Author Archives: Hannah Blacksin

Sapiens (hannah)

Note: This class is open to high school students only.

Human history is shaped by three major revolutions: the Cognitive Revolution, the Agricultural Revolution, and the Scientific Revolution. These revolutions have empowered humans to do something no other form of life has done – create and connect ideas that do not physically exist (religion, capitalism, politics, etc). These shared “myths” enabled humans to take over the globe and are now putting humankind on the verge of overcoming the forces of natural selection.

This is the theory of humanity put forth by Yuval Noah Harari in his excellent and illuminating book, Sapiens. In this class, we will explore and analyze the newly released graphic novel version of this book. If you are interested in discussing ideas about where we came from, where we’re at, and where we’re going – this class is for you!

Connection to Place (hannah)

Through place-based learning, this class aims to immerse students in the heritage, culture, landscape, experiences, and opportunities of your immediate environment. 

This class will be divided into two units: your home and your neighborhood. We will begin by learning about the tribal lands which our homes now occupy. Later in the term, you will make a community asset map of your neighborhood to learn about the social organizations, structures, and services shaping the sociocultural landscape today. 

A lot of this class will be outdoors. Your yard and your neighborhood will be your classroom. Lessons will be interdisciplinary, including sociology, science, civics, language arts, and self care, with the objective to deeply learn about your immediate surrounding environment.

World of Stories (hannah)

Note: This class is open to middle school students only.

How does culture shape our stories and storytelling? How do stories transform when they’re transmitted from culture to culture? What can we learn about other cultures by reading their stories? 

In this class, we will explore these questions by reading literature from around the world. Types of texts will include excerpts from novels, short stories, and poetry by authors including Jhumpa Lahiri, Haruki Murakami, Homer, Yann Martel, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Oscar Wilde, and Isabel Allende. 

This is a class about reading and discussing texts and culture. There will be some analytical writing assignments in and outside of class.

Physical Science – HS (hannah)

Note: This class is open to high school students only.

Waves! Electricity & Magnets! Motion & Force! Matter! Energy!

What do all these weird sciency things have in common? They are non-living systems we will study in this class. 

Here are ways you already do science: throwing a frisbee! Listening to music! Heating up soup in the microwave! In this class, we will hypothesize about and experiment with the ways in which these forces shape life and stuff in the universe. 

Here’s an example of something YOU could learn about in this class: momentum

Physical Science – MS (hannah)

Note: This class is open to middle school students only.

Waves! Electricity & Magnets! Motion & Force! Matter! Energy!

What do all these weird sciency things have in common? They are non-living systems we will study in this class. 

Here are ways you already do science: throwing a frisbee! Listening to music! Heating up soup in the microwave! In this class, we will hypothesize about and experiment with the ways in which these forces shape life and stuff in the universe. 

Here’s an example of something YOU could learn about in this class: momentum