Winter Intensive

Winter Intensive 2015

We are very excited to be launching our third annual special Harvest tradition: the Winter Intensive, a time during intercession between first and second semesters that students have the opportunity to study one particular subject in depth. For one week, starting Tuesday, February 3 and ending Wednesday, February 11, 2015 you will enroll in one of the courses below each culminating in an exhibition or presentation. Each course is worth a .5 credit; it appears on your transcript and becomes a part of your GPA with your other courses. We hope you become immersed in an exciting subject, meet new friends and have a wonderful experience outside the typical realm of the winter blues in NYC.

1. Stop Motion Animation (Paul, Zoe, Colin)
Robots juggling basketballs. Cowboys riding dinosaurs. Anything you can imagine can be animated in this course. You will have the opportunity to use stop-motion animation to bring these stories to life. Using whiteboards, clay, magnets, and everyday objects, you will learn how film directors go from a storyboard to a finished animation. Over the first few days, we will explore different animation techniques, talk to professional animators, and watch classic examples of stop-motion from Academy-Award nominated directors Henry Selick and PES. You will then work as a part of a small production team to make your own short films, workshopping your clips with other teams for feedback. As a final project, you will make a 1-2 minute short film.

2. Humans (Angelo, Monifa)
Who are we? What makes us unique among the creatures of the Earth? What does our art, our games, our literature, and our creations tell us about ourselves?

In this Intensive we will try to find answers to these questions by visiting the American Museum of Natural History, The Rubin, and possibly other museums in the city. We will be checking out the evidence from skulls to DNA in real life labs, reading up recent psychological studies on the ethics of babies, and reading stories. You will find your answers to the questions posed and produce a story or some other work of art, and an essay addressing the question on what it means to be Human.

3. Climate Justice: The Fight of Our Generation (Ashraya, Julissa)
The clock is ticking. Climate change already kills 4.5 million people a year. It has forced thousands to leave their homes and threatens the livelihoods of 250 million island people. By 2050, a quarter of the world’s species could go extinct. In the face of these grim realities, we will fight back. We will make art and build tools for societal and environmental change. We will meet artists, scientists, and activists on the frontlines of climate justice. We will learn and apply sustainable practices on an overnight excursion to upstate New York and bring back our knowledge to our community. Join us in the fight of our generation.

4. Art in New York Today! (ADC, Frankee)
Can a white square really be art? Is that giant balloon animal actually worth $60 million? Can I work in the arts if I can’t draw a straight line? In this intensive we will explore the crazy and exciting world of contemporary art in New York City. Everyday, we will travel to the City’s galleries, museums and art studios, and interact with the artists, curators, gallerists and arts professionals that create the vibrant culture in our city. Using the City’s cultural resources as our playground, we will attempt to understand what makes this city the center of the artistic universe!

5. Writer’s Retreat (Scott, Beth)
If you like writing, then this is the class for you. In this class, students will write their own stories, essays, and poetry for hours on end! As a community of writer’s, we will help each other to draft, revise, edit, and present our work each day. To get inspiration for our writing, we will travel around the city to various libraries, museums, and other sites that will get us to unleash our writers within. Then, to remove the distractions of the world around us so that we can really dig into our writing, we will go on a three-day, two-night cabin retreat to a gorgeous area near the Delaware River. At the cabin, we will cook our own meals, be inspired by the beauty of the winter wilderness, and write intensively all day long. This course includes an overnight trip outside of the city. There will be a fee for the trip to help the school cover the expenses.

6. Law School: Criminal Law (David, Andy S)
Grand jury. Indictment. Prosecutor. Justice.
How does this system actually work – beyond the slogans and the soundbites? Should we be thankful for the police, prisons, and laws? Why does almost no one get a jury trial? Whose side is the legal system on?

Together, we’re going to stop and frisk the criminal justice system. We’ll be reading, watching films, going places, and interrogating visitors. We will see if it’s possible to get the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help us G-d. Our intensive will end with closing statements from each student.

7. Harvest Survivor (P.E. credit) (Pam, John)
Have you ever wondered how people lived before there were stoves, houses, electricity, and stores? In this Intensive we will experience the ways in which “Mother Earth” provides all these conveniences and connect with the natural world and the way our ancestors lived. The trip includes a three-day, two-night cabin trip outside of the city. There will be a fee for the trip to help the school cover the expenses.

8. C.O.R.E. (Confronting Oppression through Restorative Education) (Faye, Jessica)
The prison system within our society is unjust. Right now there are approximately 2.3 million people in jail in the United States. We have the largest number of people in jail in the entire world. Even worse, there are a disproportionate number of Black and Brown people being sent to jail every year. This intensive seeks to learn about the history and the ramifications of this system, as well as work towards rectifying this injustice that plagues our community by using strategies of restorative justice. Our goal is that students learn how to implement the ideas of restorative justice and see themselves as an advocate of/for their community. Because we want to raise awareness on this issue and create change, we will seek out different ways to contribute our time and effort to give back to the community. This includes possibly going into prisons systems and leading seminars, discussions, activities; anything to break up the norm for those who have been incarcerated. We are also aiming to physically/academically contribute to the families of those imprisoned. Some of the other activities and events for this February Intensive class might include: movie screenings, speakers, trips to participating schools, dissecting music etc.

9. The Beauty of Mathematics (Math and Art: The Beauty of Fractals) (Grant, Laura)
This course focuses on identifying various relationships that exist in contemporary visual arts and mathematics through art reconstruction and museum visits. We will analyze the work of M.C. Escher, Sol LeWitt, Samara Golden et al. at MoMA PS1, the Museum of Math, and Dia:Beacon in the Hudson Valley and build upon their work by replicating their techniques. We will explore patterns, knots, optical illusions, “chaos,” repetitions, and functions and extend them to recreate art, which will be used to beautify the walls of Harvest Collegiate High School.

10. Francophone Migrations (French Language Immersion) (Gina, Sally)
Why is French spoken in so many places, far away from France? Why is French a more useful language to know than English in large parts of Africa, and in Southeast Asia? In this intensive, you will learn about migration of French-speaking people around the world, as one of the long-term effects of imperialism. We will travel to Montréal, Canada, a hub of migration from former French colonies around the world, to examine how imperialism still affects people’s lives long after independence from France. We’ll visit Montréal’s Little Maghreb (Little Morocco) district, walk around Vieux Montréal–settled by French colonists in the 1600s–and sample both local and immigrant cuisine. We will begin with a study of migration patterns accompanied by a crash course in the French language, including some of the distinct features of Canadian French. A small financial contribution will be required to help finance the trip, and you must have a valid passport or passport ID card in order to cross the Canadian border. Please note that February weather in Montréal is severely cold (it could be -20F in the daytime!), and you will need special cold-weather clothing such as boots and insulating long underwear for safety.

11. Intensively Well: Mind, Body, Soul (Myles, Rob)
According to Arnold Schwarzenegger “Legends are made from iron and sweat, mind and muscle, blood and vision, and victory.” To strengthen our bodies we will engage in bodybuilding, calisthenics, yoga, basketball, swimming, soccer, and running; with the opportunity for students to lead us in different exercises as well, mostly at our local YMCA. We will also use online tools to track how much food we eat, what kinds of food we eat, and how well we “burn” that food. On the other hand, the First Noble Truth taught by the Buddha was that “life is suffering” or “unsatisfactory” due to our incessant desires, attachments, and misperceptions. Through daily practices of mindfulness, coupled with selected texts of wisdom, we will also increase our capacity to experience “peace of mind,” compassion, concentration, insight, and perhaps nibbāna or enlightenment. By drawing from the toolbox of philosophy, fitness, education, theology, and psychology we will promote holistic well-being.

12. Making Connections: Movement in Geometric Shape (Shirlene , Katia)
We see connections in time and space everyday of our lives. We see it in nature, we see it in relationships, and we see it in the classroom. This intensive will combine the concepts of movement with the concepts of geometry to explore movement in a mathematical space. Utilizing the Principles of Laban Movement Analysis, students will explore and analyze spatial relationships embedded in the geometric shape of the icosahedron. We will focus on understanding movement on the 3 dimensional planes of the body to reach the 12 corners of the icosahedron. The goal is to build awareness of the interconnectedness of math and movement through the exploration of the intersection of the dimensional planes in geometry and the exploration of the kinesthetic planes of the body, which will lead to the construction of a life size icosahedron. Through the understanding of the invisible lines in space made by connecting the points of the icosahedron students will gain a greater understanding of space and spatial relationships

13. (Black) Girl Power (Sheila, Liana)
How do black women assert their power through sexuality? How do forms of media portray black women? Are the portrayals of black women positive or negative? Whom would you want your daughter to emulate? Beyonce, Queen Latifah, Nicki Minaj? In this intensive we will visit the Studio Museum of Harlem and Museum of Natural History, watch films like Anna Lucasta, She’s Gotta Have It, and Dark Girls, deconstruct music videos, and interview women about how the black female body has been portrayed in the past, present, and future. Lastly, we will create an artistic piece that captures the thematic moments of the intensive.

14. Think college is just high school continued? It’s not. (Kiran, Betsy)
College can open doors for you that high school doesn’t. And college can change you and shape you in ways that you might not imagine. It can unlock opportunities, make you more independent, guide you to explore your options, position you to explore the world, and show you how to invest in yourself. As you tackle college coursework and participate in college life, you encounter new ideas and challenges. Along the way, you can build knowledge, skills and brainpower. Discover new passions. Follow and satisfy your curiosity. Learn more about yourself. Bond with new friends. Prepare for a future in which you’re better equipped to give back

    What does it mean to be ‘collegiate’?
    Can you be ‘collegiate’ if you don’t come from a ‘collegiate’ environment?
    Who gets to go to college?
    What do I want to do with my life, and how could college help me get there?

This seven-day intensive course includes an overnight trip to Bard College, SUNY Purchase, Brandeis and Tufts University in Boston.

15. Filmmaking (Esther de Rothschild–guest filmmaker and teacher)
In this intensive, students will make their own short films from start to finish. We will develop stories, write short scripts, plan short lists, cast actors, scout locations, learn how to use equipment, organize and edit footage, add sound, and prepare for a screening. That is a lot to accomplish in just one week, so we may meet one day after school to view short films and generate ideas for our own films. No prior experience necessary.

16. Getting to Gateway (Steve, Josh)
In this intensive, students will receive intense support to revise and/or complete Gateway projects that did not yet meet expectations. The seminar will culminate in symposium presentations that not only involve sharing the work, but also reflection on how students were able to improve, and what lessons they can take from this to future work at Harvest and in life.

 


 

Winter Intensive 2014

Mid-January 2014 students left thoughts of bleak weather to immerse themselves in the study of one topic full-time, choosing half-credit courses exploring topics from Brazil to Computer Programming to College Immersion to the scientific basis of Humanity itself. Teachers taught their passions, and students, who variously traveled to the inauguration in Washington D.C., the United Nations, eight different colleges and outdoor campsites, discovered new passions.

BRAZIL: LANGUAGE AND CULTURE

This class will explore the rich and fascinating language, history, and culture of Brazil, the largest and most diverse country in Latin America. Over one-week, students will learn essential communication in Portuguese to be able to hold a conversation. Students will also interact with exciting aspects of Brazilian culture: watching Oscar nominated movies (City of God, Elite Squad, Central Station); learning to play Capoeira and dance Samba along with professional instructors; listening to the wonderful music of Caetano Veloso and Timbalada; going out to eat lunch at a Brazilian restaurant; reading excerpts of Jorge Amado’s Gabriela Clove and Cinnamon; and studying the history of slavery, colonialism, independence, and military dictatorships. As the Brazilians say, este curso muito legal!, this class is very cool! This class will count as a ½ credit in Social Studies.

COLLEGIATE IMMERSION: PREPARING FOR THE IVY LEAGUE

What do I need to do to get into college? How can I make sense of the college search and application process? To be on track for college you need to start preparing now. This course will immerse learners in “Collegiate” ways of thinking and writing as we examine together the steps along the path to college. Students will be taking trips to visit colleges. We will also learn about the financial aid process and scholarships, walk through the application process, and read about how to get into highly selective colleges like Columbia, Swarthmore, Wesleyan, Harvard, the University of Pennsylvania, and many others. Take charge of your education by participating in Collegiate Immersion: Preparing for the Ivy League

COLLEGIATE VERBOSITY: Preparing for College and Building an Immense Vocabulary

Duco, ducere, duxi, ductus–these are forms of the verb that in Latin means “to lead” and this verb helps to give us the modern words seduces, abducted, induce, deduction and even duct tape. The goals of this class are to have students build large vocabularies in order to be successful at Harvest, on the SAT, in college, and beyond. These Latin and Greek root words are just one way that we will build our vocabularies. We will also play vocabulary games, read voraciously, and develop positive academic identities. This class is part of the Collegiate Immersion series, thus visiting colleges, talking about the college admissions process, and searching for a college for you will be an important part of the course. The reading will be rigorous and students will be required to read two novel-length non-fiction texts about college admissions. We will also immerse ourselves in collegiate experiences like Socratic Seminars, symposia, and lectures. The final project will be for students to devise ways to bring their learning back to the whole Harvest Community.

COMPUTER ANIMATION

Robots juggling basketballs. Cowboys riding dinosaurs. Anything you can imagine can be drawn and animated. In this course, you will have the opportunity to make your own animations. Rather than painstakingly drawing a series of images by hand, you will learn how to use Stykz, a frame-based program. With Stykz (freeware) you can move, bend, rotate, resize, or recolor objects with ease, allowing you to make each frame perfect. Once your visuals are complete, you will use GarageBand to add background music and sound effects. By the end of this course, you will have created two short animations, and have the know-how to continue animating into the future. This class will count as a ½ credit of Art.

CONFRONTING OPPRESSION THROUGH RESTORATIVE EDUCATION

The prison system within our society is unjust. Right now there are approximately 2.3 million people in jail in the United States. We have the largest number of people in jail in the entire world. Even worse, there are a disproportionate number of Black and Brown people being sent to jail ever year. This group seeks to learn about the history and the ramifications of this system, as well as work towards rectifying this injustice that plagues our community by using strategies of restorative justice. Our goal is that students learn how to implement the ideas of restorative justice and see themselves as an advocate of/for their community. Because we want to raise awareness on this issue and create change, we will seek out different ways to contribute our time and effort to give back to the community. This includes possibly going into prisons systems and leading seminars, discussions, activities; anything to break up the norm for those who have been incarcerated. We are also aiming to physically/academically contribute to the family of those imprisoned. Some of the other activities and events for this January Intensive class might include: movie screenings, speakers, trips to participating schools, dissecting music, etc.

FILMMAKING

In this intensive, students will make their own short films, from start to finish. We will develop stories, write short scripts, plan shot lists, cast actors, scout locations, learn how to use equipment, shoot films, organize and edit footage, add sound, and prepare for a screening. That is a lot to accomplish in just one week, so we will all meet after school the Wednesday before the intensive to view short films and generate ideas for our own films. No prior experience necessary.

FITNESS BOOT CAMP & YOGA
Students will participate in a variety of physical activities and exercises that may include: weight training, cardio training, circuit training, yoga and dance. Students will also engage in sports that may include: basketball, soccer, volleyball, indoor rock climbing, gymnastics, running (outdoors), and hiking. We will go off-campus to Central Park, Chelsea Pier, a skating rink, Integral Yoga studio, and possible other sites that are to be determined. Students are encouraged to bring athletic clothing and should be willing to participate in all activities and are prepared to be outdoors in January. Students will also reflect on their health and make goals to improve their physical and mental well-being. We will explore questions like, Does the mind control the body or does the body control the mind? What are the effects of physical exercise on your mental, emotional, and physical well-being?

HUMANS

Who are we? What makes us unique among the creatures of the Earth? What does our art, our games, our literature, or religion tell us about ourselves?

In this Intensive we will try to find answers to these questions by visiting the American Museum of Natural History, The Rubin, and possibly other museums in the city. We will be checking out the evidence from skulls to DNA in real life labs, reading up recent psychological studies on the ethics of babies, and reading Flowers for Algernon. You will find your answers to the questions posed and produce a story, a work of art, or essay. We will have a debate in hopes of deepening our insight to what it means to be Human.

MUSICAL THEATER INTENSIVE

All members of the Musical Theater Intensive will study, rehearse and perform a range of theater and musical theater texts individually and in collaboration with the ensemble. Each day, students will study Acting, Vocal Technique, Vocal Performance, Dance and Group Performance. The Intensive will conclude with a performance during which all students will participate in large group musical numbers and perform a brief monologue and/or song.

HARVEST SURVIVOR

Have you ever wondered how people lived before there were stoves, houses, electricity, and stores? In this January Intensive we will experience the ways in which “mother earth” provides all these conveniences and connect with the natural world and the way our ancestors live. The trip includes a 4 day, 3 night cabin trip outside of the city. We will also learn vital survival skills in partnership with Children of the Earth Foundation. There will be a fee for the trip to help the school cover the expenses.

THE ARTIST’S WAY

Creativity is a gift all of us are born with. Have you discovered the artist inside you yet? This course will inspire you to become a practicing and fearless artist. Together we will explore and practice many different arts: drawing, tango, singing, soap making, acting–the options are endless! As part of our artistic journey we will also visit and talk to other practicing artists. We’ll visit studios, galleries, dance shows, and band rehearsals. Our collective goal will be to support each other in our artistic development and fulfillment. Let’s awaken our inner artists together.

GETTING TO GATEWAY

In this January Intensive, students will receive intense support to revise and/or complete Gateway projects that did not yet meet expectations. The seminar will culminate in Symposium presentations that not only involve sharing the work, but also reflection on how students were able to improve, and what lessons they can take from this to future work at Harvest and in life.

MODEL UN

Model UN simulates the United Nations, where high school students from around the world meet to debate, collaborate and attempt to solve wide-ranging international issues of immense importance. This year, the Model UN conference will take place at Yale University from Jan 23-26 (Thurs.-Sun.) and will focus on the theme of Think Globally, Act Locally. Interested students were invited to join Model UN as an extracurricular activity beginning in September, in order to prepare for this event. Registration is now closed

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