Hyla students spend the last period on Mondays and Fridays exploring General Electives. Electives are mixed grade classes. Students sign up for new opportunities every two months.
Games of Strategy – David Maron
It’s time to put on your thinking caps and play some games. Consider when to farm or where to place a tile in Carcassonne. Predict the appropriate bidding location during your secret movements within Revolution. Go big and redo the movements of World War II in Axis and Allies. Feeling like language? Go ahead and Scrabble it up or Boggle down. Maybe you want to bring your Magic deck? Do it. All hands and brains on deck for this game-a-thon.
La Cucina Italiana – Melissa Dempsey
In this elective, we will be cooking Italian food from pizza to cenci to bongo bongo to homemade pasta. As well as creating some authentic Italian recipes (I learned how to cook Italian while at university in Italy), we will also learn the language of the Italian kitchen, how to set the typical Italian table, and other cultural tidbits. So bring your apron (if you have one) and we’ll meet in Hyla’s very own kitchen.
The Gender Unicorn – Kimberley Gorman-Trick & Dora Makosky
During our LGBTQ+ mini-term exploration, we were introduced to Trans Student Educational Resources (TSER). TSER is the only national organization led entirely by trans youth. They provide support in so many ways, including speaking at conferences, leading trainings, publishing materials on trans education, and creating transgender policies nationwide. We were struck by their gender unicorn poster and want to bring the unicorn to life! While the poster may appeal to teens and adults, we believe that a stuffed animal may be a link to teaching younger kids about the LGBTQ+ population. Our plan is to prototype the stuffie and make as many as our elective time will allow. This is a community service elective.
Cardboard Engineering – Cooper Rooks & Harrison Wilkinson-Bennett
Why not take all that cardboard recycling and make something you can actually use. In this elective we will learn how to create some of our most common home furniture and essentials, but instead of wood, we will use mostly cardboard and found objects. With the help of hot glue, tape and traditional joinery techniques we will construct life size furniture that we can actually use. Reclining chair? Bedside table? Reading lamps? Treasure boxes? A rolling carry-on suitcase? We will go from designing ideas, to building, and finally functional test and display presentation.
Lego Robotics & Computer Programing – Jeff Steele
Using our new EV3 Lego Mindstorms, teams of students will build and program. This elective is a fun way to take the first few steps of computer programming while playing with an amazingly advanced toy from LEGO. This elective will meet in the computer lab on most days or operate out of the science room. You do not need to have any experience with robots or LEGO to join in on this elective.
Harry Potter at Hogwarts – Jennifer Haase
Meet me at Platform 9 ¾ (AKA the history room) and enter the world of Harry Potter. Of course, in our first elective class, you will be sorted into Houses! You will then get the chance to make your own wand, “attend” Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry and take classes such as Potions, Herbology and Divination. In this elective, we will discuss various topics from the books, look at the historical references J.K. Rowling drew upon (like what a real Mandrake is vs. the fictional one in the Harry Potter books or who the real Nicholas Flamel was) as well as participate in various wizard activities that may include cooking and eating food from the Hogwarts kitchen, creating a spell book or a Marauder’s Map of Hyla, making potions, growing magical plants or reading tea leaves. We might even compete for the House Cup in a Harry Potter Trivia Game. Your creative ideas are also welcome and may be added! Having read the books in advance is recommended, but all are welcome. I will be strictly enforcing the “NO SPOILERS RULE” if some of you have not read all the books yet. Robes, wands and owls are encouraged.
Sustainable Hyla, Year Two – Paul Carroll
Last year, I was very impressed by the students who continued working after mini-term had ended to propose changes to the Hyla Board of what could be done to make Hyla’s campus more environmentally sustainable. The Board was also impressed and agreed to some proposals, and parents at the auction were generous in financially supporting the visions that the students were advocating. Some of those changes have been put in place (one being the water fountains to reduce our rented bottled water use), but others need new energy to move them forward. I would like to work with students to review what has been accomplished and look at what next steps there could be. We might take ideas that were proposed last year and continue to build on them, or we might find new areas to consider. Significant changes take significant energy, and I would like to see if we can continue the momentum that was started last year. This is a community service elective.
Junk Cars – Chris Soldevilla
We will re-purpose some of the wood and bits and pieces around the campus as well as from the barn clean-out to create whatever mini-cars we can and perhaps race them as well. Cars will be limited in size to under a foot and we will figure out a racing area and rules. Use of basic tools such as a hand saw and hammer and nails may be required. Creativity is a must!
Cartography is cool: the magical world of maps – Colleen Carroll
Maps are so much more than an app on your phone and so much cooler than a way to get you accurately from one location to another. In my past (college) life, I was a geography student and maker of maps and now I want to help all the budding cartographers at Hyla explore the amazing world of maps. In this elective we will look at old maps and modern maps, hiking maps and data maps, artistic maps and digital maps, and then we will work to create our own maps by hand. If time allows, we may also learn how to use open source GIS computer programs.
Songwriting – Andrew Lovejoy
Songwriting is a mysterious, challenging, and rewarding craft. If you’re already a songwriter, or have ever been curious about it, come try it out! No experience as a songwriter, singer or musician is necessary and we’ll use a variety of exercises and games to get our creativity flowing. We’ll experiment with writing in different styles and genres, and also spend some time listening to great songs for inspiration.
Garden Design – Mike Fosmark
The Bucklin Hill Farm was established in 1887. It’s not hard to imagine how important a garden would have been to the success of the farm. Now, over a hundred years later, the garden is still a vital part of the land. Bainbridge community members have P-Patches of raspberries, strawberries, various squashes, kale, potatoes, and chard in the Hyla garden. We have had our own garden for the past six years but it needs an overhaul! We would love to provide more food for the school and the community, particularly Helpline.
If you are interested in designing the new and improved garden, please join this elective. Garden expertise is not necessary but welcomed! We will look at other gardens to see what works best in our area and collaborate with the crew digging during PE elective to create a functional space. This is a community service elective.
In addition to two PE classes each week with our PE teacher, Hyla students spend the last period of the day on Thursdays exploring inter-grade PE Elective classes. Each session lasts about two months. Here are the offerings that students had to chose for this year’s Winter session.
Rock Climbing – David Maron
Interested in learning how to gaston? Want to develop a sweet heel hook? Not sure how best to grip a sloper? This climbing session is for those really wanting to push their climbing skills. We’ll head to the Island Rock Gym for each session and spend most of our time in the bouldering area, working on increasing our skills, strength and stamina. *If time permits, we may use the ropes/auto-belay as well.
Mud On My Boots (walking/hiking the island) – Melissa Dempsey
Hiking the island is what this elective is about; this time of year we may run into mud and we may not. But it’s fun either way. Each week we’ll drive in a white bus to a different trail on Bainbridge Island and build up our hiking muscles for our last trail, which will take us west to east across the island, starting at Murden Cove and ending at Battlepoint Park. All you need are comfortable shoes (that might get muddy) and a water bottle.
Yoga – Kimberley Gorman-Trick
As the earth begins to awaken after the darkest days of winter, we will find our yoga practice moving forward as well. We will spend more time outdoors, exploring yoga in nature, holding space with the trees in the Grand Forest, playing with the waves in the Puget Sound, and finding stillness and strength away from our computers and phones. Please join us to learn how to tune in and develop your own yoga practice and learn how to manage stress through meditation.
LARPing (Live Action Role Play) – Cooper Rooks
Have you ever wondered what it would feel like to be a Viking who crossed oceans to battle for new lands, or a sword-wielding knight riding to the top of a hill to meet your adversaries in full body armor? In this elective we will design our own characters and then build cardboard body armor and tools of battle. We will practice physical strategies throughout the elective, while focusing our efforts early on creating our tools, armor and characters. We will collaborate on creating a story as a group and attempt to overcome challenges using playful simulated battle strategies as well as puzzles and games.
Obstacle Course!!! – Jeff Steele
Every week we will build and race! There will be individual and team championships! We will be using cardboard boxes, jump ropes, cones, balloons, dodge balls, pool noodles, picnic tables, cargo nets, and the Gaga pit! This will be an all-weather course come rain or shine, come cold or frigid! Some days these obstacle courses will be exercises in precision and detail, sometimes they will will feel like a boot camp challenge, still other days it will be an exercise in the ridiculous.
Around the House with other On-Campus or “invented” Games – Jennifer Haase
I love to play Around The House! Join me to play this game along with other on-campus games. We will start with Around the House and when we need a break from it, we will decide upon an alternative (Four Square, Hoop Games, Sardines etc…). We may even decide to invent a totally new game or to tweak the rules and gameplay of other games. Or….you may want to try a variation of the famous Prancercize workout. The campus and our imagination is our PE oyster!
Barn Cleaning – Chris Soldevilla
Requirements are organizational skills, lifting, moving, and a desire to help Hyla get a little more pretty. We will be using this elective time to clean out and reorganize the dark, scary place that is BENEATH THE BARN!!! This is a community service elective.
Winter Conditioning- Colleen Carroll
Hyla’s spring sport season is almost upon us! If you are interested in boosting your track times or your field event performance or looking to be in good shape for making dynamic cuts on the ultimate field, join me for some pre-season conditioning. We’ll do everything from core exercises to short runs to full-body circuit workouts. We’ll also get outside and get moving with games like shtick or capture the flag.
Team Sports – Andrew Lovejoy
In this elective we’ll play and enjoy several team sports, such as soccer, basketball, ultimate, and flag football. We’ll go over the fundamental rules of each game as well as examine some of the basic strategies, and focus on fun and inclusion.
Digging in the Garden – Mike Fosmark
It’s time to take gardening to the Olympic sport level! We’ve got weeds that need to be pulled and dirt to be turned in preparation for the spring. If you want to build muscle, join me in the garden. We have shovels and gloves! Wear appropriate shoes and dig in! This is a community service elective.