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Winterim (Upper School)

Winterim, the six class days before spring vacation each year, is a time set aside in the OES Upper School for experiential pursuits. Faculty and students plan a broad variety of courses that provide opportunities for students to explore new skills, places, cultures, and ideas in a focused, experiential manner. Participation in Winterim each year is a requirement for all students. It provides an opportunity for students and teachers to work together and learn in new situations, and builds community within the school. Winterim also generates some of the best memories of the school year!

NOTE: Courses marked with a 🖐 indicate that the course involves a service component.


International Courses

We announce international trip options in June, almost a year in advance, so that families can budget for them and students can have time to earn money to help pay for their trip. Generally, these trips extend into spring vacation. Students who wish to participate in one of these courses must indicate their commitment by submitting an International Winterim Course Application (available online with the Winterim forms) and a signed letter of financial commitment to the Director of Winterim (Christina Meyerhoff) no later than October 3, 2016 at 9:00 a.m.

Domestic and Local Courses

Domestic and local course options, which comprise the great majority of the Winterim offerings, are posted in mid-November. These courses are less expensive, generally ranging from no cost to several hundred dollars. The full Winterim catalogue offers students a broad range of options, from active endeavors to artistic exploration, and from on-campus courses to trips to other parts of the United States. Courses marked with a hand symbol ( ) indicate that the course involves some service. Students not participating in an international course register for their course choices on-line and have a parent send signed approval of their course selection, via the electronically generated form, no later than 3 p.m. on Wednesday, November 30, 2016. In 2017, Winterim will run March 16-23.


Biennial French Exchange Program

For our students who have had at least two years of French, we have an established exchange program with a high school in the Lyon region of France. L’Externat Sainte-Marie is located in La Verpillière, twenty minutes to the south east of Lyon. Our students spend a little over two weeks in home stays with the family of their host student, going to school at l’Externat, and touring the surrounding region. In previous years those short trips have included Geneva, the medieval towns of Crémieux and Pérouges, and further south, Avignon and les Baux de Provence.

The trip also includes three to four days spent in Paris. The trip begins the week before Winterim and includes Winterim and most of spring break. In return, the French correspondents who hosted the OES students come to Portland and spend approximately three weeks with their OES families, attending classes and touring the region. A parent meeting for those who are interested in participating in this exchange will be scheduled in the fall.

For more information please contact Katrina Perry at OES (503 416-9337) or by e-mail perryk@oes.edu

Leaders: Katrina Perry & TBA
Dates: We will likely depart on March 9 and return on March 30.
Enrollment: 10-14 students
Cost: $3600 (includes all expenses except lunch during the four days in Paris, personal expenditures, and passport fees.)

Chajul, Guatemala-OES and Catlin Gabel Global Service Collaboration 🖐

This trip will mark the fourth biennial global service collaboration between Catlin Gabel and Oregon Episcopal School. Together, our group of seven OES and seven CG students will journey to the Ixil Mayan town of Chajul, Guatemala, where we will work with community leaders and support their efforts to improve the lives of children and families in Chajul.

The Ixil region was the target of genocide during Guatemala’s 36 year civil war. Despite the signing of peace accords in 1996, people in Chajul still struggle. Less than 3% of students in Chajul graduate from high school and 75% of the adults are illiterate. Additionally, basic health and nutrition needs go unmet for many families, as 93% live on less than $2 per day. In an effort to address these deficits, we will focus our service on education and health by working with three locally-based non-governmental organizations: Limitless Horizons Ixil, (which initiated the area’s only public library and offers educational support, professional training, and health education in Chajul); Philanthropiece (which offers scholarships and support for students motivated to attend university) and with CEMIK, a one-room school house that provides Ixil-Spanish bilingual education to the poorest families in the community. These three organizations are working to bring the people of Chajul into the 21st century while still maintaining their Ixil cultural identity and traditions.

Students who participate in this trip should be excited to speak a lot of Spanish (all communication with people in Chajul is conducted in Spanish), to learn about the role of NGOs in the developing world, and to play, learn and work with very small children through young adults in Chajul. Our rewards will be the opportunity to develop friendships with people whose lives are very different from our own, and the rare chance to experience daily life in a corner of the world that few extranjeros have the privilege to visit.

Course Leaders: Christina Meyerhoff & Spencer White
NGO Key Collaborators: Joan Williams & Dr. Andrew Zechnich
Dates: March 18– March 28, 2017
Enrollment: 7 OES students, 7 CGS students. (Priority will be given to students who have completed at least Spanish III)
Cost: ~ $2300 depending on airfare

For answers to questions and for more information throughout the summer, please contact Christina Meyerhoff at meyerhoffc@oes.edu or 503-248-0344

Modern Denmark & Germany & the Challenges of Immigration and Refugee Settlement

The goal of the trip is to engage students in one of the most pressing and ongoing cultural, political, and humanitarian challenges of recent European history: the settlement of Syrian exiles.

We will travel to Copenhagen, the capital of Denmark, and Berlin, the capital of Germany to learn about the issues first hand and to consider them in the context of 20th century German history, especially the years 1933-1945. We will then travel to the Stuttgart area where we will meet up with German students who have studied the issues, people who have worked directly with refugees, and members of the refugee community. Denmark offers the possibility of a study in contrast to help us consider what is unique about German and Danish responses and what challenges are more universal.

Course Leaders: John Holloran & Rick Rees
Dates: March 16– March 28, 2017
Enrollment: 8-14 students
Cost: $3600

Divided Korea: Two Nations, One History

Come with us to explore the only divided nation in the world as we taste life in the South while looking North to better understand that which defines a people. We’ll spend 10 days based in Seoul, South Korea. Our experience will start with acclimating to the culture and geography of Seoul before working with a local organization to learn about the historic split and the hope for reunification. The rest of our trip will focus on bringing to life our new understandings of South Korea by visiting major cultural sites (including the DMZ and the Unification Tower), exploring pre-war traditional customs, and connecting with local Korean students. Commit to understanding how South Korea evolved under external pressure to create imaginary lines in the sand, tear apart families and traditions, and force two parallel cultures to emerge in the 21st century. Join us in living, for a moment, in the fast-paced world of modern Seoul while glimpsing its historic past.

Course Leaders: Alana Kaholokula, Ed Cecere, and Sarah Kim (student leader)
Trip dates: March 16-26, 2017
Enrollment: 10-12
Cost: $3,000 - $3,400

Nepal: Culture, Religion, and Earthquake Restoration 🖐

For this trip we will partner with Catlin Gabel School and SAGE Global education. The trip will have three main foci: Exploring the cultures and religions of Nepal; exploring the natural beauty and culture of the mountains through the challenge of trekking in the Himalayas; and learning about the effects of the recent earthquake and the recovery efforts.

The trip will start in the historic city of Kathmandu. We will explore local religious (primarily Buddhist, Hindu, and Newari) and World Heritage sites to learn about the history and culture of Nepal. We will also meet with local people to learn about Nepali political structure and the effects of the 2015 earthquake.

We will then travel to the mountain village of Sermathang. This village was severely affected by the 2015 earthquake, leaving many homes and other buildings destroyed. We will work side by side with Nepali youth to help construct a new community/multipurpose hall for the village. We will spend 3+ days working in the village and will have great opportunities to form authentic relationships with local community members and to learn about their culture (quite different from what we will have found in Kathmandu).

We will spend the final portion of our trip trekking in the Himalayas in Langtang National Park. During our trek we will spend time in smaller villages further up the mountains and will summit the sacred peak of Ama Yangri (12,000’, no technical skills needed).

Course Leaders: Tom Handel, Becky Wynne (CGS), SAGE facilitator
Dates: March 16– March 31, 2017
Enrollment: 6 OES students, 6 CGS students
Cost: $3800


Rock Climbing at Smith Rock

Let’s rock climb! Whether a veteran or a newbie, spend two days indoors and four days outdoors climbing the best Oregon has to offer. We will “learn the ropes” locally at indoor rock climbing gyms where you will have a chance to practice your skills and ask all the important questions. Then we head east to Central Oregon to climb at Oregon’s premier rock climbing venue, Smith Rock. We will spend four days at Smith Rock where all climbing will be guided by a rock climbing instructor. The nights will be spent in yurts nearby where we will have most of the amenities of home. Join us and have a blast climbing the sheer walls of Smith Rock while enjoying the spring sunshine of Central Oregon. All gear, transportation, food, lodging, and instruction are included in the price of the course. Beginners are welcome.

  • Trip Dates: March 19-March 23
  • Enrollment: 8-15
  • Cost: $600
  • Course Leaders: Taylor Feldman & Deri Bash

The American Civil War: A New Birth of Freedom

We will explore the events that tore the United States in half and learn how it came back together. We will walk the ground where America bled as it irrevocably came to grips with the words of the Declaration of Independence, “that all men are created equal” and Abraham Lincoln’s question “whether any nation, so conceived, and so dedicated, can long endure?” Although many soldiers fought to preserve the Union, or to defend their homes, slavery was the root cause of the war. We will start by following the path of John Brown to Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, where his failed vision of a slave Insurrection left the slave states ready to secede after the election of Abraham Lincoln.

The next day we’ll go to Manassas/Bull Run, Virginia, site of the first major battle. We¹ll see how two green armies and the country learned that the war would mean death, ugliness, and no quick end. We’ll spend the next four days in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, walking some of the most sacred ground in America. We¹ll experience Devil¹s Den, Little Round Top, The Wheatfield, the Peach Orchard and Cemetery Ridge. We¹ll walk Pickett¹s Charge as Confederates and then relive it as Union soldiers, waiting for the approaching enemy. We¹ll learn what it was like for the civilians to be surrounded by battle.

We¹ll visit the National Cemetery where Lincoln delivered his Gettysburg Address and called for a “new birth of freedom.” We’ll finish with a day in Civil War Washington, D.C. visiting Ford¹s Theater and Arlington Cemetery. On our way to the Lincoln Memorial we will visit the Vietnam Memorial and reflect on how America was torn apart again by that conflict. We’ll end at the Lincoln Memorial, focusing on Lincoln¹s Second Inaugural Address and its call for reconciliation along with Martin Luther King¹s “I Have a Dream” speech and its vision for America. You¹ll be challenged to articulate your vision for America through the prism of this Winterim experience.

Note: The trip will involve considerable walking, at times over uneven terrain. Students will be outdoors during most of the day and it is likely to be cold.

  • Trip Dates: March 16-24 **THIS TRIP RUNS ONE DAY INTO SPRING BREAK**
  • Enrollment: 10-12
  • Cost: $1500 + $100 recommended spending money
  • Course Leaders: Ron Silver & Kati Stenstrom

Outdoor School Counselor 🖐

Being a Washington County Outdoor School Counselor is one of the most fun, inspiring, and rewarding experiences you can ever have! As a Counselor, you will learn valuable leadership and teaching skills. You’ll learn how to lead interactive, hands-on outdoor activities with small groups of sixth-graders that are simple and fun. You’ll also get to work with many great students from other high schools, some of whom could become lifelong friends. As an Outdoor School Counselor you’ll gain valuable volunteer experience that looks great on college and job applications. You can earn transferable college credit, and complete one of your service learning projects at OES, too! And, most of all, you will change the lives of elementary school students, often in ways that you'll never know.

  • Enrollment: 6-18
  • Cost: Free
  • Course Leaders: Washington County Outdoor School Staff


Travel with us to Northern Minnesota to enjoy an experience unlike any other. We will spend four days on the lakes and trails of the Boundary Waters, driving two-person sleds with a team of four to five Inuit dogs each. Experienced guides will provide hands-on training on the first day, and then you will handle your own team of dogs, including feeding and harnessing them every morning. We will stay in lakeside lodges each night (with an option to camp outside one night!). There will be a chance to try snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, and a Finnish sauna. We will also pay a visit to the International Wolf Center in Ely, Minnesota, to observe and learn about the native timber wolves. Get ready for an amazing experience, and prepare to fall in love with dogsledding!

  • Trip Dates: March 16-21
  • Enrollment: 8-12
  • Cost: $1900
  • Course Leaders: Bettina Gregg & Liz Weiler

Represent OES At "Dare to Dream" National Service Learning Conference 🖐

"Dare to Dream" is a lively, inspiring conference, and you'll come home super energized about Service Learning and full of exciting new ideas. Join a thousand people--students, teachers, and service professionals from all over the US, and many from other countries--all focused on how best to use their power for good. This can count as a service learning project or lots of ON or OFF campus hours! Note that the conference ends on March 24, which is one day into spring break. We plan to send a delegation of 2-4 students and several teachers.
Applications are due Monday, November 28.

If you wish to apply, email Robin Schauffler or Maria McIvor to get the Conference application and details. Please also submit a Winterim registration form with your other five Winterim choices.

  • Enrollment: 3-4
  • Cost: $300
  • Course Leader: Maria McIvor

Midnight Train to Montana

This train and ski excursion is designed to provide a variety of winter activities in the Whitefish Ski area of Montana, a mountain with 360 degrees of diverse ski trails. Transportation will be provided by Amtrak and resort shuttles - the rental house is on the slopes of the ski resort, so students will ski in/out each day from the porch. This trip is for students new to skiing/boarding or those who don’t have the opportunity to hit the slopes very often, and will provide students with an immersion opportunity to learn, improve and enhance their skiing or snowboarding skills during 5 days of active mountain time. Students will also plan, organize, and shop for meals and plan evening activities for the group.

  • Trip Dates: March 16-23
  • Enrollment: 10 students who are not on a ski/snowboard or freestyle team
  • Cost: $1100 + equipment rental if needed
  • Course Leaders: Coleen Davis & Rob Orr

Model United Nations: New York City

This Winterim will take students to New York City to participate in the National High School Model United Nations (NHSMUN) conference, Wednesday 3/15-Saturday 3/18. The remaining days of the Winterim trip will be spent visiting with non-governmental agencies (NGOs) and service organizations in New York that work to create international peace, and touring the city.

**Please note that this group will leave Portland two days prior to the start of Winterim due to the conference schedule.**

  • Trip Dates: March 14-March 23
  • Enrollment: 10-20 (Must be enrolled in MUN activity winter term)
  • Cost: $1100-$1400 depending on enrollment
  • Course Leaders: Mike Gwaltney & Chiman Chen

Cross Country Ski Adventure

One of the best ways to enjoy winter and find solitude in the Pacific Northwest is to go Cross Country Skiing. This course is designed to give you the skills to become a competent Cross Country Skier. The first two days will be spent doing day trips to nearby groomed and ungroomed cross country ski areas near Portland where you can practice your “kick and glide” technique. Sunday you will travel and stay in Bend, Oregon. Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday will take you on a three day/two night hut to hut traverse in the Three Sisters Backcountry.

This experience gives you the opportunity to see the awesome splendor of the Three Sisters Wilderness during the winter, and without having to carry a huge backpack since these huts are outfitted with bedding, stoves, and even food! Wednesday night, upon completion of this adventure, you will enjoy a “night out” in the town of Sisters, Oregon, and Thursday you will travel back to OES. This trip includes hired guides Matt Bedrin and Nicole Gaines, potential special guest chaperone Mo Copeland, ski and equipment rental, all lodging (including backcountry huts), meals, and transportation. Beginners and experienced cross country skiers are welcome.

  • Trip Dates: March 19-March 23 (local trips 3/16 & 3/17)
  • Enrollment: 8
  • Cost: $800
  • Course leaders: Matt Bedrin, Nicole Gaines (Mo Copeland potentially on the backcountry hut traverse)

Ommm: Healthy Body, Healthy Spirit, Mindful You!

Interested in learning more about your own growth and wellness in an active, fun, rejuvenating way? Explore healthy living at its best in this Winterim by learning new ways to invigorate and strengthen your body, calm your mind, and tickle your funny bone!

Each day will include a chance to elevate your heart rate through activities like nature hikes, canoeing, laughter yoga, and Nia dance. In seeking balance and stress reduction, we will explore the ways in which the environment and our communities can enhance who we are in the world. We will explore how the foods we eat, alternative treatments (like bodywork and sensory deprivation saltwater floats), art, music, and silent reflection can contribute to wellness and growth.

Finally, our Winterim group will take a deep dive into mindfulness, play, and self-exploration with a two night retreat in a beautiful, natural setting. Join us for an energizing and relaxing week of exercise, deep breathing, joyful eating, mindful healthcare, and play!

  • Trip dates: Overnight retreat March 21-23 (two nights); local activities other days
  • Enrollment: 8-18
  • Cost: $350
  • Course leaders: Amanda Weber-Welch & Callie Schulman

Backpacking in Utah

Get ready to explore southeastern Utah from tops of plateaus to bottoms of canyons. After flying into Salt Lake City, we'll drive to the remote four corners region to see the wild and pristine canyons of Utah. Follow a winding ancient riverbed through history on a four day backpacking trip to see murals and ruins that might date back to 1400 AD. Hike along enchanting creeks that wisp through ancient red orange canyon walls. Camp under an infinite tapestry of stars at night. Listen to the howl of the coyote or the elusive Gunnison sage grouse. Breathe in the intoxicating aroma of wild sage, Pinon Pine, and Juniper. Learn about the ancient Anasazi who lived in these canyons for thousands of years. This is rugged and beautiful terrain, and rewards of traveling into it are memories for a lifetime.

  • Dates:March 16-March 23
  • Class size: 8-10
  • Cost: $950
  • Instructors: Doug Ironside, Ryan Holland, and Jenny Cleveland

Sailing and Surfing in San Diego 🖐

This Winterim is for water lovers! Students will explore the sacred ocean and connect with nature as they learn to sail and surf in San Diego. With a scheduled 22 hours of lessons, each student will be versed in equipment, terminology, tides, swells, currents, surf conditions, safety, and etiquette. Plan to leave with an excellent foundation in surfing skills and single-handed Sabot skippering.

Our location also gives us the opportunity to explore the ecology of Mission Bay, the largest man-made aquatic park in the country. Built by the US Army Corps of Engineers in 1852, it is home to many rare & endangered species of birds. And, finally, the students will connect with each other over their struggles and triumphs in the water and over shared meals in our beach home in Mission Bay. All participants need to know how to swim and will need to pass a swim assessment (swim 100 yards and tread water for 10 minutes) in order to take part in the course.

  • Trip Dates: March 16-23
  • Enrollment: 12
  • Cost: $1400
  • Course leaders: Chad Gilton & Bevin Daglen


Play in a Week: Getting Even With Shakespeare

Othello as a rap? Titus Andronicus as a cooking show? Julius Caesar and Macbeth in under one minute? Hamlet backwards?! Loosen up, man. Shakespeare's dead; he can't do anything about this abuse of his plays dreamed up by three snarky British guys. Our version will culminate in a performance on the final day of Winterim to whatever audience shows up. Students will be actors, costumers, prop collectors and builders, musicians, technicians, and set constructors. Drama geeks, drama novices, and people who are itching to get even with Shakespeare are all equally welcome.

Enrollment: 6-18
Cost: Free
Course Leaders: Art Ward & VJ Sathyaraj

Gardening Gurus 🖐

Come join us as we explore and volunteer in the gardens around Portland. You can complete a service project by volunteering at Fulton Community Gardens for four days. As it will be March, there will be plenty of cleanup and work to do in preparation for spring gardening. It will be great exercise! For the other two days, we'll spend time at the Chinese Gardens downtown (and visit their tea house to warm up!) and another fun day at the Japanese Gardens where we'll chow down on 23rd Street for lunch in order to load up on all of the calories we burned from tons of manual labor. We'll get to learn about the history of community gardening in Portland and get to visit two of the most impressive gardens in our area.

  • Enrollment: 6-12
  • Cost: Free + $ for a few lunches out
  • Course Leader: Lauren Shareshian

Exploring Indian Immigrant Culture

Read, eat, and listen to Indian immigrant culture! Students will explore Indian immigrant culture in the Portland area in a variety of ways, including reading and discussing a few short stories by Indian immigrant author Jhumpa Lahiri as well as watching and discussing the movie "The Namesake", based on a book by Lahiri. Students will learn how to cook some traditional Indian meals, such as chana masala, naan and curry. Students will explore Indian music by Rabindranath Tagore among other composers who strove to fuse Western culture with traditional Indian culture. We'll venture into local homes and schools for cooking and music lessons with local Indian chefs and musicians, including Shankar Viswanathan and master teacher Rose Okada.

  • Enrollment: 6-18
  • Cost: Free + some $ for a few lunches out
  • Course Leaders: Gowri Meda & Adam Steele

Helping Hands 🖐

Six days of service to the community and learning about how our community supports those in need. This year we’ll focus on the experience of homelessness, and explore different points of view: adults, families, children, youth, homeless advocates and allies, and even our homeless canine & feline friends. Students are encouraged to take a leading role in planning our activities. Participants earn 20-30 or so hours of off-campus credit in the week, or can get a good start on a long-term SL Project. Plus, you'll reap the great rewards of doing something to help others, and learning a lot in the process. Daily reflection time, posting to a group blog, and planning for future service are all part of the schedule. And, it’s fun!

  • Enrollment: Total of 13 in two groups
  • Cost: Free
  • Course Leaders: Robin Schauffler & Kara Tambellini

Be A Tourist in Your Own Town!

Portland is an amazing city with so many things to see and do! Have you done it all?

This Winterim will provide you with opportunities to explore the multicultural aspects of Portland. We will choose from a Portland Walking tour, a visit to the Portland Mercado, a stroll through the Japanese Gardens, an insider view of Nike, experiencing the historical Pittock Mansion, wandering through OMSI and a tour of the Blueback submarine, the Zoo, Portland Art Museum (Constructing Identity - African/American art exhibit), Milagro Theater, Mt.Tabor (the only in-town volcano in the USA), World Forestry Museum, and a guided tour of Tryon Creek. We will also explore the cultural richness of the “foodie” world in Portland.

  • Enrollment: 6-15
  • Cost: Free + $ for a few lunches out
  • Course Leader: Carmen Boyle

Lower School Interns 🖐

Have you always dreamed of going back to your 1st grade classroom? Thinking about being a teacher someday? Here is your opportunity to explore those dreams and return to the Lower School for the Lower School Internship program. You will be spending time with our young OESians, helping them out in the classroom or other activities, such as P.E., science or art. You will be able to choose the age group and specialty. These children will know and love you forever!

  • Enrollment: 8
  • Cost: Free
  • Course Leader: Robin Weitzer

Get in the Swing: The Basics of Golf 🖐

This course is designed to teach the basics of golf, and is intended for beginning and intermediate golfers. Each day our group will go to a local course, where students will receive instruction on the full swing, chipping, and putting. There will be ample time for practicing these skills, but we will also provide plenty of opportunities to take your skills out on the course. Golf etiquette will also be emphasized, so you will always be welcome at any course you visit in the future.

During the week we will play at least 36 holes of golf on full-size courses. Depending on weather and the interests of this year's group, we might do some mini-golf as well or make a trip to TopGolf. We also plan to spend at least a half-day doing a golf-related service project, such as working with the First Tee program at the Children’s Course in Gladstone. Sustenance is an important part of every golfer’s game, so daily visits to the snack shack or a nearby eatery will also be a priority. We’ll supply you with equipment if you don’t have your own.

  • Enrollment: 12 (Sorry, OES golf team members may not take part in this course)
  • Cost: Free + $ for a few lunches out
  • Course leaders: Joel Gray & Chris Meyers

Conservation and the Columbia Land Trust 🖐

The Columbia Land Trust is a local organization which works with landowners to buy and preserve areas of natural beauty and sites of special scientific interest in the Portland area. They own and manage a number of reserves. Students in this Winterim will work with the Columbia Land Trust to perform a variety of jobs on several different sites to monitor and improve them. These sites could include Spady Easement, Columbia Stock Ranch, Cranes Landing, Keller Woodland, Woods Landing, Schoolhouse Creek, Indian Jack Slough and others, and the jobs we will be doing include tree planting, weed removal (blackberry, ivy, and holly), ecological surveys, fence removal, aquatic system improvement, cleaning out wood duck and purple marten nests boxes, and restoration planting.

There will be tours and walks within some of these reserves, many of which provide habitats for rare native species. Those interested should be prepared to work outside in all weathers, have sympathy with the conservation movement, and delight in hard toil. There will be some driving to reach the reserves. All participants will receive at least 30 off-campus service hours, and, with prior agreement and planning, there may be opportunities to do an extended project either during or after Winterim.

  • Enrollment: 6-12
  • Cost: Free + $ for a few lunches out
  • Course leader: Peter Langley

All Things Hawai'ian 🖐

Come explore the arts of Hawai'i with Tanja & Sue!

Learn how to cook a pig - Hawai'ian style - for our luau, make a flower lei with daisies, plumeria, roses, orchids and carnations, learn the hula, transform bananas into works of art, watch Hawai'ian movies, paint a large scale painting, carve a large woodblock to print and make prints to sell for the turtle-tagging program to help threatened Hawai'ian green sea turtles. We will take field trips to see the arts of Polynesia and eat at restaurants featuring Hawai'ian food! Aloha!

  • Enrollment: 12-16
  • Cost: $75 for art projects
  • Course Leaders: Tanja Horvat & Sue Jensen

Wildwood in a Week 🖐

Only a few minutes’ drive from OES is a forest trail that stretches nearly 30 miles almost to Sauvie Island in the north. We’ll tackle it section by section to eventually thru-hike the entirety of the great Wildwood Trail. Along the way we’ll make stops to understand Portland’s history as it relates to Forest Park and explore current issues like homeless encampments, invasive plant species and wildlife conservation. We’ll enjoy as much of what the park and trail system has to offer while teaming with Forest Park Conservancy to maintain trails and work as citizen scientists to gather data for ongoing plant and wildlife research. Students can expect to earn 10-15 service hours and could have a great start to a service learning project.

  • Enrollment: 6-12
  • Cost: Free + $ for a few lunches out
  • Course Leaders: Tyler Green & Deb Walsh

Game Play and Design: Card and Board Games

This course introduces students to the various game-playing genres of card and board games. Students will play mostly unfamiliar games that require them to think strategically, collaboratively, and creatively. After building a level of competence and discovering the game mechanics they enjoy the most, the goal will be to combine their favorite features and design their own game. In addition, students will receive instruction from a professional game designer and take a trip to a game museum. We might also spend an afternoon introducing and playing games with members outside the OES community.

  • Enrollment: 6-14
  • Cost: Free
  • Course Leaders: C.T. Henry & Brad Hoffman

The Happiness Project 🖐

In this course we will actively explore the ideas and research about what makes people happy. Students will create the schedule for the week, based on theories of happiness, interviews with children and adults, and the individual choices of the group. We may be doing everything from walking in a beautiful natural area to taking a chocolate-making workshop to performing random acts of kindness. Service is on most lists of what makes people happy, so we'll do a day of service. We will all commit to sharing our ideas, trying out diverse activities that make us and others happy, and sharing our findings with the community.

  • Enrollment: 6-12
  • Cost: Free + $ for a few lunches out
  • Course Leaders: Debby Schauffler & Julie Sikkink

Social Justice Training Grounds

Deep conversations about identity and -isms can take more than an hour to develop; some experiences need more than three hours to achieve full engagement. This Winterim, we’re giving a lucky group of invested students the opportunity to engage in these discussions, often provoked by an outside source (including movies and board games). After engaging in these full day workshops, the students will receive facilitation training and leave this Winterim with a fully developed workshop they can offer at a future Culture Shock. Students signing up for this must be ok with facing mature content in film (along with with discussion that follows) and recognize that they are receiving the training to lead workshops and change in the community.

  • Enrollment: 6-14 (NOTE: Students should be interested in leading Culture Shock workshops in the future)
  • Cost: Free
  • Course leaders: Gabriel Edge & Dori King

Explorations in Pure and Applied Mathematics

This course is designed to help students experience creative, fun, and intellectually stimulating ideas in mathematics. Each day students will investigate a topic in pure mathematics and explore connections between that topic and the art, entertainment, and natural phenomena that surround us. Our daily topics for exploration include infinity/fractals, geometry/origami, puzzles/problem solving, and Rubik's cube/group theory. Activities include visiting an art museum/gallery, going to Uwajimaya for origami paper (and snacks), watching math movies, visiting Reed College for a math seminar, and teaching middle school students how to solve Rubik's cube. There will also be a day of solving and designing hat puzzles and eating pizza.

  • Enrollment: 6-16
  • Cost: Free
  • Course leaders: Greg Drugan & Owen Gross

Head Start Helpers 🖐

Head Start is a federally funded preschool program for low-income families. Their mission is to provide a safe, nurturing, caring, and culturally sensitive environment for their young students. As a Head Start Helper, you will read to children, play educational games, assist the teaching staff with classroom activities, and help supervise outdoor play. You will have the opportunity to interact and develop meaningful relationships with young children from very diverse backgrounds. Participants in this Winterim will earn service learning hours and may turn the experience into a service learning project.

  • Enrollment: 6
  • Cost: Free
  • Course Leaders: Head Start Teachers & Dana Mosher Lewis

Meet Your Robot Overlords

Build robots (including a scratch-built quadcopter with FPV [first-person-view] system) using a variety of parts/techniques/experimental methods including lithium polymer batteries, solar, and wind power systems. Use sculptural materials to enhance your ‘bot’s aesthetics. Code. Consider THE FUTURE and what this might look like; make infographics/videos/websites to explore and present information about energy sustainability, overpopulation, global warming, water usage, etc. and what technology is offering/might offer to respond to these critical issues. Watch a lot of cheesy robot movies while working/exploring/researching/making/imagining.

  • Enrollment: 6-18
  • Cost: $75
  • Course leader: Cameron Jack & Guests

Discovery 🖐

Discovery is a five day, 40 hour apprenticeship opportunity open to 10th-12th graders who want to create their own individualized learning experiences. The deadline for submitting an application to do a Discovery during Winterim 2016 was November 13, 2015. Students who have not already submitted an application may not register to do a Discovery during Winterim 2017. If you are interested in setting up an apprenticeship for the future, and would like to learn more about Discovery, please click here.

  • Enrollment: Open to students who have already completed the proposal process
  • Cost: Free
  • Course leaders: Dana Mosher Lewis & Corbet Clark
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