Course Descriptions

Please see below courses for the Spring 2018 term. Students will do one course for the six week period. No prior knowledge of any of the subjects is necessary. Courses are subject to change

Impariamo con i cartoni: learning Italian by captioning and re-voicing cartoons

This course is focused on the needs and interests of children who are learning the Italian language for the first time; children learn better when they have fun and enjoy what they do.

Learning a foreign language can be an enjoyable activity, hence the idea of creating a comfortable and friendly environment where they can make the most of what they learn in this course. During this course, children will have fun learning how to give voice to cartoon characters, audio-describe clips and images, comment on cartoon vignettes, describe stories and rearrange plots, and create subtitles translating from Italian to English. They will meet popular Italian cartoon characters and will learn how to caption and re-voice them, using the online platform ClipFlair (European Link-Link).Additionally, they will develop creative thinking and problem-solving skills while improving their pronunciation and communicative competence in Italian.

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When Science meets Medicine

Learn about how scientists and doctors work together, and how scientific experiments can help us understand how our bodies work.

You will learn how some of the organs and systems of the body function, and how doctors can use this information to help keep us healthy. Through fun activities, learn how the brain controls the body. How is food digested and used as fuel? You will go to the laboratory for two sessions, where you will learn about cells and what they need to survive. Use a microscope to see how cells can thrive, and what happens when we change their temperature, oxygen and other conditions. Spend two sessions with a doctor who will show you how the heart and lungs keep us alive and healthy by taking oxygen from the air and carrying it all around the body. Learn about bones and muscles, and see how doctors use x-rays to figure out what to do when injuries happen.

*Please note three different instructors will teach this course covering two weeks each. Two of the classes will take place in a lab beside the hospital.

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Idea Detectives- Exploring the World with Philosophy

In this course, we will give children the opportunity to ask and openly discuss philosophical questions.

We will use an educational approach called P4C (Philosophy for Children). P4C is the name that Professor Matthew Lipman gave to his project of using the discipline of philosophy as a resource to help children become more intellectually energetic, curious, and critical. P4C is an enquiry-based pedagogy, it engages children in developing their own questions in response to a given stimulus. This stimulus could be a story book or novel, a film, an image, a piece of music, or even an object. Guided by a facilitator, the kids enquire collaboratively into their choice of question. Finally, they reflect on their thoughts and participation, and suggest how they could improve on their thinking together for the next enquiry. This process of thinking together helps children learn how to challenge assumptions, give reasons, and, ultimately, cultivate their criticality. Recent research, particularly in the UK, has established that the integration of P4C into both primary and secondary school curricula also increases literacy and numeracy across a range of student cohorts.

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Comic Books: Create Your Own Heroes

"Pictures that don't make sense are magic, they hold balls of light covered in millions of spells swirled into a cell." - Alexa Kitchen

Let your creative intelligence flow by coming up with your own comic book idea, character, and storyline. This course will encourage you to be as creative with your imagination as possible, whether you want to draw, write, or create your own theme music for a super hero.

How are comic book heroes similar and different to characters in novels and myths? We'll find out by sharing, and comparing and contrasting our own ideas. The course will look at different types of comic books and comic-book heroes. In particular, the class will focus on how authors and illustrators present characters to a comic book audience. By doing so, the class will be exposed to the different types of devices developed by comic book authors and illustrators. As a result, writing and reading creatively will result in a development of our imaginative faculties, writing techniques, and an understanding of literary form.

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The World of Cops and Robbers: Learning the Law

The aim of this course is to provide students with an introduction to the key historical steps in the development of Irish law and to give an insight into the operation of our contemporary legal and criminal justice systems.

It will provide students with a basic understanding of how our law affects and protects citizens and how it is enforced on those who do not comply with the law. The course will take you into the fascinating world of judges, police officers, lawyers and law makers: their roles and duties. You will also be given a chance to step into their position and have a personal experience of enforcing, applying or, if you prefer, experiencing consequences of disobeying the law in a playful environment.

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Word Wizardry: The Magic of Creative Writing

Fantasies, fables, myths and legends; soppy love-poems and gory ghost stores - what have they all got in common? Someone, somewhere dreamed them up and wrote them down. And that's exactly what we're going to do!

In this course we'll take a look at different literary modes and techniques and think about why certain stories suit certain shapes. How is a poem different to a song? And can a play be more effective than a short story? Over six weeks we'll talk about lots of different examples of stories and test them all out by writing some ourselves! We'll see how the right words in the right order can sometimes be simply magical. By deepening our appreciation for creative reading and writing, we can capture the insight and imagination that is so important to us all. Each student will complete the course with a portfolio of writings and a fuller understanding of compositional techniques and literary forms.

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A fun introduction to Computer Programming, The Internet, and Multimedia

A wide variety of topics will be covered, introducing students to core programming and design concepts.

After initial tuition in each lecture students will have the opportunity to combine their new technical skills with their own creativity in a hands-on computing laboratory environment. Topics covered will be: application development, website design, gaming, networks (how the internet works) and graphics. Students will become familiar with commercial software such as: Microsoft Visual Studio, Google Sketchup and Scratch. The content of the modules demonstrates a wide array of skills required by IT industry specialists and typically each student will discover their own particular preferences and develop creativity - limited only by their own imagination.

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Weird stuff our ancestors did

History is the study of the past. It tells stories of what people did and how they lived.

During this course, stories of invasions, wars, Christianity, famine and a divided island are mixed with tales of the Vikings, the Black Death, life in castles, the Titanic tragedy, music, mobiles and computers. A major emphasis will be placed on the key political and social controversies of Irish history.

Topics that will be covered include:

Students will both individually and as part of groups become familiar with original documents from the past and learn how to interpret these sources. They will discover major figures from Ireland's past and explore how key events transformed the island.

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Your Radio: Analysing media and making your own show

Media literacy is the ability to access, analyze, evaluate, and create media.

This includes; television, radio, Internet, newspapers, magazines, books, billboards, video games, music, and all other forms of media.
Over this course you will;

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Art on the Brain: From Looking to Drawing and Painting

Improve your drawing skills and hone your artistic perception!

This course will teach you how to see and perceive the world as a composite of shapes, a vital part of being able to draw well. It will cover both the technical and the expressive side of drawing and painting. Learn how to draw realistically as a foundation for whatever direction you want to take with your art. We will be doing some exercises from Betty Edwards's classic Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain, which not only will teach you how to draw (with surprising results within a short period of time!), but will enhance your creativity in general and provide you with valuable problem-solving skills. Colour theory and still life will also be incorporated, and we will work with a variety of media, with the main focus on drawing. You will be encouraged to develop your own style.

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Exploring Camera Principles Using Raspberry Pi

Exploring Physics and Programming in an engineering project

Through this program you will learn how to design from scratch a camera. Notions of optics, image processing and programming will be explored in order to achieve the making of an embedded imaging system. The system will be fitted in a 3D printed case designed. The course is oriented towards a hands-on approach of Physics, with many experiments.

Aims of the course

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When Play becomes Performance: How to make Theatre

What makes a play a play? The words we say? How we say them?

The way we gesture, move, and create different new worlds with props, costumes and set?Here at NUI Galway, we believe that theatres are curious and exciting places, where a box can become a ship or a taxi, where a piece of cloth can become an evil spirit or the sea. On stage anything is possible if we believe it to be!From Revolting Rhymes to Silly Shakespeare to Celtic Raps and back, this course will use all kinds of games and activities to explore how to make a play. This course aims to give the students an opportunity to discover and develop performance skills, such as voice work and improvisation, as well as enhancing their understanding and appreciation of theatre. The course will finish with a performance of the students' own play.

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Exploring Electronics : Learn how to build circuits and robots

Ever wonder how gadgets work? How robots are made and programmed?

In this course you'll learn how electronic circuits work and how to program them using the Arduino platform. You'll learn the basics of programming and how to make use of sensors, motors and LEDs to create your own fantastic projects and bring your ideas to life.

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Robots and Artificial Intelligence

Robots, robots, everywhere. From self-driving cars to your local hospital, robots are assisting us in all kind of things that we can't, or don't want to do.

Robots are building cars; vacuum cleaning rooms; exploring space, deep seas and other worlds; performing search and rescue missions; assisting in surgeries; providing elderly care; and much much more! But how they do all these tasks ? What makes robots smart ? In this course you will learn all the ingredients that make a robot and learn how to make it smart.

The course outline is

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Hands on Science with Cell EXPLORERS!

Become a scientist and practice experiments in the lab with the Cell EXPLORERS team. You will find out how our bodies work and about the amazing world of cells, which are found in all living things. You will get to look at cells under the microscope, learn about different types of cells and use the scientific method to investigate what happens inside cells! From this course you will bring back knowledge at home and be able to share what you learn with your friends and family!

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A Time Traveller's Guide to Europe

Did you ever wonder how your life would be different growing up in Ancient Rome? Or what it was like to work as a child in the ‘Dark Ages'? Or learning your craft as an apprentice in the Renaissance?

What about life in Paris during the French Revolution or figuring out how much tea you drink and butter you could buy during World War II? You will learn all this and more on this course looking at Europe from the Roman Empire to the European Union. Each week we will travel back to a different period and a different country and find out what people were doing at the time.

Students will debate across the floor of the Roman senate, learn how plays were performed in the Middle Ages, report on the lives of King Louis and Queen Marie-Antoinette in France, before mapping out battlefields and designing peace conferences in World War I and II. By the end of this course, students will have discovered what life was like for someone their age at different points in history, recording a typical day for each period in their weekly diary.

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The Secret Life of Engineers

What is an Engineer? Take this course to find out!

This fun and interactive course with hands on learning gives an excellent introduction and overview of all things engineering. Each week will cover a different type of engineering, including: electronic, civil, mechanical, biomedical, software and aeronautical. During the course we will make everything from electronic circuits and mini catapults to bridges and even paper airplanes. The course will give a fun look at what it is like to be an Engineer and the different areas of engineering you can study.

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Innovation Challengers-Solving problems for good

Social innovators develop new ways to solve tough social problems.

They do this using the same techniques that entrepreneurs use to come up with great business ideas - finding out what problems people need to solve, being creative about finding a solution and planning to make the idea a reality. In this course we will work together on a challenge. We will learn how to gather insights into other people's lives and their unsolved problems. Then we will analyse our findings to choose the best opportunities where we can make life better for someone through creative new ways of doing things. We will build prototypes and test them to get feedback and improve our ideas. Finally we will work out how to implement our design in the real world. We will share our ideas with others by telling our stories through videos and posters.

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Discovering a piece of Raspberry Pi(e)

Exploring Programming Concepts and Interacting with the Environment

Here is a fun way of discovering electronics and programming in a series of entertaining projects. The focus of this course will be placed on Python programming using the Raspberry Pi - a credit-card sized computer made for teaching purposes. Through a series of projects you will learn to take still images with the PiCamera and stitching them together to make videos, reading values from various sensors and using the Minecraft API. It's a piece of Pi(e)!

Aims of the course

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