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2019 Program Offerings:

Elementary: 

Dramatic Exploration (1st - 4th grades) 

During this class, your child will be given the opportunity to expand their imagination through the power of play. Over the course, we will create a small showcase with your child by using theatre games, song, and dance. By working together, students will learn the importance of teamwork, focus, confidence, and a variety of developmental skills that aid in creating theatre art.

Stop Motion Animation(2nd - 5th grades)(In partnership with Explore More Childrens Museum)

Student movie directors will work in teams to create stop motion movies using characters created from clay, Legos and other objects.  They’ll come up with the story, create backgrounds and scenery and then film their production using a camera and animation software. The last day will include a movie screening for our families.

Lego Engineering (1st - 5th grades) (In partnership with Explore More Childrens Museum)

This class is for young Lego enthusiasts who are ready to delve into the world of engineering and computer coding.   Each week, students will be presented with a different LEGO Engineering challenge designed to spark their creativity and put their technical problem solving skills to work.  Participants will also get to work in teams to build and program Lego robots using the We-Do Lego curriculum.

Out of this world- Science, Technology and Engineering (2nd - 4th grades)  

Let your child's natural curiosity for science, technology and engineering take control as they discover how things work, build problem solving skills, and work as a team during real-world based engineering projects. Students will be inspired as they participate in challenges, such as creating marble run mazes, building extra-mini golf courses, inventing their own product using recyclable materials, and so much more!

Jr. Dancing Dukes (3rd - 6th grades)

Come dance with the JMU Dancing Dukes team! Each day with begin with a warm up and stretching along with learning the basics of dance technique. Just a few of the styles of dance covered will be Jazz, Hip Hop, Contemporary, and more. Students of all levels are welcome to join to learn more about the importance of expressing yourself, moving your body and staying healthy all while having fun!

Note: Students are encouraged to wear socks for class to help with turning and other moves that will be taught. 

Scratch Programming (4th - 6th grades) 

Come put your imagination to work by designing your own interactive stories, games, and animations! Scratch is a computer programming language that makes it fun to practice basic coding concepts. Learn how to make characters move around the screen, interact with other characters, and respond with sound effects.

Uncovering Mysteries with Fossils and Bones (4th - 6th grades) (In partnership with the Virgina Museum of Natural History)

 We will explore the natural world through fossils, bones, bugs, blooms, beaks and feet. Students will uncover the mysteries that have allowed some species to survive and consider theories about why others went extinct. Each week will include a visit to the Virginia Museum of Natural History (via distance learning) to learn about their collections and how scientists use them.

Art: 3D Mixed Media (1st - 4th grades) 

Bring your artistic side as you delve into a variety of 3D art. Build a clay sculpture, bring out your inner Picasso with oil pastels and India ink, make a textured plaque come to life and so much more. No prior experience needed or required. 

Middle:

(New Class Addition) Journey Through the Human Body (5th - 8th grades)

Take a journey through the human body with a focused course on the different systems that make your body work! This is an interactive course to increase students' knowledge of the human body and how to keep it healthy. Students will also have an opportunity to use the tools that Physician Assistants use in a typical medial visit. 

Free To Be Me: Creative Exploration Through Drama (5th- 8th grades) 

Express yourself and your passions in this hands-on approach to creating new works of theatre. Students will participate in theatre games and exercises to build ensemble, develop skills in improvisation and performing, and create an original short play. If you are interested in designing, creating, and performing new work, this is the class for you!

Python Programming (6th - 8th grades) 

Discover a new world of creativity and self-expression using computer programming! Learn to compose your own music, draw 2D graphics, and make robots dance. Come see why Python is the most popular language for teaching introductory computer science at top-rated universities. 

Nature Photography 101 for Kids (5th - 8th grades)

Nature photography is a great way to get your child interested in a rewarding outdoor activity. This class will give your child the basic skills to take better nature photos with any camera and shoot better photographs through understanding of equipment, focus, composition, and subject matter.

Tinker with Arduino (6th - 8th grades)

Come explore the exciting world of electronics and micro controllers as we create and program Arduino projects.  We will be building a line following robot, a leaping “frog”, and a micro gaming keyboard, all of which you will get to keep! 

Arduino boards are able to read inputs - light on a sensor, a finger on a button, or a Twitter message - and turn it into an output - activating a motor, turning on an LED, publishing something online. You can tell your board what to do by sending a set of instructions to the microcontroller on the board.  

Winter Farm to Table (5th - 8th grades)

Explore the journey that your food makes from farm to table and learn how to make fresh, delicious foods on your own. Learn how to make butter, ricotta cheese, and pumpkin-flavored icecream from local raw milk, and investigate the time-honored traditions of fermentation by taste-testing local kombucha flavors and preparing lacto-fermented beets and quick-pickled carrots! We’ll also explore practical self-care in the winter by making a take-home skin salve using calendula flowers, olive oil, and beeswax. As we cook, we’ll compare and contrast the industrial food system with more local, sustainable food systems, discuss the costs and benefits of each, and brainstorm ways to re-envision our own food habits.

App Inventor (6th - 8th grades)

Have you ever wanted to design your own mobile app? Come make fun projects that you can share with your family and friends! App Inventor is an intuitive, visual programming environment for building fully functional apps on smartphones and tablets. This course will focus both on visual design as well as programming. No experience necessary.

Exploration of Art Media (5th-8th grades) 

Each week students will be discovering the beauty of different classic art media. We will be practicing techniques that students may have used before, as well as discover new techniques that they can explore.  We will be creating master works using various drawing media, watercolor paint, acrylic paint, printmaking, and three-dimensional media. All level of artists will enjoy the discoveries that will be made in this class.

Olympic Fencing (5th - 8th grades) 

Take a giant LEAP forward learning how to fence! Fencing is one of the fastest growing sports in the United States. Fencing has been the sport of swordplay for many centuries, which requires strength, speed, balance and a sharp mind. Students learning to fence improve inner discipline, have better fitness/coordination/flexibility and development of strategic thinking.

Create Your Own Comic Book (5th- 8th grades)

Learn the fundamentals of writing and drawing a comic book story by creating a six-page comic book with an original character in the starring role. Take part in an interactive discussion about creating and writing comics with brainstorming and art tutorials. 

KidWind Challenge Team Prep (5th - 8th grades) 

Are you on a team preparing for kidWind Challenge in the Spring? Do you want to compete but don't have a team or coach? Well, this course is for you! JMU students will be mentoring teams and helping them prepare for their upcoming challenge this Spring. Participants will have access to tools and experts who can help them improve their designs and presentations. Coaches are welcome to attend (for free) with their team members. Challenge dates and more information on what the KidWind Challenge is and why to participate can be found here

Engineering a Brighter Future (5th-8th grades)

Create, build and problem solve, through the Design Thinking Process. The Design Thinking Process utilizes the power of empathy to create a framework for problem solving that adds value to your client through innovative means. Throughout the 6 weeks of workshops, participants will learn and utilize different engineering techniques as they progress through the Design Thinking Process to prototype a solution to address the problems proposed to them. 

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