones, computers, apps, and operating systems. There is an important area of ML known as Deep Learning that is particularly useful, which we will touch on as well. By the end of the workshop, participants will have a good understanding of how ML is used in our daily lives, as well as the surprisingly simple fundamentals of the underlying technology. We will frame the entire discussion within an overarching timeline of ML, which will run several years into the future and give students both the excitement and the tools to dive into AI in the coming years.
While constituting only 5% of the global population, the U.S. boasts nearly 25% of the world’s prison population. Does this mean that Americans are more likely to commit crimes than citizens of other countries or is there something wrong with our system? Between 1960 and 1990, the official crime rates in Finland, Germany, and the U.S. remained almost identical, however, the U.S. incarceration rate quadrupled while the Finnish rate fell by nearly 60 percent. Since 1970, the incarcerated population has increased by 700% - 2.3 million million in jail and prison today. People of color comprise 37% of the U.S. population but 67% of the prison population. How is this possible? Why do $80 billion of Americans’ tax paying dollars go towards keeping 2.3 million people behind bars? These are some of the questions we will explore. Take this class if you are curious to learn more
Human societies have long been influenced by their natural surroundings. In this workshop, we will explore the role that environment and geography have played in shaping culture and belief systems. We will explore the factors that gave rise to cultures of individualism and collectivism. We will also examine how monotheistic vs. polytheistic belief systems emerged.
In this workshop, we will discuss the emerging field of movement science: the study of skill acquisition– how we learn to perform new tasks– in relation to motor control, neuroscience, and psychology. In our sessions, we will analyze the different philosophies of skill acquisition as they pertain to improving performance and rehabilitating. We will come to understand how we move and why from an anatomical, biological, and social perspective. By the end of the workshop, students will generate a plan regarding how to teach an athlete or patient in a rehabilitation clinic a new skill. The project should include video demonstrations of the way in which the skill will be taught.
In the age of digital technology, LinkedIn is becoming an enormous web of entrepreneurs, engineers, teachers, and everywhere in between. To not understand how to fully take advantage of the platform would mean potentially missing out on connections and eventual job offers. Understanding LinkedIn is a class designed to teach high school students the basics of LinkedIn, how to make meaningful connections, and how to maximize your opportunity to get internships and job opportunities. This class teaches essential skills for anyone about to enter college, or who is looking for a highschool job or summer internship. I hope students will not be discouraged and overwhelmed by the platform, but instead will be able to use it to their advantage. I want to give students a leg-up on their peers when it comes to finding internships and job opportunities, while also having the chance to meet leaders in their respective fields and learn from them. LinkedIn is the reason I have met so many leaders in the aerospace industry, and is the reason I secured my dream internship. I aspire to give others the same opportunity.
A protest is defined as a statement or action expressing disapproval of or objection to something. In this way, we can think of every poem we read or write as a protest, tiny acts of revolution. We write poems about our loved ones to protest harm against them. We write poems about joy to protest what it means to be happy during hard times. We write poems about our people and our identities to protest what it means to be alive when others wish to see you gone. In this class, we will use the expansive power of personal narrative to write poems that capture what we protest in our own lives, big or small. Each class will be focused on workshopping your peers' poetry, discussing the poetry of accomplished writers, and progressing towards compiling a small collection of work to be showcased at the end of the quarter.
This course will focus on a wide array of subjects in American history that are often revised or entirely forgotten. Over the course of our journey we will discuss the real history American interaction with Indigenous Peoples, the slave trade and abolition, women’s rights, LGBTQ rights, and much more. The goal of the course is to help students think critically about American history and unearth some hidden truths that will broaden their understanding of the past and present. Especially in light of the past four years in which we have seen protests around racial justice and women’s rights, an alarming rise in attacks against transgender women, skyrocketing cases of hate-crimes against Asians and Jewish people, and an ever-widening income gap, it is important to understand how American history has led us to the current moment.
During this workshop students will create objects of their own conception, unlocking the potential of design, drafting, and fabrication. Beginning with the brainstorming and sketching process, students will explore the depths of their imagination. Troubleshooting and creative problem solving are essential to the design process and will be crucial in finalizing sketches and creating technical drawings. Soft sculptures, plush creatures, costumes, and wearable garments are all possible final projects but there are no limitations beyond the materials that we source. We'll explore the fundamentals of pattern making in order to transform flat fabric into three-dimensional forms.
Welcome to the world of sports analytics— a dive into how the world of sports connects with the world of mathematics. In this workshop you can expect a bevy of sports information all tied together into how professional teams use statistically driven methods in order to give their teams an advantage. From Billy Beane’s revolution of baseball in Oakland to the birth of small ball in Houston we will see how sports have gotten smarter: something that benefits both the consumer and the supplier.
Have you ever dreamed of starting your own fashion business? By the end of this interactive course, you will have gained both the skills and the knowledge necessary to do so!
We will begin each class with a mini-lecture designed to get you thinking about the business of fashion; we will conduct case studies of successful fashion brands, explore various career paths available in the fashion industry, and discuss an array of topics such as the different market levels in the industry, the environmental toll of fashion, and the emergence of "greenwashing" as a marketing strategy. We will then focus on how to successfully launch your own fashion business. Through hands-on activities, you will learn how to design a cohesive capsule collection that tells a story and reflects your design aesthetic, how to develop a mission statement and craft a rough business plan that asks and answers the right questions, how to produce garments ethically and sustainably using fabrics and finishes that are appropriate for your target consumer and price point, and how to promote your brand and distinguish it from the competition.
Much like the fashion industry itself, this course is collaborative; students should be comfortable sharing their designs and ideas in a group setting. Please note: you will not learn to sew in this course.
We'll train some storytelling muscles in the story dojo, diving into the forms: short fiction, poetry, folk music, journalism, and film, and then trying our best to forget the forms as we compose stories of our own. Some storytellers we will encounter: Joan Didion, The Twilight Zone, and Hayao Miyazaki. The final project will be a two-page short story, fictional or non-fictional.
Design is all around us: it is in our desk lamps, our shoes, and our chairs. In this class, we will test the limits of what we can make, draw our ideas, and learn how to communicate them. This creative class will take you through the design thinking process from empathizing to prototyping and iterating. Students will culminate this workshop with a presentation showing their understanding of the design thinking process and their prototyped idea that fills a need in their life or community. Get creative, and let’s make a difference one design at a time!
In the past several years, the Electoral College has become a thing of praise, contempt, and most of all confusion. America’s changing demographics have made a once universally accepted body a weapon of political fodder. It has been the subject of supreme court cases and convention speeches. Very soon, our country will be forced to decide the fate of the Electoral College. The decision we make will undoubtedly change the face of our representative republic. In this workshop, we will examine the Electoral College, its historical impact on campaign politics, and whether it should be discontinued today. It is crucial that we have a clear understanding this body; as American citizens and future political leaders, we will be deciding whether it stays or goes.
Since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, science is more present in the media than ever. However, the general public is still left to inquire, how do the new mRNA vaccines work? How does a virus spread? We will examine these big questions and other recent discoveries (ie, CRISPR-Cas9) while connecting them to the foundations of medicine through subjects in Biology and Chemistry. We will also become familiar with basic lab experiments and learn how to read scientific reports. Join this workshop to gain the expertise and understanding to answer your big scientific questions and diagnose the ailments you observe in the world around you.
Audre Lorde, Marsha B. Johnson, Michelle Obama, Kimberle Crenshaw. . . what do all of these women have in common? They have all paved the way for Black feminist thought, leadership, and theory! Come learn about the history, origins, and applications of Black feminism today and how it informs our current understandings of identity. What is intersectionality? What is the history of intersectionality? How do we understand our identities and what role does social media play? Come find out the answers in our workshop!
Not only will we explore the human form through the Cardio-pulmonary and circulatory organ systems, we’ll also think through case studies using deductive reasoning. A patient walks into your clinic with chest pain… What should you do next? Learn what imaging and examination techniques physicians and EMTs rely on to make diagnoses, and learn how to come up with your own working hypothesis! Not only will you learn why your heart beats, you’ll get to think through how doctors figure out what’s going wrong!
This workshop will introduce you to an alternative world. If you are seekingfor your ideal world this class is for you! We will learn about all the theory of alternative economic and political models (such as anarchism, afro-socialism... and even more models you have never heard about !). We will discover concrete examples around the world of societies organized differently throughout history and now. We will also link those examples to present forms of resistance across the world. To complete this political formation you will also be introduced to collaborative process (or how to learn to collaborate when you construct a project as a collective) trough games including the whole group. Your job will be to imagine your own utopia and build it as a team !
Ever wanted to dive deeper into the everyday headlines you read in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, The Economist, and more? Ever wanted to get a head start in managing your personal finances? In this two-part workshop, we will first ask and answer how money evolved to become our universal language and how the basics of economics govern our world. We will apply our newly learned economic framework to policy applications in international trade, price discrimination, decisions with risk, and topics in labor economics—including pay and productivity, unionization, and unemployment. In the second half of our course, you will learn how investing works, how to manage your budget, and how to use your resources to drive social impact. Get ready to see the world around you in a whole new light!
Breathe in, breathe out. Yoga is a vehicle for mindfulness and reflection– a reminder of some things that may slip away from us in our daily, sometimes uncompromising, race towards excellence. In this workshop, we will explore the ways in which yoga is a practice: there is no end goal, no competition, only an intention to dedicate time and space for yourself. We will reflect on our wellness and health practices, including discussing healthful eating, positive habit formation, and work-life balance. We will explore the philosophy of yoga and our body-mind connection through a variety of asanas, vinyasa flow, meditation, and visual art. The goal is to find time in our lives to be still once in a while, breathe, and reflect.
2020 has brought us a global pandemic, nationwide protests for racial justice, and a lot of politics. With the November elections fast-approaching, we may be asking ourselves, “What else could possibly happen?”. The answer: a lot! In this course, we will follow the 2020 elections on local, state, and national levels. Each student will act as a field reporter for their particular locality, becoming an expert in their local politics and reporting on the happenings to the cohort. By honing in individual campaigns, students will be able to analyze their successes and failures and make predictions about the November outcome. The cohort will also follow the presidential election closely. In the culminating project, students will draft a brief of one campaign that seeks to explain the election outcome and includes recommendations for campaigning best practices. The course also includes a media literacy component; students will spend time before, during, and after class reading and analyzing reports from various media outlets. As citizens, it is paramount that we are able to read between the (head)lines! If politics fascinates, interests, or confuses you, join us for the course this fall!
Have you ever wondered why a certain politician is still in office? Ever seen a political ad and wondered what made them create it? Ever dreamt of running for office one day and didn’t know where to start? This course explores modern political campaigns and what has made them successful, or massive failures. We will discuss the different aspects of a political campaign that matters to voters, and the differences between congressional and presidential races. We will discuss the reasons why some candidates win despite having a worse campaign, and why some candidates appear as they can never lose. This workshop will culminate in students working in teams to construct their own campaigns that will be presented in front of a panel of judges that will vote on the top campaign.
Every four years, the world comes together for two weeks to watch its greatest athletes face-off against one another. Inspired by an Ancient Greek competition bearing the same name, the modern Olympics have established itself as the most celebrated sporting event in the world. Sorry FIFA. But behind the glory and the lore of these games, what is it that makes the Olympics the internationally celebrated event it has come to be? Throughout this course, we will be following the history of the modern games from its inception in 1896 to the upcoming games in Tokyo. Along the way, we will learn about some of the Games’ most famous athletes (such as Jesse Owens, Larisa Latynina, Carl Lewis, and Katie Ledecky) to some of its most infamous moments (such as the ‘36 Games in Nazi Germany and the Munich Massacre in ‘72). In addition, we will study global trends that have had a tremendous impact on the Games including nationalism, the Cold War, and Globalization. This class is not just a celebration of sport, but a study of a modern world through an unconventional lens. The class will culminate with a group project where students will present on an Olympic Game of their choice.
There is a popular saying in psychology, the mind is what the brain does. This means that the brain’s biochemical activity somehow translates to the thoughts we think in our mind, and ultimately to the behaviors we see in ourselves and others as a result of those thoughts. Racism—albeit an unjustified and baseless one—is ultimately a behavior and is no exception to this rule. In order to understand how some people are racist, therefore, we can look at the structure and function of our brains, on both the smallest and largest scales.
Biomimicry is the future... or at least the only functioning future! Knowing how to design using nature is critical for any maker. This course covers modern applications of biomimicry (nature-based design) and discusses its position as a remedy for the environmental, economic, and health-related issues of the 21st century. Throughout this workshop, we will refine our skills in observation, prototyping, and creation and learn to use the engineering software CAD to bring our creations to life. By the end of the workshop, students will create their own prototype for a biomimetic innovation on any scale, whether it be architectural, consumer-based, environmental, or business-oriented!
Have you ever tried making a drawing of a real object? It’s so hard to make it look completely realistic! Engineers and scientists would agree with this, which is why they rarely draw the things they design. Instead, they use a type of computer program called CAD, which is a computer tool that creates 3D drawings. People all over the world use CAD. It has been used to create children’s toys as much as it has been used to design rocket ships! Knowing CAD will allow you to put yourself in the shoes of an engineer, to manipulate virtual reality to your liking, and to never have to settle for a bad drawing again.
The Sars-CoV-2 pandemic, more commonly known as COVID-19, is the largest public health crisis in over 100 years. Over a year since the first confirmed infection, the world is finally starting to regain its feet and put up a fair fight against this incredibly infectious and often fatal disease. How did we miss the warning signs? What if we saw the warning signs, but simply ignored it along with the advice of health experts and scientists for years? What if COVID-19 is only one small part of an "Age of Epidemics"? This workshop will investigate the ins and outs of our current pandemic, from the science behind vaccines to the politics and ethics of government response, how we can learn from our failures, and what can be done to be better prepared for future pandemics. After this workshop, you will have a start on the tools required for the next generation of pandemic problem solvers and the agency to act accordingly. The class will culminate in a final project where students must address a hypothetical pandemic situation through a policy memo, presentation/TED talk, or formal research paper
Ever wanted to code your own Andy Warhol pop art? Always thinking of funny things to say in MadLibs? Want to design your own Functions? Or just reading this want to learn what a function is? This introductory Python course will fuse creativity, puzzeltry, and coding to do all of those and more! We will learn the fundamentals of programming (variables, strings, inputs, if statements, loops, lists, and functions among others!). And then use our skills to program fun projects like Winter MadLibs, Number Guessing Game, Digital Winter Greeting Cards, and then build our own functions that make snowmen, wintergreen trees, or anything each student is passionate about! This course is designed for students who have no or elementary knowledge of Coding/Python, but can also be adapted for more advanced students who are looking to refine their skills.
Ever wondered how your favorite animated shows and movies create such compelling characters? It’s not all in the script--animators play a key role in character building. They design each role deliberately, unifying each character’s physical appearance with the way they carry themselves, with the way they move their body. In this class, students will learn how to design characters and scenes that are evocative, equipping them with the knowledge needed to succeed in the animation industry.Students will be walked through the animation process from start to finish, being taught a thorough overview of everything from storyboarding to rendering. They will learn industry standard techniques as they design a small cast of characters, which they will then translate into 2D models in Blender (a free animation software widely used by professionals). After this class, students will have all the material they need to embark on animating their own short film.
Will self-driving cars make traffic better, or will they actually make it worse? How will cities respond to rising populations, sea levels, and inequality? This class will tackle these questions—and more—as we understand the future of cities through the lens of architecture, design, and urban planning. Using real-world case studies from across the globe, we will look at the forces shaping the ways cities are planned, designed, and built. And because cities are dynamic, living entities, we will also understand how the lives of citizens are affected by design considerations at all levels—from mandatory solar roofs to highways being bulldozed through neighborhoods. You’ll have the chance to think like architects, planners, and mayors in this interactive and hands-on course as you work towards your final project: planning and designing a future urban neighborhood in a city of your choice.
In this workshop, students will learn how to craft their own startups, practicing the very same ideation, prototyping, and presentation methods taught by Stanford’s design school. In this program, students will be led through an incubator that will guide their ideas from concept to execution. The first four weeks of this course will be dedicated to using design thinking to find creative solutions to complex problems. The next four weeks will be dedicated to teaching you how to create a minimum viable product (MVP) and how to improve your ideas through guided feedback. Finally, we will teach you how to make your ideas into a story, as you prepare to present your business plan to a panel of professional investors from whom you will receive comprehensive written feedback.
Interested in medicine? Have a desire to be a doctor, physical therapist, nurse, or dentist? Just curious about what's beneath your skin? In this class, we will explore the human body from head to toe, exploring primarily the muscles of the musculoskeletal system, the organs of the thorax, abdomen, and pelvis, and the major arteries and nerves that traverse the body. To really understand how all of this looks in the body, we will utilize 3D software and explore images from dissected cadavers. In this class, you will also gain the skills to apply this anatomy to some of the most common injuries and illnesses that healthcare professionals witness. For your final project, you will choose an illness or injury that is most interesting to you and apply the anatomy we have learned to explain what's wrong - in a way, becoming pre-professional doctors, physical therapists, nurses, or dentists.
In this class, we will discuss the economics behind how trade works. Topics we will cover include opportunity cost and comparative advantage. The class will tie in with the Silk Road and we will have an interactive exercise enacting trade between two parties during the Silk Road era. By the end of the class, students will understand, at a high level, the mathematics behind why trade works as well as its importance to the global economy.
Climate change is one of the greatest threats to humanity, and as young people, we know that the effects of climate change will severely impact our future. Temperatures and seas are rising, pollution in our air and water is continuing, and species are going extinct every day. But what can we do about this crisis at a high level? In this class, students will learn about environmental policy, how policy decisions are made, and how these decisions can impact our future. This course will look at environmental policy from a justice-oriented lens and involve thorough conversations about environmental justice. Students will also look at specific environmental policies and assess whether these policies have or will adequately address climate change.
How did the human species become so diverse? Why are there so many different languages and cultures on this planet? How do these languages and cultures differ from each other? This course is dedicated to the study of human biological and sociocultural evolution. Take this course to understand the processes that have given rise to the diverse Homo sapiens. We will build connections between topics in the biological and social sciences using principles from genetics, ecology, biological evolution, and sociocultural evolution. We will learn the origins of language, agriculture, cultural diversity, and the rise of civilizations. We will also leave the course having completed a short, final research presentation on a topic of their choosing that relates to the course theme.
Do you ever look down at your skirt and wonder, why aren’t there any pockets? Or have you gotten dressed for graduation and grumbled at how the only option seems to be a boring suit? We get dressed every day, and clothing is often the first thing we notice about each other. This class will explore the cultural purpose of fashion and how it became a $2.5 trillion global industry. We will study how Coco Chanel revolutionized womenswear in the early 1900s and how Rei Kawakubo toppled those ideas of beauty and the body through her contemporary couture. Throughout the term, we will delve into common means of consumption like thrifting and fast fashion to learn not only about the aesthetics and history of what we wear but how the clothes are produced. By the end of the class, students will learn how to sketch like a designer and use that skill to rethink design problems in the clothing we wear.
Want to learn how to write one-liners like John Mulaney and Tiffany Haddish, monologue jokes like Stephen Colbert, or sketches like Tina Fey? Here’s the place to start! In this seminar, we’ll peel back the curtain on your favorite comics and their best jokes, learning the fundamentals of joke-writing and how to draft a routine with your own personal style. From news headlines to personal experiences, comedic material is all around us! Becoming a great comic is only a matter of learning how to showcase your unique perspective. You'll learn the building blocks of several different comedic mediums—stand-up, late-night monologues, sketch, and satire—all while workshopping your own jokes with peers. And for our capstone project, you’ll put on a show of your own in the medium of your choosing! It's an opportunity for students to hone their writing and public speaking skills, all while finding their comedic voice.
A novel in which you can choose your own story. A piece of music that sounds the same played forwards and backwards. A story written in a code the reader must decipher. A painting featuring optical illusions. A text-based literary video game. This workshop will explore how games, tricks, puns, codes, and other experiments weave into literature, movies, music, and art. Experimental art can often seem overwhelmingly complex and daunting. In this workshop, we will prove that it is not: that, when done right, it is fun, innovative, and accessible! We will be introduced to the concepts of form and content, and investigate how artistic and literary movements such as Modernism and groups like Oulipo have incorporated games and tricks to experiment with these. We will look at how games like chess, dice, and cards have been featured in books and movies. In doing so, we will explore how language serves as a vehicle for our ideas, and how it can be manipulated and distorted along the way. This workshop will open your eyes to new horizons in literature, art, and philosophy; it will teach you to enjoy books and appreciate museums. As a final project, students will produce their own experimental, gamified work.
Feminism has enabled women to achieve power in politics, sports, and business while also mobilizing public concern for once-taboo issues like rape, domestic violence, and demeaning characterizations of women. Despite all our progress, there is still much work to be done. Who can we thank for having helped us get this far? What else is there to do going forward ? How do women still confront unfair double standards and discrimination? What does sexism look like in your life? Let’s talk - from the books to the lunch rooms to the homecoming parties to the courtroom and beyond. We will discuss everything from the Seneca Falls Convention to women’s suffrage to the #MeToo movement to all that you face in your life today. Time to break some glass ceilings, ladies!
What comes to mind when you think "global health"? Maybe hospitals, doctors, healthcare... These are some of the players, but not all - not even most. In this course, we'll take a deeper dive into the intricate layers of connections between various industries and even countries with regards to health and healthcare. We'll look at some of the players that shape healthcare globally and how local health innovations relate to global ones. We'll take in a zoomed-out view of what addressing global health could look like, then in the capstone project, zoom in a bit more into each participant's area of interest and how they can contribute to a healthier planet. Hopefully, this course will inspire you to think about working with people you never knew you needed to address both local and global issues.
How did we get from standing on the ground, looking at the stars, to standing among the stars, looking down at the Earth? Since the beginning of recorded history, and likely before, humans have looked to the sky with curiosity, with a desire to learn more about this vast “space” that connects everyone on the planet. From Eudoxus of Cnidus, who proposed the first model for how planets move, to the SpaceX Crew-1, the most recent crew to go to space, we will go over these amazing points in the history of space. Join us as we learn exactly how we got from feet on the ground, to footprints on the moon!
Have you ever wondered why giving back to your community is so important? Have you ever questioned how to give back to your community, especially in the holiday season? Merriam Webster defines philanthropy as “the desire to promote the welfare of others, expressed especially by the generous donation of money to good causes.” However, a philanthropic deed can also be volunteering remotely or in person. The course will unpack the meaning of philanthropy and charity and how forms of each intersect with privilege. By the end of the workshop, students will have a plan of action for how to make a social impact in their community based on each student’s unique interests and talents.
As a young child, I remember dribbling my soccer ball and practicing the same move over and over. Ten thousand stepovers later, I swore that I was Cristiano Ronaldo, prancing down the pitch. Though I am much older and wiser, I still view sports in a starry-eyed view. From a young age, I identified my passion, and sought it every chance I had. Sports was the frame through which I saw the world and the avenue through which I learned all my greatest lessons. In this class, I will share the framework of discovery I used to make my passion into my future. Through study of sports literature, anecdotal tales, and plenty of discussion about what makes you happy, this class will teach you how to view the world in the way that will truly motivate you to be the best.
Oceans are the most diverse ecosystems on our planet. They contain an enormous range of life forms and processes, from kelp to plankton to deep-sea fish and sea mammals. In this workshop we will learn about the networks of life that occur in our oceans– and how climate change poses a threat to them. We will study the effects of ocean acidification on marine life and the ocean’s role in absorbing greenhouse gas emissions. We will investigate kelp farms and other natural methods of mitigating the impacts of ocean acidification. We will even learn kelp can serve as a culinary ingredient to create sustainable nourishment. By the end of this workshop, students will have an understanding of the processes that sustain life in our oceans, and how we can use our knowledge to effect positive ecological change.
Get the chance to learn all about the world of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, their superheroes, and how to create your own dream team to save the world. Since 2008 with the release of Iron Man, Marvel has swept through movie theaters, breaking barriers and setting the standard for the next great wave of superheroes on film. In this class, we will learn about what has made Marvel so successful and apply it in writing our own creative stories. From outlining the 11 year build up to Avengers: Endgame, to empowering women and superheroes of color, and showing the danger in too much power, Marvel has done it all. Each class we will practice different creative writing techniques alongside the work of Marvel movies to culminate in grand stories of our own.
Humans will take 1.4 trillion photos this year – what makes some better than others? How can you improve your photography skills by paying attention to composition, light, colors, and horizon lines? How can picture-taking help you become more observant? This course will focus on improving our photography skills and dabbling in photo theory while creating and executing fun and meaningful personal projects. In this class, we’ll look at the work of famous photographers, discuss different types of photography, learn basic technical skills (composition, lighting, exposure, aperture, shutter speed, etc.), design series-based, personal projects, and practice formal photography critiques aimed at discussing, improving, and sharing our work.
Let’s be real for a second. Finance can be confusing, intimidating and boring. This course is designed to empower students in all their endeavors by giving them the tools to be strategic in how they manage their capital! The goal of this course is for students to take away important practical knowledge and even think of personal finance as fun. By the end of the course students will have answered many of the burning questions surrounding modern finance: What are stocks? How should I build a budget? Is insurance a ‘good deal’? What’s ‘the Fed’ and what does it do? And how about that Bitcoin? The class will cover financial literacy, budgeting, basics of financial institutions, important lifetime savings decisions, insurance, and investment strategies (stocks, private equity/venture capital, bonds, etc). Understanding your own financial situation and the decisions you get to make is empowering. So, why not start early?
In school, poetry typically considered a part of literary “canon” and taught in classes are by authors who are white, male, and dead. This can make poetry feel like a dead, inaccessible form that doesn’t have a place for people of color. In this workshop, each day, we will focus on the poetry of a different living poet of color, as well as learning and practicing craft techniques to help us grow as writers. We will learn what devices and tools the poets are using in their poetry, and how it elevates their work. For the final project, students will write and present 2-3 poems using the skills they learn from the workshop. No poetry experience necessary, just a willingness to read and talk and write!
This workshop is for students interested in learning more about American politics and polarization in 2021. We will start by discussing the 2020 election, analyzing the major factors at play that resulted in the election of Joe Biden. We will then take a step back and look at what it means to be a Democrat or a Republican today. What unites each party, and where are each divided? What are the competing factions? We will also focus on the causes of heightened partisanship, most recently culminating in the January 6th US Capitol riot. Finally, we will look at the first few months of Joe Biden's presidency to see the patterns that have emerged and what they can tell us about the next four years. The workshop will culminate with a final project, where students will capture the identities of the two parties by creating their own Spotify playlists! Alongside this, students will also turn in a 2-3 page paper explaining their song choices.
Is it possible to 3D print a 3D printer? How do 3D printers even work, and where is this technology relevant? In this workshop, we will explore the evolution of 3D printing and its economic and environmental impacts in a variety of industries. From the production of lightweight airplane parts to customized medical treatment, 3D printing technology, also known as additive manufacturing, continues to expand rapidly beyond its original, purely prototyping purpose. Alongside the innovation that 3D printing technology permits, we will contrast the material waste and energy consumption of 3D Printing against traditional manufacturing processes like CNC machining and injection moulding. With a more complete understanding of the printing process, each student will spend the final weeks of the class designing and optimizing their own small object in a 3D design software.
The ability to communicate effectively is a timeless skill, and one with the power to shape entire perspectives and arguments. But what makes a speaker impactful? What methods are best to inspire, invigorate, persuade, and reach your audience? How should you even construct a speech in the first place? In this class, we will explore the art of public speaking, but there will be much more to our journey than “ethos, pathos, logos.” Both popular culture and history are full of incredible speakers and speeches, and it will be our task to analyze the ways in which familiar movie characters and historical figures employ the same speaking skills we will address in the classroom. Throughout the term, we will engage in class discussions, speaking exercises, and (of course) movie debates. By the end of the course, we will have prepared and presented a polished speech and project about a key social issue we care about.
Quantum computing promises to be the next frontier of tech, and the subject of a massive race for global dominance. It has already infiltrated pop culture as a new form of mind-boggling sci-fi technology (anyone who’s seen Endgame knows this), but the fundamental research being done in the field is just as exciting. The aim of this workshop is to provide a broad overview and timeline of the advent of quantum computing. Specifically, we’ll aim to give students some of the baseline knowledge needed to either get involved in the race for quantum tech, or simply to be educated about its implications for people all over the world, good and bad. The applications of quantum tech are seemingly endless, ranging from revolutionizing AI to potentially jeopardizing the very form of cryptography that keeps your social media accounts (and much more) secure. We will aim to survey these potential applications, and assess how viable they are on a given timescale. But if nothing else, this workshop is meant to build excitement and anticipation for this upcoming technological revolution; it’s already begun within the government and the private sector, and we should all know exactly where it is taking us.
I know what you’re thinking...Why would I take a math course in my free time? While most consider math a bore, I plan to prove otherwise by showing you the fun and practical application of mathematics. Take a leap of faith, and join me on this algebraic adventure! In this class, I aspire to make math your new favorite subject! Math is often taught poorly at an elementary level, through memorization and repetition. I have developed a fun curriculum at an 8th grade level for elementary students that inspires creative thinking and applies mathematical concepts to the real world.
From space telescopes to GPS, TV, and space stations, satellites are the backbone of so much of our society. How do we get satellites up into space, flying hundreds of miles above us all the time? What goes into designing satellites and what does the future hold for them? How small can we make them? In this class we'll cover the fundamentals of satellite design, and each student will design their own satellite to orbit around the Earth! By the end of this workshop, students will have an understanding of how space (and satellites in particular) impacts our lives here on Earth and the engineering/design that goes into making something survive in space. At the end of the course, students will present their satellite proposal with complete sketches, subsystem descriptions, and mission purpose.
Have you ever watched a sci-fi movie and wondered if any of it could be real? In this workshop, we will explore a few of the the stranger properties of outer space by examining their roles in the science-fiction film Interstellar. As we begin to conceptualize travel through our universe on a much larger scale, familiar concepts like distance, time, and general relativity begin to come apart at the schemes. Together, we will examine the realistic and fictional components of different plot points in the movie and use them to develop a greater understanding of the universe around us.
Have you ever wondered why we as humans have such a desire to belong and “fit in”? Have you ever thought about why we as humans have an innate tendency to judge those around us, even if we don’t mean to? Have you ever questioned why following orders and rules seems so normal? Or have you ever just stopped to think “Why do I act, think, and feel the way I do?” Then this is the class for you! Join me in this journey to better understand the human mind through the study of Psychology! We will focus on social psychology or, more specifically, how humans interact with other individuals and society at large. This class will provide a platform for better understanding human behavior and motivate students to instigate positive change in the world. We will unpack societal norms and expectations so students can dismantle long held beliefs, and delve into topics like racism and prejudice to shift their mindsets and help others do the same. This class will be a combination of lecture style presentations, current events discussions, in which we apply topics learned in class to real life situations, and a final group project that allows students to apply what they’ve learned outside of the classroom.
Do you play fantasy football? Do you want to know what it takes to take your team to the next level? Take this workshop to learn about the math and science behind your favorite game! In this workshop, we will learn how to effectively research and rank players based on their expected contribution to your team. We will discuss mathematical modeling and the fundamentals of game theory in application to fantasy football. We will also investigate the pros and cons of different drafting strategies, conducting “mock drafts” to see how they play out. Our class will be centered on acquiring the tools you need to build a winning team.
This course will kick off with an introduction to the ins and outs and hows and whys of debate, including an overview of significant historical debates. Students will be introduced to learning different debate styles available for high schoolers wanting to compete. The course will also cover how to conduct research, write cases, construct and deconstruct arguments, employ persuasive rhetoric, and speak publicly. At the end of the course, students will engage in a public forum style debate over Zoom.
What’s the best way to tell a story? We’re always telling stories, whether its over lunch with friends, or through a TikTok or an instagram story. In this class, we’ll look at what goes into a good story. Using examples from journalism and short fiction, including short works by Joan Didion and James Baldwin, we’ll explore the timeless power of storytelling and start to think about the ways that storytelling has changed in the digital age.
5G is one of the newest and fastest emerging technologies from unlocking robotic surgery to one-day delivery and robot assistants. This workshop series dives deep into 5G technology and its implication. Students will explore the application of 5G in healthcare, smart cities, and autonomous vehicles. Day 1 will be an overview of 5G technology and it’s history, Day 2 will be 5G application in healthcare, Day 3 will be 5G capabilities for smart cities, and Day 4 will be 5G in the automotive industry. Students will be exposed to the “cutting edge” of technology and explore some of the biggest problems of the decade!
The Paris Climate Agreement signed in 2016 established a goal of limiting global warming to less than 2°C above pre industrial levels by 2100, with a further ambition to limit warming to 1.5°C. What does this goal mean? Is it even possible? If so, how will we get there, and at what cost? In this course, we will unpack the science behind climate change as we explore how the Earth operates as an interconnected, integrated system. Students will learn how social, political, and economic sectors inform the way people talk about and experience climate change. Along the way, we will sift through scientific resources and potentially conflicting narratives so students can better advocate for our climate. As the focus shifts to activism, discussions will include the Green New Deal, Greta Thunberg’s School Strike for Climate, emerging climate technologies in geoengineering, and the role of the food and agriculture industry. Students will learn how to discuss and address what is widely considered to be the greatest existential threat humans face today.
In this course, we will explore different ways that social movements advocated for change. Each week, we will learn about a different "tool" that organizers use to affect change and learn about how that tool has been used by different groups. Tools we will learn about will range from non-violent civil disobedience to litigation. We will cover movements from labor, the civil rights movement, feminist movements, LBGTQ+ rights, the disability rights movement, farmworkers rights, and BLM. By the end of the course, students will have a better idea of how different groups affect change in American society. Students will have the freedom to select a modern social problem that they care about to complete a final project on.
ATTENTION! Welcome to your first day on the civic scene where you’ll learn how and where money gets spent in a data-driven discussion about the US government. Join us as we become better participants in politics and members of society by truly understanding the flow of our taxpayer dollar. This course will ask students to think critically about public spending and policy and give students a robust introduction to policy. On this journey, students will improve their ability to write concisely about quantitative problems, engage with basic principles of public economics, and build logical arguments. We will draw from resources created by USA Facts, an NGO that compiles data on the government as if it were a corporation to ensure quantitative, nonpartisan sources.
Upcycling implies the creative reuse of items without fundamentally changing their material structure. This art making course is an opportunity for you to engage with your creative side and experiment freely with techniques that break from the norm. We will focus on not just the idea of upcycling in art, but how and why modern and contemporary artists repurpose materials and, as a result, redefine the appearance of the artwork itself. Each week we will learn about how artists and designers modify upcycled, found, and unconventional materials in their work. We will develop, learn, and demo techniques that arise from examining elements of the everyday—from household items and miscellanea to rocks and packaging—for their art potential. By the end of this class, students will produce a series of small sculptures as a foundation for those starting to build portfolios and keep as a vestige of our creative time at home. Basic supplies will be needed but the intention is to have an eye for what can be transformed.
Last quarter, 2.7 billion people logged into Facebook. Social media is now an inarguably global phenomenon that has come to define how we interact with others, a trend which has only accelerated with mandatory physical distancing. Using social media as a point of departure, this course will survey related topics in computer science including recommendation algorithms, machine learning-based personalization, user interface design, and web development. Students will use this knowledge alongside techniques from media theory and semiotics as lenses to examine a variety of questions relating to social networking and how we use it. How do multiple networks coexist and complement or compete against one another? How can user experience and post-sorting algorithms shape the community and content of each platform? Students will complete basic projects and gain working proficiency in programming languages like HTML/CSS, technologies like Bootstrap, and industry-standard design tools like Figma. This course assumes no prior computer science knowledge.
If you had to make a replica of your favorite robot, how would you do it? How do you make it move and what electronics do you need? Where will you get your hardware, learn to code? Heck, what even IS a robot really!? Ack, that’s stressful. Fear not though, that's what this class is here to teach you. We’re going to let you know how to go about building robots, and how to think about robots in a way that lets you use the skills you learn in a super vast field. Electronics, hardware, sensors, and math come together to let you build Wall-E, or a robot dog, or just a motor, or.. whatever you like, really.
In this class, we will hear from a range of female guest speakers in the STEM field, from academia to industry, who will expose the breadth of possibilities students may pursue in STEM careers and their unique journey as women in a male dominated field. Class sections are designed to fill in the historical gaps of STEM oriented female game changers and to examine the effects of gender discrimination in STEM. We will study systemic and historic exclusion of women in STEM and the ways societal stigmas manifest in classrooms and professional settings. On top of that, each student will be paired with a female mentor in college studying or practicing in a field of similar interest to share personal wisdom on how to succeed in industry, education, and life. We hope to empower students with different perspectives and newfound confidence. Aware of these differences and empowered by community and recognition, Curious Cardinals girls will go on to excel in the STEM fields, with their mentors cheering them on along the way. Curious Cardinal girls in STEM, here we go!
This course is designed to be an introduction to celebrations during the Holiday Season in Latin America, and by extension, an introduction to Latin American cultural perspectives at large. Through the study of traditions, festivities, and holidays, students will interrogate the intersection between diverse identities and circles of opportunity as they relate to the celebrations we study. On the final day of class, each student will prepare a traditional holiday dish from a Latin American celebration of their choosing and will share a 10-minute presentation about that holiday. The course will combine low-stress, multimedia learning with guest speakers, interactive activities, and an intro to basic Spanish vocabulario.
Once upon a time, the United States had the most miles of train tracks in the world. Now, it is a country addicted to cars. In contrast, many countries have constructed thriving rail systems and many more are about to take the leap. So why what’s the deal with trains? In the class, we will look at the future of trail travel from high-speed rail to maglev trains and their potential to combat issues like climate change, city crowding, affordable housing, and productivity. We will look at the world’s nations who have and do not have comprehensive rail systems and ask ourselves was it worth it. Finally, we will zero in on the US as a case study in the context of US society and politics and answer the questions: How did the Queen of Rail fall, and will she ever rise again?
Stories are born at all the edges of the world. Most of us only get to know the ones that are from the same places and cultures we are from. Luckily, though, we can still find and read stories from far away places and times long passed. We can also make up stories of our own! In this class, we will read children’s stories from a diverse set of places, time periods, and authors. We will discuss the new things and ideas that each story brings us. Our final project will be to create a story of our own (as a class). After helping to write and illustrate this book, each student will receive a copy of it so that they can share with their families and friends.
Dreaming of stardom? Want to learn more about what makes your favorite actors so great? In Acting FUNdamentals, students will learn to unlock their imaginations as they approach theatrical text and delve into playing a character. This course will teach basic acting principles, including objectives, tactics and given circumstances, through acting games and small-group scene work. Students will work together to perform a short scene as the course’s final presentation. In this laboratory of learning, students will heighten their observational and concentration skills, learn to effectively communicate onstage, and tap into their artistic impulses.
The future and past of humanity are closely tied to the biosphere— the oceans and earth surface where life is found. Billions of years have shaped the animals that occupy these areas, and we’re constantly learning more about them. One thing that has become clear in modern biology and environmental science is that the planet it is now undergoing important changes as a direct consequence of human activity. In this course, we will cover the incredible diversity of life on earth, from ancient tree ferns in Australian rainforests to our nearest relatives in Central Africa. From there, we will explore the ways in which humans are rapidly altering the environment, and what we can do individually and together to combat this change. Students will do research on on an animal of their choosing and how environmental issues may endanger it.
Can’t get enough sports in your life? You’ve come to the right place! In this seminar-style book club, students will engage with a mixture of sports-themed novels, podcasts, movies, and poetry, learning to hone their reading comprehension, textual analysis, and discussion skills. Meetings will encourage student participation to focus on summary and analysis of each work, with a special focus on drawing connections between the material, personal experience, and the world. Students learn best when they’re having fun, so let’s get reading!
Centuries ago the idea of human flight was dismissed as folly, consigned to the realm of legend or miracles. Flight is indeed a miracle. But it is also the greatest technical feat in modern history. In engineering, aviation is notorious for being the least forgiving with mistakes because one tiny miscalculation can lead to a severe disaster. In this class, we will discuss how different airplane propulsion systems, structures, and aerodynamic principles can transform the future of aviation. We will study why and explore how aviation has not only changed the world, leading to a global economy and making it possible for humans to fly faster than the speed of sound, but also inspired humans to push harder, think smarter, and explore the boundaries of our mind and the universe. The class will be very hands-on and culminate in a capstone aircraft design project where students will build a glider by creatively applying topics discussed in class.
Do you know how to solve a mystery? In this class, we will read Encyclopedia Brown mysteries. Each story ends with a question--how did Encyclopedia solve this case? We will work together and find the small detail that tipped Encyclopedia off to the identity of the culprit. The answer to each question is at the back of the book--but no peeking! We need to step into our detective shoes and figure out once and for all how to solve a mystery. At the end of the class, each student will write their own mystery and explain to her classmates how the protagonist dug through all the clues to find the right answer.
Bugs are everywhere, but they're often far less conspicuous than, say, cats and dogs. This course provides middle school students with an introduction to the small but incredibly complex world of bugs (defined very broadly). We will explore the mechanisms which underly evolution on a organismal and genetic scale, and the fascinating and truly incredible history and diversity of invertebrates. There will be a special focus on insects--the most diverse of all animal groups--but we will also explore the myriapods (centipedes, millipedes, etc.), arachnids (spiders, scorpions, etc.), crustaceans, mollusks and many other lesser-known groups. The course will end with capstone projects in which students can choose to make an insect collection (either physical specimens or photographs), create an artistic representation of a course topic (e.g. insect anatomy or malaria transmission), or research a topic of interest in depth. By the course's end, students can expect to understand the basics of evolution, the true diversity of the animal kingdom, why bugs matter to humans, and they'll learn about tons of exceptional creatures along the way.
This workshop will introduce our youngest Curious Cardinals to important historical figures who have had major impacts on the world around them. We’ll explore change makers from different fields so the students will learn more about figures they know and be introduced to those they’re unfamiliar with. The people we learn about will be chosen based on students’ interests. Potential figures we could explore include Rosalind Franklin (who discovered the structure of DNA), Thurgood Marshall (lawyer and Supreme Court Justice), and Jackie Robinson (the first African American player in the MLB).
Have you ever wondered how to take the best pictures of your favorite meals? Have you struggled with poor lighting or felt frustrated that your photograph didn’t do the meal justice? By the end of this food photography course, you will have gained both the skills and the knowledge necessary to photograph the most delicious dish! You will also acquire the expertise to cook these beautiful meals yourself!In the words of Jose Andre, “I always say that I don’t believe I’m a chef. I try to be a storyteller.” In this course, students will learn how to create delicious meals that tell a story - striving for a mastery of perfecting both taste and appearance. We will cover the fundamentals of food photography including styling, lighting, composition, and color. All you will need is a camera, a kitchen, and a window. We will also build off of our photography skills to explore how to create compelling stop motion videos. By the end of the class, you’ll have the skills to capture the #yum and #beauty of your kitchen creations in a way that’s enticing and perfect for sharing.
Why does bread rise or custard set? Why does baking soda cure my heartburn and make my cookies rise? Why do egg whites and aquafaba (chickpea liquid) behave the same way physically while coming from such different places? Why do we put eggs in cookies and cakes, but cookies aren’t cakes? Can gluten-free ever be as good as gluten rich? In this class, we will explore the kitchen through the lens of chemistry, using the molecular scale to explain what we see, feel, and taste. A true exemplar of a hands on learning, this class requires only three things: a kitchen, hands, and an empty stomach. With an in-depth look at chemical reactions like the Maillard reaction, come discover the why’s and how’s of cooking and baking all under the guise of chemistry. It’s gonna be sweet, salty, and finger-licking good!
Ever wanted to build your own coding game? How about making art with coding? This introductory coding class will teach the fundamentals of programming with an emphasis on creativity, design, and art. We’ll be covering important Scratch concepts like costumes, sounds, backdrops, event, and clone management. Students will build on these skills to create a challenge in Scratch. By the end of the course, you’ll not only have built your own Scratch games, but you will also have learned important programming concepts such as variables, conditional statements, and loops that will help you with any future coding you do! This course is designed for students who have no or elementary knowledge of coding can also be adapted for more advanced students who are looking to refine their skills.
Whenever you join a computer science program or class, it's common to only learn how to hard code. You learn if-statements, for-loops, debugging, all of that. However, CS is so much more than just coding! It has history! It has super mind-boggling applications! This course focuses on generating the trifecta of history, applications, and opportunities. The technical CS knowledge you will be taught in this course are the basics– but fear not! The focus is more on understanding the field of CS, how you can apply your knowledge, and giving you resources to expand your knowledge and work at your own pace to create whatever you would like in the future!
Do you love your stuffed animals? What about Halloween costumes? During this workshop, students will craft creatures by turning flat fabric into 3D forms! Whether it be soft sculptures, plush animals, or futuristic costumes, students will learn to sketch and then turn that sketch into sculpture. Making sculpture will provide a platform for the students to develop problem-solving skills. So get ready to dig deep into your imagination and get creative with sculpture.
A century ago, people would have never believed that we could fly or instantly speak to someone across the world. As time goes by, we humans tend to innovate and come up with creative solutions to our society’s biggest problems. From reducing carbon emissions to limiting food insecurity, our society continues to be faced with imminent problems that seem to have no clear solution. However, if design is approached with the right sense of empathy and purpose, it is possible to create meaningful change. This course will delve into what it truly means to create a social impact through design by learning from the successes and failures of others, as well as practicing empathy to understand real world issues. Besides gaining first hand experience in need-finding, students will also gain the skills necessary to execute their ideas, from prototyping with cardboard to designing a mobile app. The fun design activities and real world examples will culminate into a final project where students can choose to address any issue they are passionate about. Whether it’s reducing waste in their school or supporting mental health support during the pandemic, the students can get creative about their final project and will receive the mentoring to present a prototype of a solution. Overall, this class will be a mix of fun, hands-on projects and critical thinking about important issues. It is an open space for creativity and anyone who wants to change the world!
I challenge you to look around the room right now and find one manmade object that hasn’t been designed. You can’t! The world is chock full of design, and in this course, you will learn how to develop an eye for the design around you and create beautiful, expressive designs of your own.We will start out each class with a design challenge, then spend some time learning about the key elements of design such as contrast, color, composition, typography, and hierarchy. By analyzing tons of different design styles, we will answer questions like: How do some colors go well together and others don’t? Why are logos always so simple? How do billboards and advertisements capture my attention? We will work together to get you thinking like a designer so you can develop your own unique design style and apply it to everything you create in the future, whether it’s school powerpoints, social media posts, digital art, or beyond!At the end of this class, we will channel all of our knowledge into designing our own personal website or magazine spread. No computer science skills will be necessary, as we will be focusing on website appearance rather than functionality. After developing your design superpowers, you will never be able to see the world the same way again!
What are the sources of energy that power the world? What will we do when they run out? How can we develop sustainable energy sources that can last us forever? In this workshop, we will begin by studying the history of energy, exploring the resources that have powered previous civilizations from the Greeks and Romans up to the Industrial Revolution. We will discuss how non-sustainable energy sources, like coal and other fossil fuels, are finite and cause harm to the environment. Then, we will explore alternative sources of energy, like solar, wind, and nuclear power, diving into the pros and cons of each and how they play into politics. As a final project, students will present on the source of renewable energy that they think is the most promising, and learn how to make a device powered by it!
In this workshop, we’ll look at global health from an angle that’s undoubtedly worldwide yet highly culture-specific: food. We all need to eat to survive and what we eat varies from culture to culture. We’ll look at some foods and drinks that have spread globally and how they impact health in various communities. We’ll also briefly explore how food availability can be deeply motivated by economic reasons and see how these all have major effects on the wellbeing of a community.
Have you ever wondered how money works– why we can trade coins and pieces of paper for expensive and valuable goods? Take this workshop to find out! We will begin by studying the history of money dating back to Mesopotamia, and how gold eventually came to be a universal currency. We will study the way that money has evolved and come to govern global markets and goods ranging from food to clothing to art. We will learn the basics of concepts like trade and credit, investigate different currencies from around the world, and even talk about the future of digital currencies! By the end of this workshop students will have an understanding of where money came from and why it is the way it is.
In this workshop, we will learn what it takes to plant, cultivate, and harvest a healthy garden– from soil to roots to plants. We will learn to look at gardens as complex and beautiful ecosystems, beginning with the soil: the foundation of any healthy and productive garden. We will learn about how microorganisms process and develop nutrients in the soil that make for happy plants, and how composting can help create healthy soil while also recycling materials. Next, we will investigate what it takes for your favorite plants to thrive from the perspective of climate, watering, and nutrients, learning about photosynthesis along the way. We will learn about plant life-cycles and ecosystems, and how climate change affects both of these. Throughout the workshop, students will apply their knowledge to create their own sustainable garden with their favorite plants, whether they be fruits or vegetables or flowers!
What if it actually is rocket science? Well, it's not as hard as you would think. Come learn the fundamentals of how we put satellites and space stations in orbit around the Earth. In this class, we'll cover everything from the history of rocketry in the 1900s to how to make your own rocket at home, and everything in between. You'll be acting as a real NASA engineer, understanding every part of the rocket and how it launches objects to a speed of 18,000 miles per hour in just a couple of minutes.
In this hands-on course, kids will get experience mixing things together and asking questions the backbone of science! Using common household items, we’re gonna get messy! From slime to edible play dough, we’re going to explore new ideas and the world around us. It’s going to be a wild ride -- some things will be yummy, some things will explode, but everything is guaranteed to be engaging and thought-provoking!
Often, our youngest students ask the most curious and profound questions. “Why does time always keep moving?” “Where do I go when I sleep?” “What is the universe and how was it made?” In this workshop, we welcome our youngest Curious Cardinals to the world of Philosophy, a place where asking questions is half the fun, and all questions are welcome! No age is too young to start learning Philosophy: it’s not about scary concepts or big words, it’s all about learning how to think! The brain can be trained, just like any other muscle. We will take an approach that makes Philosophy easy and fun, playing games, running thought experiments, doing puzzles, and learning the skills of logic and argumentation along the way. We will take examples ranging from the Ancient Greek Philosophers to Eastern religions to present-day thinkers. By the end of this workshop, students will learn that the joy in Philosophy does not necessarily come from the answers we arrive at, but from the process of getting there.
Being a journalist requires being on top of the news! This workshop will incorporate discussions of current events and how various media outlets portray them. We will track the reporting and personal stories of historical trailblazers. We will discuss journalistic ethics and think critically about the role of media in the digital age. Students will end the class with a whole new vocabulary. “She gave a good copy!” and “I need an exciting lede” will become a natural part of your vernacular. Join us as we venture into the fourth branch of government: the press.
Design is all around us: it is in our desk lamps, our shoes, and our chairs. In this class, we will learn about the ubiquity of design and how we can use it to make a difference in the world around us. In this creative class, we will test the limits of what we can make, draw our ideas, and learn how to communicate them. Let’s join the maker movement and see what wild designs we can create with (primarily) materials found around the house. This class will take you through the design thinking process from empathizing through prototyping. Students will culminate this workshop with a presentation showing their understanding of the design thinking process and their prototyped idea that fills a need in their life or community. Get creative, and let’s make!
Most students go through many computer science classes before getting acquainted with machine learning. We will skip all of that and jump right into helping Marty plan her birthday bash. Guest list, food, decorations, venue, there’s so many decisions to be made! Through creative story-telling and hands-on group activities, we will build machine learning and probability theory intuition without relying on the need for any prior CS experience or terminology. Students will explore various classification, clustering, and regression techniques in a way that relates to their own decision-making processes. This class will conclude with students designing their own ML model to help Marty make the best decision.
In this course, we will dive into the history of black music from its origins in the plantations of the South to modern day hip-hop. Along this musical journey, which spans centuries, we will cover legendary black artists like Aretha Franklin, James Brown, Michael Jackson, and Beyoncé. The course will also focus on the political importance of black music: the spirituals that were instrumental in the abolition movement, the soul and gospel that formed the soundtrack for the civil rights movement, and the hip-hop and R&B that has given voice to the modern Black Lives Matter movement. Through this class, students will gain a greater appreciation for black music, while also coming to understand how music can be a powerful political device. Options for final projects include original music, song analysis, research papers, and more!
When you hear the word “spy,” you may think of James Bond, or perhaps a mysterious man in a trench coat with some fancy gadgets in the 1960s. The truth is though, spies look just like you and me, and international spies are still being found and arrested today. Spy missions that were planted way back during the Cold War are still active. How and why did espionage become the battleground of the Cold War? How did governments employ intelligence to their advantage in the ideological war? Who were the key players, and what were their stories? In this workshop, students will uncover the hidden mysteries of the Cold War, its most famous spies, and how they got away with it all…or didn’t!
Are you a budding young artist? Do you find inspiration and creativity in the great outdoors? Are you looking to improve your skills in painting and drawing landscapes, trees, leaves and flowers? If you answered yes to any of these questions, come join our Nature Art class! In this course, students will meet twice a week for six weeks in their own outdoor settings to learn from Mother Nature as we develop our respective artistic processes together! We will begin with the basics: sketching a landscape, recognizing the artistic patterns found in nature (the petals on a flower, the branches or roots of a tree, etc.), exploring color and pigment, and communicating depth and distance in our art. Then, we will begin to incorporate nature itself into our art, instead of just using it as a subject. What does this mean? Create a painting using pigments from flowers and berries, build a sculpture or installation using the rocks and twigs in your backyard, or design a textile using the bark from your favorite tree. In this class, the sky is literally the limit!
Get ready to travel back in time 2,500 years to Ancient Greece. We will read about the mortals who devoted themselves to the Gods on Mt. Olympus, and the Gods who worshipped Mother Earth! The Ancient Greeks wrote stories about the Gods to explain the world they lived in. We will read about Athena and Arachne and learn why the Ancient Greeks thought spiders spin webs! We will dive into the lives of Demeter and her daughter Persephone and understand the ancient idea behind the changing seasons. We will then learn why spiders actually spin webs and why we have different seasons! Each class we will practice reading and learn some how to think like a scientist.
From acing a math test to dancing the tango to creating your emotions, your brain does it all! How does this all happen, though? Students will answer these questions as they explore the anatomy and physiology of the nervous system. In addition to discovering how the brain works, they will also discover how the brain cooperates with our sensory organs. In hands-on workshops, students will be able to test out optical illusions and reflexes. Using household items, they will also be able to build and present their own models of neurons and the brain.
Calling all poets, writers, and musicians! Explore and celebrate the work of prominent African-American poets, musicians, and leaders such as Maya Angelou, Louis Armstrong, Martin Luther King, Rosa Parks, and Barack Obama. This class will give historical background and showcase speeches, poems, stories, and songs from those who greatly influenced black history. Dive even deeper and emulate the greats by writing your own poems and verses!
Public speaking appears in everyone’s life whether it’s interviewing, presenting in classes, having a conversation. There are always situations where we want to sound eloquent and educated, but it’s easier said than done. In this class, students will begin a journey of poise and confidence, learning how to articulate their thoughts from the classroom to the stage. A series of speaking exercises as well as an analysis of the great orators from Cicero to Obama, students will develop a set of skills that they can hone and utilize throughout their lifetimes of learning and participating. Students will complete the workshop having composed their own speech.
Patterns are all around us, and we can be inspired by the repetition in nature. We will learn about colors and new ways of putting them together with crafts and art projects. Every day will have a new theme like insects, extreme environments, or magical creatures that will inspire the games and projects for the day. Students will end the workshop will end with a portfolio of art projects, invigorated imagination, and a class gallery party featuring everyone’s final projects.
In the United States, was everyone always allowed to marry anyone they loved? Were kids who had different skin colors always allowed to go to school together? Travel back in time to the Civil Rights era to explore how the most powerful court in the country overturned laws that affect people of different races in unequal ways. We will explore what a law and how the Supreme Court has the power to explain what laws mean. Together, we will discuss two important cases called Loving v. Virginia and Brown v. Board of Education to talk about what “equal” has meant in the past and should mean in the future.
Every living thing sleeps, from the smallest insect to the largest whale. Some animals even spend as many as 20 hours a day sleeping! While humans don't need to sleep quite so many hours, our sleep is just as important. In this workshop, we will start by discussing what sleep is and why it is important for our body and brain. Then, we will discuss what happens when we dream and how we can take the fright out of our nightmares! Students will keep their own dream journals, and will create a creative project based on one of their happy dreams!
Goooooal! In this class, we'll discuss how soccer became the world's favorite sport. We'll trace the history of soccer from its birth in the streets of England to the 15 billion dollar global spectacle of today's Premier League. Along the way, we'll travel around the world meeting figures like Pele, Maradona, Ronaldo, and Messi, who have united fans and cultures. We will discuss the business, finance, and tactics of building a world-class soccer franchise. As a final project, students will build their own soccer team with real players based on budget, team chemistry, and complementary skillsets. Teams will battle it out in a tournament bracket, with students exercising their math, business, strategy, and creativity to win the Curious Cardinals Cup.
This course aims to deconstruct the larger picture by first reducing the concept of “public speaking” into its purest form: a method of communication akin to any other, such as a conversation with a loved one or writing an essay for school. By doing this, we can then explore its more approachable aspects, such as presence, preparation, and audience. From there, we can delve deeper into more specific details related to the archetypical “talking-in-front-of-a-bunch-of-scary-strangers” scenario. We will also be practicing everything we learn because public speaking is an activity fueled by experience. Whether you’re completely new or looking to hone your talent, there’s no better place to gain that experience than in a safe, controlled environment with knowledgeable support. By the end, all participants will be able to successfully give an impromptu elevator pitch on a randomly assigned topic, demonstrating to themselves and others that they can handle any curveball sent their way.
If you’ve ever wanted to start a small business, this workshop is for you! Whether you want to open a lemonade stands, sell baked goods, or start a fashion company, this workshop will prepare you for the excitement and challenges of being a young entrepreneur. We will start by workshopping our ideas: what makes a good product? How can we understand what our customers want? We will cover the basics of supply and demand, and then make our ideas a reality. Students will create a business plan, learn the fundamentals of budgeting and projections, and develop a preliminary product. By the end of this workshop, students will have all the tools they need to launch their small business, and get on the road to entrepreneurship!
How can we use movement to tell stories? In this interactive workshop, we will be learning the character description in a fairytale and communicating them through movement. It will be an exercise in our imagination and creativity as we recreate popular fairy tales characters like "The Big Bad Wolf," and "Cinderella." Come prepared to move, engage and share!
Food is a pillar of every culture— an integral part of health and hearth. The way in which and reasons why communities come together to share a meal can clue us in to their beliefs, traditions, and history. In this workshop, we will likewise come together and share a meal in honor of black history month. We will take a deep dive into “soul food,” cuisine often associated with black communities, while keeping our hands busy making strawberry shortcake, featuring the classic southern biscuit. Lastly, we will chat about how food impacts our own cultures, what it means to us, and our personal and culture traditions based on the sharing of food.
Ever wanted to build your own summer beach or carnival game? How about making art with coding? This introductory coding class will teach the fundamentals of programming with an emphasis on creativity, design, and art. We’ll be covering important Scratch concepts like costumes, sounds, backdrops, event, and clone management. Students will build on these skills to create a summer-themed challenge in Scratch. By the end of the course, you’ll not only have built your own Scratch worlds, but you will also have learned important programming concepts such as variables, conditional statements, and loops that will help you with any future coding you do! This course is designed for students who have no or elementary knowledge of coding can also be adapted for more advanced students who are looking to refine their skills.
Every February, we take the time to explore and understand the sacrifices and achievements of black people in the United States. Black History Month presents the opportunity to learn about the impact of Black Americans, in fields from arts and music to science and technology. In this series of discussions and activities, we will explore the stories and successes of the black trailblazers in a variety of fields, as well as encouraging students to dare to follow in their footsteps.
Do you ever wonder what is happening when a ballet dancer or professional sports player moves? Does it excite you to explore what is hidden beneath your skin? Do you like getting active yourself? If you answered yes to any of these questions, this workshop is perfect for you. Join us as we learn about the bones of our body, the most important muscles and their actions, and how all these pieces work together to give rise to movement! The greatest part about this workshop is that we will be using our bodies as the most useful learning tool! So get ready to learn some anatomy — and be active and play games while doing so!
Why learn Latin? Besides deepening your vocabulary and grammar skills and having an academic edge over your peers, Latin translating bridges the gap between language and logic. Often considered more puzzle-like than modern languages, Latin has become a favorite for STEM-oriented brains. Students will learn how to break down sentences with arrows and brackets to understand the origins of dangling modifiers and the difference between who and whom. Alongside their budding language skills, students will learn the history that arguably created modern western society with a look at Roman politics, pastimes, and engineering.
Have you ever had a nightmare? In Hans Enzenberger’s story “The Number Devil,” 12-year-old Robert can’t seem to get away from his scary dreams. A Number Devil (you got that right) comes to visit him in his dreams and teaches him about all things math. This isn’t your normal math class--I bet you your teachers at school have never heard of prima donna numbers or hopping. In this class, we’ll follow Robert’s journey as he learns that math isn’t quite as scary or boring as he thought. We will use the book The Number Devil as a guide, following discussions of the book with explanations of the mathematical concepts they contain (as well as where these concepts came from). Students will learn how to do math problems, but more importantly they’ll learn how to make any math problem fun.
Leadership matters, though the definition of leadership is often more expansive than what students are taught in school. And leadership is a muscle one can build from a young age. In this course on Unconventional Leadership, students will learn four critical leadership skills: clear communication, the ability to capitalize on individual strengths, the cultivation of long-lasting positive habits, and the art of coalition-buildings. The course draws upon sources including Never Split the Difference by Chris Voss, Atomic Habits by James Clear, and True North by Bill George. Students are encouraged to experiment, create, and collaborate. By the end of the course, students will feel more confident in their own leadership style and develop a series of actionable steps to apply their new skills.
From the Salem Witch Trials to the hit Broadway play Wicked, witches have been a symbol of fear and fascination for both children and adults in the U.S for centuries. But what’s behind the broomstick and pointy black hat that we haven’t thought of before? Are witches really scary and dangerous or are they just powerful women who threaten those in power? Through watching and discussing movies and TV shows that depict witches, we will explore the answers to these questions, and students will be able to reimagine the power of witches through writing creative short stories and making visual art. Join us to debunk myths about witches and explore how they can be transformed into a symbol of empowerment for women, girls, or any other person made to feel like an outcast from society.