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Badger Precollege Classes

Think like a Badger. Badger Precollege offers in-person and online programs in humanities, music, business, psychology, government, STEM, college prep and more — all designed to help students in grades 1–12 find their passion, meet new friends and explore their future.

Use the search filters to find the class, program or workshop that matches your interests.

If you are looking for information about sports camps, field trips and other youth programs offered by our UW–Madison partners — including Badger Sports Camps, Wisconsin 4-H, the Language Institute and others — view campus programs.

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Classes (76)

EducationUSA Academy Connects

High school students will be taken on a journey of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Math) as they chart their own educational and career pathways to become the STEM superstars of the future. Students will investigate their own interests, values, and skills through interactive activities, as well as explore the dynamic world of STEM careers and trends. They will learn about accomplished scientists' and professionals' success stories, and become acquainted with the many ways to navigate STEM at UW–Madison. This course will also include talks with UW–Madison STEM experts.
Upcoming Dates
  • Jan. 9, 2023–Feb. 3, 2023
    Tuition: $490
    Online
  • July 10, 2023–Aug. 4, 2023
    Tuition: $490
    Online
  • July 31, 2023–Aug. 25, 2023
    Tuition: $490
    Online
  • July 31, 2023–Aug. 25, 2023
    Tuition: $490
    Online

Virtual Fantastic Beasts: Exploring Fantasy through Literature and Art (Grades 1-2)

Fantastic Beasts: Exploring Fantasy through Literature and Art will explore the wonderful world of magical creatures through literature, writing and the arts! We will read about fantastic beasts, write our own stories and poems, improv and perform pieces about these magical creatures and create art using our limitless imaginations.
Upcoming Dates
  • Feb. 4, 2023–March 4, 2023
    Tuition: $200
    Online

Virtual Game of Economics (Grades 3-4)

This class will spark your curiosity about one of the world’s current driving factors: economics. Through critical reasoning, creative problem-solving and collaborative learning, you will play games to help you understand large economic concepts such as scarcity, supply, demand, opportunity costs and diminishing returns. Some of the "big" questions we will tackle throughout this course include: What is economics and why is it important to me? What does it mean to produce something? Why is the concept of supply significant? What does it mean to consume? How do our demand preferences shape our world? Students may be interested in becoming economists, financial analysts, financial advisors and game designers.
Upcoming Dates
  • Feb. 4, 2023–March 4, 2023
    Tuition: $200
    Online

Virtual Intro to Cyber Robotics (Grades 3-4)

Virtual Intro to Cyber Robotics utilizes the innovative "CoderZ" curriculum to guide students through coding challenges and collaborative activities with a virtual robot. Students will learn to control their virtual robots by writing code to facilitate motion utilizing pattern recognition, repeat loops, smart block functions and much more!
Upcoming Dates
  • Feb. 4, 2023–March 4, 2023
    Tuition: $200
    Online

Virtual Mystery Detectives: Intro to Forensic Science (Grades 3-4)

Do you love a good mystery? Are you interested in finding out more about how forensic science helps us solve mysteries? If so, this is the class for you. Mystery Detectives: Intro to Forensic Science is an interdisciplinary class that builds upon the skills explored in our very popular Secret Agents class and takes them to the next level. Students will utilize their powers of observation to investigate scenarios, find clues and collect evidence, all while harnessing their critical thinking and problem-solving abilities to reach logical conclusions.
Upcoming Dates
  • Feb. 4, 2023–March 4, 2023
    Tuition: $200
    Online

College Ready: Critical Reasoning

Human beings engage in reasoning all of the time, and improving our reasoning can be exceedingly difficult. In this course, students will examine their own reasons for believing what they believe, with an eye to determining which of their beliefs needs to be changed and how to go about changing them. We will examine the ways human reasoning tends to go wrong, how to identify instances of good and poor reasoning, and how to improve one's own reasoning.
Upcoming Dates
  • Feb. 20, 2023–March 16, 2023
    $500
    Live online

Financial Essentials for College Planning

This class will help you understand options for funding a college education and prepare to make confident decisions during the college application and admission process. We will explore financial aid processes, look at the options for merit and need-based aid and learn how to compare financial aid packages offered by colleges and universities. In this class, you will learn how to approach finding the school that offers the best financial fit for you as a student.
Upcoming Dates
  • Feb. 20, 2023–March 16, 2023
    $500
    Online

Set for Success - College Admissions Prep

This course combines a broad college readiness experience with a jumpstart in analytical skills exploration to help prepare students for college success. During the course, students will hear from a variety of guest speakers, including Admissions Counselors, Career Advisors and UW experts in various fields and will have the opportunity to spend time focusing on one of two areas leading toward a final product that could be used in college applications. They may focus on Writing a College Essay or College Resume and Portfolio Building. If students choose College Essay Writing, the instructor will help students to brainstorm, develop and write an essay or personal statement that will help showcase students for admissions committees. Choosing College Resume and Portfolio Building will help students to demonstrate their creativity and willingness to work hard. A strong portfolio can show much more than numbers and statistics. Students will work on cover letters, items to include in a resume, building and presenting an online portfolio and more.
Upcoming Dates
  • Feb. 20, 2023–March 16, 2023
    $500
    Live online

Fantastic Beasts: Exploring Literature and Art (Grades 2-3)

In this course we will explore the wonderful world of magical creatures through literature, writing, and the arts! We will read about fantastic beasts, write our own stories and poems, improv and perform pieces about these magical creatures, and create art using our limitless imaginations.
Upcoming Dates
  • June 12–16, 2023
    Early Bird tuition: $400
    Regular tuition: $420
    Application Fee: $35
    In-person

Game of Economics (Grades 3-4)

Game of Economics will spark your curiosity about one of the driving factors in the world today, economics. Through critical reasoning, creative problem solving, and hands-on learning, you will construct your own games to help you understand large economic concepts such as scarcity, supply, demand, opportunity costs and diminishing returns.
Upcoming Dates
  • June 12–16, 2023
    Early Bird tuition: $400
    Regular tuition: $420
    Application Fee: $35
    In-person

Inside Out/Upside Down (Grades 2-4)

Inside Out/Upside Down will introduce students to the world of psychology using the movie Inside Out as a base for exploring emotions, actions, and memories. Students will be learning about the foundations of psychology through role play, hands-on activities and class discussions.
Upcoming Dates
  • June 12–16, 2023
    Early Bird tuition: $400
    Regular tuition: $420
    Application Fee: $35
    In-person

Mayor Madness (GEM Grades 2-4)

Students in this class will think deeply about the design elements necessary to create a livable city. They will become urban planners who consider how a city is shaped by its natural borders and what impact urban sprawl will have on the surrounding environment. They will consider the needs of their citizens and look for innovative solutions to meet them, in every area from public transportation, public space and cultural identity. Students will examine cities from around the world, as well as studying urban space in Madison, to think critically about what ultimately makes a city livable. By the end of the course, students will have used this knowledge to create a model city.
Upcoming Dates
  • June 12–16, 2023
    Early Bird tuition: $400
    Regular tuition: $420
    Application Fee: $35
    In-person

Mystery Detectives: Intro to Forensic Science (Grades 2-3)

Are you interested in finding out more about how forensic science helps us solve mysteries? Intro to Forensic Science is an interdisciplinary class that builds upon the skills explored in our Secret Agents class. We introduce forensic science techniques used in the field.
Upcoming Dates
  • June 12–16, 2023
    Early Bird tuition: $400
    Regular tuition: $420
    Application Fee: $35
    In-person

Nose to Toes: Intro to Human Anatomy (Grades 2-4)

We introduce students to the major systems of the body through interactive and engaging activities. They will not only learn how the inner body looks, but also how it works. We explore the muscular, skeletal, nervous, digestive, respiratory and immune systems through models and experiments.
Upcoming Dates
  • June 12–16, 2023
    Early Bird tuition: $400
    Regular tuition: $420
    Application Fee: $35
    In-person

The Green Team: Introduction to Environmental Science (Grades 2-4)

The Green Team: Introduction to Environmental Science offers a multi-disciplinary approach to learning about environmental issues by increasing knowledge and building critical-thinking skills that will help our students make informed and responsible decisions in an age-appropriate format.
Upcoming Dates
  • June 12–16, 2023
    Early Bird tuition: $400
    Regular tuition: $420
    Application Fee: $35
    In-person

'Swing-State' Wisconsin: Government, Politics, and Participation

This course will review the history of poverty and its recent trends in the U.S., and examine the myriad effects of COVID-19 on people at, or near, the poverty threshold. We will pay particular attention to the key players and processes operating at local, state and national levels, and evaluate the role of the highly polarized political environment that predates this current situation.
Upcoming Dates
  • June 18–30, 2023
    Residential tuition: $3,870
    Commuter tuition: $2,220
    International tuition: $4,220
    Application Fee: $70
    In-person

An Introduction to Chinese Language and Culture

This course introduces students to Chinese language and culture through the exploration of famous cities in China, including Beijing, Shanghai and Tianjin. In the course, students will learn basic spoken Chinese, such as culturally appropriate ways of making introductions, greeting people, asking for directions and ordering food. They will also gain a basic knowledge of Chinese characters, and of the Pinyin writing system.
Upcoming Dates
  • June 18–30, 2023
    Residential tuition: $3,870
    Commuter tuition: $2,220
    International tuition: $4,220
    Application Fee: $70
    In-person

Changemakers: Community, Leadership and Change

Big changes start small. Students in this course look at the role that individuals and communities can play in achieving real social change. Through active learning, students work on communication skills and mindsets that are needed to affect change. Topics may include racial and social justice, health equity, food systems and sustainability. Learn how to become a changemaker in your community.
Upcoming Dates
  • June 18–30, 2023
    Residential tuition: $3,870
    Commuter tuition: $2,220
    International tuition: $4,220
    Application Fee: $70
    In-person