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KCC > Continuing Education > Lifelong Learning Institute > Courses

Courses

Lifelong Learning courses give you a chance to engage in new and familiar topics. You’ll get to know others in the class and dive deep into topics.

Register using one of our easy registration options. If you have any questions, phone 815-802-8206 or email mposing@kcc.edu.

Lincoln's Funeral Train

Lincoln’s funeral train headed back home to Springfield on the same train route that Lincoln embarked on when he initially came to Washington, D.C. as president-elect. Marking the 154th anniversary of Lincoln’s death and funeral, this class examines how the nation mourned its loss. We’ll discuss logistical planning, the challenges and obstacles in organizing such an event, and the reactions of each city as the funeral train headed toward Springfield. 

Date: Friday, April 19
Time: 9 a.m. - noon
Location: KCC Room D123
Facilitator: Christina Smith
Cost: $19, includes materials.
Course no.: LLLI 8850.A16

Death and the Civil War

​This class examines the effects death had on Americans during the Civil War. The Civil War resulted in more than 214,000 deaths of Confederate and Union soldiers, and these losses touched the lives of almost every American. From fathers, husbands, and sons in their own immediate family, Americans – both North and South – also witnessed their neighbors and friends mourning their own losses. Attitudes ​toward death also greatly changed due to the war. 

Date: Friday, May 3
Time: 9 a.m. - noon
Location:  KCC Room D123
Facilitator: Christina Smith
Cost: $19, includes materials.
Course no.: LLLI 8860.A16

Decoration Day: Memorial Day Origins in the Civil War

Memorial Day was originally called “Decoration Day,” with roots reaching back to the Civil War era. We’ll examine how hundreds of thousands of deaths during the Civil War brought about the notion of remembrance and memorialization of fallen soldiers. We will also discuss how southern women’s associations sprang up across the South as a way to bring home lost husbands, fathers, and sons. We’ll talk about the rise of the Confederate Memorial Day, and how Decoration Day evolved into Memorial Day.

Date: Friday, May 10
Time: 9 a.m. - noon
Location: KCC Room D123
Facilitator: Christina Smith
Cost: $19, includes materials.
Course no.: LLLI 8870.A16

Decorative Mesh Spring Flower

Give your front door a spring makeover by creating a beautiful spring flower wreath made from decorative mesh to hang on your door or your wall. No experience necessary. Two sessions available!

Date: Wednesday, April 3
Time: 1:30 p.m.-3:30 p.m.
Location: KCC Room D151
Facilitator: Amber Gocken
Cost: $39
Course no.: LLLI 8900.A16

Date: Wednesday, April 3
Time: 5:30 p.m.-7:30 p.m.
Location: KCC Room D151
Facilitator: Amber Gocken
Cost: $39
Course no.: LLLI 8900.Q16

Traffic Light Eating

Want to eat healthier but don't know where to start? In this course, you'll  learn how to make healthy living easy and fun through the four pillars of 1) lifestyle, 2) exercise, 3) attitude, and 4) nutrition.

Date: Thursday, April 4 or 11 (2 sessions, Pick 1)
Time: 9:30-11:00 a.m.
Location: KCC Room D121
Facilitator: Yamei Rohlfs
Cost: $5
Course no.: LLLI 8800.A16

A Time to Meditate

Take some time out of your week and meditate. This course gives everyone—experienced with meditation or not—the time to meditate with a group and learn new skills. There will be a different meditation each week. We’ll spend 15 minutes getting ready to meditate, 30 minutes meditating, and 15 minutes cooling down.

Date: Mondays, April 8 to 29
Time: 1-2 p.m.
Location: KCC Room D123
Facilitator: Sue Eggerton
Cost: $39
Course no.: LLLI 8840.A16

​Trust Your Gut

Meditation, combined with other practices, teach you to tap into your gut feelings—the special inner knowings we all have. You will learn to listen to them, trust them, and to act on them. This is a participation course, so come prepared to enjoy yourself. Intuition is a natural ability that makes life easier, more abundant, and happier. This course enables you to use your “sixth sense” to gain more self-confidence and live a better life.

Dates: Tuesdays, April 9 to May 14
Time: 1-3 p.m.
Location: KCC Room D124
Facilitator: Sue Eggerton
Cost: $59
Course no.: LLLI 8820.A16

Raising Chickens

Chickens make lovable pets and—once in a while—you will get an egg or two. Find out what you need to keep chickens, what’s legal, and how to get started.

Dates: Wednesdays, April 10 to 24 
Time: 1-2:30 p.m.
Location: KCC Room D151
Facilitator: Dr. Maureen Shannon
Cost: $15 
Course no.: LLLI 8750.A16

Write Your Story

Whether you are a beginner or experienced writer, this course gives you the chance to take one event from your lives and make it into a short story to share with family and friends. You will learn the craft of writing from the ground up. This class is a prerequisite for “Edit YOUR Story,” where you can further develop your story all the way into book form.

Dates: Thursdays, April 11 to May 2 
Time: 1-3 p.m.
Location: KCC Room D123
Facilitator: Sue Eggerton
Cost: $52
Course no.: LLLI 8810.A16

Viking Passage

Come join the “Wandering Christians” as they wind their way across the North Atlantic following the path of the Vikings from Denmark to Canada, ending up in New York.

Date: Thursday, April 18 
Time: 9:30-11:30 a.m.
Location: KCC Room D123
Facilitator: John Hassett & Dr. Jim Paul
Cost: $10 
Course no.: LLLI 8400.A16

Apprentice Beekeeper

The Apprentice Beekeeper class will focus on hive health and management. This includes information on how to check the health of your hive, how to monitor for pests and diseases, honeybee biology, swarm management, queen replacement, and other IPM recommendations.

Dates: Tuesday & Thursday, April 23 & 25
Time: 6-8:30 p.m.
Location: KCC Room D124 
Cost: $65
Course no.: LLLI 8920.Q16

Extreme Weather: Floods, Drought, Heat Waves, Cold Waves and Blizzards

When weather takes a turn for the worse, everyone is affected. We will visit a wide range of events that span the entire year—floods, drought, heat waves, cold waves and blizzards. Topics include: causes, consequences, dangers associated, and how to deal with them.

Date: Tuesday, April 23 
Time: 11:15 a.m. - 12:45 p.m.
Location: KCC Room D124 
Facilitator: Dr. Max Reams
Cost: $7
Course no.: LLLI 8710.A16

NEW! The Last Standing Patriot at Gettysburg

Willie Dixon will lead a discussion on the last patriot standing at Gettysburg. Dixon will discuss how the south re-entered the union and development of the 13th Amendment to the United States Constitution.

Date: Wednesday, April 24 
Time: 10-11:30 a.m.
Location: KCC Room D123
Facilitator: Willie Dixon
Cost: $5 
Course no.: LLLI 8930.A16

New! Tomato Grafting

Take advantage of the unlimited number of tomato varieties you can grow by grafting. At traditional markets, grafted plants can be expensive, and hard to find. This class teaches the basics of tomato grafting, and you’ll take home your own grafted tomatoes grown in the KCC Greenhouse. After you learn to do it yourself, you’ll saves money and get to choose your own tomatoes to graft. It just takes a little practice. Benefits of grafting include a more productive and disease-resistant tomato crop.

Date: Tuesday, April 24
Time: 10 a.m. - noon
Location: Horticulture Bldg VA 03 on KCC’s West Campus
Facilitator: Holy Froning, University of Illinois Kankakee Extension Office; and Katelynn Ohrt, KCC Agriculture/Horticulture program director.
Cost: $49, includes materials 
Course no.: LLLI 8910.A16

Double Wine Basket

Spend an evening creating your own double wine bottle basket. The basket can have many other uses as well. Various color accents will be offered. Choose from two different finishing options: basket with embellishment or basket with a wooden wine glass holder. Seats are limited and will fill fast.

Date: Thursday, April 25
Time: 6-9 p.m.
Location: KCC Room D151 
Facilitator: Sharon Taylor
Cost: $35 - Course no.: LLLI.8890.Q16 with embellishment
Cost: $38 - Course no.: LLLI 8890.Q26 with wooden wine glass holder

Extreme Weather:
Hurricanes, Tornadoes, and Thunderstorms

Weather comes in many sizes and styles. We will explore three of the extreme varieties that make the news—hurricanes, tornadoes and thunderstorms. These events usually occur in spring, summer and fall. Topics include: how they form, when they occur, the dangers they pose, and suggestions about how to survive them.

Date: Tuesday, April 30
Time: 11:15 a.m. - 12:45 p.m.
Location: KCC Room D123 
Facilitator: Dr. Max Reams
Cost: $7 
Course no.: LLLI 8710.A26

Castles and Clans of Scotland

The rich heritage of Scotland has grand and imposing castles, fortified places and palaces among glens, hilltops, lochs and coastlines. Come get to know some of the great castles of Scotland, their owners, history and folklore. We’ll talk about the “râison d’etra” for castle building and much more!

Dates: Wednesday, May 1  in KCC Room D123 & Wednesday, May 8 in KCC Room D151
Time: 9:30 a.m. - noon
Facilitator: Dr. Loarn Robertson
Cost: $20 
Course no.: LLLI 8740.A16

Frame Loom Weaving

Learn fundamental weaving techniques and make a small tapestry. All you need to bring is a ruler, large-eyed needle, scissors, pick or large toothed comb, and a small assortment of yarn in your color scheme, any size and texture. You’ll also learn some loom weaving vocabulary.

Dates & Times: Weds. May 1, 9:30-11 a.m. and Weds. May 8 & 15, 10-11 a.m.
Location: KCC Room D124 
Facilitator: Diana Pappas
Cost: $15 
Course no.: LLLI 8640.A16

The Real Cinco de Mayo

Come hear the real story behind Cinco de Mayo. The Civil War in Mexico is often overlooked in the U.S. because it took place at the same time as our own. It remains an important piece of history, full of heroism, patriotism and tragedy. Benito Juarez defeated France’s attempt to seize his country. The Emperor Maximilian and Empress Carlotta were tools of the French and met with sad ends. And the war also marked the real birth of the French Foreign Legion.

Date: Friday, May 3 
Time: 9-11 a.m.
Location: KCC Room D151 
Facilitator: Phil Angelo
Cost: $10 
Course no.: LLLI 8770.A16

Group Guitar

This is an introductory course to playing guitar in a group setting, intended for students without prior knowledge of the instrument. You’ll learn music notation and tablature for guitar, fingering for basic open chords, interpreting basic chord symbols, right hand strumming techniques and styles, playing simple song melodies, use of chords as accompaniment, and right hand picking technique. You’ll also learn how to tune and basic instrument maintenance.

Dates: Mondays, May 6 to July 15 (No class 5/27)
Time: 5:30-6:30 p.m.
Location: KCC Room D123 
Facilitator: Tammy Cantrell
Cost: $150, includes text, chord charts, song sheet music and handouts 
Course no.: LLLI 8880.Q11 

Playing the Ukulele

Get started with the ukulele by learning basic chords and strum patterns at a pace designed for first-time players. This class is for those who have never played an instrument before. You’ll learn the basics of chords, strum patterns, finger picking, music notation and songs. Even if you’ve tried guitar and thought it was too hard, you’ll be surprised by how soon you’re playing songs on the ukulele.

Dates: Mondays, May 6 to July 15 (No class 5/27)
Time: 6:30-7:30 p.m.
Location: KCC Room D123 
Facilitator: Tammy Cantrell
Cost: $150, includes test, chord charts, song sheet music and handouts. 
Course no.: LLLI 8960.Q11
Class note: Bring a ukulele, tuner & picks.

Waterfalls of Illinois

Waterfalls have attracted humans for as long as we have been on our planet. Their mesmerizing effect, shear beauty, and raw power draw us to them. Illinois has a large number of waterfalls, and many of them are easily accessible on public land. We will explore three areas with very different waterfalls: southern Illinois, western Illinois, and northern Illinois. Because people get injured or die every year in association with Illinois waterfalls, we will emphasize safe practices when visiting these amazing features.

Date: Tuesday, May 7 
Time: 11:15 a.m. - 12:45 p.m.
Location: KCC Room D151 
Facilitator: Dr. Max Reams
Cost: $7 
Course no.: LLLI 8720.A16 

Cooking for 1 or 2

Not as many gathered around your dinner table as there once was? Have you become tired of eating leftovers lacking in pizazz? In this workshop, we’ll talk about exciting makeovers to leftovers, and how to freeze leftovers so they taste good the second time around. Let us do the math for you in cutting down recipes. Cooking is fun!

Date: Thursday, May 9 
Time: 9:30-11 a.m.
Location: KCC Room D151 
Facilitator: Drusilla Banks
Cost: $10
Course no.: LLLI 8730.A16

Follow up for Write YOUR Story … Edit YOUR Story

Now is the time to edit and polish your story for publication to share with family and friends. These four weeks will teach you how to edit and get your story or book ready for publication. The cost of binding is included in the course fee.

Dates: Thursdays, May 9 to 30 
Time: 1-3 p.m.
Location: KCC Room D124 
Facilitator: Sue Eggerton
Cost: $65 
Course no.: LLLI 8830.A11
Class note: Prerequisite is the “Write YOUR Story” class.

NEW! Hats, Heroines
and Cavaliers

Come step back in time and learn about famous men and women from in history. You’ll participate by picking a hat to wear or hold. Then, you’ll learn facts about the history of who would have worn which hat. It could be an author, movie star, political hero or history maker. Then get ready to guess who else had that style of hat. Come prepared to learn historical trivia and have fun!

Date: Thursday, May 9 
Time: 9:30-11 a.m.
Location: KCC Room D123 
Facilitator: Cheryl Rabe
Cost: $7 
Course no.: LLLI 8160.A16

Driving the
Pacific Coast Highway

We all have that trip we really want to take and when you get to do it, and it turns out great, well, that’s driving the Pacific Coast highway! Join us as we describe one of the best trips ever in pictures
and play-by-play commentary.

Date: Wednesday, May 15 
Time: 1-2:15 p.m.
Location: KCC Room D121
Facilitator: Mike & Carol Snyder
Cost: $7 
Course no.: LLLI 8780.A11

The Five Sullivan Brothers and the Kissing Sailor

The 5 Sullivan Brothers & The Kissing Sailor. First, learn about the depression era childhood of the five Sullivan Brothers in Waterloo, Iowa. We’ll then journey through the naval history of early World War II in the Pacific. The Sullivan “We Stick Together” Brothers tragically died along with 687 shipmates when the light cruiser USS Juneau, was sunk on 13 November 1942 in the Battle of Guadalcanal. In 1943, President Roosevelt ordered a Fletcher Class Destroyer to be named USS The SullivansDD-537. The presenter, Hal Burke, served on this ship in 1964.

Date: Wednesday, May 22 
Time: 10-11:15 a.m.
Location: KCC Room D124 
Facilitator: Hal Burke
Cost: $25 
Course no.: LLLI 8160.A26

New! Movie Music Romance

Come enjoy this live 2-hour presentation of movie music classics and experience 36 classic songs and dances from among the greatest in film history from the 1930s thru today. John LeGear has been touring Illinois since 2017 presenting his American history series. In this new presentation, familiar faces abound: Judy Garland, Doris Day, Emma Stone, Jennifer Lawrence and Elvis Presley. Yet it’s fresh and different. Several scenes are cast in a new light and blended with accompanying music in a new way. It’s a journey through lyrical splendor.

Date: Wednesday, June 12 
Time: 2-4 p.m.
Location: KCC Room D152 
Facilitator: John LeGear
Cost: $10 
Course no.: LLLI 8760.A11

Video Lectures

These courses are taught by talented professors from all across the country. Lectures are pre-recorded and played during the class session.

Five Films That Changed America

Renowned Yale Film Professor Marc Lapadula will discuss several films that, for better or worse, made their mark: The Jazz Singer, I Am a Fugitive From a Chain Gang, Easy Rider, The Graduate, and Jaws.

Date: Tuesday, June 25 • Time: 2-4 p.m.
Location: KCC Room D152
Facilitator: Video Lecture, Marc Lapadula, Yale University Film Studies Program
Cost: $5 
Course no.: LLLI 8940.A11

Our 5 Greatest
Presidents …
And Our 3 Worst

Take an insider’s look at the polls by leading historians that rank the presidents, and share some stories behind the greatest (and failed) presidents.

Date: Wednesday, July 10 
Time: 10 a.m. - noon
Location: KCC Room D124
Facilitator: Video lecture, Robert Watson, Lynn University, distinguished professor of American History
Cost: $5 
Course no.: LLLI 8940.A21 

An Evening with Leonardo da Vinci

Investigate perhaps the most remarkable genius of the Italian Renaissance – or any other time, Leonardo da Vinci. We’ll follow him from his birth as the illegitimate son of a minor notary in a provincial town, to his death in France where he had been given a castle by his last great patron, King Francis I.

Date: Thursday, July 18 
Time: 10 a.m. - noon
Location: KCC Room D123
Facilitator: Video lecture, Kenneth Bartlett, University of Toronto, Professor of History and Renaissance Studies
Cost: $5 
Course no.: LLLI 8940.A31

Men, Women and Politics: A World of Difference

Despite cultural evolution and society’s changing attitudes toward women in politics, running for public office remains a much less attractive and feasible endeavor for women than for men. Professor Lawless will discuss many research studies regarding the gender divide in politics.

Date: Tuesday, July 23 
Time: 10 a.m. - noon
Location: KCC Room D123
Facilitator: Video lecture, Jennifer Lawless, American University, professor in the Department of Government
Cost: $5 
Course no.: LLLI 8940.A41

Are the Machines Taking Over? The Ethics of Artificial Intelligence

Computers answer questions, give directions, serve as companions, and guide autonomous cars and weapons of war. Learn about the ethics of letting machines decide so much.

Date: Monday, July 29 
Time: 10-11:30 a.m.
Location: KCC Room D124
Facilitator: Video lecture, Walter Sinnott-Armstrong, Duke University, Professor of Practical Ethics
Cost: $5
Course no.: LLLI 8940.A13​​​​​