CAROLINE COX - Science
Dr. Cox grew up in Arlington and graduated from H.B. Woodlawn Secondary school. She studied theater at Boston University for a year, and then wound up in California and graduated from UCLA with a BS in Astrophysics. She received her MS and PhD in Astronomy from the University of Michigan, followed by research and teaching at the University of Virginia for a few years. She has been at GWCS since 2000.
Dr. Cox's interests and hobbies include science fiction, new urbanism, water aerobics, and vegetarian cooking.
In this course, students will learn about the solar system and about stars, galaxies and cosmology. You'll learn how to tell time by observing the moon, you'll learn where the atoms that make up your body come from, and you'll come to understand the basis for current theories on the origin, evolution and ultimate fate of the universe. We'll go to at least one star party to look through optical telescopes of several inches diameter, and we'll also visit the National Radio Astronomy Observatory and take data with a 40 foot radio telescope.
Prerequisites: Physics and Algebra II with Trigonometry
In this narrow and deep course, students will put themselves in Newton's place and, through problem-solving, come to understand motion and forces. Students will never again ride a roller coaster without thinking of Newton's Laws and conservation of energy! The students will also take on the challenge of designing and building a cardboard boat to enter in the Lake Accotink Cardboard Boat Race, held the weekend after Memorial Day.
Prerequisite: Algebra II with Trigonometry.
AP Computer Science Principles
Advanced Placement Computer Science Principles nurtures both your creativity and your problem-solving skills. It is an excellent big picture overview course for students who are thinking of careers in computing, but it will help anyone understand how computing underlies so much of what we do today, no matter what field you work in or what your interests are. You'll learn how the internet works, how innovations in computing impact society in both positive and negative ways, and you'll get an opportunity to try out design and coding by creating your own app with App Lab at https://code.org/educate/applab.
Prerequisites: Algebra 1 and readiness to be challenged by a college level course.
Environmental Science (not offered 2016-2017)
Biology! Chemistry! Physics! Economics! Philosophy! Politics! Environmental Science is an interdisciplinary subject, meaning that it draws on knowledge gained by researchers in many different fields. It is the study of the interaction between the natural world and human civilization. We will learn how humans fit into the rest of Earth's ecosystem. We'll learn how to think critically about media reports on environmental issues, and discuss the ethical dilemmas that arise when we prioritize among the things we value.