January 10: Today's JTerm Highlights

Textiles and Tech Styles: Students have been learning how to incorporate textile design and technology in this JTerm course. Work on their final projects is underway. Felia Zhu '17 painted Vincent Van Gogh's The Starry Night and will silkscreen it on a sweatshirt. She then plans to light the stars by sewing in LED lights. Dylan Ott '20 is making a tie that includes LED lights that will be connected to a volume meter. Other students are crocheting scarves that will also include lights. One student is incorporating a temperature gauge that will trigger blue lights to turn on the colder the temperature. "Everybody is using their imagination to create something," explained Jen Phiambolis. "It's really nice to combine art with technology. If they can dream it, they can make it." Matt Memmo is also teaching this class.

Innovation with K'NEX: Walking into this classroom is a bit of an obstacle course. Teams of students are working on the design and construction of some very impressive structures. This is the first JTerm experience for freshmen Neil Bam, Reagan Synder, and Brendan DePillis. They are building a seven-foot, fully automated grandfather clock. And the pendulum swings! "I have never used K"NEX before," explained Reagan. "I have learned a lot about calculations and applying them and learning how they are used to build in the real world. It's interesting to practice different skills than you usually do in the school day." Final projects will be on display later in the week in the Honor Hall. Teachers: Teddy Mathisen, Cheryl Mitchell, and George Lorenson.

Dance Marathon: Mark your calendars for Thursday, March 3. These students are planning a DanceEAthon. The class is working with the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia to raise money for the fight against Friedreich's Ataxia. Today students went to Temple University to meet student leaders of Temple's HootaThon for planning advice and suggestions. Last week, EA alums James Costalas '13 and Robin Farrell '13 came to campus to share their experience and tips working on Penn State's popular Thon Weekend. The teachers in this class are Kelly Edwards and Jim Farrell. The DanceEAthon will take place from 2 - 10 p.m. in the Competition Gym on March 3.

Faith, Family, and Food: Traditions Around the Table: Today the twelve students in this course gathered in the kitchen and around the table to share in a traditional Diwali meal. Seniors Sarah Wingfield, Cathy Wang, Jason Miller and Jack O'Connell prepared today's feast. Yesterday the class learned about Indian recipes and traditions from EA parent Divya Mukherjee. Tomorrow the group travels to Philadelphia to tour and learn about the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. On Thursday, students will cook and share an Orthodox Easter meal. Cheryl McLauchlan and Holly Johnston work with this class in Mrs. McLauchlan's home kitchen. "The best part about this JTerm class is just sitting around the table and talking," said sophomore Carson Fischer.

Podcasting: After creating their first podcast episodes in small groups, students in Mr. Shapiro's Podcasting course spent the day learning about the importance of marketing and promotion. EA Assistant Director of Communications Kate LaBrake began the day with a lesson on the topic, beginning with the basics of marketing and ending with 10 promotional strategies to build audience. Students used that advice to build their online and social media presence and strategize how to gain listeners. They also created visual identities for their podcasts, including finalizing names, writing compelling descriptions, and designing logos. All student-created podcasts, which range from technology to sports to conspiracy theories, will be available on the EA website by the end of the week.

Museums: The Museums class spent the day exploring the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA). After speaking with PAFA President (and proud EA parent) David Brigham, the students took a tour of the institute's art and architecture. Students snapped photos, took notes, and even posed alongside some of their favorite paintings. The tour ended in the casting room, where students were invited to practice their own artistic skills by sketching statues on provided easels. The Museums class has toured some of the region's best institutions in art and history. Since last Tuesday, students have enjoyed customized experiences at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Brandywine River Museum, and more.