Every January, high school students at Rockford Christian High School spend the first week of the second semester learning in unique ways. Jan-Term courses energize through hands-on interaction, create experiences that are interdisciplinary, expand beyond the classroom, and explore career opportunities.
The school day is from 8:00 a.m. to 2:45 p.m. with a lunch break between the morning and afternoon classes. Students enroll in two classes. For Jan Term, class options and enrollment will be listed on Google classroom.
Juniors and Seniors are strongly encouraged to seek an internship off-campus for that week. Internships allow the student an opportunity to explore a career path of interest to them.
Morning Class Offerings
Instructor: Mr. Jones
Did you know the coffee bean is actually the pit of a fruit known as a coffee berry? Did you know the most important factor in making a cup of coffee is having the bean ground the right way? Did you know that espresso is not pronounced 'expresso' and that it is just another type of coffee bean? In this class we will study how coffee beans are harvested, the various ways to make incredible cups of coffee possible and even look at the business side of coffee. We will go to Rockford Roasting Company to see how they roast their own beans and head to Starbucks to learn about what they call the 'third place'. Cost of coffee is included in the price of the class. I will be bringing in Fire Dept. Coffee to talk about their company and what it took to start that business. I look forward to caffeinating you! Students must provide their own transportation.
Beginners Guide to Photography
Instructor: Hannah Johnson
Requirement: DSLR (digital) camera with a memory card
This class will expand your knowledge on the basics of photography-whether you enjoy landscapes, portraits, street photography, wildlife, or astro photography! We will learn everything from the very first photograph ever taken, to making you feel confident behind the lense. We will cover studio lighting, composition, depth of field, and subject matter. We want you to feel confident in operating your own DSLR camera, (not just using your cell phone), and by the end of the week you will select one of your favorite photos to be displayed in the RCS gallery. After all, it’s not a photograph until it’s printed.
Instructor: Mr. Reed
Location: Band Room
Interested in learning how to play the guitar? Beginning Guitar is the answer! Whether you play a little, or if you have never played, come and take the next step toward becoming a guitar hero. Mark Reed has taught hundreds of students how to play...now it’s your turn. See you there.
Instructor: Mrs. Happ
Location: Swan Hillman Elementary School, 3701 Green Dale Dr., Rockford
Are you a Spanish Student? Are you interested in improving your Spanish and learning what it’s like to work in a bilingual environment? Entonces, esta clase es para ti. Come work alongside of public school teachers in bilingual classrooms (grades K-6) at Swan Hillman Elementary School. Students must provide their own transportation.
Common Sense Personal Finance
Instructor: Mr. Leonard
This class will provide the students with basic financial data regarding how to handle their finances in a post high school environment . College costs, vehicle / home purchases, renting, leasing, insurance, marriage / divorce costs and retirement will be presented.
Instructor: Mrs. Ullrich
Cost: $15 (student must purchase a copy of The Great Divorce, by C.S. Lewis not included in the cost)
Explore one of Christianity’s most loved fiction authors! How did this atheist become a Christian? What inspired him to be a writer? What did he believe about humanity, heaven, and hell? In this class, we will be reading and discussing his short book The Great Divorce, which is about a bus trip to the afterlife. We will also learn more about Lewis’ life, read excerpts of other books he’s written, and maybe even watch some of the film adaptations of his works.
Entertainment or Manipulation?
Instructor: Mrs. McIntosh
We will look at screenwriter Aaron Sorkin's work. He is known for rapid-fire dialogue, extended monologues, and invented the walk and talk. People become attached to his characters. He has an ability to captivate viewers, but could he be lulling them into a political agenda? We will view parts of his TV series like The West Wing, Sports Night and Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip. We will also view a couple of his movies like The American President and The Social Network.
Instructor: Mrs. Sabin
Learn how to draw beautiful patterned images in the style of zentangle. Students will begin by drawing a few basic lines, dots, and shapes in repetition. Simple to more complex motifs are then added, drawing one pattern upon another to create contrasting designs. Techniques in black ink, color, and graphite will be presented. Students will practice several small samples, then choose a theme for a final project.
Instructor: Mr. Bruhn
Location: Choir Room
Explore various influential Americans through documentaries, movies, and discussion. Topics include Mister Rogers, Vince Lombardi, Julia Child, Walt Disney, and more. Some films are PG-13.
Instructor: Mrs. Lasater, Mrs. Ecklund
Basic life skills like sewing, cooking, changing a tire, and more
Sewing for Beginners
Instructor: Mrs. Heinzeroth
In this class you will learn basic sewing skills through 4-5 projects. Projects will include pajama pants, a drawstring backpack, a pillow, and more. Students will provide their own materials for the projects. Estimated cost of materials, $30.
Instructor: Mrs. Ferrero
Students will learn some basic sign language terms work on simple conversational skills. This is an interactive class, so be ready to have some fun and learn!
Words of Power In Art
Instructor: Mrs. Day, Mrs. Mariani
This course will use the power of the words we say as expressed in art. We will spend one day learning how to write “spoken word” poetry. Every student will have an opportunity to write their own “spoken word” using their words to impact others and express their thoughts. We will use the beauty of calligraphy, graffiti, and other art as expressed through words in our design to create an art piece which will be hung in the school at the end of JanTerm.
Afternoon Course Offerings
Instructor: Mr. Gulley
Location: Off campus
Cost of the class will be the price of bowling and shoe rental depending on time. Students will have to provide their own transportation.
Build It, Break It, Race It
Instructor: Mrs. Downey
Students will build and test several contraptions including towers, rubber band powered helicopters/planes, battery powered vehicles, etc.
Instructor: Mrs. Truitt
Students will make different candy from basic ingredients of sugar, water, and butter. Background chemistry will be involved, as well as phase changes and intermolecular forces.
Dorm Room Cooking
Instructor: Mrs. Sawdey
Location: Off Campus
Are you wondering how you'll survive off of college cafeteria food alone? Are you worried that you'll miss all of your home-cooked favorites while away at school? If so, then this is the class for you. You'll be taught how to prepare meals using the cooking supplies allowed in a dorm room or a shared kitchen within your dormitory. What's great is that you'll walk away with a handful of recipes that you can take with you to college as well as your own set of cooking supplies. Please note that you must be able to provide your own transportation.
Forensics-The Science of Catching Criminals
Instructor: Mr. Steely
In this hands-on class students will be involved in activities that show how forensic evidence is gathered and processed at crime scenes to show how a suspect can be proven innocent or guilty. Students will lift fingerprints from a glass, test for “counterfeit money” using ultraviolet light, take teeth prints from an apple, make a plaster of Paris cast of a tire track, ink a shoe print, find the specific density to identify glass types, test blood splatters, do microscopic analysis of hair and fiber threads…and so much more to solve the crime and catch the criminal!
Instructor: Mr. Moore
Set sail in January with Mr. Moore, Horatio, Lieutenant Bush, Captain Pellew, and Napoleon! This Jan Term
learn about the greatest naval character ever created. Watch as Horatio begins his career in the royal Navy as a midshipman and through quick thinking, brilliant intuition, and amazing courage he finds success, love, and friendship. Follow Horatio through his naval career and along the way learn about cannons, ships, sailing, adventure, honor, duty, and love! Activities: watch the A&E miniseries based on the novel Mr. Midshipman Hornblower, explore 18th century ships-of-the-line, learn about cannons and naval warfare, and research the etymology of nautical terms.
Instructor: Mr. Cropper
Oil Painting on Canvas
Instructor: Mrs. Sabin
Prerequisite-Must have completed 1 year of HS Art
Students will learn skills and techniques of oil painting on canvas with an emphasis on color mixing and composition. Students will observe how to hand-build, stretch, and gesso a canvas in preparation for painting. Included in the class fee is student's own set of paints, canvas, brushes, and supplies to keep.
Instructor: Mr. Jeske
An investigation of various areas of mathematics that can be studied without numbers. These will include Topology, Knots, Networks & Graphs (not to be confused with plotting points), Game Theory, Number Theory, and some topics of Recreational Math. Investigations will include building models (e.g. Flexagons, Soma Cubes, Pentominoes), playing math oriented games (e.g. “Set”, Nim, Alqueque, etc) and other hands on investigations. We will learn about some of the latest discoveries in the field of mathematics.
The Art of Baking
Instructor: Anna Peterson, Mrs. Day
Location: Off Campus
How do you make a friend? How do you say thank you? How do you ask forgiveness?? Brownies. Cupcakes. And other such deliciousness. Join alum Anna Peterson and Mrs. Day to create beautiful and yummy treats that will bless you and others! Students must provide their own transportation.
Instructor: Mrs. Heinzeroth
Have a drawer full of t-shirts at home you don't know what to do with?! Join me and make a quilt out of them! Perfect for the athlete or performer that has shirts from every competition/performance they have been a part of! It makes a great memory quilt. Students will also make 1-2 other smaller projects. Student will need to provide their own materials for the projects. Estimated cost of materials, $40.
The Wright Stuff
Instructor: Mrs. Happ
Location: 106, with two day trips
Have you ever wondered how the space around us affects our lifestyle and reflects our values? Frank Lloyd Wright did! During this class, students will learn about the fascinating, tumultuous life and architectural career of Frank Lloyd Wright, the Chicago-based architect whose iconic work changed the face of architecture and urban planning in the U.S. and around the world. We will spend two afternoons touring a couple of Wright's architectural masterpieces right here in Illinois.
Chicago-Chinatown: Seeking Chinese Roots
Instructor: Mrs. Aiello
This is a week-long trip. Monday we go to Chicago and check in a hotel. Tuesday we will visit Chicago Chinatown Chamber of Commerce, and the American Chinese Museum to learn about the history of Chinese immigrants and then take a tour of Chinatown. Wednesday we will visit the famous Ping Tom Park then take a water taxi to go to Chinatown in the late afternoon for a Chinese dinner. Thursday, we will visit Field Museum, to see Cyrus Tang Hall of China, to take a closer look at objects that tell stories of China’s complex history, diverse cultures, and changing role in the world. On Friday, we will spend the morning in Chinatown then take a train home in the afternoon. It's an all inclusive tour except meals and spending money.
HoneyRock Winter Retreat
Instructor: Miss Regan, Miss Burmeister
Cost: $300 (transportation cost has not been included yet)
Location: Three Lakes, Wisconsin
Turn your Jan Term into a winter retreat! This class will be held at HoneyRock, Wheaton College's beautiful Northwoods camp located in Three Lakes, WI. Students will leave RCS on Monday and return on Friday. The class fee covers all lodging, meals, equipment, and transportation. Retreat sessions will focus on the topic of Student Leadership through team-building initiatives, Scripture study, personal time for devotions and reflection, barn sessions with the camp horses, and an overnight camping trip. In addition to the retreat sessions, there are many fun activities to pass the free time: broomball, cross-country skiing, indoor climbing, snowshoeing, and more! Get your friends together and kick off second semester with a fun get-away while earning school credit!
Collegiate Visits (Junior students only)
Instructor: Mrs. Dishner, Mr. Graber
Grade: 11th only
Location: Off campus
Interested in visiting colleges in Rockford, Chicago and Milwaukee? This Jan Term will visit up to 8 colleges and universities during this week. Students will begin the week learning how to make the most out of a college visit. Then Mr. Graber and Mrs. Dishner will take this class to: Rockford University, North Park University, Loyola University, Trinity Christian College, Olivet Nazarene University, University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee, Marquette University (this list is subject to change). We will end the week with a debriefing breakfast. This class is for Juniors only. Space is limited. Students must have an interest in at least one of these schools and be able to leave before the school day begins Tuesday-Thursday and arrive back after the school day ends.
Cost:$100 with money for lunch.