Wednesday, April 10, 2019

May Term - Overview

The staff at ELC is excited to roll out our first May Term here at ELC for spring of 2019.  Over the past two years, a group of HS staff members have been working to create a new learning opportunity inline with our gradual shift to more hands on, project based learning opportunities within the high school curriculum.  As a staff we recognize that there will always be a need for the level of learning all of us have known as students, as there continues to be no substitute for the “Three R’s” we all grew up with. However, as a staff we also recognize the need to stay relevant in terms of what our students need as they transition into a world that is arguably changing by the hour.  Many of the jobs we know today will not even exist when our students enter the workforce. With that understanding, it is as important to teach our students how the be lifelong learners who are willing to get their “hands dirty” as they actively participate in the learning process. It is our belief that May Term will give them that opportunity to explore an academic area, or a personal social activity that can contribute to a quality of life we want all our students to experience after their formal education is complete.

First, to outline the specifics, May Term will be held for five days beginning May 23.  This means seniors will not be participating, as graduation for them will have already taken place.  There will be many different May Term activities for students to explore, such as: job shadows, community mural painting, foreign language exploration, video editing, DNA analysis, lifetime healthy living, authoring history books for elementary students, plasma creation, music theory, law enforcement, and much more.  The school day will run as normal in terms of hours, with the only difference being where students are located throughout the day. Many of our students will be working off campus, and all parents of those off-campus students will be notified prior to this opportunity.

Although May Term is a scaled down version of the J Term educational opportunity that can be read about in many scholarly articles, the benefits are similar in terms of the following:  new subjects, student exploration of passion areas, hands on higher level learning, opportunity for teachers to share a passion area, and climate and culture building. It is also our hope that May term gives an opportunity for our students to both give back, and become engaged within the community they live.  The high school staff recognizes there will be “bumps in the road” as we offer this opportunity for the first time, but believes it is something we can build on in the future to provide a more well-rounded education that teaches to the whole child.

As a staff, we welcome your questions regarding the May Term activity.  Please communicate with building administration through email, and they will get the answers to your questions from the May Term staff committee.  Again, we are excited to be able to add this opportunity to our educational menu, and feel it will be a great experience for those students involved in the process.  Our goal is to make ELC HS a place of unlimited opportunity for our students to reach their goals, and become prepared for the “real world”.

-Brad Leonard
High School Principal