Thursday, January 23, 2014

Intersession version 1.0

Wow! Our first Intersession, the period between Winter Break and the beginning of the second semester, went off without a hitch thanks to fine planning and hard work by our magnificent staff.
Torgeir cuts lumber for a picnic table.
The idea arose last spring as we did our annual planning to see if students would do better academically by having first semester exams prior to the Winter Break.
Michael and Marcellus work on choking rescue skills.
This would align us with what colleges do, useful for us as a college preparatory school, but would shorten one marking period while extending another. The solution (for at least the extending problem) came from Norman Maynard and Thornton Friends School, which had run Intersessions for a number of years.
Chandler painting with oils.
After months of planning we ran five intensive classes: Basic Construction, First Aid and CPR, Chinese Brush Painting and Oil Painting, Music Production, and Classroom DC. Students used power tools to build picnic tables and bookcases, became certified in CPR and first aid, produced several songs and dozens of painting, and traveled around DC for two weeks.
Zachary and Daelyn discuss the music project.
Our post-Intersession survey was unanimous to keep exams before break and continue Intersession, with perhaps a few tweaks. If you have a chance please stop by to have lunch at one of our picnic tables or play ping-pong on another.
Lunch and Ping-Pong at the newly constructed tables.
Nick and Collin talk about ClassroomDC