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Belin-Blank Center

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Belin-Blank Center

600 Blank Honors Center
Iowa City, IA 52242

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319.335.6148
belinblank@uiowa.edu

Director:
Dr. Susan Assouline
Belin-Blank Center

Welcome

The Challenge Saturdays Program is an academic program for high-ability elementary and junior high students (grades 2-8) that takes place over a series of 5 Saturdays in the fall semester on The University of Iowa campus.

Students are not required to participate in the Belin-Blank Exceptional Student Talent Search (BESTS); however, we encourage all students to participate in BESTS in order to learn more about readiness for academic challenge.


Iowa City Classes

The Artist's Studio

Grades 2 through 4
Sep 20, 2014-Nov 01, 2014, 9:30AM-12:30PM

In this class you will explore and expand upon your artistic talents with studio-based experiences. You will learn new techniques and work with a variety of materials in a positive, fun, and supportive environment that allows you to explore your creative ideas. We will work with watercolors and paint landscapes by studying the work of Georgia O’Keefe, Helen Frankenthaler, and Thomas Eakins. You will develop your portraiture skills, exploring the proportion of the face and how to translate measurements to paper or canvas from the work of Chuck Close. We will work with charcoal drawing and study the charcoal art of Egon Schiele. Additionally, we will look at the works of Georges Braque and his work in cubism. We will study the works of Paul Cezanne and create "Still Life" drawings. You will have an opportunity to choose your medium and create a piece of art that reflects how a favorite piece of music makes you feel. We will be doing "Visual Sound" with various types of World Music and different composers. The students will use the inspiration of these artists to produce their own work.

Registration is closed.

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Instructor: Taera Harman
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Innovation, Invention, and Engineering

Grades 2 through 4
Sep 20, 2014-Nov 01, 2014, 9:30AM-12:30PM

Innovation, Invention, and Engineering will strengthen your inventive and engineering interests and aptitudes. In addition to direct instruction about the invention process, you will do your own independent, hands-on engineering of inventions. Over the five weeks, you will learn how inventors and engineers shape the future by creating new and original tools that make our lives easier and more rewarding. You will learn that creativity—seeing the world and how we interact in it in new ways and by asking different questions—can enhance your ability to engineer inventions.

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Instructor: Leon Lueck
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Chemistry and Physics Explorations and Investigations!

Grades 4 through 6
Sep 20, 2014-Nov 01, 2014, 9:30AM-12:30PM

In this class you will be able to explore everyday applications of both chemistry and physics. Come make, taste, and test different foods and substances. Learn about the physics of waves. Analyze mystery powders, learn scientific notation, and create polymers—some might even be slimy. Determine whether there are secret ingredients in various products that make them better than others, and then practice being wise consumers by learning how to read labels.

Registration is closed.

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Instructor: Deb Snook
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LEGO Robotics

Grades 4 through 6
Sep 20, 2014-Nov 01, 2014, 9:30AM-12:30PM

LEGO Robotics is designed to provide learning opportunities for students interested in an initial and fun way to learn how to design, construct, and program LEGO robots to complete a desired task. NXT robots are constructed to learn how advanced programs simplify the programming process. You will work in groups of two using robotic kits to design, construct, and program robots. Mac computers (one for two students) will be used to program the robots. MINDSTORMS NXT software will be used to learn basic programming. Touch sensors, light sensors, angle sensors will be used to design robots to complete assigned tasks. First LEGO League tables will be used to test the robots, refine the program, and for two robots to compete against each other.

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Instructor: Dominic Iannone
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Join the Maker Movement!

Grades 4 through 6
Sep 20, 2014-Nov 01, 2014, 9:30AM-12:30PM

Do you love to make things? Do you love to solve problems and create solutions? Thinking about becoming an entrepreneur? Become a part of the worldwide Maker Movement and be part of the S.T.E.A.M. initiative during this Challenge Saturday course. We will explore Design Thinking, product creation and marketing, and make things that are just plain fun! Many craft materials will be provided, but if you have a great idea you want to explore, feel free to bring your own supplies.

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Instructor: Chelsea Sims
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Challenge Math

Grades 4 through 6
Sep 20, 2014-Nov 01, 2014, 9:30AM-12:30PM

This Challenge Saturday math class is designed to accelerate and strengthen 4th–6th grade students pre-algebra and algebra skills. Through a combination of direct instruction, independent work, and home exploration, students will be engaged in challenge problems that offer interesting alternatives and extensions to traditional approaches to pre-algebra and algebra. Topics will include problem solving strategies, algebra skills, metric system, computation with decimals and fractions, perimeter, circumference, area, volume, and percent.

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Instructor: Slade Hovick
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GAME:IT

Grades 6 through 8
Sep 20, 2014-Nov 01, 2014, 9:30AM-12:30PM

GAME:IT is a computer programming and game design course. In this class you will learn how to program your own basic computer games, and work in teams to solve problems we encounter in the game design process. You will develop technical skills like programming, graphic design, animation, testing, debugging, and other skills that are needed for game development. We will spend the first two class sessions becoming acquainted with different aspects of coding and the final sessions using a program called GameMaker to design and create our own working games. You do not need any prior experience with computer programing to participate in GAME:IT. If you are comfortable with computing skills like using a mouse and navigating the internet, then you have the skills to participate.

Registration is closed.

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Instructor: Jenna Spiering
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