Course Descriptions
Life Skills 7  (Required)
Students will be exploring the various curriculum areas taught in the Family and Consumer Science Department.  The semester begins with a Teen Issues unit introducing them to High School—participating in activities that  every 7th grader needs to know about peer pressure, self-esteem, relationships,  attitude, and decision making.  The Child Development/Exploring Childhood unit involves students in a babysitting course in which  students will learn about care techniques and safety considerations using the Baby Think It Over infant care simulator.  We will get a head start on Career Horizons by assessing career interests and looking at jobs to match their interests.  Preparation of quick and easy recipes in the foods lab will prepare students for the more advanced classes of Basic Foods, Food Prep, and Foods  Around the World. Our final unit involves the construction of a nylon back pack in preparation for Recreational Sewing.

 Teen Issues     (9 -12)     Semester
Day after day, our society continues to speed along at a dizzying pace.  As a side-product of such a fast-moving culture, today’s teens are exposed to many complex social issues.  Whether the topic is unplanned pregnancy, drug experimentation, alcohol addiction, or STI’s  and HIV infection,  one thing holds true:  it’s hard to be a teenager today.  Most teens are simply not equipped with the sort of life skills that would be sufficient to cope with the kinds of difficult choices that teens must now make.  In order for teens to grow into emotionally stable young adults, they need to learn many new skills in three basic areas;  decision making, coping and stress reduction, and interpersonal relationships.  In Teen Issues,  students examine such significant issues as stress, broken relationships, depression, anger , sex and the unexpected consequences of risky behaviors.  By helping students to examine the myriad of choices they face, we can prepare them to make better and healthier choices for their future.

College Ready   (11 – 12)       (Offered both Semesters)                                                                   Semester 
College Ready is a class designed to prepare students for college success.  From an academic perspective, “college readiness” means that a student has the knowledge and skills necessary to qualify for, and succeed in, the postsecondary education needed for their chosen career.  However, we all know that college success is also about time management, knowing how to study, and utilizing resources.  The resources used in this class, as explained  in the following paragraphs, are all student driven;  you work independently, at your own speed, on those areas that are specific to your individualized needs.
PrepMe is a personalized , custom study plan which will adapt to your strengths and weaknesses, concentrating on those academic areas of english, math, reading and science in which you need the most help.  You will spend 60-90 minutes per week working your way through 60 hours of ACT test prep lessons, which include 84 multi-media lessons and 75 quizzes.  Detailed reports are provided along the way on your progress. Although it is not a promise (!) participants in this program generally see a 3 point increase on their ACT test score; this generally equates to more scholarship dollars.  Higher ACT scores are even a benefit  for students choosing open enrollment schools that do not require ACT scores for admissions;  these colleges are often  accepting ACT scores in place of the ACCU-Placer.  Higher scores might save you some Gen Ed classes, and that means tuition dollars saved.
ACE Brain Fitness  is a one-on-one, hands-on program building the skills of attention, processing speed, memory, logic and reasoning.  A certified cognitive skills trainer from ACE Brain Fitness will be coming in to our classroom on a regular basis to individually help you sharpen your mental skills to improve your academic success.  The ACE skill building activities will help you to maximize your potential through cognitive skills training and test taking techniques.
Peterson’s Academic Test Prep is a component of the MCIS College and Career program that students become acquainted with in Career Horizons class.  The ACT is a standardized college entrance examination that measures knowledge in the academic areas.   Getting a competitive score on the ACT test can be essential to getting into the college of your choice as well as improving your chances of qualifying for a scholarship.  Strategies for specific question types will be provided, and key components of successful ACT preparation will be identified.
The College Level Examination Program  (also known as CLEP), allows students to “test out” of courses in which you are already proficient.  Most colleges let you test for credit through the College Level Examination Program, through the College Board.  Any fees for taking the exam or applying the credit probably won’t be as high as the tuition for taking the course would be.  Did you take an AP class here at W-K and get a score of 1 or 2?  You have the knowledge,  maybe you just need some testing skills? The CLEP would give you an opportunity (maybe a second chance) to test out of a college level course.  Practice tests are available in math, natural sciences, social sciences, college composition and humanities.
Scholarships are financial aid awards for your accomplishments.  There is one for just about every talent or achievement!  Would you believe that Duck Tape awards $50,000.00 a year to students who create their prom outfits with Duck Tape?   It takes money to go to college, and in this class we are going to search for scholarships that you can qualify for, do the applications, write the essays, do the projects, create the portfolio, or yes…even Duck Tape  your prom outfit if that is what you need to do! The more scholarships you apply for, the greater chance you have of receiving one.  Whether you are a junior or senior in class, we have access to a fully searchable listing of 1.6 million scholarships.  

Senior Issues    (12)    Semester
Do you need some help getting ready for life after high school graduation?  Senior Issues is designed for the college bound student who could use some step-by-step guidance as you make plans for your higher education.  Whether you choose a community college, a career college, a technical school or a 4 year university, there are lots of things that need to be considered in the fall of your senior year.     We will begin by assessing your interests and skills and identifying your goals.  We will research college majors, minors and courses of study to fit with your occupation of choice, and compare the many college options available to you.  We will complete your college applications in class and write all of the essays that you might need not only for your college applications but also for your scholarship applications.    Students will do internet scholarship searches, learn about financial aid, and have class time to complete applications for both local and web based scholarships. Three field trips are offered to interested students:  Mayo Health Care Career Festival, the National College Fair at the Minneapolis Convention Center and a tri-college visit to Minnesota State College:  South East Technical, Winona State University and St. Mary’s University.  Guest speakers are invited to class to speak on various topics of interest.  Students will build their electronic portfolio (e-Folio Minnesota), create a written resume with a cover letter, and learn how to prepare for an effective interview.  On occasion, we will have a day of “What every senior needs to know about….” which might include such issues as Underage Drinking, Avoiding Party Meltdowns, or Club Drugs.    Senior Issues will help you to focus on the things that need to get done your senior year so that you can feel confident about your future.

Child Development  (9-12)   Semester
This course focuses on child development from conception through age one.   Some of the topics to be discussed include parenting skills and lifestyle changes, prenatal development, reproductive technology, genetics, multiple births, prenatal testing, environmental hazards, pregnancy, labor, child birth hospital procedures, development of the newborn, infant care, family planning and teenage pregnancy.  Students may become a “parent” to an electronic infant simulator (“Real Care Baby”) for one weekend to experience  the realities and responsibilities of parenthood.  Students are also offered the opportunity to use the “Empathy Belly”, a multi-component garment, to temporarily “experience” more than 20 of the typical symptoms of pregnancy.

 Exploring Childhood (9-12)  Semester 
Do you think you might like to be a parent, teacher, child-care worker, child psychologist, or work in another field related to children? This course will give you the opportunity to learn about yourself and your ability to relate to children.  We will study the development of children, birth through twelve years.  Mondays and Wednesdays of each week throughout the semester, students become observers and participants in elementary classrooms pre-school through grade 6.  On Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays students study a variety of theories regarding human behavior, learning and child development.  Through observation, hands on learning experiences and classroom discussions, we look at childhood from a variety of perspectives—personal, scientific, historical and cultural.  This course examines the various influences that shape us as members of the families and societies in which we are raised.

 Career Horizons (9-12)  Semester 
Who am I? What do I want to do with my life?  How do I get there?  Career Horizons is designed to help you develop life work plans.  It will help you to determine who you are and what you want from life.  This curriculum is designed to help you identify your strengths, values, passions, abilities and goals, then translate them into a future plan that will provide the life satisfaction that we all seek.  You won’t necessarily choose your life’s career in this class, but, you will learn a process that you can use again and again, as you adjust to the future and keep making plans.  Career Horizons emphasizes discussion, interactive learning and projects that get students involved in their learning.  Students will take self-assessments, enjoy guest speakers, go on field trips and explore a variety of careers.  They will review their high school plans and explore post-secondary options such as technical schools, colleges and apprenticeship programs.

Recreational Sewing I  (9-12)  Semester
This class is designed for the student that enjoyed sewing in Life Skills 7 and would like to further develop their skills.  Do you enjoy hands-on project work?  Students will apply step-by-step directions in the construction of the sewing projects of their choice.  Page through the Haan catalogue of sewing kits and find something exciting!  Some of the fun projects you can choose from include sports bags, stuffed animals, pillows of all styles, back sacks, locker caddies, fleece blankets, pants, shirts, jackets, hats, mittens, gun cases, snowboard bags, hunting belt pouches, and CD cases.   Students will learn essential skills for construction—pattern layout, cutting, marking techniques and assembly.  Students will learn relevant technical vocabulary, demonstrate proper use of tools and demonstrate safe procedures on the sewing machines.

 Recreational Sewing II and III  (9-12)  Semester
Prerequisite:  Recreational Sewing I and II
 These classes are offered during the same class period as Recreational Sewing I and allow for students to progress with their skills.  You may continue to choose sewing kits from the Haan catalogue, or construct projects of your own finding.   Ideas might include hunting, fishing or camping gear, room décor items, quilts, or curtains.  If you have a pattern and can sew it, it is likely to be approved as a class project.

 Basic Foods (9-12)  Semester
 Want to cook something? This is the class for you!  Students will learn how to prepare basic foods using appropriate techniques and principles of food preparation.  Whether you are cooking or baking, lots of “tips” to make your final product a success will be offered.  Units include Quick Breads, Yeast Breads, Deep Fat Frying, Pizza, Pies and Pastry, Cookies, Fruits and Vegetables, Cheese, Eggs, Milk and Meat.   This course will also help students understand the benefits and responsibilities of group membership.  Students participate in classroom foods labs that are designed to practice cooperation, organization, safety and sanitation.  Problem solving and interpersonal group skills are practiced as students work their way throughout recipe after recipe. 

 Food Prep  (9-12)  Semester
 Prerequisite:   Basic Foods 
Students in this class will be working alongside Basic Foods students during the same class periods.  You will be focusing on the same units of study (see Basic Foods).  The difference is that you will be developing your own action plans!  You will need to be a self-starter and highly motivated.  The emphasis in Food Prep is the use of kitchen equipment.  Knowing how to use the right equipment makes cooking easier and more fun.  You will learn how to use the food processor, hand blender, pressure cooker, ice cream maker, food dehydrator, bread machine, gourmet grill, heart waffler, krumkake baker, lefsa baker, convection oven and more.    You will be choosing your own recipes, making your own market orders, and planning your own labs.  While students in Basic Foods are kneading their yeast bread by hand, you will be figuring out how to make the bread of your own choice in the bread machine.

 Foods Around the World I (9-12)  Semester
 This course takes students on a journey to discover the foods of America and the world.  Any food loving student interested in culture and cuisine will enjoy preparing and tasting typical dishes from the United States, Latin America, Europe, the Mediterranean, Middle East, Africa and Asia.  Students taste their way around the world, preparing classic recipes that will give them a greater appreciation of the diversity of meal patterns and food habits enjoyed by groups of people internationally.

 Foods Around the World II (9-12)  Semester
Prerequisite:  Foods Around the World I
 This advanced course is for the student who would like to continue their exploration of the world’s culture and cuisine.  Students will be working alongside Foods Around the World I students during the same class period, but you will be working independently on your own projects of your own choice.  You will be independently researching the cultures and cuisines of your choice, choosing  your own recipes, making your own market orders and planning your own labs.