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Session II Course Descriptions

An “Animated” Course

An Animated Course is an introduction and exploration of traditional cell frame animation. Drawing and sketching skills are recommended. Fundamentals of cartooning, character development and storyboarding will be explored and experienced. Photographic and claymation animation techniques are also topics for this course. Students will use Apple computers utilizing Adobe Photoshop and Apple iMovie in addition to their own Smart Phones to prepare and upload their animated creations to YouTube.

The class will be watching a documentary movie about animator Chuck Jones and his long career animating Loony Tunes characters for Warner Brothers. Chuck will impart vital animation tips and secrets. Yes, we will watch some classic cartoons in addition to viewing the summer’s best animation offering at the local theater. Students should be confident in drawing and/or interested in making their drawings and characters come to life.

Enrollment limited to 20 students. Course fee for supplies and materials is $65.00.

Textbook
Character Animation Crash Course! by Eric Goldberg

Instructor
Rusty Nelson, Professor of Art, Visual Communications, Truman State University. B.F.A. Fort Hays State University; M.F.A. Kansas State University.

Big History: Finding Humanity’s Place in the Universe

Even though human civilization has only been around for roughly 5000 years, most historical studies focus exclusively on this period, ignoring the 13 billion years that led up to it. In this course, we will widen the scope of history to include the complete timeline, analyzing and exploring how the momentous events that took place before the earliest humans have shaped our development as a species. With a focus on the crucial historical thresholds that transformed humans and society, we will construct a more complete history of humanity.

Using David Christian’s Maps of Time as a guide, we will incorporate astronomy, biology, geology, and environmental science to develop a more complete account of history and humanity’s place in it. We will challenge common misconceptions of cause and effect in history, provoking students to look at human history with a more critical lens. In doing so, students will be better equipped to understand modern society as it stands today by having a fuller appreciation of the colossal forces that have and continue to impact our daily lives in countless ways. To achieve this goal, course activities will include reading, writing, discussion, and research into a wide array of topics.

Textbook

Maps of Time: An Introduction to Big History by David Christian

Instructor
Andrew Peake, Instructor, Special School District of St. Louis County. B.A. History, M.A.E. History/Social Science, Truman State University.

 

Bright Ideas: Exploration of Light’s Role in our World

Why is the sky blue? How do rainbows form? How do our eyes receive images from the outside world? How does your cell phone display cat memes? Why can I actually see myself in the mirror? What’s going on with the album cover for The Dark Side of the Moon?

Equipped with lenses, mirrors, prisms, and a host of light sources, we will carefully develop three models of light to help explain these phenomena and more. By the end of the course, you will have a detailed understanding of what light is and how it makes the world remarkable. You will never see the world in the same light again. There will be lasers.

Textbook
TBA

Instructor
Joe Milliano, Instructor of AP Physics, Clayton High School. B.A. Physics, B.S. Mathematics, M.A.E. Math/Physics, Truman State University.

Introduction to Chemistry

The course will introduce you to the scientific process by exploring fundamental concepts in chemistry in the context of contemporary environmental and societal issues.  A broad range of topics will be explored throughout the session, including the atom and atomic structure, molecules and chemical bonding, chemical nomenclature, writing and balancing chemical equations, the mole and molarity, and the relationship between chemical structure and function. You will participate in several laboratory experiences in which you will learn to work safely in the laboratory and make careful observations of chemical reactions and phenomena in order to draw useful conclusions from your experiments.  You will also have the opportunity to explore and share new topics through brief class presentations.

A key component of the course involves inquiry based learning as a means to understand the process by which new scientific knowledge is developed.  For example, in the laboratory you will synthesize a compound of unknown composition and use a variety of tools to deduce the structure of this new material.  Examples of other experiments include determination of water hardness of samples from local sources, the synthesis and analysis of biodiesel, chromatographic characterization of chemical mixtures, analysis of artificial blood, the study of dyes through the making of tie dye T-shirts, as well as the opportunity to develop and perform chemical demonstrations for your peers.

Textbook
Chemistry Essentials for Dummies and a course packet which includes laboratory experiments and supporting materials for the lecture.

Instructor
Brian Lamp, Professor and Chair of Chemistry, Truman State University.  B.A. Augustana University (SD), Ph.D. Iowa State University.

 

Introduction to Programming: A Colorful Journey

In this course the students will be using geometric shapes, colors, arts, and music and will be introduced to many of the computer programming concept such as variables, expressions, equations, if control statements, loops, and array. The course will use Scratch programming learning tools from MIT and processing programming languages.

Textbook
None

Instructor
Dr. Kafi Rahman, Assistant Professor of Computer Science, Truman State University.  B.S. Computer Science and Engineering, Khulna University;  M.S.C. and PhD. Computer Science, University of Ottawa.

 

Monsters: Using Big Screen Frights to Think Critically About the World Around Us

This course teaches our students much more than the “do’s” and “do nots” of surviving a horror movie. Using a combination of films, literature, and discussion, we will study the horror genre, using monsters as a metaphor to explain the nuances of different cultures and societies. Students will explore many STEM fields along with the humanities, learning practical skills of disaster preparedness alongside critical thinking skills in the classroom.From shelter building, to crisis management we will learn to take care of ourselves and others in times of disaster.  Surviving is only half of the battle. The films and literature of the horror oeuvre will serve as a jumping off point as we use monsters as a metaphor for exploring current and historical cultures and societies.The students final project will be to use what we have learned about disaster preparedness and horror movies to create a Public Service Announcement that uses their critical thinking skills to link our new knowledge of these ghouls with an actual problem we could all face.

Textbook
TBD

Instructor
Tyler Unsell, Director of Debate and Forensics, Park Hill School District. B.A., Truman State University. M.A.E., Truman State University.

 

Reading Between the Panels: Comics, Graphic Novels, and Sequential Art

In his book Understanding Comics Scott McCloud explains that the potential of comics is limitless, but has been constrained by its perception in popular culture. In this course we will explore the true potential of the medium by reading and analyzing comics (also known as graphic novels) as a form of both art and literature. Using McCloud’s Understanding Comics  as a guiding text we will learn about the history of comics as well as ways to interpret the combinations of words and pictures within comics. We will put our understanding of sequential art into conversation with other mediums that use words and pictures to make meaning such as advertisements, art, and film. This course will also invite students to think critically about what they read and to consider the ability of literature to shape our understanding of who we are and  how we interpret the world around us.

Daily activities will include reading, writing, and discussion. While we may try our hand at producing some comics ourselves, artistic ability is not a requirement for this course.  

Textbook
Understanding Comics by Scott McCloud, fiction and nonfiction graphic novels TBD

Instructor
Rachel Brown, Instructor of English, Raytown High School. B.A. English, M.A.E. English, Truman State University.

 

This is your Brain.  This is your Brain on Music.  The Psychology of Music.

Have you ever wondered why people respond so strongly to music? Or ever wondered what’s going on in your brain when doing/listening to music?

The Psychology of Music is an introduction to how we understand and perceive music, and how and why we respond to it. Students do not need a background in reading music for this class. We’ll start with building a base of knowledge of musical acoustics and the anatomy/physiology of the ear and the brain. Then we will study how we perceive music; how we learn music; how we understand “meaning” in music; and how music is significant in our lives. During the course, we will listen to all kinds of music, watch videos and movies to see how music is used to guide our emotional response, and even do some “musicking” of our own.

Textbook
TBD

Instructor
Mark Jennings, Professor of Music and Director of Choral Activities at Truman State University.  At Truman, he conducts the university choirs, including Cantoria, University Chorus, and Voci chamber ensemble. He also teaches courses in choral music, applied voice lessons, and conducting, and he leads the master’s program in choral conducting. Ph. D. in Music Education/Choral Music from the Florida State University, studying with Andre Thomas and Rodney Eichenberger, his master’s degree in choral conducting is from Michigan State University, and his bachelor’s degree is from St. Olaf College.

 

Uncanny Creatures: Stitching together the Mythological Hybrid

In this studio art course, we will study historical examples of mythological hybrids, ranging from Egyptian gods to Greek monsters to the common North American Jackalope. Students will then take inspiration from a culture of their choice to make one of these creatures or invent a new one of their own! We will discuss these creatures’ place in their respective stories and try to understand the purpose of their hybrid nature.

This course also takes a hybrid approach to soft sculpture, combining textile arts with sculptural techniques often used in the movie and prop industry. We will begin by learning to sew simple stuffed forms and then progress to designing more complex shapes and sewing patterns. In addition, students will learn how to make molds of their hands or faces and cast these in rubber, resin, or foam.  These cast parts will be altered and combined to create truly uncanny creatures.  As students gain confidence with sewing, we will begin upcycling found textiles like old jeans, shirts, gloves, or socks. If time allows, near the end of the course, we could either create our own bestiary or work together to build a giant inflatable monster.

Course Fee: $45

Textbook
None

Instructor

Danielle Yakle, Assistant Professor of Art at Truman State University teaching Fibers and Sculpture.  Bachelor of Fine Art, Truman State University, Master of Fine Art, University of Kansas.

 

 

Why We Fought: American Wars from World War I to Iraq

The course covers the major American conflicts from the start of the 20th century to the present conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. While the focus of the course will examine these conflicts from the U.S. foreign policy perspective, some attention is given to the role of domestic public opinion as well as foreign perspectives on the conflicts.

There are three learning objectives for this course. First, students should gain a deeper understanding of US conflicts over the past century and how these conflicts shaped the US into the global leader. Second, students will attain a better theoretical understanding of why countries fight. Finally, students will discuss and attempt to determine what countries can attain from conflict and if it’s worth the price.

Aside from the normal classroom activities, the class will take two field trips. The first will be to Laclede, Missouri to visit the Gen. John J. Pershing Boyhood Home State Historic Site. Students will take a tour the famous US Generals boyhood home and see how he lived and discuss his accomplishments. The second trip will be a two day trip to the World War I Museum in Kansas City Missouri and the Harry S. Truman Library in Independence, Missouri. There they will explore wartime documents and memorabilia before undertaking role-playing activities where students will decide how to deal with the growing differences between the U.S. and its Soviet allies near the end of the war in Europe.

Course Fee for the two field trips is $165.00.

Textbook
International Politics and Zombies

Instructor
Michael Rudy, Associate Professor of Political Science and International Relations, Truman State University. B.S., Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville; MA, Eastern Illinois University; Ph.D., University of Missouri.