Monthly Archives: June 2018

Wilderness class teaches students how to survive in the outdoors

By Kenneth John Catimbang

Staff Writer

Introducing Wilderness to Summit Public Schools as a full-day Expeditions class taught by Melissa Bernstein has helped students experience and adventure through the outdoors and discover what students have been missing.

This class started in the 2016-17 school year, but it began as a half-day class. That changed when Ms. Bernstein decided to provide a wider experience – instead of learning from indoor classroom activities and short daily trips, the students now go on backpacking trips that can take days outside of school. This class is a great opportunity to better understand the outdoors.

See below for a video about the course:

Human Sexuality impacts the community

By Deandra Han, Jennifer Rico, Charlie Stattion, Karla Tran and Jasmine Villegas

Staff Writers

Human Sexuality is an Expeditions course that allows students to learn more about human bodies, gender and sexual orientation; it also gives students a chance to express themselves in a safe space. This course teaches students the importance of consent and the importance of knowing your body before getting involved in sexual intercourse.

Unfortunately, this class was disbanded mid-year at the South Bay campuses, so those who were in this class had to change courses. The loss of Human Sexuality greatly impacted the community; many students were upset that the class was no longer going to be available.

The Expeditions team has worked to relaunch the Human Sexuality course at its South Bay campuses, hiring Rebecca Breuer for the 2018-19 school year. Ms. Breuer will teach Human Sexuality at Rainier, Tahoma and Denali. Ms. Breuer has extensive experience in Sex Education; she also works as a fitness instructor, a skill she’ll bring to bear in her Health and Fitness class, which will be offered at Shasta. She has taught in many locations around the world, including New Zealand. She’s relocating to Summit from Tulsa, OK.

For more information about the course, see this video:

Organizers reflect on the Everest walkout

By Anna Scherer and Natally Tapia

Staff Writers

The organizers of the Sequoia Union Walkout put their skills to use and grew as activists on the day they took a stand for school safety. On March 14, students from Everest Public High School and Summit Preparatory Charter High School participated in the National Walkout Day to protest gun violence.

Everest freshman Tali Beres, a student in the Expeditions Social and Emotional Intelligence course, was one of the student organizers, along with Everest junior Samantha Suchite, a student in the Expeditions Human Rights course. The teacher who helped organize the walkout was Zoe Marinkovich, the Human Rights teacher. She said she helped organize the walkout because she wanted to provide resources to students who were fighting for their safety at school.

The walkout showed the students how to put the skills they gained in their Expeditions courses into use. Ms. Marinkovich explained what information she teaches in her Human Rights Expeditions course: “Through these case studies, students are asked to develop skills that Human Rights activists use. They do an oral history, and we also gain skills trying to understand what’s happening in our legislature right now: what laws are trying to be passed; what are activists working on to try and address some of these issues, and what does it mean for individuals citizens to be engaged in that process.”

See below for a video explaining more about this walkout:

Journalism students learn to communicate

 By Karina Ramirez and Karen Salazar

Staff Writers

Journalism is a way to share the news with our community. It is also an Expeditions course where students talk about current events that are happening and do professional writing such as articles that contribute to the community at Everest Public High School.

Journalism students learn useful things like writing structure and grammar; they also complete hands-on activities and improve their ability to create great content.

Celebration of Learning is an event after school where parents and students go to view the work that students did during Expeditions. The Journalism class showed a playlist of student-created videos and set up stations for visitors to view the student-produced website.

See below for a video about this course:

Note: Journalism became part of the Expeditions course offerings in the 2016-17 school year. For the 2017-18 school year, there were three journalism courses offered: Journalism, Advanced Journalism and Multimedia Journalism.

For the 2018-19 school year, all introductory students (anyone who has not previously taken a journalism course at Summit Public Schools) will be enrolled in a new course called Multimedia Political Journalism. As in school year 2016-17, the first round of Expeditions will focus heavily on political coverage in advance of the November elections. The subsequent three rounds will continue to include current event discussion, but the journalism production work will shift to additional student-selected topics. 

Here’s a look at the 2017-18 Multimedia Journalism class at Rainier (video produced by Cecelia Carrillo):

Here’s a look at the 2017-18 Journalism and Advanced Journalism courses at Rainier (video produced by Nicolas Medina):


Everest journalism program expands



Redwood City journalism programs expand

By Irving Frausto and Jose Lopez 

Staff Writers 

Journalism at Everest is becoming broader with the topics that are being reported and talked about. In the 2017-18 school year, Journalism focused more on matters that happened at Everest Public High School and other Summit Public School campuses.

This year, there are three journalism courses offered at Everest: Journalism, Advanced Journalism, and Multimedia Journalism.

Next school year, the Everest journalism program will create a student-led group that will be reporting on the same topics as before and trying to improve coverage in areas such as sports. One thing that will be added to the student-led group is job titles, such as Everest Sports Editor. The students who have those titles will be in charge of focusing on that one beat.

The students who will be leading the Everest journalism program for the 2018-19 school year are Jennifer Valencia and Molly Pigot, this year’s Managing Editors. As Editor-in-Chief, each will help supervise an independent study style course in which journalism students produce articles, multimedia features, and social media content.

Valencia said she aims to “kind of guide them through what I believe is going to be a great, good thing like we’re gonna – it’s like – you’re gonna have a lot more freedom to do what you want and choose the topics that you want and go and explore things that you want.”

See below for a video with more information:

Students at Summit Prep will also be leading a student-led advanced journalism course. See this video for more information about their plans:


Journalism students learn to communicate

Students learn the aspects of filmmaking

By Jennifer Mota and Jennifer Ruvalcaba

Staff Writers

In the Video Production class at Everest Public High School, Estrella Esparza-Johnson teaches her students how to take videos and photos correctly. She also makes sure the students work in groups and individually on the projects; however, Ms. Estrella grades all students individually so one student won’t do all the work. Also, when they are filming they use their phones instead of cameras. For Celebration of Learning, the class set up stations to screen their films.

Video Production TA and Everest senior Lynette Huerta explained, “In Video Production, the project the students worked on taught them how to take videos and photos at the perfect angle you need to do it in.”

See below for a video about this course:

Psychology Explorations helps students better understand themselves and others

By Paula Piva

Staff Writer

The Psychology Explorations Expeditions course allows students to learn about psychology while also learning about themselves. By learning about the brain and its different processes, as well as exploring different personality traits, disorders and therapies, students gain insight on their interactions with others.

For Celebration of Learning, a night where students showcase the culmination of their Expeditions projects to parents and members of the school community, Psychology Explorations students chose a psychological disorder to study and found a test and therapy to diagnose and treat the disorder.

When asked about what he hopes students take from this course, Psychology Explorations Expeditions teacher Vaughan Wilkin said: “I think getting who you are and why you are that way, and feeling more comfortable with it, would be a great starting spot.”

See below for a video about this course:

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