Schedule and Room Assignments
Classes meet on Wednesdays in Oakton, VA, with some classes also meeting on Fridays. Filter by subject or grade below.
Quarter beginning January 10, 2018
Wednesday Classes (Click here for Friday Classes)
American History Alive! The Civil War American History Alive! The Civil War - Step back in time each week for a one-of-a-kind rendez vous with key personalities in American history. Third quarter appearances will focus on the Civil War and mid 1800s. Meet Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S Grant & Julia Dent Grant, Robert E Lee, Harriet Tubman, Clara Barton, and Susan B. Anthony. Each week a professional, costumed living history interpreter will deliver a compelling first-person performance portraying his or her role in American history. Living history actors are the professionals employed by museums, historical sites, and conferences. They have typically studied their historical character for years and tell their story in first person. Presentations are conversational in style, occasionally involve the audience, and conclude with spontaneous audience Q & A. Watch the historical actors answer 21st century questions in character with period replies! Students younger than third grade (or age 8) must be accompanied by a paid parent or adult. Parents and siblings interested in the program must register and pay separately.
12:00 pm-12:55 pm
The Stock Market Challenge The Stock Market Challenge - Stocks? Bonds? Shorts? Margins? Cryptocurrencies? Mutual funds? This class, built around the Stock Market Game, gives students the information and experience they need to invest for the future. Student teams will compete to generate the highest returns on their (imaginary) money while learning about the ins and outs (and ups and downs!) of various investment strategies. In addition to the tools provided by the Stock Market Game, students will discuss relevant readings ranging from Adam Smith through blockchain technology and be able to participate, if they choose, in the security industry s spring "InvestWrite" essay contest. To be successful in this class, students should read at or above grade level and be comfortable calculating decimals and percentages. They should also be prepared to do a minimum of 30 minutes of research each week and coordinate and communicate with team members. Teams of 4-5 students each will be registered with the national Stock Market Game program with an estimated registration fee of $5.00-$6.00 per team member. (This fee will be finalized when team registration details are published.) This is a 15-week semester class that begins on January 17, 2018, and then follows the Compass winter and spring calendar.
10:00 am-10:55 am
Money Matters: Entrepreneurship
Money Matters: Entrepreneurship - Explore the real life "money matters" of entrepreneurship through fun, interactive activities! Middle schoolers will investigate aspects of what it takes to be an entrepreneur and how to take a great idea and turn it into a marketable new product. The class will explore facets of entrepreneurship and innovation such as pitching a new concept and attracting mock investors. Find out how you protect your new product or idea from copycats! Discover the difference among a patent, a trademark, a copyright, and how to get them. Students will work individually or with partners to conceptualize an all new product or an improvement to an existing one. Students will brainstorm how to get the word out about their innovation and will consider well known marketing techniques and ad campaigns. They will design a logo, slogan, and mock-up a marketing campaign of their own. The class will touch on the concepts of supply and demand, and students will define and research the potential market or end users. Student entrepreneurs will research prices of similar products, consider fixed and variable costs and mark-ups, and set a price point for their product. The class will culminate in a Shark Tank style presentation where student entrepreneurs will pitch their ideas to a parent audience. Students should expect to spend 1 hour each week investigating costs on the internet or other resources. On several weeks, students will be asked to bring a laptop or tablet device to look up information in class.
11:00 am-11:55 am
Mission Possible: Global Solutions 2025 Mission Possible: Global Solutions 2025 - Want to fix the world? Of course you do! This highly interactive class will engage students in running the world they will inherit. As officials of imaginary countries, they will employ critical thinking skills, negotiation techniques, and problem solving methods to lead their people towards peace and prosperity. (Or will they?) Working individually and in teams, they will decide when to cooperate and when to compete, when to bargain and when to take a stand, how systems are interrelated and how to adjust to life s surprises. Short readings in political science, international affairs, people management, and moral philosophy provide discussion points and context for the simulation. Based on the instructor's experience working with groups on scenario-based planning, this class promotes outside-the-box thinking about world problems and how to solve them. The simulation is different every time. This is a 7-week class, that begins on January 17, 2018, and then follows the Compass winter calendar.
12:00 pm-12:55 pm
Where in the World? Human Geography Where in the World? Human Geography - Geography is our window into understanding the world around us. It helps us make sense of history and economics, peoples and culture, politics and current events. The focus of this class will be human geography. We'll design cities and trace historic trails, explore patterns of food production and language dispersal, even investigate our laundry and favorite sports teams. Each week will feature a variety of hands-on activities, games, and at-home projects designed to enrich students understanding of both U.S. and world geography. Prior geographic knowledge is welcome but not assumed. Students must be able to read at or above grade level and be prepared to complete projects at home to present during class time. This is a 7-week class, that begins on January 17, 2018, and then follows the Compass winter calendar.
1:00 pm-1:55 pm
Dynamic Dioramas: Native Americans- Pueblo People of the Southwest Dynamic Dioramas: Native Americans- Pueblo People of the Southwest - American history began long before the arrival of Europeans! Discover native American Indian cultures from coast to coast with focus on the Puebloans this quarter. Pueblo comes from the Spanish word for town, which aptly describes the adobe and clay structures that made up a pueblo village. This quarter will teach students about Pueblo Indian architecture and agriculture. Each student will construct a Pueblo town diorama and receive set of miniatures to take home with them. Students will craft and hand-shape their scene on a 10 inch X 12 inch foam board using artistic, model-making techniques. They will customize their dioramas with landscape elements, waterways, structures of the time, and paint. Once individual projects are constructed, students will populate them with 1:72 miniature figures and combine their dioramas alongside those of their classmates to create a larger terrain. Using their diorama board and figures, students will learn to play a survival strategy game, competing with each other to gather resources and grow their town. Course documents such as maps, game rules and all other instructional media will be available via a Google Drive link which will be emailed to parents. There is a $15.00 materials fee payable to the instructor on the first day of class. Future topics in this series include the tribes of the Southeast (4th quarter).
1:00 pm-1:55 pm
Modeling the Great Conquests: William the Conqueror 1066 Modeling the Great Conquests: William the Conqueror 1066 - In the year 1066, the last successful invasion of the British Isles would begin. The Saxons, who were themselves invaders centuries before, would be supplanted by ancestors of the Vikings, the Normans. These Vikings had settled in France 100 years earlier on land gifted to them by the Frankish King, in order to end their Viking ways and the threat they posed to Paris. For most of that 100 years, these Normans fought among themselves, until Duke William the Bastard unified them and with the Pope s permission, took the combined Norman force across the channel to carve out a brand new kingdom. Beset by enemies on all sides, the exhausted Saxon English stood little chance against the thundering Norman Knights, and in 1066 at the battle of Hastings, Norman conquest was finalized when Poor King Harry of the Saxons took and arrow to the eye and died. In the following decades William, no longer a Duke and a Bastard but now a King and a Conqueror. This class will focus on the society of feudal England, the medieval knight, as well as William's battles of the conquest. Students will craft diorama from the battle of Hastings, Fulford, or Stamford Bridge. Using artistic model-making techniques, hand tools, and historical maps, students will create a 12 X 18 diorama board, and populate it with dozens of 1:72 scale Carolingian knights for historical re-enactments. Once individual projects are constructed, students will combine their dioramas alongside those of their classmates to approximate a larger battlefield terrain. Students will spend the remainder of the quarter learning about the tactics and outcomes of the military engagement while playing a table-top strategy game. Student strategists will use a simplified version of the Fire and Fury historical war gaming rule system for moving troops and equipment. Along with their classmates, students will see how battles progressed and test different outcome scenarios that might have occurred with different battlefield choices. Course documents, such as period maps, game rules and all other instructional media will be available via a Google Drive link which will be emailed to parents. Next quarter s conqueror will be Saladin, and the Crusades (4th quarter) Students in this class would benefit from taking the Siege Physics, Catapult class since it examines another aspect of warfare at the same time. There is a $25.00 materials fee payable to the instructor on the first day of class.
2:00 pm-2:55 pm
History Investigators: Gettysburg, Why Was It a Turning Point? History Investigators: Gettysburg, Why Was It a Turning Point? - When Confederate troops marched across Maryland and into Pennsylvania in late June of 1863, General Robert E. Lee hoped to undermine Union morale. If he could win a decisive battle on Union soil, it might cause the North to give up the fight. The two armies engaged outside the town of Gettysburg. The battle lasted for three brutal days. This DBQ asks the question: Why was the Battle of Gettysburg a turning point in the war? History Investigators is an interactive, multi disciplinary examination of some of most pivotal points in American History using sources from The DBQ Project. DBQs, or document based questions, are derived from AP History exams and help develop high school level critical thinking skills. Students will review an array of primary sources such as letters, journal entries, inventories, ship's manifestos, newspaper articles, period maps, and court documents along with selected secondary sources like excerpts, charts, and graphs. Students will be guided through analyzing the documents, interpreting the data, drawing inferences, and forming conclusions. In some historical scenarios, the class will consider conflicting perspectives and be able to defend and debate multiple sides of a key issue. To demonstrate comprehension and a deeper understanding of the class theme, students will use factual findings to develop a structured, evidence-based essay. Future themes in this series include North or South: Who Killed Reconstruction? (4th quarter).
2:00 pm-2:55 pm
Hands on History: Ancient Israel Hands on History: Ancient Israel - Discover the ancient civilization of Israel, and its contributions to the modern world in this vibrant hands-on history class! Learn about the cultural development and traditions of ancient Israel (such as homes, architecture, clothing, food, transportation, and beliefs) through weekly projects. Students will make blessing scrolls, timbrels, Hebrew tablets, clay seals, and model homes as they learn about life in ancient Israel! Students will learn about the lasting influence of monotheistic Jewish beliefs and texts on later faiths. They will also compare the customs and culture of the Israelites with their ancient neighbors the Philistines and the Phoenicians, as they make "bronze" bowls and a warrior's headdress. ! The class will also sample the literature of the period through read-alouds of fables and folklore, most of which recounted the stories of the gods. Students will be excited by history when approached through this engaging, multi-disciplinary exploration of historical connections and integrated concepts rather than memorizing dates and disconnected facts! There is a $15.00 material/supply fee payable to the instructor on the first day of class. Future themes in this series include Mali (4th quarter).
3:00 pm-3:55 pm
American History Illuminated: The American Revolution
American History Illuminated: The American Revolution - Students will be immersed in detail and fully engaged in this intensive history course led by well- known homeschool instructor and historian Hugh Gardner. This history class is unlike other high school American history courses. Instead of learning a sequential set of names, dates, and battles, students will learn how to analyze and interpret history. Much like a college seminar, this approach to American History incorporates historiography (the history of the history.) Mr. Gardner does not teach a narrow view from a single textbook or static set of prepared notes. Instead, he presents the back story and multiple interpretations for the "why" questions in American history. Class discussion considers interpretations from a wide array of scholars and is updated as new sources are published. Rather than running through a timeline of outcomes, students will evaluate contributing factors (the "how" questions) and will learn about the personalities, prejudices, and biases of the people involved ("who"). For example, instead of compartmentalizing the causes of the American Revolution into a list of taxes and legislative acts, students will dig deeper and go farther back to see that the rift was 150 years in the making.
Second semester will investigate will evaluate the final French and Indian War, the American Revolution, the leadership of George Washington, the new Republic, and if time permits, The War of 1812. The class will discuss the effects on the political, social, economic, and religious climate as well as influences on the arts, science, literature, and warfare. This is no ordinary history class as Mr. Gardner surrounds the students with vivid posters, maps, charts, primary sources, and artifacts to supplement his story-telling style. Students will be able to examine and handle period pieces such as antique and replica weapons and military accoutrements of the era while learning how these tools helped shape the battlefields and turning points in history. With an emphasis on primary sources, students will scrutinize historical atlases and original writings, all in a fun and interactive setting. Students will also play historical games and earn historical trading cards for class participation.
This class meets for 2.5 hours, one time per week on Wednesdays. Students should expect to spend 1-2 hours outside of class each week completing assigned reading. Students will be asked to purchase two books for class (approximately $30-$40). For those families who want to investigate the course themes at a deeper level, an optional reading list will be furnished. Based on the format and rich content of this class, homeschool families could count two semesters of this series as a full credit in American History for purposes of a high school transcript.
9:30 am-11:55 am
Friday Classes (Click here to jump back up to Wednesday classes)
3D History: WWI Mud and Blood, Verdun and the Somme Offensive 3D History: WWI Mud and Blood, Verdun and the Somme Offensive - Why read about key military battles on maps or in books when you can learn about them hands-on, in three dimensions, using historical miniature gaming? In 3D History, pivotal engagements come alive for new and experienced students, as they navigate a table-top terrain, deploy hundreds of miniature soldiers, ships, and tanks... all while playing a military strategy game. Each student will have the opportunity to fight a battle from both sides, allowing them to test various strategies, try multiple scenarios, predict different outcomes, and rewrite history- an effective way to gain a deeper understanding of what actually happened and why! Students will learn why the First World War was exactly that, war spread to every corner of the globe, through a simulation and examination of key battles. This quarter will focus on the iconic trench warfare of the Great War with some of the deadliest battles in human history. Tens of thousands of men from all over the world would face each other across the No Man s Land and march into the face of certain death in a brutal war of attrition where the side who lost the most soldiers is slowly defeated. As a true world war, this also meant taking the fight to sea and air, and students will reenact the Great Naval Battle at Jutland with dozens of Dreadnaught battleships, as well as filling the skies with the first fighter planes to support their land battles. This quarter also builds a knowledge base for the final theme in the WWI series, Germany's last Gasp: WWI the Ludendorff Offensive and America's arrival 1918 (4th quarter). Course documents including period maps, photographs and recreations will be made available through a class Google Drive link emailed to parents, as well as a class YouTube playlist for any videos watched in class or assigned as homework.
1:00 pm-2:55 pm
Human Geography (AP, Honors, or On-Level)
Human Geography (AP, Honors, or On-Level) - Wish you could take anthropology, environmental science, and economics, but don't have enough space in your high school schedule? Human geography blends all these and adds a dose of pop culture and even sports. This is the classic interdisciplinary course for people interested in everything! Human geography explores questions like "how many pizza parlors can survive in Schenectady, NY?" and "why is French spoken in Madawaska, Maine?" and "how many teens are listening to K-Pop in Cairo?"
Human geography studies people, places, and cultures. It considers how and why humans and our activities are distributed across Earth's surface. Geographers have a special way of looking at topics using the broad questions of "where?" and "why there?" In human geography, "place" is more than map coordinates and location. Places have meaning. Consider a mountain: it might be described mathematically in terms of height or geologically in terms of plate tectonics. From the perspective of humans, however, the mountain may be a barrier between nations, a place of recreation, a site for toxic waste disposal, a national symbol, or a sacred sanctuary. Human geography maps the spread of world religions, monitors the movement of epidemics, explains the rapid expansion of new technologies, and can even investigate the death of little-known languages.
This year-long, multi-level, high school social science course studies how human activity and the surface of our planet interact. Seven themes, taken from the College Board's Advanced Placement (AP) Human Geography curriculum, will be covered: (1) the nature and perspectives of geography; (2) population and migration; (3) cultural patterns and processes; (4) political organization of space, (5) agriculture, food production, and rural land use, (6) industrialization and economic development, and (7) cities and urban land use.
This course offers a substantive, full-credit experience. The course is offered at three levels, which meet together: On-Level, Honors, and Advanced Placement (AP). Pick your desired workload. You can always do more if you like, but at any level you are expected to keep up with weekly readings and homework. This allows you to enjoy active, rich discussions with your peers a big advantage of taking a class with live, in-person meetings. Students will likely need 4-5 hours each week outside class meetings for reading and homework, regardless of level. All levels use materials written at an adult or college level, but the amount and type of homework varies. Brief summer assignments are due in August for those who elect to take the AP level.
There are two weekly meetings: (1) Friday in-person at Compass; and (2) Tuesday online (recorded for those who cannot attend live; time to be announced). This is a 27-week class which follows the Compass calendar, with a few exceptions. Check the course calendar for a few additional days off, assignments due on non-meeting days, early finish, etc.
All students will register online for the same course. Students must designate their intent to take the on-level, honors, or AP version before August 4. Once the course has begun, students may move down a level (from AP to honors, or from honors to on-level) at any time. However, once classes have begun, students may not "bump up" a level.
There is an additional tuition fee of $130 for students who are approved to take the AP level of this course. Those who take AP level will receive a separate invoice for this amount before the start of classes. The fee is not refundable if the student decides mid-year to change to honors or on-level work. The fee to take the AP Human Geography exam in May 2018 is not included; each family will be responsible for scheduling and paying for their student's AP exam. Students who have taken a prior course with this instructor can seek approval for the AP level through a conversation or e-mail with the instructor. For a student who is new to the instructor, a short questionnaire and brief written assignment about a sample textbook chapter is needed in order to get approval for the AP level.
All students should request the course information packet from Compass to receive the sample chapters, ISBN for required text(s), course calendar, projected weekly workload, and AP questionnaire. Registered students will have access to a detailed syllabus and other information on the instructor's Canvas website starting Friday, August 4.
9:30 am-10:55 am
9th - 12th
Ancient Justice: Crime and Punishment in Ancient Greece Ancient Justice: Crime and Punishment in Ancient Greece - This class will explore the judicial processes of the ancient world, starting with Ancient Greece. Students will learn how justice was carried out in a time before codified written legal systems, prisons, lawyers, or even formal judges existed and where the facts of your case depended entirely on how well your rhetoric could convince hundreds of your fellow citizens that would serve on a jury. Like a traditional mock trial program, the class will hear cases, and students will defend themselves, but will be expected to do so as an Ancient Greek citizen would have, through open debate. Real historical cases will be studied and trial parts assigned to the class, which will be expected to debate from the perspective of both citizen and non-citizen residents of an ancient Polis. The class will serve as the jury and, if necessary, select period-appropriate verdicts and explain how they arrived at their decisions. Future quarters will examine the Ancient Justice systems of the Roman Republic (4th quarter), followed by the Roman Empire, Early Medieval, Late Medieval, and Common and Colonial English Law (2018-2019). This course fee includes a $5.00 charge for the cases studies and course materials.
12:00 pm-12:55 pm
Psychology: Influential Cases in Social Psychology Psychology: Influential Cases in Social Psychology - Would your behavior change if you suddenly found yourself working as a prison guard? Are your opinions influenced by others? If you were in distress, would it be better to have more people around you, or fewer? The answers to these questions and others like them may surprise you! This class will introduce students to the study of social interaction and human nature by reading, discussing and analyzing four influential cases that have shaped the way we understand social psychology today. Students will investigate factors that affect human behavior in different social settings and will learn about group behavior, the bystander effect, obedience to authority and more. Landmark studies conducted by renowned psychologists will be at the core of this class, leading to ongoing, thought-provoking and intellectually stimulating discussions. Students will learn how to read research, evaluate theories, and think critically about social phenomena. 4th quarter will examine four different case studies in the field of intelligence, cognition, and memory. This class is a great introduction to psychology and will allow you to explore your interest in taking the AP Psychology being offered at Compass in 2018-2019! This course fee includes a $5.00 charge for printed case studies and course mateials.
1:00 pm-1:55 pm