Session 5: (July 17-21)
Rising 1st Grade
What’s the Matter? – full, accepting applications for waiting list
Curious things are happening: a strange, unidentified substance has been found, the principal’s water is disappearing, and even more mysteries abound. Never fear, you are on the case! In this course, you will become a detective and practice using science to solve problems. After learning about the investigative processes of a scientist, you will gather your own information about solids, liquids, and gases by making scientific predictions, designing and conducting experiments, carefully recording your observations, and collecting data. You will then use the information and discoveries you uncover to solve some very puzzling matter mysteries.
The Math in Music: Patterns, Patterns, in my Ear – full, accepting applications for waiting list
Can you hear it? Can you play it? Can you see it? Patterns are everywhere in the world around us, even in music! In this class, we will use patterns to discover the relationship between math and music. We will learn to recognize and create algorithmic patterns as mathematical and musical representations. As we develop our computational skills, we will use what we have learned to solve musical math problems that uncover patterns we can read and hear. By the end of the class, we will be able to create mathematical compositions that can be performed and shared with others! These compositions will be driven by our mathematical understanding of beat division and pitch intervals and showcase your awareness of how patterns work in math and music. Grab some instruments and get ready to hear the math!
Rising 2nd and 3rd Grades
Archaeological Adventures: Uncovering Tennessee’s Past – waiting list closed
We have all heard of the pyramids of Egypt and historical structures built by the Romans and Greeks, but did you know that there are tons of archaeological sites right here in Tennessee? People have been living in Tennessee for close to 15,000 years, and it is the job of archaeologists to uncover their stories to help piece together history! In this course, you will be transported back in time as we immerse ourselves in Tennessee’s archaic past. Come ready to learn from a real-life archaeologist how archaeologists test hypotheses and develop conclusions about events and people long ago! As you take on the role of an aspiring archaeologist, you will learn about the tools and techniques that professionals use to excavate artifacts and draw meaningful conclusions about Tennessee’s past. If you love puzzles and history, and don’t mind getting a little dirty, then this class is for you! Are you ready for an adventure in archaeology?
Neuroscience Navigators – waiting list closed
Come join a neuroscience team on a journey to understand the human body’s most complex organ, the brain! In this course you will explore what scientists know about this organ and investigate how scientists unlock mysteries of how the brain works. Have you ever wondered how your foot communicates with your head? Did you know that light is involved in how we see color? Do you know why? In this class we will apply our own personal experiences as we explore brain related questions that puzzle us. You will also learn about the role neurons play in how the brain functions as you investigate how these cells talk to each other using electricity and chemistry. Through inquiry-based, hands-on activities in Vanderbilt science labs, you will use problem-solving skills and creativity to answer big brain questions as you hypothesize, observe, and investigate. Get ready to collaborate and learn about one of the fastest-growing scientific fields– neuroscience!
Rising 4th and 5th Grades
Programming and Robotics – waiting list closed
Robotic engineers are learners, dreamers, strategists, and creative thinkers. Robots are cool to play with, but how are robots used in the real world? Can robots really help make our lives easier? How do robots turn lines of computer coding into action? What are the thinking processes needed to successfully code a robot to complete a task? Come learn the answers to these questions and more as you challenge your mind and test your creativity by programming Sphero interactive robots! In this course, you will take on the role of a robotics engineer as you brainstorm hands-on solutions to real-world problems through computer programming. You will program how your robot moves, looks, and interacts with apps, including augmented reality games, as you try to solve robotic challenges. After taking this course you will have new ideas about how to use coding and robotics to solve big problems in our world today!
Poetry in Practice – full, accepting applications for waiting list
Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost, Langston Hughes, and E. E. Cummings. Influential poets such as these have the ability to create written pieces that transcend time. Powerful poems can impact your emotions and thoughts, and remain etched in your mind for days, months, and even years. But what characteristics make a poem memorable? How do we tell a meaningful story using so few words? In this course, we will closely examine how famous poets create compelling poetry, and we will discover how to apply similar skills and ideas in our own work. By using examples from both historical and current-day collections, we will examine the different forms that poetry can take and discuss the elements of craft employed in preparing poetic creations. After exploring the work of famous poets, we will write our own unique pieces to share. Develop your own powerful poetic voice in this in-depth look into the complex world of poetry in practice.
Rising 6th and 7th Grades
Commodore Investment Fund: Economics and the Stock Market – full, accepting applications for waiting list
Business school may be several years away, but that doesn’t mean you can’t understand important business concepts now! In this course you will take on the role of a financial analyst as you learn how math intersects with economics, how the stock market functions, and how to discern between a multitude of investment options. After gaining an understanding of the basics of investing, including investigating market efficiency and historical stock market trends, you will experience firsthand the power of the stock market. You will work with a small group of your classmates, now your business colleagues, to propose investment decisions for the Commodore Investment Fund, a fund set up by the SAVY Company. Your instructor will serve as president of the board for the company and will listen to your investment proposals in a real boardroom. Don’t let the fancy boardroom intimidate you. You and your business colleagues will be ready to show the president that you understand economics, the stock market, and have a plan for quality investments for the Commodore Fund. Get ready to debate money decisions, develop economic strategies, and provide justification in a class that will engage you whether the market is bull or bear!
Computational Astrophysics: Coding the Universe – waiting list closed
Astronomers spend their days studying stars and galaxies in space, but these celestial bodies sometimes exist for billions of years, much longer than the average lifespan of a scientist. How, then, is it possible to study these objects? What techniques can astronomers use to make scientific predictions and conduct experiments? Over the last several centuries, scientists have been carefully unravelling the laws of physics and quantum mechanics– laws that can be applied to almost all objects. In this course we will uncover how astronomers combine computer simulations and real-life observations to make scientific discoveries and predictions about the future of our universe! We will begin our studies with hands-on learning of some computer programming basics and exploring important laws in astronomy. We will demystify computer code, translating it into physical models and representations that will help us better understand objects in space. We will even work together to develop our own simulations of astrophysical objects and compare them to real observed objects in the sky. Get ready for an academic experience that is out of this world as you learn how coding, physics, and astronomy can be used together to investigate the universe!