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College 4 Kids Course Descriptions


Mary Lyons

2 East South Street

Galesburg, IL 61401



A fall sunset from the west side of Ford Center for the Fine Arts

Knox College for Kids course descriptions provided below are for the 2024 summer program.

Please note: some courses or sections are geared toward specific age groups, but this does not exclude anyone from registering for that section of the course, just that content will be taught at that level.


The Junior Program is for youth entering grades 1 and 2. In order to include young children and alleviate parental concerns, each child in our Junior Program is accompanied by program instructors or college fellows at all times to ensure safety. To facilitate this full-time accompaniment, the children in the Junior Program are organized into groups, each group spends the entirety of the morning together (8:30-12:00), and their classes are predetermined by program leaders. Classes are inclusive of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences, and Science & Math.

The tentative course schedule for youth in the Junior Program includes the following:

Move and Groove

Instructor: Kathleen Ridlon

This course invites students to stretch, balance, reach, turn, walk, melt, slide, fall, freeze, jump, run, repeat. We use fun and lively music and creative physical games to develop our expressive imaginations. This movement class is designed for children rising into first and second grades. Wear comfortable clothing and be prepared to kick off your shoes and socks!

Art-Making / Scrapbooking

Instructors: Laci Klein; Leticia Camacho

We will be crafting and making art that reflects our lives! It will be fun and it will be messy (but not TOO messy), and the course will provide opportunities to explore creativity, collaboration, communication, and critical thinking via projects that will include drawing, painting, and paper crafting.

Ecology at Knox College

Instructors: Tina Hope; Harvi Taylor; Erin Hunt

Ecology is the relationships between organisms and their environment. Everything is connected! Explore and deepen your relationship with plants, soil, and critters that inhabit our shared community. Hands-on activities, interactive games, writing, and nature walks will support understanding ways that everything around us is connected.


The General Program is for youth entering grades 3 through 8. The courses and descriptions are listed under three subject areas: Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences, and Science & Math. All offerings will allow participants to either build upon areas of strength or explore new interests. When registering, youth are encouraged to indicate all courses they are interested in taking. After registration closes, individual schedules will be created and shared with participants prior to the start of the program.


Building Makers and Creators (grades 3-5; 6-8) 

Instructor: Alex Fluegel

Are you ready to unleash your inner inventor and artist? In this hands-on course, you'll learn the fundamentals of many tools and techniques, empowering you to bring your wildest ideas to life. Whether you're drawn to the precision of engineering or the freedom of artistic expression, this course is your canvas for innovation. Welcoming seasoned tinkerers to novice explorers. Join us and become part of a vibrant community of makers and creators. Let's build, create, and innovate together!

Art 101

Instructor: Colleen Noonan 

Art is for everyone and so is this course! This hands-on course will be packed with several art experiences where you get to try drawing, painting, building, and much more. This course will have a focus on exploration of many art mediums and the discovery process. Students will use their own ideas combined with teacher guidance. Students will have the chance to experiment with art materials and also produce finished artworks. Student will be engaged by a knowledgeable and enthusiastic art instructor! If you enjoy art, you will enjoy this course. Returning students are welcome to repeat the course. We will have all new projects! 

Scrapbooking 101

Instructor: Christinel Cain

During this class, students will utilize their creativity and writing skills to document personal events. Students will learn what makes a great layout. Ten trendy scrapbooking techniques will be modeled, one technique per day, and students will be able to test them out. Scrapbookers will learn about the importance of titles and journaling in their scrapbooks. Single page, double page layouts, explosion books, and other mini books will be created. If you like to be creative and document special events, Scrapbooking 101 is a perfect fit. Be prepared for class by bringing your own photos of a few special events.

Photography is Fun!

Instructor: Tom Foley 

A hands-on class, all about having fun with photography.  Learn the history of the first photo made in France in 1826, to making better photos with a cell phone. Students will make their own unique photographs in a real black and white darkroom. Other discussion topics will include point and shoot digital cameras, sheet film cameras, interchangeable lenses, medium format cameras, 35 mm cameras, studio lighting, electronic flash, time exposures, photographic composition, and multiple exposures. 

Beginning Printmaking

Instructor: Nikki Ponce

This class is based on beginning printmaking techniques. We will explore relief printing, monoprinting and ideas like urban printmaking. These types of prints will be explored using different tools and processes that will allow the students to continue exploring printmaking even at home. Printmaking is a fun and effective way to make multiple original artworks to share with friends and family. Students will have a collection of unique and individual art pieces to take home at the end of camp. Things to bring to class: ideas, photos or other reference materials and fabrics (we will make some of our prints on our clothes, they do not have to be new so check your closet for any old t-shirts that maybe brought back to life with a fun design you get to create)!

Landscape Painting (beginning; intermediate and beyond)

Instructor: Tina Browder

Description coming soon…

Jewelry Making

Instructor: Jessika Cullett

We will be making a variety of jewelry pieces. Bracelets, necklaces, rings. We will also be creating our own beads and turning them into custom jewelry pieces!

Air-Dry Clay Art

Instructor: Jessika Cullett

Create air dry clay pieces from start to finish. The first week we will be creating our pieces and the second week we will focus on decorating the pieces we created. If time allows we will also do 1 day of a baked clay project. 


Instructor: Laci Klein

Come explore the wonderful world of clay! In this class, students will learn to create beginner-level projects such as pinch pots, coil pots, and slab-constructed pieces using various hand-building methods. For students who might have a bit more experience with clay, there will be instructions on how to use various ceramic tools and techniques to create intricate textures and more challenging pieces. Students will learn about the unique technical elements of clay, get dirty, and get to make fun works of art to take home! We recommend bringing an old t-shirt or smock for students to wear over their clothes if they do not wish to get them covered in clay. Repeat students are welcome.

Advanced Ceramics 

Instructor: Laci Klein

Let's get dirty! While this class is aimed at students who might have a bit more experience with clay, beginners are also welcome. We will learn to create more challenging pieces using the hand-building techniques of pinch, coil, and slab, as well as how to use more advanced tools in the studio. Students will continue to learn about the unique technical elements of clay, get dirty, and, most importantly, make fun projects to take home! We strongly recommend bringing an old t-shirt or smock for students to wear over their clothes if they do not wish to get them covered in clay.

Future Barbers and Stylists (grades 3-5, 6-8) 

Instructor: Andrea López and Nicole Crouse

Future barbers and stylists will explore the fundamentals of the grooming industry with fun, age targeted activities centered around personal grooming and hygiene, infection control education, basics of color theory and the color wheel. We will explore the basics of hair braiding and styling and simple hair cutting techniques. We will be thinking outside of the box and adding arts and crafts into our teaching style to give hands-on experiences for techniques used in a live barber and beauty shop. Learners will have an opportunity to view a few live hair cuts and discuss career options in the grooming industry. 

Quilt Your Own Cross Body or Adventure Bag

Instructor: Annie Maier 

Students will learn the history of American Quilting and practice piecing a cross body bag or tote bag. Students will learn the rudiments of hand sewing with a needle and thread, running a sewing machine, cutting fabric, designing their piece, and sewing it together.

Crochet for Beginners

Instructor: Anna Hinton 

Students will learn the basic stitches of crochet as well as how to choose yarn and hooks for specific projects. Students will make their own hat or scarf or small blanket. This class will consist of hands-on learning, and we will also explore the possibilities of crochet through videos and books!

Dream Weavers 

Instructor: Kathleen Bashem 

Dream Weavers is the class for the student interested in learning the basics of weaving! Weaving is a fun way to "free your inner fiber artist." Want to know the difference between your warp and your weft? This is the place for you! Students will use a cardboard loom to learn basic weaving techniques including plain tabby, vertical tabby and Rya knotting. They will learn color combinations, patterning and dye yarn, too! Students may choose a mug rug or wall hanging as a final project. Join Dream Weavers and turn your yarn art dreams into reality! Returning students are welcome to repeat the class.  

Dance: Jazz, Hip-Hop, and More!

Instructor: Angel Peterson

Students will explore different forms of dance like jazz, hip hop, and ballet through this introductory dance class. This course is created for novice dancers, but dancers of all levels will enjoy the joy of movement. Important aspects of warming up muscles, working individually and as a team, and expression will be integrated into the learning to promote well-rounded dancing habits. 

Introduction to Improv

Instructor: Addison Anderson

If you like to laugh, play games, and take risks, improv is for you! Improvisational theater is acting with no script, where your imagination takes the lead. In this class, we will explore improv through a series of theater games and exercises. Get ready to work together, be silly, and go wherever our minds take us!

Zip Zap Zip: Make 'Em Ups Theatre and Games

Instructor: Jill Bradford

Improv is theater that’s 100% made up…on the spot! It might sound tough to do, but you already improvise every day. When you have a conversation, it’s not scripted. You basically know what you want to say, but that changes as you listen to the other person. That’s improv! In this class, we’ll let our IMAGINATIONS define the POSSIBILITIES. We’ll tell stories by listening, building characters, and identifying emotions. Another thing we’ll practice is using body language as communication. We’ll play teambuilding and group mind games…and it will all be made up by YOU!

Story uniVERSE

Instructor: Jill Bradford

Wait - is this a book? Like, a novel? Or is this a poem? Could it be both at the same time? This course will explore the uniVERSE of story poems. We’ll read from many books, including The Crossover by Kwame Alexander, Love That Dog by Sharon Creech, and Locomotion by Jaqueline Woodson. Once we understand the ideas, we’ll practice reading aloud and even write our own stories! 

Theatre Basics (grades 4-6; 7-8)

Instructor: Katy Redington 

Stage Left?  Down Stage?  What did you say, cheat?  Want to learn the basics of how to stand, project and otherwise carry yourself on a stage?  Look no further than this!  In this beginner course, we’ll cover everything from not turning your back to the audience to how to not laugh when you say something funny!

Theatre Design: An Intro (grades 6-8)

Instructor: Katy Redington 

Ever wanted to know how a play comes to life if you’re not the actor on stage?  In this class we’ll learn about all the different elements that are part of the technical world of theatre; light design, sound sound, stage management, directing, costume design, props, etc.  During the course we will also choose a play to study and create our own production designs to practice flexing our artistic muscles!

Brass Instruments (grades 5-8, students need their own instruments) 

Instructor: Katy Redington 

Are you a First - Fourth year band student playing Trumpet, Trombone, Baritone/Euphonium or Tuba?  Want a head start on your new instrument or a chance to wow your band teachers when you come back to class this fall?  This is the course for you!  Students who take this class will need to bring their own instrument but method books and music will be provided.  

Summer Band (grades 6-8, students need their own instruments) 

Instructor: Katy Redington 

Missing band already?  Join Katy Redington in creating a summer band!  During our classes we will rehearse a few summery songs and perform them outside (pending weather), following the end of the Knox College for Kids class time. 

Calling All Swifties - Explore the Eras!

Instructor: Christinel Cain

Explore all of the TS eras by engaging in research about Taylor Swift, her albums, and her tours. Engage in mathematics with Taylor’s favorite numbers and important dates, creating timelines of Taylor’s career.  Explore ELA by reading books about Taylor Swift and writing our own song lyrics. Engage in the latest Taylor Swift trends, by creating friendship bracelets and jamming out to tunes!

Humanities & Social Sciences

Fairy Tales (grades 3-4)

Instructor: Jessica Jones 

This course takes the fairy tales we know and love and creates opportunities to help the characters! From developing a stronger house for the 3 little pigs to making a parachute for Jack to escape the giant, these STEM activities will keep students engaged and thinking like engineers! 

Greek Mythology: A Crash Course

Instructor: Anna Hinton 

The gods and goddesses of Greek Mythology are everywhere in literature and popular culture. Students in this class will learn about the major players in Greek Mythology, read some of the myths, and have a chance to escape from the underworld! 

Sherlock Holmes and Other Mysteries

Instructor: Anna Hinton 

Do you like a good mystery? Then this class is for you! After reading some Sherlock Holmes stories, you will have the chance to try out your own skills as a detective. Do you have what it takes to solve a mystery?

Multicultural Story Hour

Instructor: Angel Peterson

Calling readers of all levels! Learn about the world around us through a diverse set of books that will spark deep conversations and inspire connections to everyone around you. In this course, everyone will see themselves as a protagonist and engage in an interactive activity or craft to compliment the read-aloud. 

Plants for You, Plants for Mars?! Digging Science Fiction (grades 5-8)

Instructor: Mike Davidson  

The Green Morning by Ray Bradbury is a science fiction story about a person who tries to plant a vast array of plants and trees on Mars. In this class, students will learn about different species of plants and trees here on Earth while reading this fantastic story together! Students will take home a different plant each day. Using our reading comprehension skill visualization, the final project will be illustrating a scene from the story!

Word Games

Instructor: Peter Schwartzman

Scrabble®, Boggle®, UpWords®, Anagrams, Jumbles, etc. Learn what it takes to be a dynamite word guru from one of the top Scrabble® players and author of word books. Many word games are more than words. They take strategy, spatial manipulations, mathematical skills, stamina, sportsmanship, and confidence. Come find out what is involved and what can be learned by playing word games. Strategy and fun all wrapped into one. Don't miss it! 

Puzzle Mania: Puzzles of All Kinds!

Instructor: Colleen Noonan

Students will try out all different kinds of puzzles. We’ll do word puzzles, search and find puzzles, number puzzles, and, of course, traditional jigsaw puzzles. Solving puzzles can help reinforce existing connections between our brain cells and increase the generation of new relationships. This, in turn, improves mental speed and thought processes. Puzzles are especially good for improving short-term memory. Join this class to get in the puzzle zone and have fun! This course is intended to be a relaxing, calm space for all.

BreakoutEdu (grades 4-8)

Instructor: Jennifer Young 

Do you like puzzles? Do you like problem solving? Then BreakoutEDU will bring Escape Room experiences to you! Follow clues which are posted or hidden in the room and work together to beat the clock. You will be thinking critically, problem-solving, troubleshooting, using teamwork and having so

much fun you won’t even realize how much you’re using your brain. Come join us and see if you can break out!

Social Emotional Learning: Writing a book about ME!

Instructor: Alicia Condreay

Students will learn a variety of calming techniques in this class. The most important thing will be journaling. We will use a variety of breathing techniques, stretches, music and art to inspire writing a story “All about Me” Social and Emotional needs are very important and this class will help students feel valued and appreciated as they learn more about themselves.

Inspire your Desire to Write

Instructor: Heather Hellenga 

Students will explore a variety of writing activities with an emphasis on maintaining a writer’s notebook and on illustrating and enhancing their work with art. We will have structured writing lessons as well as time to free-write daily. Activities will include creating noticing and list poems, vocabulary trioramas, edible oxymoron ads, personified vocabulary words, memoir writing activities, masterpiece-inspired poetry and more! 

Chapbook Chronicles: Writing the Next Chapter of Poetic Pioneers (grades 5-8)

Instructor: Gunnar Leaf

Prepare to unleash your creativity through poetry, literature, and personal expression! We’ll learn all about poetic forms and devices through interactive workshops and readings, giving students the tools to craft their own original writings. By the end, we'll gather together to celebrate and share excerpts from your very own chapbooks—little booklets filled with your imaginative creations. It’s never too early to become an author!

Podcasting 101 (grades 4-8)

Instructor: Jane Carlson 

Students in this course will listen to and discuss age-appropriate podcasts, learn the basics using NPR's guide for student podcasting, record and edit audio, and have the opportunity to produce a podcast episode.

World Geography

Instructor: Peter Schwartzman 

Do you want to know more about the countries, rivers, mountains, and the flags of the world than most adults you know? If so, this is the class for you. We will navigate around the world and find out where things are and what makes them so fascinating. In the end, you'll be ready to be U.S. ambassador to some foreign nation!

Get It in Galesburg! Explore Galesburg History & Businesses

Instructor: Christinel Cain

Galesburg has a lot to offer with its rich history, and continues to offer opportunities to its residents with local businesses and employers. Did you know when and why Galesburg was founded? We will explore famous individuals from Galesburg, visit locations close to campus significant to Galesburg history and to the Galesburg economy.  We will explore literature written by local authors and make connections to Galesburg locations. Looking forward to instilling pride in our local community by exploring the history of Galesburg and connecting it to the current gems found in Galesburg.

Can you survive? American History Simulations

Instructor: Heather Hellenga 

Students will travel back in time to experience important historical events through simulations. Students will be faced with the same choices and challenges that early Americans faced in activities including Jamestown, the Oregon Trail, the Lewis and Clark expedition, and the California Gold Rush. Will you survive and be successful in this new country?

I Survived the Titanic: All Aboard! (grades 3-6)

Instructor: Jessica Jones 

This course will explore the Titanic tragedy as students explore what happened and why. They will have the opportunity to make improvements to the ship, explore the different classes and their experiences, and see if they can survive the Titanic.

Intro to German: Language and Culture

Instructor: Alicia Condreay

Ich Bin Frau Condreay! I am eager to teach students all about German culture, food, education and most importantly the GERMAN LANGUAGE. In this class we will explore the country and by the end of class students will be able to introduce themselves, they will know the alphabet, colors and count to 100. They will also be able to label foods and objects in the home and at school. **On the last day of class we will sample German foods**

Science & Math 

Wildcrafting: Local herbs nourish and heal 

Instructor: Tina Hope 

Explore and deepen your relationship with the local plants that inhabit our shared community as we delve into an earth based perspective that relates to health and healing for ourselves and others. Learn how to identify local edible and medicinal herbs that live within the Knox College campus ecosystem, create an herbal field guide of your favorite herbs and learn how to prepare herbal remedies that nourish and heal.

Healthy Minds, Healthy Bodies: Nutrition

Instructor: Jessica Jones 

Students will explore nutrition, health, and mental wellness through different games, activities, and relaxation exercises. Each day will highlight a way to keep our bodies moving, fuel ourselves with healthy food, and keep our minds bright and happy.

Moments of Mindfulness: Wellness Practices

Instructor: Erin Hunt

This course will include a daily morning meeting, personal journal writing, activities based on character traits and team building exercises around the traits. We will explore interesting and provocative quotes as inspiration!  

Yoga Mosaic

Instructor: Laura Bush

The course will include indoor and outdoor practice; individual and group poses and flows, & time for reflection via journaling, sketching, and/or collage during the latter part of the course.

Let’s Walk Together

Instructor: Colleen Noonan

Each day, students will take a walk. We will walk around Knox campus, check out the Knox track, walk around the neighborhood and chat with each other. Each student will have a pedometer to track their progress. There will be 2 adults with this group at all times. This is a casual class where students need a pair of tennis shoes, a good attitude and a happy heart! Let’s walk! Together!

Disc Golf for Beginners (grades 3-5; 6-8)

Instructor: Chad Simpson 

Come learn about and play disc golf with an instructor who is obsessed with the game! In this course, you will learn how the game works, how different discs fly, as well as how to throw different types of shots.

Creating Computer Animations and Games

Instructor: David Bunde 

Come create a computer animation or a simple game in Scratch, a programming environment designed for young people. Students will learn important computing concepts in a fun way while making projects they can share with family and friends online. No programming experience necessary. 

Introduction to Coding with (grades 3-5, 6-8)

Instructor: Jessica Jones 

Based on curriculum, this course will introduce students to what coding is, and how they can do it! They will participate in plugged and unplugged activities to help understand the different processes, and develop their own apps and games.

Introduction to Programming in Java (grades 6-8)

Instructor: Mike Davidson 

Students will learn to declare variables, receive user input, perform calculations, and output the result. As students gain confidence, they will be able to advance to conditional statements and loops. Many skills in Java readily transfer to other programming languages. 

Unlimited Inventions

Instructor: Penny Wagher 

If you have ever wondered why or how machines work or are the type of person who enjoys making things and or taking them apart, then this is the class for you. Using German-made Capsela Building Sets, the students will learn how to construct, following diagrams, everything from basic cars to vacuum cleaners to cranes. All of which really move on land or in the water. Each capsule is constructed out of clear plastic so you can really see how a clutch or front wheel drives operates. Time will also be given to create your own inventions which can then be raced for speed or distance. If you can imagine it, then you can build a working model. 

Marvelous Machines

Instructor: Addison Anderson

If you've never seen a Rube Goldberg machine, look one up (seriously!). They make the easiest tasks, such as turning on a light, incredibly complex and creative. Using knowledge of basic machines and engineering, we will create our very own Rube Goldberg inspired machines. Explore and learn in this hands-on, collaborative, STEAM environment!

Basic Physics (grades 7-8, best for 8th)

Gerald R. (Jerry) Ryberg 

Three demonstrations will kick-off this physics course! Using graphics, YouTube videos, and fact sheets, we will explore why we have seasons, what makes a light year, matter and energy. We won't get into complex formulas -- just fun and interesting things, like making a simple battery-powered motor that you can show your family and friends!

Three, Two, One Blast Off: Build your own Estes model rocket!

Instructor: Christinel Cain

In this interdisciplinary study of aeronautics, pilots will explore flight by building and testing paper airplanes. Students will also build and launch film canister rockets, experimenting with different variables. Students will discover information about the history of aeronautics through research based instruction. Engineers will construct model rockets and become model rocket hobbyists. If you want a class that is out of this world, this one is perfect for you! 

Soda Bottle Rocket Competition (grades 4-8)

Instructor: John Van Nieuwenhuyse 

Have you ever seen a soda bottle flying through the air...well if you take this class you will see several! We will start off by figuring out what makes a paper airplane soar across the room. Then, we will figure out what makes the plane stay in the air, come in for a landing, and what makes it fly really fast! We will then take what we learned and have a competition to see who can make a rocket that will stay in the air the longest. Your rockets will go as high as a three story building...maybe higher. Sign up for this class and find out!

Jet Toy Challenge (grades 4-8)

Instructor: John Van Nieuwenhuyse 

Teams will learn through the STEM approach, which uses Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics to build the fastest toy car.  We will be working on design teams and students will build and test JetToys models using different nozzles and balloons to collect and analyze data to understand the effect of nozzle size on the performance of the toys. We will be following the engineering process: design, build a prototype, test, and repeat.  This is a worldwide challenge and we will do our best to break some world records!

Introduction to Atoms and Molecules (grades 6-8)

Instructor: Mike Davidson 

Why do things rust? How come a drop of water doesn't spread out one molecule deep when it lands? Why do elements burn different colors? Students will learn about atoms, the periodic table, and how atoms join together to form molecules.  For the final project, the students will create slideshow diagrams of various atoms showing each proton, neutron, and electron. 

CSI: Crime Scene Investigation (grades 5-8)

Instructor: John Van Nieuwenhuyse

Do you like solving a good mystery? Do you like science? What about putting the two together in the same class…we are going to be doing just that! We will learn about the different types of fingerprints, learn to collect fingerprints, learn about different teeth impressions, and learn about different lip prints, figuring out shoe print impressions, handwriting characteristics, blood spatters…all leading up to piecing together clues to help solve a mystery. So, put on your thinking cap and join us for a crime-solving journey!

Wild Weather (grades 3-5)

Instructor: Jessica Jones 

Do you wonder why tornadoes happen? What does a hurricane look like? Students will use STEM and different activities to explore why weather is the way it is. 

Edible Science (grades 3-4)

Instructor: Jessica Jones

Explore topics that are all around us, such as plate tectonics and volcanoes… with food! Experience what is matter, how earth moves around us, and make your own mixtures and solutions while also enjoying a yummy snack.

Knox College

Printed on Wednesday, June 12, 2024