Elective Pathways

 
ELECTIVE COURSE DESCRIPTIONS
 

COLLEGE PREP

AVID-ADVANCEMENT VIA INDIVIDUAL DETERMINATION: (Year-Long Class) Elective course that prepares students for college and career readiness and success. Students will participate in activities that incorporate writing, inquiry, collaboration, organization, and reading to support their academic growth. AVID students take part in weekly student-led study groups, field trips to colleges each semester, monthly motivational activities, quarterly guest speakers, and research, to increase their knowledge of college and career options. Any student interested in this elective must fill out an application to be part of the class.

Student requirements:

  • GPA of 2.0 to 3.5
  • Application required
  • Meets or exceeds State tests for Math and ELA
  • May be the first generation in their family to attend college
  • Is a hard worker, has a positive attitude, and is collaborative in nature
 

INTRODUCTION TO AVID: COLLEGE PREP: (One Semester Class) Students are introduced to the foundational elements of the AVID year-long elective: maintaining a binder, learning to take focused notes, monitoring grades, participating in student-led study groups, experiencing different college/university options by way of virtual campus tours, and attending a college fair.  This course is open to both 7th and 8th graders. You can continue with AVID at BJH or BOHS. Join us to be more successful in school, college, and career.


Study Skills/Study Hall

BOBCAT ACADEMY: (One Semester Class) Bobcat Academy is an elective intervention class available to all students and will be taught by a credentialed BJH teacher. The elective course will focus primarily on academic support, monitoring Grade Portal, teaching organizational skills, homework completion, time management, and test taking  strategies. In addition, students will have fun and gain self confidence in their newfound abilities as a student.
 

VISUAL AND PERFORMING ARTS

BEGINNING GUITAR: (Year-Long Class) No musical experience is required for this class! This class is designed for students who have either very little or no experience playing guitar, or who may play using guitar tablature or chord symbols but do not know how to read standard music notation. Students will learn to read and play music and chords. Finger picking, chord strumming, and some rock techniques will be taught in a wide variety of music. Students do not participate in concerts for this class. 

INTERMEDIATE BAND: (Year-Long Class) This class is designed for students who have at least one year of experience playing a woodwind, brass, or percussion instrument. This is the recommended class for students who have played an instrument throughout elementary school or who have completed Beginning Band at BJH or at another school. Students should already have some basic skills in reading music. Students will continue to develop music-reading skills and more advanced playing techniques, and will perform at a variety of concerts, competitions, and events throughout the school year. Intermediate Band will prepare students for future participation in Concert Band, as well as high school band. Brea Junior High may provide a limited number of instruments and supplies for students’ use. Join the BJH instrumental music family!

CONCERT BAND: (Year-Long Class) Concert Band is the most advanced band at Brea Junior High, and students are placed in this class either after successful completion of Intermediate Band, successful audition, or recommendation of the teacher. Students will learn advanced music reading skills and playing techniques on a band instrument, and will perform extensively throughout the school year. The Concert Band regularly represents Brea Junior High at concert festivals and competitions across Southern California, including an annual performance at Disneyland or Knott’s Berry Farm. Auditions take place in June of the previous school year. Concert Band will prepare students for participation in high school band. Brea Junior High may provide a limited number of instruments and supplies for students’ use. Join the BJH instrumental music family!

JAZZ BAND: (Year-Long Class) Jazz Band is an advanced level band at Brea Junior High for students who are competent on saxophone, trumpet, trombone, or a rhythm instrument (piano, guitar, string bass, drumset). Students are placed in this class either after successful audition or recommendation of the teacher. Students will learn advanced musical skills and playing techniques in the jazz style as well as improvisation. Jazz Band will perform extensively throughout the school year. Jazz Band will prepare students for participation in the award winning BOHS Swingin’ Wildcat Jazz Band. Jazz Band must be taken concurrently with Concert Band or Intermediate Band.

BEGINNING ORCHESTRA: (Year-Long Class) No musical experience is required for this class! This class is designed for students who have either very little or no experience playing a string instrument (violin, viola, cello, string bass). Students will learn the basics of reading music and playing a string instrument, and will perform at a variety of concerts and events throughout the school year. Beginning Orchestra will prepare students for future participation in either the BJH Advanced Orchestra or high school orchestra. Brea Junior High may provide a limited number of instruments and supplies for students’ use.  Join the BJH instrumental music family!

ADVANCED  ORCHESTRA: (Year-Long Class) Advanced Orchestra is the most advanced string orchestra class at Brea Junior High, and students are placed in this class either after successful completion of Beginning Orchestra or recommendation of the teacher. Students will learn advanced music reading skills and playing techniques on a string instrument, and will perform at concert festivals and competitions across southern California. Advanced Orchestra will prepare students for participation in high school orchestra.  Brea Junior High may provide a limited number of instruments and supplies for students’ use. Join the BJH instrumental music family!
 

SHOW CHOIR EXPRESS: (Year-Long Class) This class is designed to teach students to sing and dance as part of a competing show choir. Teacher approval is required before any student may be enrolled in this award-winning ensemble. In the Fall Semester, Show Choir Express will perform a Broadway Night Concert at Choir Competitions throughout Southern California and host a Show Choir Competition for Middle Schools at BOHS. All students will also be given the opportunity to participate in the Spring Musical at BOHS as part of the chorus. This course is open to all students by AUDITION ONLY.

DRAMA: Acting, Improv, and Theatre (One Semester Class) If you’ve ever wanted to take a dive into the world of acting, this is the perfect place to start. In our class, we will actively participate in and learn the basics of theatre arts including: improvisation, voice projection, monologue/ensemble acting, and script analysis. We will view scenes from movies and television, dissect and critique the performances, and finally recreate the scenes ourselves. We will have guest speakers from “the business” visit the class and discuss their craft. Be ready to get up in front of the group and show us what you can do!

PLAY PRODUCTION: (One Semester Class) This class is offered during 2nd Semester. This course is designed for advanced student actors. Students will represent BJH in an evening and weekend production near the end of the school year. Students must be prepared to try out for roles in the play and be willing to work as part of the “stage team.” Classroom instruction includes the study of acting styles, classical and contemporary theatrical works and directing. Students are required to participate in after school or evening rehearsals. (Prerequisite : Drama Class)

ART 1: (One Semester Class) If you don’t know how to draw, this is the class for you. You will learn how to draw, shade, sketch and how to make objects look real (3-D). You will also learn how to mix colors using many varieties of paints. You will learn beginning sculpture. Your grade is based on effort. If you already know how to draw, this class will help you become a better artist. No previous drawing ability is required to join Art 1. This class in intended as a beginning pathway to the Visual Arts Program offered at Brea Olinda High School.

ART II: (One Semester Class) An intermediate level drawing, painting and graphic design course where students apply artistic processes and skills, using a variety of media, to communicate meaning and intent in original works of art. In addition, students analyze the role and development of visual arts in past and present cultures throughout the world, as it relates to the visual arts and artists. Concepts and techniques learned in Art I are used to create finished works of art. Also, a Visual Arts Pathway to BOHS. (Prerequisite: Art I)

S.T.E.M. - SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY, ENGINEERING AND MATH 

PRINCIPLES OF CHEMISTRY: (One Semester Class) This class is offered 1st semester only. Chemistry is intrinsic to the air we breath, the water we drink, and the materials around us. Chemistry 101 offers an introduction to the fundamental theories, laws and techniques of chemistry with emphasis on the contributions chemistry is making to modern life. The course will Include concepts of structure of matter, bonding, acid-base chemistry, organic chemistry, radioactivity, and thermodynamics.
 

MARINE BIOLOGY: (One Semester Class) Marine Biology is an introductory class which leads into Oceanography. Marine biology is the science of saltwater and everything that lives, moves, and filters through it. The word “marine” in this sense refers specifically to saltwater that you find in oceans, not freshwater, which is found in lakes. When you look at a globe, you can see that nearly three quarters of the Earth’s surface is covered with water. In this course, you will learn about life in the ocean depths, at the Polar Extremes, in coral reefs, estuaries, and in the open sea. You will learn about plants large and small , marine birds, reptiles, invertebrates and fish. You will learn how all these organisms connect with each other in the marine biome, and what threats are facing these ecosystems.

FORENSICS: (One Semester Class) This course enables students to see STEM through the eyes of a crime scene investigator. Investigators are trained individuals who collect various types of physical evidence at a crime scene. The basic principle of forensic  science is that every contact leaves a trace. The goal of this course is to isolate microscopic trace materials to identify their chemical makeup and origin. Students will have an opportunity to solve a mystery, supplemented with vivid details, a motive, a crime scene and evidence, all set up for their class to solve. Students will learn investigative skills and explore uses of technology through the use of labs, case studies, and online activities. This may include things like: DNA, fingerprinting, hair and fiber analysis, soil comparison and digital forensics.

PROJECT LEAD THE WAY (PLTW) DESIGN & MODELING: (One Semester Class) Students apply the design process to solve problems and understand the influence of creativity and innovation in their lives. They work in teams to design a playground and furniture, capturing research and ideas in their engineering notebooks. Using Autodesk design software, students create a virtual image of their designs and produce a portfolio to showcase their innovative solutions.

ENGINEERING THROUGH THE AGES: (One Semester Class) This class is designed as an extension to PLTW Design and Modeling class. Students will continue to use the design process and the SketchUp software to solve engineering challenges that humans have faced over time. Students will work collaboratively to design and build projects such as pyramids, bridges, catapults, cars, and rockets. (Prerequisite: PLTW Design & Modeling)

PROJECT LEAD THE WAY (PLTW) AUTOMATION & ROBOTICS: (One Semester Class) Project Lead the Way prepares students to be the most innovative and productive leaders in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) and to make meaningful, pioneering contributions to our world. In this course students will learn about mechanical systems, energy transfer, machine automation, coding in RobotC and computer control systems. The students will work collaboratively using the VEX Robotics platform to design, build and program real-world objects such as traffic lights, toll booths, VEX carnivals, robot dragsters, and automated delivery vehicles. 

COMPETITION ROBOTICS: (One Semester Class) This class is offered during 1st Semester. This class is designed for students who have taken PLTW Automation & Robotics and want to build more advanced robots and participate in robotics competitions. In this class you will work in teams to design, build and program a robot to compete in the current seasons VEX Robotics Competitions.  Students enrolling in this class must be willing to attend after school practices as well as weekend competitions. Students must fill out an application to be a part of this class. (Prerequisite: PLTW Automation & Robotics)


ADVANCED ROBOTICS: (One Semester Class) This class is offered during 2nd Semester. This class is designed for students who have taken PLTW Automation & Robotics and want to participate in more advanced robotics challenges. Students will work in teams to design, build and program robots using the VEX V5 Robotics platform and Vexcode C++ programming. Students must fill out an application to be a part of this class. (Prerequisite: PLTW Automation & Robotics)
 

SCIENCE OLYMPIAD: (One Semester Class) This class is offered 1st semester only. Students explore, experiment, hypothesize, conduct studies and then compete in “events” pertaining to various scientific disciplines, including earth science, biology, chemistry, physics, and engineering. They will gain knowledge of science facts, concepts, processes, skills and science applications throughout this course with an emphasis placed on teamwork and on active, hands-on group participation. Students participate in premiere science competitions throughout the country.This is a rigorous, honors level course due to the high school/college level science content.

EXPLORING MEDICAL CAREERS: (One Semester Class) Exploring Medical Careers includes personal, consumer, and community health; safety; nutrition; individual growth and development; communicable and chronic diseases; medical terminology and abbreviations; body systems; legal and ethic topics; and socioeconomic issues. Students are introduced to the diversity of career choices in the medical/dental/health field. This class is intended as a beginning pathway to the Health Science Pathway offered at Brea Olinda High School.


FINANCIAL LITERACY/MONEY MANAGEMENT: (One Semester Class) Money, money, money...and more money!  This class will explore the basics of everything to do with money- from how to earn it, how to save it, and how to spend it. Students will utilize EverFi Online software and partner with local businesses in Brea.  In addition, students will further explore and develop their skills in research, data analysis, and decision making.  


TECHNOLOGY


EXPLORING COMPUTER SCIENCE: (Year-Long Class) Computer Science introduces students to the foundation of computer science using an inquiry-based, hands-on approach to understanding and solving real world computing problems. Instruction includes the areas of human-computer interaction, problem solving, web design, programming, data analysis, and robotics. Emphasis is placed on the creative, collaborative, interdisciplinary and problem-solving nature of computing. This class is intended as a beginning pathway to the Global Information Technology Pathway (GITA) offered at Brea Olinda High School.

ADVANCED COMPUTER SCIENCE: (Year-Long Class) 8TH GRADE STUDENTS ONLY

This advanced class fosters an environment that both empowers and challenges students to utilize their computer science knowledge in real world applications.  Instruction includes web design, JavaScript programming, video game coding, and an introduction to the Python language. Emphasis will be placed on having students work collaboratively, apply their critical thinking, and utilize their communication and problem solving skills.  This class is intended as a beginning pathway to the Global Information Technology Pathway (GITA) offered at Brea Olinda High School.


DIGITAL PHOTO: (One Semester Class) Discover the endless possibilities of digital photography and learn to edit and enhance photos like the pros using Photoshop. From photography basics to creating life-like fake photos, students will learn not only how to take better pictures, they will learn about the enhancement tricks that are making Internet headlines every week. After this class, students will never look at photographs the same way!

ADVANCED DIGITAL PHOTO: (One Semester Class) This class is offered 2nd semester only. Adventures and mysteries await as students spend an entire semester delving deeper into the exciting world of Photoshop. Students will discover advanced techniques used by professionals as they continue advanced photo editing and creating custom graphic design projects. This class is intended as a beginning pathway to the Arts, Media & Entertainment Pathway offered at Brea Olinda High School. Prerequisite: “A” in Digital Photo.

YEARBOOK: (One Semester Class) This class is offered 1st semester only.  Help capture all the excitement of the school year as part of the BJH yearbook staff. Outgoing students will be called upon to photograph events, classes, activities, sports and more. Yearbook staff members work in teams to create an unforgettable yearbook that will be cherished by students and staff for years to come. Students must fill out an application to be a part of this class.           


VIDEO BROADCASTING (BCTV): (Year-Long Class). If you want an exciting class where you can be a member of a creative team that produces videos for the entire school, then this class is for you! Bobcat Television (BCTV) needs energetic, outgoing students to join our broadcasting team. Working in a project-based environment, students will work in groups to participate in all aspects of producing a monthly broadcast video: writing, planning, performing, filming and editing. Students must complete an application and submit a sample video in order to be considered for this course. This class is intended as a beginning pathway to the Arts, Media & Entertainment Pathway offered at Brea Olinda High School.
 

COMMUNICATION /HISTORY

GREEK AND ROMAN MYTHOLOGY: (One Semester Class) Greek and Roman Myths are filled with adventure stories of monsters, gods, and beasts. This elective course looks at a collection of the major myths of Greek and Roman antiquity that encompass the Greek and Roman perspective of the world, wars like Troy and Thebes, heroic acts of Hercules and childish pranks by Hermes. In this course, students will study these myths in the form of art and literature and will connect mythology to our modern times.

PEERS: (One Semester Class) Friendships during Jr. High can be rough, and sometimes the way we go about making new friends doesn't always work which makes Jr. High even more difficult. There is enough to worry about academically, personal relationships shouldn’t add to the pressure. In PEERS (Program for the Education and Enrichment of Relational Skills) students will learn a variety of relational skills including but not limited to starting and joining conversations, appropriate use of humor, handling arguments, handling bullying, and starting and maintaining friendships. During each session students are taught important social skills through role-play exercises, concrete rules, and steps of social behavior. Additionally, they are given the opportunity to practice these skills during socialization activities inside and outside of the classroom. Space is limited to 15 students.

SPEECH & DEBATE: (One Semester Class) Come learn the basics of Public Speaking & Debate! This challenging and competitive academic discipline will teach you how to get your voice heard. In this class we will learn rhetoric, practice delivery skills, and even prepare to compete. Some of the events we will cover in this course are Extemporaneous speaking, Impromptu speaking, Expository speaking, and Lincoln-Douglas Debate. Students will develop and enhance their communication skills, critical thinking skills, as well as increase their self-confidence. “If you can speak, you can influence. If you can influence, you can change lives.” Rob Brown 2013

WORLD LANGUAGE  (8TH GRADE STUDENTS ONLY)

Successful completion of a language course during eighth grade allows students to complete college prerequisite for language requirements at an accelerated rate in high school. Students must have earned an A or B throughout the year in their seventh grade language arts classes to be eligible for the following world language course.


SPANISH 1: (Year-Long Class) Beginning course in oral and written Spanish. Based on a specific theme, new vocabulary and grammar are presented and reinforced through a series of carefully calculated listening, reading, writing, and speaking exercises. Through various activities, will become familiar with the culture of the Spanish-speaking world. Assessment is based on homework, participation, projects and oral and written tests and quizzes. Spanish 1 is the equivalent of high school Spanish 1. Successful completion of Spanish 1, with an A or B grade, prepares students to enter Spanish 2 in 9th grade.


FRENCH 1: (Year-Long Class) Beginning course in French with an emphasis on spoken and written communication skills. Lessons are presented in a cultural context with themes such as school, sports, the café, dating, and the family. As students proceed, their knowledge of basic grammar must also be demonstrated. The grade is based upon the student's achievement on homework, class participation, oral and written projects, quizzes and tests. French 1 is the equivalent of high school French 1. Successful completion of French 1, with an A or B grade, prepares students to enter French 2 in 9th grade.


KOREAN 1: (Year-Long Class) The first year course in oral and written Korean introduces the basic elements of reading, writing, speaking, and understanding Korean. Basic information on Korean culture will be taught along with basic vocabulary and grammatical structures. Students will be able to understand and produce words and phrases appropriate for a first-year Korean language learner, use orthography and phonology to understand and products words and phrases in context, use language in highly predictable common daily settings, and develop an appreciation of Korean customs and history appropriate for their course level. Korean 1 is the equivalent of high school Korean 1. Successful completion of Korean 1, with an A or B grade, prepares students to enter Korean 2 in 9th grade.
 

INDUSTRIAL ARTS

BASIC INDUSTRIAL ARTS: (One Semester Class) Students build projects that introduce them to fundamental wood working skills. Emphasis is placed on hand tools, basic power tools, shop safety rules, and craftsmanship. The metalworking industry is also emphasized by the construction of projects in sheet metal and bar stock.

ADVANCED INDUSTRIAL ARTS: (One Semester Class) Students continue to develop wood and metal working skills through the construction of advanced level projects. Students receive instruction and experience in the use of all power machines and tools in the shops. Safety, craftsmanship, and good design are emphasized. This class is intended as a beginning pathway to the Building Industry Technology Academy (BITA) offered at Brea Olinda High School. (Prerequisite: Basic Industrial Arts with a “B” average or higher and no “N’s” or “U’s” in citizenship marks). 

FOUNDATION OF RESIDENTIAL AND COMMERCIAL CONSTRUCTION (BITA1):

(Year-Long Class) 8TH GRADE STUDENTS ONLY

The Residential and Commercial Construction course is designed to teach basic skills for the construction trades through a course rich in connections to construction projects that generate interest in math and increase student’ likelihood of success. The course covers basic construction math; measurement and scale, blueprint reading, safety, procedural use of hand and power tools. Students acquire these skills through the use of technology and real world problem solving. Integrated throughout the course are foundation standards, which include communication, ethics, interpersonal/team skills, critical thinking and other employment skills needed for the 21st Century.

STUDENT LEADERSHIP

STUDENT GOVERNMENT/ASB: (Year-Long Class) This class plans, organizes, and conducts school activities. Each student is assigned a homeroom for which they will act as a representative. Students will also participate in parliamentary procedure, speeches, debates, and a mock trial. Additionally, students are required to take part in activities outside of the regular class period such as P.R.I.D.E. lunchtime challenges, spirit dress-up days, and ten hours of community service each semester as part of their grade. Students are chosen for this class from an application/interview process. ASB officers are elected from this class in Spring.

LEADERSHIP 101: (One Semester Class) Leadership 101 is a course where students will be exposed to a variety of leadership styles and strategies. This class will emphasize the importance of goal setting, organization, time management, customer service, character education, and team building. Throughout the semester students will build relationships with leaders on campus and in the community. Students will discover their inner leader through discussions, presentations, and activities. This semester class is available to all students, but is especially recommended for those looking to be part of ASB, NJHS, PAL or AVID.
 

SCHOOL/STUDENT SERVICES



7TH GRADE (Second Semester Only) AND 8TH GRADE STUDENTS



LIBRARY/MEDIA AIDE: (One Semester Class) The library/media class is a group of students who wish to aid in the library. They receive instruction in the area of library skills, and use of a variety of equipment. They must be able to follow directions, get along well with others, and be very responsible. (Prerequisite: Students for this class are interviewed by the librarian. Students should be above-average academically and have good citizenship and attendance.)



OFFICE PRACTICE AIDE: (One Semester Class) The purpose of office practice is to teach students to meet the public, deliver messages to teachers, file, and aid in general office work. (Prerequisite: Students for this class are selected through an application process. Students should be above-average academically and have good citizenship and attendance.)



STUDENT MENTOR: (One Semester Class) This course will enable students to work as a peer mentor with students with special needs one period a day. Student mentors  work hand-in-hand in assisting students with functional life skills such as calendar, money skills, functional math and reading skills, safety and much more. Student Mentors provide a valuable social aspect to the classroom and serve as positive role models. It is a highly rewarding elective and often leads students to a career in teaching.



TEACHER AIDE: (One Semester Class) This course is open to those students who are interested in helping teachers by performing various duties, running errands, aiding the teacher with the class, or tutoring other students. Students interested in Teacher Aide must be able to get along with others, follow directions, and be very responsible. (Prerequisite: Students for this class are interviewed and chosen by classroom teachers).



UNIFIED PE: (One Semester Class) 8TH GRADE STUDENTS ONLY

Students in this course will participate as a Mentor Coach in the Adapted PE class. This course focuses on building leadership skills, improving fitness levels and fostering a more inclusive environment on campus. Students will work together to increase competence and confidence in a variety of physical activities. Through ongoing leadership opportunities, members of this course will be empowered to help create a more inclusive and accepting school environment for all students.