Oregon State University

Courses for 3rd and 4th Graders

 Partial List of Courses for 2015


Each course meets for 80 minutes on each of the six Saturdays: January 24, 31; February 7,14, 21, 28;  2015.

Advanced Chess

Presenter: Phil Schapker

Learn strategies to dramatically improve your chess game! This class will introduce students to a broad spectrum of topics in advanced chess theory, from general opening, middle, and endgame strategies to more specific lessons in pawn structure and tactics for attacking the opponent’s king. Lectures will include examples and discussions of some of the most famous chess games. Students will have ample opportunities to play and practice their new skills and learn to record their games for later review.

Beginning Chess

Presenter: Phil Schapker
New chess players will learn basic beginning, middle and end game play.  Discover the fundamental strategies of chess, general principles, and how to use a chess clock!  Strategies and principles of chess will be covered at various levels to meet each player's needs.

Chemistry I

Presenter: Andy Cadotte ($5 Materials Fee)

Have you ever wanted to have a foam fight, make slime, or grow crystals? Does the secret world of chemistry excite you? Do you want to understand the secrets of the universe’s smallest particles? Then we have a class for you. In this class you will learn the ins and outs of chemistry all through hands on learning and labs. We will use everyday items to do the labs so you can go home and show your friends, siblings, and parents. We will also have a demonstration day in a lecture room at OSU where you will be shown experiments that will amaze and enthrall you. We will also make ice cream on the last day.  How? That is a secret. If you’re ready to have fun, this class has plenty to offer.

Creative Computing

Presenter: Sophia Zhang

Use Scratch, a fun computer programming language, to create art, animated stories, music, and, time permitting, even games!  Scratch allows participants to think creatively, reason, and work collaboratively.

Creative Computing 2

Instructor: Sophia Zhang

Students who participated in the 2014 Winter Wonderings/STEM Academy "Creative Computing" course have an opportunity to continue working with Scratch at a more advanced level. This course will explore more advanced topics such as advanced animations, music creation, and advanced game design. Hybrid course includes all grades.

Crime Scene Investigation

Presenter: Sarah Erhardt ($5 Materials Fee)

Exactly how do investigators solve a crime mystery?  You will become a junior detective to investigate a crime scene and solve the mystery.  Along the way, learn the techniques scientists use to examine evidence, determine blood types, and perform your own experiments, such as fingerprinting and particle analysis.  This is one puzzle you don't want to miss!

Design and Build a City                                                                                                    

Presenter: Kaisa Laukkanen  ($5 Materials Fee)

Design and build a city to your liking.  How would you like people to live, play, travel, and work in your city?  The sky is the limit!  Will you base your design on a city you know and like or begin a completely new design?  Start with geographical features, like mountains, rivers, and lakes.  Add residences, businesses, and industries. Plan parks and bike paths. What makes your city unique?  Will there be any special features or attractions?  Welcome to endless possibilities!

Draw What You Wish

Presenter: Kaisa Laukkanen  ($5 Materials Fee)

Express yourself through visual art.  Choose and bring topics you are interested in drawing—animals, landscapes, mythological creatures, characters from books/movies/games or one you yourself have created, etc.  Draw items to look surreal or original, dramatic, proportional, three-dimensional, and beautiful.  By the completion of the class, you will have improved your drawing ability and learned tools or methods that will continue to improve your drawings.  This class uses lots of imagination.  Come, create, share inspirations, and have fun!  All skill levels welcome, especially those that feel limited as artists.

Dynamic Theatrics

Presenter: Diane Allen ($5 Materials Fee)

Do you wonder what it takes to be an actor? Have you ever had an interest in creating your own theatrical production? Explore and create a scene from a different show each week- starring you! Discover the skills needed to bring a story to life on stage! Try you hand at talking with a cool accent, getting "into character," improvisation, putting together costumes, changing your look with stage makeup, preparing for an audition, writing a script, memorizing lines, and much more. No previous experience necessary! Just bring your creative self!

East meets West: Chinese your Way

 Presenter: Luh Jang Chen ($10 Materials Fee)

Ever wanted to learn Chinese, but felt you needed 10,000 hours of practice and a tiger mom to learn it? Now is a time to debunk the myth of learning difficult languages. Chinese your way is taught through an art medium, you being the artist. Students will be guided through a series of projects including historical to modern Chinese calligraphy written on scrolls, Chinese painting sewn onto sustainable bags, and Chinese cultural song performances. All projects including videos of performances can be taken-home at the end of the program. Learn to express yourself through the language of Chinese.

Exploration, Games, and Adventure

Presenter: Alexis Lanham

Participants: Please wear closed-toe shoes, comfortable clothing you can move about in, and outerwear appropriate for the weather, as some sessions may be held outdoors.

Introduction to Programming I

Presenter: Caleb Barde

This class will be a basic introduction to understanding how computers accomplish tasks and how people make the run procedures. We will be using Alice (a visual programming language) in order to make games, movies, and stories. Previous knowledge with a computer is helpful, but certainly not needed.

Maker Exploratorium

Presenter: Ken Olsen ($15 Materials Fee)

We are all makers at heart. We just have to find our passion. Explore electronics with Arduino microcontrollers. Learn how computers work with Raspberry Pi. Learn how to program in Scratch, JavaScript and Python. Incorporate computing in textiles with soft-circuits. Take apart an appliance to see how it works. Create art from junk. Explore and utilize online maker resources. Go home with the skills and confidence to follow your passion.

Math for Smarty Pants!

Presenters:  Vanessa Otamendi and Spencer Ramey

What does it mean to be a mathematical smarty pants? It sounds like it means being smart in math. And it does. Being smart with numbers is one way, but it's not the only way. There are some kids who "see" things easily in their heads. Others are good at strategy games and puzzles. All are ways of being a smarty pants in math. Come join this class and explore different fun and exciting ways to discover math!

Mundus Imaginalis: A Door Into the History of Mural Art and the Colors of Self-Discovery

Presenter: Elena Charvarria-Correa

Learn about the amazing and diverse paradigms implied in symbols portrayed in mural art since the beginning of culture and collaborate on your own mural! How did Egyptians prepare hues for their afterlife? What did azuli mean for the Mayas? Be prepared to unveil the conscious and imaginary creations of our world's civilizations as you reflect upon the artistic transcendence of humankind. Express your own reality through artistic talents and gifts shared in your class as you participate in a collective mural project.

Science in Action!

Presenters: OSU Scientists

Have you ever wondered what a real scientist does? Here's your chance to find out! Each week, meet different OSU scientists and take an interactive exploration of their research. From plants to bugs to mammals and more, explore scientific research through fun, hands-on activities and see why scientists get excited about their work!


Presenter: Ken Olsen ($15 Material Fees)

Computers surround us and are getting smaller and more powerful all the time. In this class you will solder together a small Arduino compatible computer and program it to sense light or touch and respond by blinking an LED or emitting sounds. You can then incorporate it into textile or craft items of your choice using conductive thread.

World Challengers for the Future

Presenter: Carlos Valdes-Casillas

As community leaders heading toward key positions, this class will motivate students to place themselves in leadership roles. We will address past and current events, while they will become representatives of our communities, our state, and even our world. Participants will create proposals to challenge existing trends in order to explore "alternative roads" and imagine new paths for our communities. 



Contact Info

Dennis Hickey, Coordinator

Precollege Programs for TAG Youth
Oregon State University
239C Covell Hall
Corvallis, OR 97331-3502
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