Poetic Justice

Poetic Justice

How can you become a poet of social change?

If more politicians knew poetry, and more poets knew politics, I am convinced the world would be a little better place in which to live. —U.S. President John F. Kennedy.

Poetic Justice asks you to explore the relationship between art and politics, uncover the history of protest poetry, and understand its status and evolution within today’s political climate. The course begins with an introduction to two basic concepts – poetry and politics. We will discuss the differences between poetry and the other literary arts as we attempt to identify the unique qualities that make verse such a powerful medium for political expression. Along the way, we will read, hear, watch, and analyze political poetry from the past and present moments as we prepare to write and perform our very own protest poems. How will you use poetry to fight the power?

Students of Poetic Justice will pursue these Guiding Questions:

  • What makes poetry radical?
  • Where does poetry fight for freedom?
  • How will you protest with poetry?
Five Faces of Genius

Five Faces of Genius

How do you live a more creative life?
How do you understand and access your genius? How do you find your place in the world, and love it? How do you make the world better as you manifest your creative genius?

This course explores the beauty and challenges of life through the examination of personal creativity and how it can impact you and your communities. The Five Faces of Genius™ frames your investigation into learning specific skills and techniques through the challenges faced in families, communities and the world, which are bigger and more difficult than ever before. This course will provide practical skills and tools, but it does so in the context of thoughtful consideration on creativity, problem-solving and teamwork.

Ollywood

Ollywood

What makes a movie a movie? How is storytelling through film different from storytelling through literature? Which films deserve a “thumbs-up” and which deserve a “thumbs-down” – and why? These are just some of the questions you will pursue in the Ollywood course. By investigating the stages of pre-production, production and post-production, you will develop a critical eye for film and TV, and express your critiques in written, video, and audio formats.

Global Peace: An integrated, project-based high school class

Global Peace

What is peace? What is violence? What does peace look like in your community? How does peace generate peace around the world? Why are there so many stories of nonviolent peace movements? These questions guide the Global Peace course, which is centered around the study of Gandhi’s 4 principles of nonviolence.

You Are Beautiful: An integrated, project-based high school class

You Are Beautiful

Why is it important for art to be accessible? How does public art spark human interaction? How does art go viral? Students will examine the history of public art and its ability to transform spaces and connect people on a worldwide scale in the You Are Beautiful course. Inspired by case studies of successful public art movements, students will master skills to conceptualize, produce and install their original art pieces in public spaces with the goal of engaging people in conversations.

Equality: An integrated, project-based high school class

Equality

“All men are born equal”. But, what about women? And, even if we are born equal, do we live in equality? How do wealth and resources fit in? In this course, you will explore inequalities that exist based upon gender, race, and socioeconomic class differences. You will become familiar with the theories that strive to explain why these inequalities exist, whom they oppress and benefit, what actions have been taken in the past, and what can be done now to dismantle the systems and institutions that perpetuate them. You will gain the knowledge necessary to engage in these debates, develop skills to facilitate meaningful dialogues, and access the tools necessary to mediate disputes and impact change.

Endurance: An integrated, project-based high school class

Endurance

How much are you willing to endure to change the world? This course will ask you to face your challenges, and learn endurance through endurance. The content of this course will be felt: you will endure the course not because it is boring, but because it poses real-life challenges. The ultimate resource for this course lies in your own 5 senses; they will all be challenged through Sense Solos, which will help you dive deeper into who you are and how much you are willing to endure to change the world.

Journalism: An integrated, project-based high school class

Journalism

How do you know about the world? In this course, you will learn how to observe, analyze and report on current events through different media—Image, Sound and Text. In each of these three units, you will be challenged to conduct an exploration into a realm of journalism; you will follow a full cycle of investigation; meet with specialists in the area; and conclude each investigation with an Action Project that reports the news in a multimedia format.

A Nation's Argument: An integrated, project-based high school class

A Nation’s Argument

A Nation’s Argument integrates historical and global revolutions and nation-forming with the language and logic skills needed to develop and sustain an argument. By anchoring our investigation in the birth of the United States and learning the structure and language of argument, you will explore the life of the nation within and beyond these borders as a powerful idea–one which was carefully and logically crafted, yet continues to be challenged and transformed. In doing so, you will also deepen your understanding of yourself as a citizen as you evaluate the arguments that shape our ever-evolving national identity, and those of our brothers and sisters in countries around the world.

Policy: A High School Humanities Course

Policy

Policy informs students how to use both rhetoric and argument to agree on a common good, so that living together is sustainable and nurturing. In this course, you will study the decades-long civil rights movement in the U.S. and international social justice struggles, examining the process and different roles by which policies – for better or worse—come into being as you pursue the question: What does it take to make policy (for the common) good?

Rhetoric: An integrated, project-based high school class

Rhetoric

Why do certain speeches “work” and so many others do not? Rhetoric supposes that we use language to persuade, challenge and unite, in all aspects of our lives. To awaken to this reality, you will explore how language has been, and might be used to help us powerfully and clearly articulate our viewpoints. As you study how the earliest Americans manipulated language as conquerors, colonists, and revolutionaries, you will become skilled in analyzing and manipulating language in order to articulate and achieve your own aims. These domestic examples will be juxtaposed with international case studies to strengthen your sense of global awareness, identity, and possibility.

Stories: An integrated, project-based high school class

Stories

How are journeys shared? Stories have traveled through time, oral tradition, books, and art. The stories that reach us create a relationship with our ancestors, to civilizations that are long gone, and to heroes that still inspire us today. These stories contain lessons, offering new perspectives and wisdom. By reading, listening, and watching, you will gain insights into the world—past and present, conscious and unconscious.

Forbidden Books: An integrated, project-based high school class

Forbidden Books

Why have books been forbidden throughout history? In this course, you will explore why certain books and ideas have been considered dangerous or threatening throughout history, focusing on 3 themes: politics, dogma, and diversity. In each unit, you will read original texts to understand, through the study of each text’s historical context, why its central themes were considered dangerous at the time of writing—and beyond.

Drama: An ISS and English High School Course

Drama

From ancient times, theater has provided an opportunity for communities to stage their challenges and rehearse ways of facing them. The Drama course provides an opportunity to study the history of theater through the lens of gender equality and how social roles have evolved across time and space. In 3 units, each analyzing a different play, students will be challenged to write a monologue, dialogue, and a traditional chorus that explores gender relations and students’ own roles in society.

Food For Thought

Food for Thought

How are food systems shaped, and how do they shape the world? In this course, you will be guided through the cycle of life as a metaphor for the trajectory of our global food system. Using food production as a lens, you will study the history of human societies, starting with our transition from hunter-gatherer societies and ending with our current globalized food system.

MDGs: An integrated, project-based high school class

SDGs & You

What are the biggest challenges facing humanity, and what is your role in addressing them? In March 2012, the world population topped 7 billion people. While this population continues to grow exponentially, natural resources dwindle and are distributed unequally. More than ever, our world needs thoughtful, engaged, global citizens to address the world’s growing crises. In this course, you will study the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), and pursue strategies for achieving them.

Who Am I?: An integrated, project-based high school class

Who Am I

How will I investigate my Self to know who I am? The Who Am I? course is a journey into your Self, your beliefs, origins, fears, and hopes—pursued through philosophical discussions, self-reflections, historical investigations, and diverse field experiences. Specifically, the course challenges your perceptions of Truth, Memory, Doubt, and Belief.