WinterimFor one week, the entire St. Andrew's-Sewanee community shifts its attention from the regular academic routine to intensive courses of study that are dedicated to experimental and experiential learning. Winterim gives faculty members and students an opportunity to collaboratively explore their passions.
What an absolute joy it has been to hear about our daughter's days this week. The meditation exercises, the positive thinking messages, the being attentive tips are feeding her soul. I know it takes time and effort to put this entire program together. Thank you for giving so much. ~ Kathryn Bruce, parent
I just wanted to let you know how great Winterim was for my daughter. I was especially excited that she got to spend a week doing songwriting with Linda Heck. Linda is a remarkably unique talent, one that stuffier academic environments would be unable to appreciate. Hats off once again to SAS! - Adam Randolph, parent
2018 Winterim Courses
Middle School Maker Challenge
Pairs of middle school students will design and build devices to accomplish specific tasks. They will then test the devices to see whose is most successful. They will earn points for their team. This is a spinoff of our Science Olympiad Winterim. We are offering some of the most popular building events in a low stress, fun, yet competitive environment. Monday: Rubber-band launched glider (distance, mass, time aloft) Tuesday: Ramp Raiders (race down the ramp!) Wednesday: Bottle Rocket Day (Eggstronauts) Thursday: Bridges (mass ratio scoring) Friday: Clean-Up, Party, Presentation, Paper Plate Awards.
The Science of Food and Cooking
Have you ever wondered how a cake batter is different from a muffin batter? Or how a bread dough is different than cookie dough? What is the difference between medium rare and rare steak? How does pasta get so soft? Why do mashed potatoes get gluey? If you are curious about any of these things, if you like to work with your hands, and you like to read and talk about science, this course is for you! Each night you will be assigned a different reading to prepare you for cooking lab the next day. We will discuss what dishes/recipes we will be making, why they are a good choice for our concept, make them at my house, and then eat and discuss how they taste and how that is related to their structure and properties. Prerequisites: must be able to do arithmetic, to clean up behind yourself, and to be willing to actually read and to learn cooking terms in French, Italian, or other culinary languages.
Intro to Psychology with Dee Eichler
We will examine human development - both in terms of growing up and growing old - and will discuss the manner in which the behavior of others affects our own thoughts and behavior. We will discuss various forms of mental illness and the treatments that are used to help those who suffer from them. The fact of the matter is that humans routinely do amazing things without appreciating how interesting they are. However, we are also routinely influenced by people and events without always being aware of those influences.
Exploration in BioTech
Explore the fascinating field of biotechnology in this hands-on, interactive course. Through labs, discussion, and videos we’ll investigate genetic engineering, genetic analysis, and gene therapy. We’ll make E.coli bacteria glow green by inducing transformation of a jellyfish gene and then learn how scientists purify the green fluorescent protein product. We’ll perform electrophoresis of DNA fragments and learn about the various uses of electrophoresis in genetic analysis and genetic engineering. Through the evaluation of case studies, we’ll consider the ethical dilemmas presented by gene therapy and genetic screening. We’ll also see how biotech issues are depicted in modern movies such as Gattaca and the not-so-modern The Andromeda Strain.
Voyage to Space!
Every day we will study a different aspect of Space Science and Exploration! We will: research our planets and create a scale model of the Solar System on the SAS campus; revisit the 2017 lunar eclipse, compare lunar versus solar eclipses, and learn mythology of eclipses; understand the complexities and prepare for a trip to Mars; explore space disasters such as the Big Bang event, black holes, asteroid impacts, and solar flares; and discuss how space science and exploration has been presented in movies, comics, and books.
Classic Philosophy in Game of Thrones
Winterim is coming! Students will read, discuss, and engage with the primary texts of classical philosophers that are represented by several major characters in the fantasy series A Song of Ice and Fire by George R.R.Martin. We will read selections from Immanuel Kant, Niccolo Macchiavelli, Jean Jacques Rousseau, Aristotle, and Epicurus, and discuss how their philosophies are embodied in characters like Eddard Stark, Tywin Lannister, and Daenerys Targaryen. We will discuss the ethical dilemmas and ambiguities in adhering to these different philosophies of power. Students should be prepared to present to their classmates about these philosophers. Students will need to have either a basic familiarity with the plot of the series, or need to have read (or be reading) the first book in the series A Game of Thrones.
Field Archaeology: Salvage Excavation of Indian Shelter
Who came here before us? What did they eat? How did they live? Here on the SAS campus we have an abundance of archaeological resources in the form of rock shelters like Indian Shelter and Widow's Crack that were inhabited 5000+ years ago. The history of rock shelter use and habitation patterns on the Cumberland Plateau is still not fully understood, but it was certainly significant. Sadly, much of Indian Shelter has been looted over time and the information available from the artifacts and their context has been lost. In this hands-on, primarily outdoor course, we will continue the salvage excavation of Indian Shelter that was started during Winterim 2006. Advice and guidance will be provided as needed by University of the South Archaeologist Sarah Sherwood. The goal of this excavation is to continue the collection of diagnostic artifacts left behind by looters that will allow us to establish a basic timeline of habitation in Indian Shelter. Students will learn to responsibly excavate an archaeological site, to identify artifacts such as nutting stones, grinding stones, spear points, flint chips, pottery shards, and maybe even charred nuts or wood, and to properly clean and catalog these artifacts. During the course, students will learn more about the prehistoric cultures of the Cumberland Plateau and help to preserve this incredible cultural resource present on our campus. Participants should be prepared for physical work and getting dirty!
During Robotics we will have two teams that build a robot from their VEX IQ super kits. Working in two teams of five people, students will choose the style and type of robot they will build. Both groups will then decide if they want to build with or without programming. Once the decisions are made, roles will be delegated based on student choice. The second phase will be robot building. Once the robots builds are complete, we will then have a series of events with the robotic arena and each team will perform certain challenges.
Creating with Clay
Whether you are a beginner or have taken a clay class, you can participate in this clay Winterim course. In this workshop, students will design and create unique ceramic pieces. Beginning students will learn how to construct vessels using slabs of clay. Students who have already taken at least one semester of throwing at SAS may choose to spend the week throwing or handbuilding their wares. After a fun week of making pottery during Winterim, once the pots are fired, students will return to the studio to glaze their pieces during a work period. After the pots are glazed-fired, students may take home their pottery.
Explorations in Painting and Drawing
This course will offer a tour de force in creativity as we look at multiple painting, drawing, and printing practices on multiple mediums. There will be a great deal of freedom to explore techniques using paint, ink, pastels, chalk, pen, and pencil, and other media. We will also look at examples of artists who have pushed the boundaries and try to emulate their techniques and style. With this course, we hope to tap into each student’s “culture and creativity.”
Design Challenge: Architecture
This course teaches basic architectural principles and focuses on form and space as they relate to the particular design challenge chosen by each student. Possible design challenges include designing an affordable housing prototype, redesigning a 21st century classroom, designing a tiny house, or designing a temporary housing structure. Floor plans would be drawn to scale first by hand and then a three-dimensional rendering would be created with Sketchup. Daily slideshows and lessons on architectural practices will help students place their work in a broader context. Hopefully, during the week of Winterim, the campus master plan architects, Hord Coplan Macht, will be able to connect with our students via Skype.
Audio Story-making Workshop
Students will learn to interview, record, and edit an audio story. We’ll learn to record voice and ambient sound, to mix audio tracks, to write narration and edit to a finished audio piece of between two and five minutes. We’ll present the best finished pieces at end of Winterim and submit suitable pieces for broadcast on WMTN. Participants can use smart phones for recording. For those without a recording device or who wish experience with professional field recording equipment, there will be two field recorders with professional mics. The class will be introductory and fun, but professional. We will discuss interview skills and basic best practice in professional recording. We’ll watch a couple select short discussions by Ira Glass of This American Life, Jad Abumrad of Radiolab, and others from Transom.org. We will frame the workshop in the documentary arts but will quickly move to field recording, getting “good tape.” Participants can choose to write, script, and narrate their piece or produce a piece without scripting or narration. Each participant will leave the workshop with a short, simple piece that is solid with the very basic principles of radio story-making. Students can use smartphones or dedicated digital recorders, any device that can produce exportable mp3s and will need headphones to monitor recordings. Even cheap ones are fine.
Life After High School: An Inspired Design Course
In this course we will be challenged to think critically about social and economic issues derived from YouTube videos, crowdsourcing, social media, and featured films. In this solution-driven “think tank,” students will combine research, discussion, sketching, and computer aided design (CAD). Class will conclude with a visual presentation or movie to express ideas. Objectives: Make a friend, Make a count, Make a difference, Make some change, Make it last, Make the money, don't let it make you.
Telling Stories Through Music
We will listen and learn stories as told through a variety of musical styles. We will watch at least one video each day and discuss the stories, the themes, the characters, and the music used to represent them. We will reflect on whether the works are interesting and relevant today. We will watch a full length musical, a full length opera, a full length ballet, a performance of a few symphonic works, and concert footage of rock, country, and folk music concerts. This program will help students see how culture through the arts is a reflection of our society as a whole. Students will be exposed to new art forms which promote creative thinking and a deeper understanding of the variety of ways to express themselves. Viewing a variety of art forms helps to create well-rounded individuals who are better equipped to understand and tolerate diversity. Students are invited to dress comfortably, bring blankets, pillows, and snugglies for comfort during the videos. Snacks will be provided.
Introduction to Harry Potter (Films vs. Books)
Students will watch the Harry Potter films and discuss the differences between the films and J. K. Rowling’s books. Since the wizarding world of Harry Potter is a worldwide cultural phenomenon, students will delve into the beloved story, characters, and themes. We will analyze the flawed pedagogy of Hogwarts, character psychology, and the popularity and continued influence minds of Harry Potter on all ages.
Miyazaki’s Lesser Known Classics
The SAS Anime club is proud to announce that it will be hosting another year of Anime Winterim. This year, we will go back to our proverbial roots: Miyazaki films. However, we will not be watching fan favorites like My Neighbor Totoro (1988) and Princess Mononoke (1997). Those movies will always be cherished by the anime community, but they are well known and only show off a sample of Miyazaki’s work. Instead, this Winterim will focus more on his studio’s lesser known works, including Castle in the Sky (1986), Howl’s Moving Castle (2004), Pom Poko (1994), and Nausicaa of the Valley of the WInd (1984). We will also be introducing people new to anime to two popular shows Cowboy Bebop and Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood. Throughout the week we will reflect on how Miyazaki’s work has changed over time, the themes present, and what anime means for the average American high schooler. But, most of all, the goal is to have fun and be thoughtful.
Popcorn and Classic Movies
We will enjoy watching and discussing some of the great movies that have survived the test of time, including The Big Sleep, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, North by Northwest, Some Like It Hot and Cool Hand Luke, popcorn is included.
Analysis of Science Fiction Films: The Deeper Meaning
After a brief study of the history of the science fiction genre of film, students will watch contemporary sci-fi films such as Blade Runner 2049 (2017), The Matrix (1999), and Avatar (2009). We will then discuss our opinions, thoughts and most importantly, analyze the themes and motifs of these films. Our goal is to sit back, have fun, and learn about why science fiction films are so powerful and how they can transport us to other worlds and capture our imaginations.
Supporting Senior Citizens Through Music, Reading and Conversation
A group of students will travel to area nursing homes and perform music, read, and have conversations. It is well known that elderly people (specifically those suffering from dementia) respond well to music.
This course is an exploration of our closest community in the east: Grundy County. We will go to several historic and cultural sites and experience all the beauty and lore of the region. All that is required is a love of exploration and a positive attitude! We will be going off campus all five days. Please dress for hiking as that is how some time will be spent. Class limit: 20
At Your Service
This course will be service projects that can be completed off campus. Earn service hours while meeting new people, helping organizations and individuals who need it, and venturing off campus each day.
Board Games for the Competitive
Board games require a certain amount of strategic thinking, cooperation, competitive drive, and luck. This class is for students who are interested in playing board games, whether they are seeing a game for the first time or the hundredth time. A variety of competitive and cooperative board games will be supplied. This course offers the opportunity for students to work together, use their brains, have fun, and be respectful and polite when winning or losing. Live, laugh, play!
In this workshop, we will explore the basic techniques for knitting: casting on and binding off, knitting, purling, and garter and stockinette stitches. We will also learn how to choose needles and yarn and to read patterns. At the end of the week, participants will take with them the basic knowledge to create a scarf and additional simple knitting masterpieces!
Cocina Mexicana- Write Your Own Cookbook
This is a class focusing on the basics of the Mexican kitchen. Students will learn to prepare basic foods the way they are prepared by millions of people in Mexico every day. The object of the class is to learng how to start with a bag of rice and beans, onions, tomatoes, and chile peppers, etc., and go through the step-by-step process to create a salsa, a dessert ,or even a meal. All of the steps of all of the recipes will be recorded by the students in the form of a cookbook.
The Art of Manliness
In an essay in Harper’s magazine in 1933, Robert Littell listed “What Every Man Should Know”: swim, handle firearms, speak in public, cook, typewrite, ride a horse, drive a car, dance, drink, and speak at least one foreign language well. Although it may be fun to discuss which skills are anachronistic or relevant for men—as well as women—today, in “Skills Every Young Person Should Know,” we first will consider the usefulness of gender identity and expression and next consider which skills should make up a similar list for the twenty-first century. Students will apply those skills in practical situations, such as ironing a shirt (or a blouse), changing a tire, or throwing a football. Students will examine life lessons on how to answer (and ask) questions in a job interview and how to know when a partner is “the one,” among many other possibilities.
Taking Things Apart And Fixing Them
You can fix more stuff than you know. With some simple tools, a little time, and the right website, you can save money and earn the respect of your peers by taking things apart and fixing them. In this class we'll fix the power switch on an iPhone, the volume knob on an electric guitar, an iron, a MacBook, a computer charger, and other broken stuff. Time permitting, we'll also build an electronic drum set out of Fr. Bunting's old junk and parts from Radio Shack.
Celebrate Traditional Chinese Holidays with Chinese Food
Learn to cook different food for five traditional Chinese holidays: Jiaozi (dumplings) niangao (rice cake) for the Chinese New Year, yuanxiao (rice dumplings-sweet) for the Lantern Festival, zongzi for the Dragon Boat Festival, and yuebing (moon cake) for the Mid-Autumn Festival.
Korean Culture and Cooking
안녕하세요 – An-nyeong-ha-se-yo—Hello! Students in this class will learn to make Korean food, such as bulgogi, japchae, pajeon, bibimbap, soondubu, and tteokbukki. Don’t know what those are? Join us, and eat some of the best food ever created! You will wonder how you ever lived without Korean food! Please note: we will be eating meat and spicy food! We will also learn some basic Korean phrases and customs. 감사합니다 – Kam-sa-ham-ni-da—Thank you!
Life, the App
We will take the week to explore the real-life equivalents of some of our favorite apps by sharing photos (Instagram), reviewing a meal in real time (Yelp), making friends and sharing experiences with them (Snapchat & Facebook), listening to music together (Pandora), writing letters (Gmail), creating a map and giving directions (Google Maps), and more. Students will have a hand in planning the activities for the week as we begin on Monday with a discussion of what non-electronic activities might replace our usual activities. Students up for an additional challenge can take a no- or reduced-electronics pledge for the week. This Winterim will celebrate our place (Perspective, look at other ways to communicate (Communication), teach us to be resourceful even when the power is out (Preparation), and encourage unplugged Well Being.
The Art of Happy
We’ve heard repeatedly, especially among our seniors, the refrain, “I just don’t feel like I can be myself and have people like me,” which, as it turns out, is the essential barrier to happiness for most people. It is our ability to be our authentic selves, combined with the time to practice self-compassion that enables a contented life. The skills of vulnerability and creativity, combined with the time and space to practice these skills, proves essential in finding a sense of balance in one’s daily life. We will travel to Fiber Farm in Tracy City, an alpaca farm where clothing and other textiles are produced. The proprietor of this farm, Kaci, will talk to us about the experiences that led her to this venture, sharing her own journey to a contented life. Each day, students will meaningfully engage with one another based on a tested method for creating a specific skill in emotional resilience, self-care, and a more positive world view. These activities will include creative reflections, craft projects (to be gifted as an act of rejuvenating kindness), and interacting with both animals (field trip) and nature (enjoying the outdoor space on this campus).
Enter the world of radio and acquire hands-on instruction, with work here in our campus station combined with a visit to the Sewanee college station and one additional local county station. Learn how to produce a music show. Learn to voice track automated generated shows. Learn how to be on air live. Produce a short radio “drama” (similar to Prairie Home Companion). And, have Fun! We have been invited by the benefactor of our campus station to visit a major commercial station in Nashville.
Backpacking the Appalachian Trail in Winter
Discover the wonders of winter camping by spending four days on the Appalachian Trail in North Carolina. Monday, we gear up, learn skills, and plan our meals. Tuesday morning we depart for the trailhead. We will hike about 25 miles in total, 6-8 per day, but the terrain will be challenging and scenic. While parts of the week are sure to push us beyond our comfort zones, the experience is always rewarding both mentally and physically. The school can provide most of the gear you'll need, and we will teach you all of the basic skills such as setting up camp, cooking, hanging bear bags, fire building, and risk management. The trip is open to all upper school students who are tough and willing to endure some minor suffering; the reward will be memories that carry you through the rest of the year!
Explore several of our area's grand and peculiar caves. See flowstone, dripstone, breakdowns, columns, stalactites, stalagmites, hidden pools, and underground streams. Dress to get wet and muddy and be ready to hike. We'll provide helmets and headlamps. This is a no cell phone class. We'll meet through lunch one day, maybe two (we'll pack lunches on those days.)
Students will learn the basics of botany while preparing the school farm for spring. Students will assist in planting starters for the spring season along with converting the enclosure to raised rows. Students will be asked to assist in a significant amount of digging along with maintaining and germinating new seedlings for use in the spring season. Over the course of the week physical work will be broken up with discussions of seed germination, soil management and possibly planning of a seedling sale.
Futsal (a kind of Indoor Soccer)
Through play, lectures, and movies we will learn the rules, strategies, skills, culture, and history of Futsal.
The fly fishing class will be taught in 3 parts daily. First will be approximately 20-30 minutes of class room time teaching equipment, general techniques, and species commonly pursued. Second will be fly tying for approximately 1 to 1.5 hours. We will start with wooly buggers and move to commonly used trout nymphs. Third will be the casting/fishing portion to be held outside on the St. Andrews pond. 1-1.5 hours we will focus on roll casting and overhead casting for distance and accuracy. If water temperatures are warm enough we may pursue fish in the pond. Timing will depend on weather and student learning pace. Some days may focus more on tying and others on casting. Class time will be kept to a minimum. All equipment is included.
Enjoy a slideshow from Winterim 2017.