Winterim 2023 kicked off this week! First adopted in 1991 when the January term was gaining popularity at the collegiate level, Winterim shows our enduring commitment to innovation in the classroom. During this term, students have opportunities to dive into specialized topics and skills. Additionally, over one hundred and fifty of our students have chosen to intern with businesses and ministries where they will gain valuable career insights.
As we look back on the first week of Winterim 2023, we are highlighting just a few of the explorative learning opportunities that are taking place in our classrooms this year.
Service Project Class
In our Service Projects class, students are seeking ways to serve both Wheaton Academy and our local community. They visited Wayside Cross Ministries in Aurora and Feed My Starving children this week. Pictured below, the group packs care packages for the Ronald McDonald House in Chicago.
Service is one of the core values that we cultivate in our community. Through opportunities like this one, we teach students to find joy in offering their gifts to build God’s kingdom.
Worship Leading & Beginner Guitar
Students in Worship Leading & Beginner Guitar are reflecting on the Biblical foundations of worship, examining historic and current practices, and learning practical skills like playing the guitar.
In the picture below, Mr. Hogan helps students to select a song and pick a key that works best for their voices. These students have the opportunity to draw on Mr. Hogan’s many years of experience leading music as they consider how they may serve in future worship ministries.
In Rock Climbing this week, the class observed and practiced the many different climbing techniques. More than half the class earned their belay-certification at Vertical Endeavors in Glendale Heights. Students gained experience top rope climbing, building, auto-belay climbing, and bouldering.
Mrs. Urban explains, “Rock climbing is a unique opportunity for students to develop their physical, mental, and social skills in harmony. As they work to ascend complex routes, students are challenged to think and move creatively. And it all happens in the context of a supportive and safe community, where students can experience the joy of sharing adventure and challenge with others.”
Finding Joy in Painting
In Finding Joy in Painting, students are leaning into their creative side as they learn to paint using acrylics. Together in class, these students reflect on our Creator God and consider who we are as creators, made in His image.
This week, our Aviation class visited an airport hangar, practiced their piloting abilities on a flight simulator, and built their own gliders!
In past years, this class inspired students like Stephanie ’19 to eventually attend the Air Force Academy. Reflecting on her Winterim experience, she shared, “Winterim at Wheaton Academy changed the direction of my life. During my freshman year, I took an aviation class. During that class I gained a passion for flying. I did not know how to process it at the time, but I now know that it was in that Winterim class that God called me to become a pilot!”
For over twenty years, students have enjoyed unique and intensive hands-on learning during Winterim. Stay tuned next week to hear about more classroom experiences and hear from our interns.