North Star classes and workshops are offered on a variety of topics. The schedule is a reflection of the interests and expertise of our core staff and extended staff of 25-40 volunteers, interns, and work-study students. Rather than attempt to fulfill any particular curriculum, we ask our teachers to share the topics that excite them.
All classes and workshops are optional and open to every member. Classes vary in length, format, and content.
The format of each class can vary significantly as well, again depending on the vision of the leader as well as the input of the students. We encourage all members to learn about and try as many classes as they can. Once a student decides to be a regular participant of a class, we expect commitment.
There are no grades or punishments, but we expect class members to communicate with the teacher regarding attendance and other issues and to fulfill any requirements such as readings, research, or other assignments.
Some classes will ask for and expect a considerable amount of work to happen outside of class time while others will be more limited. This is made clear in the class description and by the teacher and should be taken into consideration by the student deciding to join the group.
Teens sometimes lead classes without adults. In addition, members frequently ask for the creation of certain classes and participate in the planning.
Weekly classes are held on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, 9:00-4:00.
Individual one-on-one meetings are available in a variety of subjects. These are not listed on the calendar. Each teen talks with his or her advisor about what meetings might be helpful and schedules them around other commitments.
Common subjects like math are very easy to arrange. More specialty topics like electronics or foreign language are often available but can be more challenging to schedule.
North Star core staff offer some one-on-one meetings, and many more are provided by volunteers and college students. Each week North Star hosts an average of 70 individual meetings in topics ranging from math to personal organization to music lessons to history.