Winter Break 2019 - Hackers (Grades 3-6)
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 18Shooting Star Card Lab: LED Circuitry (morning)
Technology and visual art are two fields we often bridge together at Geek Forest. In this particular lab, we’ll be using circuitry to illuminate original paper crafts. This lab combines creative arts and circuit building to create vibrant crafts illuminated by custom LED bulb designs.
Lego Spirograph (afternoon)
Not everyone has time to draw. For those who don’t, why not make a robot that does it for you? That’s what this class is all about. In this lab, students will try their hand at engineering their own spirographs, nifty contraptions that create beautiful spiral patterns. The class is 2 in 1: create the robot, and see how many designs and patterns you can create with it. (Robots are not available to take home).
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 19Robotics Lab (morning)
Looking to get into the basics of robotics? Look no further. Codey Rocky is a great introduction to visual coding and robotics, making it simple to control and observe the effects of basic programming logic through controlling these immersive, yet highly approachable robots.
Take a look at one of the processes that shaped the way we think of animation today. Before the takeover of 3D animation in the industry, films like The Nightmare Before Christmas and Wallace and Gromit used clay sculptures and stop motion animation to create vivid 3D environments and stories. Even with the abundance of 3D animated content today, several modern films, such as Coraline and The Boxtrolls choose to stick by the claymation method instead, and the genius of using this animation style shows in these films’ organic and lively aesthetics. This lab is an introduction to this animation style, providing students with the skills to sculpt, shoot, and animate clay models.
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 20
Terrarium Lab (morning)
Condensation, evaporation, photosynthesis, and more, all within a 2-liter soda bottle. Terrariums are complex systems, but that doesn’t mean you can’t create, maintain, and observe one with just a few supplies. In this lab, students will build and customize their own terrariums using soda bottles, soil, and whatever plants and decorations of their choosing. These tiny terrariums simulate fascinating water cycles which students will get to take home and customize to their liking.
Minecraft Ecosystem (afternoon)
Terrariums are fascinating and informative displays of biology and plant life, but how does a science project like this work in a setting such as Minecraft? This lab explores the various ways Minecraft’s nature assets can be combined to emulate a real life ecosystem, informing students on the inner workings of the water and plant cycles, while practicing some Minecraft skills as well. This digital ecosystem can be customized to each student’s liking and combined with worlds of their own creation.
THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 21Zine Maker (morning)
Zines: think of them like books, but smaller (and for some reason, all the rage). Zines can range from informative pieces on something you’re passionate about, to illustrated stories, to poetry, art collections, and more. The handheld size and format of the zine allows for this kind of creative expression. Students construct the zines from scratch, then fill the pages to their heart’s content. This class is great for storytellers, illustrators, and builders alike.
Game Design Star Wars Arcade (afternoon)
Design your own Star Wars game! Students will use the tactile feature of Bloxels to create levels, and the app to bring their story to life with dialogue, change the graphics and backgrounds, and more. They will also be able to play missions as classic heroes and villains, and use your imagination to create your own Star Wars Universe.
FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 22Synth Sounds (morning)
What goes into producing a sound? We may know what a lot of things sound like but what goes into creating that sound is often unknown to us. While synthesizers are known for creating a wide array of sounds we hear in electronic music, they also break sound production down to its simplest form, allowing us to see what each waveform looks like, and how changing its shape affects what we hear. This lab breaks sound synthesis down into a modular format, making each part that goes into creating a sound observable and easy to understand.
Minecraft Redstone Fireworks (afternoon)
Minecraft engineering at its finest: this lab involves combining materials, arranging them to construct launchers, and customizing your own fireworks show based on the colors you pick, the sizes of each burst, and how you want it timed out. This lab is an expressive exercise in cause and effect, encouraging students to experiment with different formulas to see how their show comes out. This lab is a key choice for young artists, engineers, and Minecraft lovers alike.