June Term
From May 22 through June 9 in 2017, all West Sound Academy students participate in June Term. June Term takes place after spring semester finals. Students study one or two intensive classes for three weeks. June Term provides a forum where students put the academic skills they had been building into practical application. The day is divided into a morning June Term class and an afternoon June Term class or an all-day June Term class. Students are graded and earn 0.25 - .5 elective credits for each of their Jan Term classes. Go to Image Galleries to see the album of 2017 June Term photos.
DC/NYC TREC group visiting the Statue of Liberty in New YorkJune TREC
June TREC (Travel, Rethink, Explore, Connect) classes give students the opportunity to opt in for a June Term that involves a trip. This allows for greater flexibility on providing international travel or service trip opportunities. Trips are multi-age but some are specific only to middle school or upper school.  A student who chooses to do a June TREC class will make that choice in the first semester and will have an all-day June Term class centered on the trip experience until the group departs on the trip.  In 2017 there are two June TREC classes - one going to Washington D.C. and New York and the other traveling to Eastern Europe.
Independent June Term
Students can propose an independent course of study or internship during June Term, and can choose between half-day or full day. All independent June Term course proposals must include a designated adult supervisor or mentor that is not a parent. Only domestic upper school students are eligible for an independent June Term unless otherwise arranged with the Head of School. A student must complete the Independent June Term proposal form and submit it by the deadline to be considered. The 2017 June Term Independent Proposal Form is due March 20, 2017.
Students are graded and earn 0.25 - .5 elective credits for each of their June Term and June TREC classes. Seniors may choose to participate in a June Term after graduation but they will not receive their diploma until after the term is complete.  A student who departs early must complete an approved Independent June Term program.

June Term Courses - Half-Day Morning

"Whoa, these things really work!" - Lionel Pummell photoStar Wars                                                                          Jen David

In a galaxy far, far away....or as close as Poulsbo, students have the opportunity to learn about our Milky Way galaxy through an exploration of astronomy and visits to a local observatory and planetariums. Jen will once again lead an amazing journey through all things related to Star Wars including a session of fencing in order to master your Jedi light saber skills. Those who enjoy the epic nature of the Star Wars saga, cosplay character dress-up, and fun Star Wars crafts will be drawn by the force to this June Term!                                           

Acrylic Painting - Inside and Out                                   Melissa McCanna             
Delaney in Acrylic Painting classWell-known artists from all artistic movements found inspiration from nature as well as from common objects inside their studios. We will start week one by looking at famous artists’ studios and painting still life objects that may have been found there, touching on cubism and modern art. We will end the week with a finished acrylic painting inspired by artists like Paul Cézanne, Andy Warhol and Wayne Thiebaud. The second week we will step outside and paint plein-aire! With lessons in composition, sketching and initial lay-in acrylic painting, we will complete a second acrylic painting. The completed painting will be of a landscape inspired by the outdoors and masters like Claude Monet, David Hockney, and Richard Diebenkorn. During our last week of painting, we’ll explore combining skills in still life and landscape painting to create art from our own imaginations. Learning about different surrealist artists and where they found inspiration, we will write and sketch ideas that can then be put into a final surrealist painting. Artists of inspiration will be Salvador Dali, René Magritte, and Dorothea Tanning.
This is a very interactive and creative class, using paint and other media to find different ways to express our natural and inner worlds on canvas. By the end of class, students will have about ten studies and three complete paintings to share with friends and family in an art show on campus.
Mr. Tryba advising West on his project in Electronics June Term classSTEAM Electronics                                                         Spencer Tryba 

We have all heard that computers are just a bunch of 1s and 0s, but how does that work? Or how does your car decipher radio waves to play the latest song? And what is a circuit anyway? We will uncover all of these mysteries and others as we explore the world or electronics.

We will start with the basics as we learn about voltage, current, resistance and Ohm’s Law. We will add to the complexity of our circuits as we introduce LEDs, relays, switches, and transistors. We will harness the power of the Sun to drive motors with solar arrays and journey into the world of the invisible as we detangle the space tape obscuring electromagnetism. Finally, we’ll end June Term with an electronics service project for the campus.

Alice and Ms. Garvin lead a practice session in Contemporary Dance Contemporary Dance                                                     Alayna Garvin

Modern, hip hop, lyrical dance types are all possible in this student-led exploration of contemporary dance. The course will have a warm-up, learning and movement practice. Students will interpret and choreograph movement to music by popular artists.

The culmination of this course will be a dance performance. In the words of Justin Timberlake, “I got this feeling inside my bones...Nothing I can see but you when you dance, dance, dance…”

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June Term Courses - Half-Day Afternoon

Science and the Movies                                                Karen Mattick

Jenna and Danny test the bus jump scene from the movie 'Speed'If you've been around the WSA community for awhile, you remember the especially laughable made-for-TV movie called 10.5. What other films has Hollywood created that get the science so wrong? In this June Term, we will explore how bullets, cannonballs, flying cars and other projectiles actually move as described by Newtonian physics. Then we will compare movie depictions of motion. In what ways do Spider Man, the Incredible Hulk and other films mess with the laws of thermodynamics? We will consider explosions, including nuclear bombs that sometimes make for a very bad day and at other times save the day. Does Hollywood get the biological world right? What happens when one scales up a gorilla to King Kong? Could natural selection lead to X-Men? We will throw in some earth and climate change science to round out our studies. Students will engage in a mix of hands-on activities, lectures, research, movie clips and a feature length movie each week. Students will create storyboards for their own movie scenes that entertain and get the science right. Finally, we will close this June Term by choosing a film that makes for excellent cinema and honors the way our universe actually works.

Sam at work on his canoe
Make Your Own Canoe                                                   Duncan Forbes

The fun and pride of paddling a canoe that you built yourself can be yours. In this course students will build their own plywood canoe to take home with them at the end of the course. The canoe is constructed from two 4' x 8' sheets of marine plywood and a few pieces of dimensional lumber and, with epoxy glued seams, is watertight from the moment it hits the water. When completed, the canoe is 15'3" in length with a 31½" beam and weighs only 65 pounds. The canoe has a max load of 250 pounds and is intended for sheltered waters. It is built using ordinary tools and materials. The canoe gives everybody access to boatbuilding and a boat. In the process students will learn how to transfer plans to full size pieces, use hand and power tools, see real world applications of mathematics and learn the basics of plywood boat building.  Canoes will be finished at the end of the course and there even may be time for painting the canoe. 

Justin makes his moves past Curry
Basketball Diaries                                                           Eric Bright

Basketball Diaries is a course for students wanting to learn about the game, get some exercise, and have some fun. The academic component will explore the history of the game and its cultural and social significance through film, interviews, documentaries, and music. The physical component will involve daily exercise, practicing individual and team skills, and playing basketball. In addition, students will be given responsibility for working in teams, developing daily regimens and strategies, and setting individual and team goals to be achieved by the end of the term.

So if you’re looking to get out of the classroom and run around, learn a new sport, teach others about a sport you love, and engage in a little friendly competition please come out and play some basketball!

Blaire reading up on time travelTime Travel                                                                        Lionel Pummell

Explore the theories of time travel through literature and media. From H.G. Wells, The Time Machine, and Dr. Who, we will look at how time travel is represented and look at current theories on what could actually be possible with today’s and tomorrow’s technology. Through writing and discussion we will explore the possible paradoxes and ethical implications of time travel.

“Even if it turns out that time travel is impossible, it is important that we understand why it is impossible.”
         - Stephen Hawking

Band Camp for Grades 6-8 Only                                    Crystal Thornell

Student musicians practicing their parts in Band CampThis introductory course is offered to middle school students who want to learn to play a concert band instrument and to read music. Instruments offered include flute, clarinet, trumpet, trombone, and percussion (mallet instruments, snare drum, and other percussion accessory instruments). Due to the potential for limited availability of each instrument, students will be asked to select their first, second, and third choices. Music skills learned in this course will be very applicable to school music and ensemble classes!  This course will cover three primary areas:

1) Playing an instrument: Students will learn to play beginning sounds and notes on their instrument with proper breathing, intonation, fingering, embouchure, and articulation techniques. They’ll learn how to maintain their instrument, effective practice techniques, and how to use tools of the trade (metronome, tuner, etc.).
2) Music reading, ear training, and listening: Students will learn to read beginning notes, rhythms, and expression symbols. We’ll use games, activities, videos, and listening examples to practice and reinforce these skills.
3) Composing music: Students will apply their new music reading skills and learn to compose a simple piece of music using an online music notation program. The course will culminate with a performance for the school!

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June Term Courses - Full Day

Let’s Put on a Show!                                                      Gretchen Nordleaf-Nelson and Julieta Vitullo

The cast of 'Girls on the Run' - WSA's Middle School theatre productionSchool students will have the opportunity to work on and off the stage in this June Term course. Students will audition and be cast for a middle school theatrical production. Students will focus on realistic acting, commanding audience attention, and developing a stage presence. They will learn and understand stage directions so they can follow basic directing, and use proper techniques for body and voice control. Students will learn and discuss the basic elements of drama to better understand and analyze characters and scripted material. The cast will also act as crew and we will be making our own costumes, set pieces and props too.

The entire casting and play production will be done during June Term with performances scheduled on June 10 and 11. A few upper school students may enroll in order to assist with tech and production as Stage Manager and/or Student Director.

June Tunes                                                                      Paul Burback and Jenny Davis

A rehearsal session in the June Tunes music ensemble classJune Tunes is an all day music ensemble course with the goal of a live performance on June 9th.

Students who are considering taking this class should have intermediate to advanced experience on at least one instrument.

The class will work together as a group to deconstruct and reconstruct music along their own lines of inquiry. Students will be actively involved in choosing their song selections and organizing rehearsal time. This class will also focus on teaching students about the technical side of live sound and stage design. 

Exploring Western Washington's Greatest Places      Lisa Gsellman and Eryn Morrigan

Olympic National Park - Britannica ImageQuestWestern Washington is home to many unique and beautiful places. Your adventure guides, Eryn and Lisa, will take you on exciting excursions throughout our own region, from the city to the ocean and in between!

You will gain skills in orienteering that can be applied on campus for geocaching treasure hunts and on field trips that you will help to plan. Some places we could explore together might include the Seattle Underground Tour, the Olympic National Park, the Museum of Flight, and so much more.

We hope to even do an overnight or two. This class will explore this beautiful place we all call home!


Independent June Term - Full or Half-Day


A student intending to propose an Independent June Term course of study can choose between half day or full day. The student must indicate their intention on the form below along with the independent June Term course proposal that is available on our website on the June Term page. All independent June Term course proposals must include a designated adult supervisor or mentor that is not a parent. Only domestic upper school students are eligible for an independent June Term unless otherwise arranged with the Head of School. Please submit an Independent June Term form even if you have already communicated verbally about your plan to the Head of School.



Washington D.C. and New York City                              Catherine Freeman and Lorri Brito

Olivia and Sam at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C.Feel the pulse of the American spirit during this journey to two of the nation’s most influential cities. From the White House and the U.S. Capitol to Times Square and the Statue of Liberty, discover how these two great cities have helped shape our past, present and future. 

Before our expedition, we will ask questions, research and explore the history, geography, literature and culture of these two famous cities. Using technology, music and film we will familiarize ourselves and plan our adventure. Five days of our TREC term will be spent exploring first hand and experiencing upclose a variety of vibrant and historical sites.

After our trip, we will spend time reflecting, journaling and developing a presentation for our West Sound Academy community.

Eastern Europe                                                              Kim Uyyek and Tomese Buthod

Prague Castle and St. Vitus Cathedral - Britannica ImageQuestTravel through the Iron Curtain and World War II to Gothic cathedrals and ancient cities that are now more lively than ever. First we'll visit Berlin, with its historical significance, rich culture and an exciting culture and sophistication. Next we'll visit Prague, a city that escaped the bombs of World War II and now delights visitors with its old-world charm. And in Krakow and Budapest, two of Europe’s most underrated cities, architectural treasures await around every corner. We leave on our nine-day adventure on May 30.  Prior to departure, we'll be meeting at school to learn about the cultures of these cities and countries, as well as practice some essential phrases in German, Polish, Hungarian and Czech.  We'll also learn some important tips on packing for international travel!  

We return on June 8, and we'll be at school the next day to make a presentation to the rest of WSA about our trip.

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