High School Re-Design Extensional Activities at Buck Mountain Central School

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As part of High School Re-Design Buck Mountain Central has implemented a flexible learning block.  At this time, students can go for re-teaching, work on homework or take part in extensional learning activities.  The extensional learning activities may have credits associated with it or might just be an activity that students engage in purely to learn something beyond the curriculum.  The school has had extensional activities such as Junior High dissection labs, Quidditch tournament, and book clubs.  This month the extensional activities include:  peer mentoring, film study, drama and an anxiety workshop.

Buck Mountain Central has implemented a school wide peer mentoring program during flex block.  This program focuses on the belief that all students can learn and achieve at high levels.  The intention of this program is to bridge the gap between striving for excellence and achieving it.  Peer mentoring addresses the contextual variables that effect student learning.   Mentors were chosen from grades 10, 11 and 12 that exhibit the qualities of being a positive role model and have high expectations for their learning. Mentors pass along their own knowledge and experience to other students, making Buck Mountain Central a more positive environment for student learning.  The high school students gain credits toward graduation as well as the positive experience of mentoring.  Peer mentors completed the academic requirements of the program, and now meet with their student men-tees during flex block once a week.

Students taking part in the film study in March are analyzing the classic film, The Shining.  The photography and filming techniques in this movie are quite extensive.  Film is an industry built for the masses; however, even the most popular genres have explicit techniques. The Film One Credit Wonder is a flex project that engages students with these techniques, using influential landmark films to both captivate and intrigue students towards understanding. Using an edited version of Stanley Kubrick's The Shining, students will engage with the medium and analyze it for genre specific technique, culminating in a final analysis paper that will grant them a credit-- all for watching a horror genre masterpiece.

Students also have the choice to take part in a cross graded activity, called “if life were a musical”.  Students take part in improv games, drama games, and have fun performing for the small group or large group.   This fun activity based extension is enjoyed by all the students who have chosen to participate.  It gives students who are not a part of the drama class the opportunity to join as well as those who want more than just drama class.  Students can let out their inner child and dance and sing away the flex block.  This activity helps build confidence and also works to release stress through laughter. 

Students have the choice to take part in an anxiety workshop, where students learn skills to help cope with anxiety and how to work through it.  They have mini discussions and practice skills that reduce anxiety and build resiliency.

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