Updated: Jul 23, 2020
Exploration HS knows that learning starts with trust, goals, and passion. Advisory is where we build those components.
“Exploration is intentionally designed around a personalized advisory model to build, foster, and maintain deep and meaningful relationships.”
Relationships drive Exploration High School. Exploration is intentionally designed around a personalized advisory model to build, foster, and maintain deep and meaningful relationships. Advisors help their explorers navigate the academic, social, emotional, and community experience at Exploration and beyond. Explorers meet with their advisors daily, working closely together in one-on-one and group settings to plan their academic pathways, reflect on their learning experiences, set goals, track progress, and find ways in which Explorers can learn about, practice, and share their passions.
We at Exploration High School strive to create self-directed, conscientious, community problem-solvers. Importantly, adults work with students to guide them in their growth and development -- advisories are one of the main ways we support our students! In advisory, Guides facilitate personal development. Guides lead students through strengths finder activities, world view exercise, social justice circles, and other experiences to help Explorers understand who they are, what their skills and strengths are, and what sort of experiences can help them learn and grow. Guides build off frameworks of existing resources to develop more self-direction in students; one example of these resources is the AVID program which exposes students to organization systems, time management, asking questions, and self advocacy. At the end of the day, advisories are a place of support, safety, strong relationships, and growth. Students are coached to learn the soft skills of school, like time management, empathic listening, and self advocacy that enable them to truly be self-directed, conscientious, community problem-solvers.
Weekly Schedule Making
“Guides help explorers reflect on the the work that has been done and then plan for the work that needs to get done ahead.”
Lastly, flexibility makes the wheels turn at Exploration. Guides and explorers have the time and space to follow their passions and work on authentic projects in real time. This flexible framework is not chaos or anarchy. There is a rhythm and a reason. Specifically, each student has his or her own unique schedule for the week. Yes they attend anchor courses at the same time as some of their peers, but the majority of the student’s time is open for them to do work they care about. As such, the advisories guide students weekly in making their schedule. Guides help explorers reflect on the the work that has been done and then plan for the work that needs to get done ahead. Using their knowledge of their strengths and weaknesses, their ability to manage their time and advocate for themselves, students draft a weekly schedule that they have ownership over to do what they are passionate about while getting the adult and academic coaching to ensure deep and meaningful learning is happening. So, advisories make the wheel turn. Students are equipped with relationships and skills to be able to drive their own learning. Both students and teachers consistently monitor and adjust to modify what they are doing based on on-going reflections in order to maximize their time in school making it a place they love to be, learn meaningful and relevant things, and make the world around them a better place.