Potter Jr High School
Elective Course Offerings 2017-2018
21st Century Journalism (7th & 8th Grade)
The 21st Century Journalism class provides students with the ability to lead and deliver the daily morning news in a broadcast format, school-wide. Students will develop a variety of skills through the use of technology to run broadcasts and create and edit videos. In addition, students with further develop public speaking skills as a result of leading announcements in front of the camera. Students also work on collaborative projects and become experts in different roles needed to produce and anchor a tv broadcasting station.
Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) (7th & 8th Grade)
AVID is an academic elective class to prepare all students for college readiness and success in a global society. This course supports student learning the WICOR Strategies - writing, inquiry, collaboration, organization, and reading. In this course students learn the Cornell Way of focused note-taking, conduct tutorials on academic topics, and utilize and maintain organized binders. The students in this class are leaders on campus and in the community, as they participate in volunteer opportunities and educate their peers on college opportunities for the future. Additionally, AVID students participate in field trips including college visits and trips to educational and historical locations.
Associated Student Body (ASB)/Student Lighthouse Culture Team (7th & 8th Grade)
The ASB class supports students’ leadership development as class members work together to plan and implement school events like dances and spirit days. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens are incorporated into class lessons, as students learn how to utilize the habits to function as the “Lighthouse Team”. Students selected for this class are hardworking and able to maintain good grades despite being out of class to prepare for activities periodically. As role models, ASB students synergize with other students, school staff, parents, and community members to create a positive school culture where all students on campus feel welcome, safe, and included.
Band/Advanced Band (7th & 8th Grade)
Advanced Band is open by audition for those students who are proficient on their instrument. Emphasis is on advanced skills development and ensemble performance. The Advanced Band is a performance group and represents Potter Jr. High at community events. Potter’s Advanced Band also participates in out-of-town performances and competes with other middle schools during the annual music festivals, including a 2-day festival at Disneyland or Magic Mountain. A uniform is required. Fundraisers are offered to help pay for uniforms and trip expenses. Students entering this course should have had at least one, and possibly two or more years of study on their instrument. Please see band instructor for correct placement in intermediate and advanced band course placement.
Band/Beginning Band (7th & 8th Grade)
The Beginning Band class is open to all students interested in learning how to play a band instrument. Instruments include flute, oboe, bassoon, clarinet, bass clarinet, alto saxophone, tenor saxophone, bari saxophone, trumpet, French horn, trombone, baritone horn, tuba, and percussion (bells and drum pad). Students wanting to learn percussion should have had at least one year of study on another instrument (preferably piano). All students will be provided an instrument depending on availability. Students will learn how to assemble, care for, hold, and make a sound on the instrument, class and rehearsal etiquette, how to read music, and how to play as a group.
Band/Intermediate Band (7th & 8th Grade)
Intermediate Band is open to all students who wish to improve their skills on their instrument. Students will be provided an instrument depending on availability. In this intermediate course emphasis is on rehearsal technique and ensemble performance. This band will participate in a music festival at Disneyland or Six Flags Magic Mountain. Fundraisers are offered to help pay for trip expenses. Students entering this course should have had approximately one year of study on their instrument. Please see band instructor for correct placement in intermediate and advanced band course placement.
Peer Tutoring (7th & 8th Grade)
When signing up for this class, you will be assigned a teacher and class to help tutor students individually or in small groups. You will take direction from the classroom teacher to know which students to help and how to help them. This is a great elective to use the 7 Habits through synergizing with other students and helping them to be successful. You must have teacher recommendation, stellar citizenship remarks, and A’s and B’s in your classes. Peer tutoring is open to any student wishing to use leadership skills with their peers.
Performance Choir (7th & 8th Grade)
Choir is open to all students (male and female) who are interested in singing in a group setting. Proper posture, breath support, diction, and tone quality will be stressed. We will be singing two- and three-part traditional songs, popular songs, folk songs, multicultural songs, and patriotic songs in class. Additionally, this group incorporates movement and choreography within their music and students may help design and choreograph some routines. Performance Choir participates in the annual music festivals and may require additional evening and weekend performances. Fundraisers are offered to help pay for uniforms and trip expenses.
STEAM: Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Mathematics (7th & 8th Grade)
This class is custom designed for all students to learn through hands-on experimentation, design, trial and error. Student engagement is key and allows students to analyze, synthesize, and evaluate what they have learned. Students will have the opportunity to work on project based units that include all STEAM components. This course offers a state of the art computer lab including a 3-D Printer and Computer Aided Design and Drafting (CAD) software, as well as other student friendly programs for design. The art classroom gives students the opportunity to work with tools and various mediums as they learn real world concepts and develop higher order thinking skills that will prepare them for the 21st century. Students will have the technology class and the art class for half the year and then switch.
Robotics & Computer Programming (STEAM Technology) (8th Grade)
Students will work cooperatively on projects as they explore the topic areas of computer literacy, computer coding and programming, and robotics. They will work with software and online websites to enhance computer skills and explore various technological programs. Students will use the EV3 Mindstorms Lego equipment and work in collaborative teams to problem solve and program a robot to complete various challenges. The robotics portion of the class will begin with basic programing skills and build up to using advanced algorithms. Students will learn how to use sensors, hardware, computer programs while programming robot characteristics. The course will allow students to move on to new challenges as they master each task and develop technological and 21st century skills.
Spanish (8th Grade)
This is an introductory class to Spanish language and culture, and students will begin to develop skills in listening, speaking, reading and writing. The class will be conducted primarily in Spanish with the goal of helping each student become a competent communicator by the end of the year. Frequent oral work in pairs and small groups will be used to reinforce student learning. Additionally, the class will be infused with cultural activities from Spanish-speaking countries across the globe so students will develop an understanding and appreciation of the cultural diversity within Spanish-speaking countries.
Study Skills (7th & 8th Grade)
Study Skills is an intervention class providing students earning grades of D’s and/or F’s with the opportunity to complete homework while at school in a small classroom environment with teacher support. Students may also receive individual assistance on classwork for various subjects. This course focuses on techniques and learning strategies to improve students’ organizational and study skills. Students learn how to set goals, develop strategies to achieve them, and monitor progress throughout the quarter. Specific areas of study include taking organized notes, time management, and test-taking strategies. At the beginning of each trimester both 7th and 8th graders have the opportunity to be added to or removed from this class as grades change throughout the school year.
TA for Unique Learners (7th & 8th Grade)
This is an elective where you have an amazing opportunity to work with our students who have the highest level of need on our campus. Students work on academics and other individualized skills in the classroom and/or at PE. You must have satisfactory citizenship remarks and willingness to work alongside students with varied needs. No prior experience necessary. Students in this elective will experience how they can be influential in bringing out the best in others.
Teacher’s Assistant (8th Grade)
This is a leadership opportunity for students to help a specific teacher in their classroom or on the PE field, or provide assistance to the school counseling or main offices on a daily basis. Students greet visitors, provide campus tours, and perform various duties needed to support the classroom or office. Students may also help grade and file papers, organize the classroom, and facilitate PE activities. Students will strengthen communication skills, develop the ability to work independently and collaboratively with others while contributing to school community. Students must maintain grades of C’s or better in their classes and demonstrate ready, respectful and responsible behavior. Additionally, a teacher, school counselor or administrator must sign the student’s elective form, stating that the student has their approval to be their assistant.
Yearbook (7th & 8th Grade)
In this year-long elective class students work in a professional environment, both individually and on teams, to create publications for our school community including the annual school yearbook. Students will learn to use computers for graphic design, cameras and photo editing software, and other components of technology. Additionally, students will gain basic skills in sales and advertising as they promote the yearbook to the student population. This is a fun, fast-paced class where students work together to meet deadlines and create a beautiful yearbook full of memories that will last a lifetime.