This year, CTY Greece students were taught Chemistry, Philosophy, Cryptology, Mechanics, and much more; they even designed an amphibious vehicle.
This is not a usual classroom. Primary school students wear white lab coats and work around lab benches. Having been taught the basics of Mechanics in previous classes, they are now to build a bridge, with slim wooden sticks, which will withstand maximal weight. They are doing mathematical calculations on their notebooks, talking about their construction’s stability.
The last record weight kept on such a bridge was 18kg.
Summer teaching weeks in the Centre for Talented Youth (CTY) of Anatolia College in Thessaloniki are once again in schedule, for the second year now.
185 children from all over Greece follow the innovative educational programme, which lasts three weeks. It is supported by the internationally recognised American University John Hopkins, with the exclusive funding of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation, and functions under the Greek Education Ministry.
CTY Greece’s director, Antonis Apostolou, says that the number of students in 2015 more than doubled that of 2014, which was the programme’s first year. The students were chosen among 3,000 primary, secondary and high school students through exams – not knowledge-based, but focusing around academic skills – which were carried out in 14 cities around Greece.
Most students got funding to attend, based on their families’ income. Among sponsors are Aegean and Lidl Hellas, and other supporters are the Latsi and the Hellenic Hope foundations.
So what are they being taught? They can choose one out of the classes prepared by the John Hopkins University teachers and CTY: Cryptology, Introduction to Biomedical Sciences, Possibilities and Game Theory, Beginner’s Design for Mechanics, Chemistry and Sociology, Computer Science, Genetics, Introduction to Philosophy and Macroeconomics! For the primary school students, the curriculum includes Science and Mechanics, The Mystery of Consciousness: Senses and Stimuli, The Magic of Mathematical Thinking, and The Writer’s Workshop.
During the break, students say they are excited because they learned Cryptology using DNA as a coding basis, which they learned in Genetics. Chemistry is next, where after going through the theory, they will produce biofuels.
One of the most popular classes is Game Theory, which has become quite popular lately. “In simple terms, we learn how close we need to be to someone so that we can hit him with a ball – but not as close for him to be able to hit us with a ball”. They learn through analysing and recreating historical battles, to get into the strategists’ mind, to understand the design and the attacks, the defence and the bluffs – the children are impatient.
CTY Greece: http://www.cty-greece.gr/en