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The Seminar Secret Menu

Yessika+Aguilar+%2811%29%2C+Giselle+Medina+Segovia+%2812%29%2C+Gustavo+Muratalla+Jr+%2812%29%2C+and+Angel+Hernandez+%2812%29+collaborate+to+solve+an+issue+on+the+computer+for+a+client.+The+Charger+Tech+Team+is+an+enrichment+seminar+that+meets+on+Wednesdays+and+Thursdays+to+troubleshoot+technological+issues+for+students+and+staff+across+the+school.
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The Seminar Secret Menu

Yessika Aguilar (11), Giselle Medina Segovia (12), Gustavo Muratalla Jr (12), and Angel Hernandez (12) collaborate to solve an issue on the computer for a client. The Charger Tech Team is an enrichment seminar that meets on Wednesdays and Thursdays to troubleshoot technological issues for students and staff across the school.

Yessika Aguilar (11), Giselle Medina Segovia (12), Gustavo Muratalla Jr (12), and Angel Hernandez (12) collaborate to solve an issue on the computer for a client. The Charger Tech Team is an enrichment seminar that meets on Wednesdays and Thursdays to troubleshoot technological issues for students and staff across the school.

Yessika Aguilar (11), Giselle Medina Segovia (12), Gustavo Muratalla Jr (12), and Angel Hernandez (12) collaborate to solve an issue on the computer for a client. The Charger Tech Team is an enrichment seminar that meets on Wednesdays and Thursdays to troubleshoot technological issues for students and staff across the school.

Yessika Aguilar (11), Giselle Medina Segovia (12), Gustavo Muratalla Jr (12), and Angel Hernandez (12) collaborate to solve an issue on the computer for a client. The Charger Tech Team is an enrichment seminar that meets on Wednesdays and Thursdays to troubleshoot technological issues for students and staff across the school.

By Sam Haj, Staff Writer

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Ever since Dos Pueblos High School first implemented seminar in 2014, a majority of students and staff alike have enjoyed the extra time it provides to catch up or get a head start on their work. For those 40 minutes each Wednesday and Thursday, students use their seminar for a variety of purposesfrom completing homework, to studying for exams, to simply catching up on sleep.

In addition to the standard quiet, independent, and academic seminar environment, over the last couple of years, a number of new programs have been established as alternative options for students to participate in.

The first of these is a program seminar. These are specially designed for students already enrolled in certain classes. Program seminars allow students in electives such as theater, choir, DPNews, and more to stay in those programs during seminar and use the extra time to further their experience.

Seminar Activities Facilitator and English as a Second Language instructor Robin Selzler emphasizes the freedom that accompanies program seminars.

“If you’re in theater, and you want to spend extra time doing theater during seminar, you can be in that program seminar,” said Selzler. “If you’re in the choir, you can be singing during seminar with your choir group.”

Secondly, are the tutoring programs. DP offers help in math, writing, sciences, and technology through classes led by either student volunteers, teachers, or a combination of both.

Any student at DP can sign up to become a tutor in these programs or attend one to receive help themselves. Students who volunteer to teach their peers receive community service that contributes to their graduation requirement.

Teacher-led tutorials are less formal, typically established when many students request clarification on difficult subject material, and the teacher plans a review lesson to address their questions.

Students seeking understanding in a subject can request a golden ticket from the teacher of that subject prior to seminar, which will allow them to visit their teachers during seminar and receive personal help for a one-time session.

Enrichment seminars, on the other hand, are teacher-led classes focusing on a specific activity, which students participate in once a week.

According to Selzler, these seminars are more of an elective style, and seek to introduce students to activities they might never have previously attempted.

“One thing that’s important to understand about an enrichment is that one of the functions of an enrichment is for it to be an incentive,” Selzler said.

For example, if a student has a grade lower than a ‘C’ in any class, they will be pulled out of their enrichment seminar and placed in a study hall or tutorial program with their teacher to receive help so that they can raise their grade. As soon as the grade is improved, the student will be moved back into their enrichment seminar.

Some of the enrichment seminars that have been popular in the past are yoga and meditation, Zentangles, walk-and-talk, calligraphy, and gardening.

The Gardening and Permaculture seminar, one of the more prominent enrichment seminars at DP, is run by Art and Design teacher Kevin Gleason.

Enrichments like the Gardening and Permaculture seminar provide “time that [teachers] wouldn’t usually have during the day to teach something that’s not necessarily class related, but that a lot of students are interested in,” said Gleason.

Senior Fenna Roukema, who is enrolled in Gleason’s permaculture seminar, has enjoyed her experience and encourages other students to join an enrichment seminar.

“If it’s something you’re really interested in, it can really increase your learning,” said Roukema. “And also it’s a nice relaxing point in your day, just like an elective?where you are learning about something you love, but also just having a good time with your friends.”

All students are encouraged to join a program or enrichment seminar if they would like to, especially students who feel overwhelmed with schoolwork or who need some down time to unwind. Program and Enrichment seminars offer the opportunity to do just that. Plus, they give students a chance to explore something they are truly interested in—a chance that does not come at the expense of missed assignments.

“Anyone who likes the idea of being outside, working with plants, and getting their hands dirty who would like to join us, can come see me,” Gleason said in regard to his permaculture seminar.

There are a number of ways for students to learn about enrichment seminars, and a list of all the seminar classes available can be found on dphs.org, under the Seminar tab.

Although teachers are the main medium of recruiting students for their seminars currently, Selzler claims that the process will soon be streamlined.

“We’ll be advertising,” said Selzler. “So students can keep their eyes open for flyers around campus and announcements in DPNews.”

Students who want to switch into an enrichment seminar may go to the counseling office and fill out a blue paper labeled “Seminar Change Request Form.” After turning that in, they will be notified of their schedule change during first period, and may join their new seminar starting that week.

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