Interim Term, typically held for two weeks at the beginning of each January, provides underclassmen at EHS a unique opportunity to add depth and value to their high school experience through the inquiry of diverse topics unavailable during the regular curriculum. These courses encourage students to explore personal interests or dive into new areas of study.
In addition to these courses, the Interim Term Grade Level Learning (GLL) classes educate students in areas that will lead them to greater success in high school and beyond. Freshmen take courses such as Communication and Online Etiquette; sophomores focus on the Choices program with courses on Stress Management and Decision Making; and juniors enjoy in-depth presentations from College Counseling on Essay Writing and Test Taking Strategies.
Each day during Interim Term, the students participate in Community Time, where they break off into advisory groups each day for team-building exercises and a little fun competition.
Each year, besides the abundant offerings on campus, we also offer travel experiences.
Interim Term 2022 Courses
- Advanced Baseball Statistics: The Game within the Game/Matt Fox
We will take a non-traditional approach to evaluating a player’s overall worth as a baseball player. Using Major League Baseball, this class will discuss the development of modern theories, various data sets, publications, and research methods commonly used in the sabermetric industry. Topics include: game strategy, park factors, DIPS theory, MLB’s economic system, clutch hitting, and the MLB Draft. Students will draft their own team and learn to most accurately assess the most valuable players to ever play the game.
- All that Jazz: Costume Design for Chicago/Robin Bowman
Learn the basics of costume design (no sewing required!) and work on this year’s Spring Musical, Chicago. We will meet with the director, analyze the script, and research fashions from the Roaring 20s to develop a vision together as a class. You will get to choose a character and create your own design, and then take a trip to the costume rental warehouse and make your vision a reality!
- The Art and Science of Football/Dan Casey
When you cheer for your favorite football team, have you ever heard someone angrily yell to the coaches on the sideline, “throw the ball!”? In this course we will dive into the art and science of play designs. We will explore the geometry of the game – how do numbers, angles and open space give teams a competitive advantage? Students will have an opportunity to design their own playbook and run digital simulations to see if their ideas could work in the SEC. When you go to college, you can be the most educated fan in the stands!
- Artists: Carve--Ink--Print!/Lauren Cunningham
In this hands-on, studio art course, you’ll create a linocut from first draft to final print. “What’s a linocut?” A linocut is a type of printmaking, in which an artist carves an image into a block of linoleum and then prints the image with ink on paper, similar to a rubber stamp. In addition to making your own, personalized linocut, you’ll learn about historically significant printmakers and other printmaking methods. We’ll also take a field trip to the Museum of Fine Arts to see some prints in person.
- Battle of the Bands: Beatles vs. Stones/Alice Berry
The Rolling Stones and The Beatles – Who were the most original? The most influential? Which is the GOAT? We will delve into the roots, histories, and contributions of both of these great British bands and explore some modern bands who owe their success to these two. Learn about the Blues, Country, Jazz, Beatniks, R’n’B, Doo-Wop, Boogie Woogie, Rockabilly, Soul, Motown, Surf, Protest, Greenwich Village Folk, Psychedelia, and Ravi Shankar’s sitar. Be prepared to also share the bands you love!
- Calling All Writers: Short Story Workshop/Tennessee Hill
Calling all young writers! We will read contemporary short stories and work on writing our own, looking closely at plot, character, and dialogue. The goal of the course is that students end with a polished short story they had fun writing and feel confident about. We will watch movie clips, read snippets of plays, conduct small and large group workshops, and debate plots and characters in popular culture.
- Chemistry and Cooking/Krista Holter & Jenny Cantrell
In Chemistry and Cooking, we will explore how everyday cooking and cuisine can illuminate basic principles in chemistry, physics, and engineering. Learn about food molecules and how chemical reaction can affect food texture. During this course, Ms. Holter and Ms. Cantrell will reveal the secrets behind many culinary creations. Topics will include: how molecules influence flavor (and pH), the role of heat in cooking, diffusion revealed by the phenomenon of spherification, solubility, and the science of candy. You will also have the opportunity to become an experimental scientist in the laboratory — and the kitchen. By following along with engaging recipes, taking precise measurements, and making skillful observations, you will learn to think like both a cook and a scientist. The lab is certainly one of the most unique components of this class — after all, in what other science course can you eat your experiments?
- Comparative Animal Physiology/Shaun Flood
DISSECTIONS! Grab your gloves, goggles, and scalpel —we are going to spend our interim comparing the anatomy and physiology of 5 different species. We will dissect each species starting from the most basic and moving our way up the evolutionary tree to compare and contrast species from the inside out!
- Conspiracy Pseudoscience and Media Bias/David Framel & Pejman Milani
In the world of Cryptozoology, UFOlogy, and the Paranormal, photographic and video evidence of the existence of unknown creatures, lights in the sky, and ghostly images is compelling, and certain media outlets will take advantage of the conspiratorial nature of this “evidence.” But is it all a complete hoax? Students will discuss the characteristics of pseudoscientific claims and how to critically examine them. Through critical thinking and cultural context, students will recreate famous scientific and historical happenings through film to ultimately create believable still and “Mockumentary” forgeries that rival what is out there, using props, computer graphics, Adobe Photoshop software, and Final Cut Pro.
- Designing Academic Olympics: An Extravaganza of Knowledge and Fun/Scotty Johnson
This interim course will make history at EHS: we will design, organize, implement, and participate in our first-ever Academic Olympics. This 12-event academic challenge will take place in class at the end of interim after students have chosen the events that interest them the most and explored topics through educational videos and other materials. Possible events to be planned include: Quiz Bowl, NumberSense, Calculator, Math, Science, Chess, Current Events, Spelling, Social Studies, Headline Writing, Literary Criticism, and Computer Science. Each class session culminates with a Quiz Bowl matchup between students. At the end of the two weeks, students will organize and participate in Episcopal High School’s inaugural Academic Olympics: A Dodecathlon of Academic Excellence and Cavalcade of Stars.
- Empowerment: Weight Room 101 (Females Only)/Emily White
Have you ever walked into a crowded gym and immediately headed towards the treadmill or elliptical because you weren’t sure where else to go? Have you ever been interested in some workouts or movements that you have seen people do but are unsure how to do them? Empowerment is a course offered to all females who are looking to be more confident in the gym/weight room or any female who wants to advance her knowledge of exercise and fitness. This course will provide a fun and safe environment for us to work out and learn more about fitness.
- Explorations in Cooking and Culture through East and South Asia/Phuc Luu & Maya Hoyer
When a person takes a bite into a delicious Bánh mì (Vietnamese sandwich), they often do not think about how the meal came to be the way it is. In this course we will explore the historical and cultural origins of some of the most iconic meals of East and South Asia and learn to cook these meals. We will take a trip to an Asian market in Chinatown to gather ingredients. Then we will learn to prepare and turn them into delicious meals. The course will end with a group dining experience in Houston’s Chinatown and a ramen noodle cook-off.
- From Mickey to Marvel: The Wonderful World of Disney/Eric Lerch
For all those Peter Pans who refuse to grow up, let’s get Tangled in the magical world of Disney. We will go to “Infinity and Beyond” as we study the Walt Disney Corporation, including its history, business strategies, and cultural influence. Beauties and Beasts, Avengers and Guardians, Jedis and Mandalorians are all welcome to join. It will be pure Fantasia as we go Under the Sea with the Little Mermaid and Up in the sky with Aladdin. Don’t be a Sleeping Beauty or get Frozen and miss this opportunity. Be Brave and sign up for “The Wonderful World of Disney!”
- Hollywood in the 20th Century/Justin Hickey
Do you love movies? Have you always wanted to watch more classic films but didn’t know where to start? Join us for two weeks of cinema bliss where we will be watching, analyzing, reviewing, and vlogging about some of the most important films of the 20th We will explore key eras of American filmmaking such as the Golden Age of the 30s/40s, New Hollywood of the 60s/70s, and the Blockbuster era of the 80s/90s. If you have a passion for movies or just want to learn more about the art form, this course is for you!
- How to Be a Chinese Dragon/Kate Liang & Alice Davidson
This class will dive into Chinese culture using traditional language, art, music, food, drink, games, and films. You will learn about some famous people and ethnic groups and have the opportunity to write Chinese characters,speak a little Chinese, make your own Chinese lantern, try to play Chinese instruments, taste-test Chinese snacks and tea, and more. Come learn how to be a dragon this January!
- How to Build Your Own Computer/Alan Duncan
Do you want to build a computer? Do you ever wonder: how does my computer actually work? What is inside of the metal box? How much does it cost to build my own custom computer? If you have asked yourself any of these questions or if you just enjoy working with technology, then you will enjoy this adventure in assembly and problem solving.
- Independent Study: Choose Your Own Adventure/Alan Bradshaw
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to build your own class for school? A class on a topic that is super interesting to you? A class that allows for you to create your own final project? A class that gives you the power to explore, create, and share what interests you personally? Then this is a great opportunity for you! This is a course that will empower select students to complete a “mini” independent study project over the course of Interim Term. It’s a great opportunity to take a deep dive into whatever interests you most while creating a valuable project that can help you with future independent study and your college application. All students who enroll must complete a very short application with a brief project proposal.
- A Journey Through International Film/Roya McArthur
Come and learn about the diverse and complex world in which we live by watching The Music of Strangers and Landfill Harmonic. This course will guide students to examine international issues of culture, immigration, and poverty through journaling, discussion, creative activities, and — of course — watching international films.
- Knights Fight!: An Introduction to Stage Combat/Paul Revaz & Peter Hutcheson
Dive into the world of unarmed and armed choreographed stage combat! Work on basic fitness, learn the moves, and choreograph your own battle for the stage. Your choreographed battle will be shared with any available spectators and even filmed for a wider audience!
- Knight Moves: Hip Hop Dance/Karen Pfeifer
Hip hop is a high-energy class that infuses the latest styles of street dancing. Classes will encourage students to step outside of the box by bringing their own individual style and personality to the movements. The course will emphasize the benefits of stretching and physical flexibility for athletic suppleness and greater ease and efficiency of movement through Hip Hop dance. It will consist of structure and discipline along with fun and freedom to freestyle. Hip-hop is an upbeat urban style of dance that is forever evolving. An appreciation of dance as an art form will be nurtured among all students.
- LEGO Robotics/Michael Hunt
Interested in robotics or think you might be? Why not take this course to explore the possibilities? You’ll have fun unlocking your imagination, practicing creative problem-solving, and exploring the world of building and programming robots. You’ll construct robots out of LEGOs and teach them to meet a variety of physical challenges.
- Lights Up: Dance for Musical Theatre/Kristina Burgess
Ever wanted to learn how to move like the stars of Hamilton, hip-hop like the actors in Bring It On, or groove like the dancers from In the Heights? Well, now is your chance! Come join the fun with Lights Up: Dancing for Musical Theatre. This class is made for any student wanting to get on their feet and dance! Students will learn popular Broadway styles of choreography from the EHS dance faculty. Styles range from tap to jazz funk to hip hop and more! Increase your coordination, body awareness and confidence this January.
- Love is Hilarious: Studying the Romantic Comedy/Bob Matthews
Ice cream? A blanket? Tears at a predictable ending? If this setting feels familiar, come examine the Romantic Comedy through an intelligent and critical lens. We will identify the traditional structure of the modern romantic comedy, look back at some of Hollywood’s most memorable offerings in the genre, identify the modern classics, and find out exactly how Greek and Elizabethan Theater birthed the movies that people love to cuddle up to today. Using all of this new knowledge, each student will write an outline and do a fantasy casting of their very own romantic comedy.
- The Making of the Rainbow Nation: South Africa’s Emergence from Oppression to Modern Democracy/Garmon Ashby
In this class, we will witness episodes from South Africa’s violent and troubled past, including colonial exploitation, internal wars and the brutal Apartheid regime. We will encounter some of the most spectacular scenery and wildlife in South Africa and get to know its peoples through film, artifacts, music, stories and food. Most importantly, we will hear how forgiveness and reconciliation saved South Africa from the brink of revolution as it emerged from Apartheid 27 years ago. Hear more about the “Rainbow Nation” from an instructor who actually lived through the Apartheid regime and witnessed its transition to democracy and nationhood.
- Money, Money, Money!/Mike Hodgson & Johnny Kwok
Finance can be fun! Learn how to invest, save and manage your money, and put it to work for you. Learn about the history of US currency, cryptocurrencies, the stock market, credit cards, auto loans, mortgages, investments, various types of savings accounts, and more. In a casual, relaxed environment, you’ll learn everything you need to know to handle your financial business!
- More than Monopoly: Contemporary Board Game Design and Culture/Art Callaham
Board games have changed significantly since the days when Monopoly, Sorry, Life, and Candy Land were popular. Even the game-changing Settlers of Catan is older than every student at EHS. So-called ‘Hobby Board Gaming’ is a major, international industry complete with its own design processes and culture. In this class, students will have the opportunity to dive into the contemporary table-top scene with an eye towards broadening their own design vocabulary and even developing their own unique game concept. And, of course, games will be played. No prior experience in gaming or design is necessary.
- Multi-Media MasterClass: Let’s Hype Up Interim!/Jay Berckley
This exciting course will focus on capturing photo and video in order to document and promote interim term on EHS social media and the EHS website. Students will also collaborate to create a multi-media capstone presentation for the entire school at the end of interim. Throughout the two-week term, students will develop strategies and skills for taking the best photographs, creating the most hype videos, and building the most engaging social media content possible. The source material? Interim Term. Class participants will actively follow all of the happenings of interim —its electives, its grade level learning sessions, and everything in between — in order to show our community what all the hype is about. No previous media arts experience required, and auxiliary equipment will be provided to all students. We hope you’ll join us for this fun adventure!
- That Puzzle is Really a Math Problem: The Art of Mathematics and Problem Solving/Joanna Papakonstantinou & Neil Fullarton
Come investigate some classic mathematics problems and explore their solutions. Learn how resulting discoveries are the foundations that underlie current research and still have a profound impact on real-world applications in a variety of industries. You will discover how these seminal problems —some of which are centuries old — are easy to state but hard to solve. The resulting discoveries of these problems have changed our world profoundly!
- Rise and Shine/Leigh Anne Raymond
This relaxing and restorative class will introduce students to different exercises to help keep their bodies flexible and strong. We will engage in a variety of exercises, including pilates, yoga-like stretching, core work, and breathwork to relax your body and mind.
- Salsa, Tango, Reggae, Reggeatón: Music of the Americas/Alex Bruton
This is a survey class in which we will listen to music — lots of music — from Jamaica, Cuba & Puerto Rico, Colombia, Argentina, Perú, Brazil, Mexico, and the US. We will listen for trends, connections, common beats, and rhythms as well as identify what makes the genres unique to each region and country. Music styles will include son, salsa, cumbia, rancheras, corridos, mariachis, tango, Andean, samba, rock en español, reggae, reggaetón, bossa nova, vallenato, and capoeira, among others. You will also be able to play some instruments and learn a dance move or two! Knowing Spanish is not a prerequisite for the course.
- School of Rock/Grant Gould & Ken Ballard
This is a class where we teach you to ROCK! Have you ever wanted to be in a rock band and play music that quite simply melts your face off? Haver you ever learned some cool guitar licks or drumbeats but had no one to play them with? Have you ever wanted to play the music of Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix, or Nirvana? If you said yes to any of the above questions, you should sign up for this class. Mr. Ballard and Mr. Gould will teach you the ins and outs of how to play rock music and how to cultivate your musical talents. We are looking for anyone who has even a tiny amount of experience playing guitar, bass, or drums. If this is you, sign up and get ready to have fun!
- SEW much Fun: Basic Skills for Crafting and Gifting/Katheryn Ray
Have you ever spotted your mother’s sewing machine in the back of a closet and wondered how it worked? Do you think you’d like to make fun and easy gifts for friends and family for special occasions? Is redecorating your bedroom on a budget all you can dream about? If SEW, we have the IT course for you. Learn the basics or put in some practice time if you are beyond novice. Come ready to think conceptually and spatially as we explore the art of sewing. By the end of this course, you will have quite a few finished projects to show off to friends and family and some new skills for life.
- So You Think You Can Doctor?/Karen Foster
Students will go through “mini medical school,” learning the basics of medical terminology, medical testing, and surgical skills. We will practice giving injections to oranges, suturing chicken wings, and taking blood pressure along with other skills used in the health field. Students will compete in a “surgical Olympics” where they will put their suture skills and sterile technique to the test.
- Tags to Murals: Photographing and Creating Graffiti/Kate Philbrick & Japheth Storlie
Have you ever wanted to create your own graffiti art (without getting arrested)? In this class, we will take a field trip to photograph several AWESOME street art scenes and see some of Houston’s hottest graffiti. With that inspiration, we will then create our own graffiti wall as a group and use it as a backdrop for creative photos!
- “Tudo Legal!”: Brazilian Culture and Language/Catie Street
This survey course will dive into Brazilian history, geography, music, dance, food, film, language, and current events. It will be taught in English, though students will get to learn some basic Portuguese in context as well as some fun popular words and sayings in Brazilian Portuguese. This is a great opportunity for students to learn about our largest neighbor to the south, which is home to a rich and diverse culture.
- Visions of the Future/John Flanagan
Visions of the Future explores science fiction and facts in humanity’s attempt to predict the future. The primary goal will be for student groups to develop their own vision of the near future. Daily programs will include discussions, movies, short stories, future vision project work, and futuristic activities including Laser Tag.
- We Knit: The History and Practice of Knitting/Amalia Pflaumer
This class is designed to teach beginners the basics of knitting, but it is also useful to those knitters who might need a refresher class. Whether you have just a little or no knowledge of knitting – this course is for you. Lessons provide history, discussion of the tools, how to read and understand patterns and color charts, and — of course — how to start knitting. This course will finish up with some simple knitting projects to practice and complete. Learning how to knit has never been simpler, and in just a few days, you will be ready to tackle all kinds of new knitting adventures. So, join the knitting fun!
- Weird Lit: Building a Fictional World/Emma Tsai
Reading a novel can feel like falling into another world, an immersion in a fictional reality saturated with detail--each novel its own trip down the rabbit hole. But what are worlds, anyway? Are they spaces, like a container? Or are they not a thing at all, but social systems--ways of belonging that are constantly being made and remade? This course is about imagining powers of fiction and tracing out various techniques and strategies by which authors create worlds. In this course, you’ll learn about worldbuilding in novels, short stories, and poems, and at the end of the course, you will create your own fictional world in a short story.
- The West Wing (or How to Become Leader of the Free World)/George Brock
Using episodes from the classic television series The West Wing, students will explore the inner workings of the Executive Branch of the US Government with a focus on Speech, Debate and Campaigning. Activities will include a mock campaign (two students will be selected to run for “POTUS” and the rest of the class will split to work as their campaign teams), a mock debate (the two presidential candidates will be prepped for and participate in a debate moderated by a guest artist), and the culminating project, which will be mock inauguration speeches given by each of the participants.
- Women in Sport: The Challenges and Triumphs of Female Athletes Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow/Paige Moriarty
All students with an interest in analyzing the history of women in sport and how it has impacted the lives of athletes today should sign up for this course! We will be reading excerpts and watching documentaries surrounding the early experiences of female athletes. After looking into the history of women’s sports, we will take a closer look at how the experiences of female athletes compare to those of male athletes at the collegiate and professional level. The culminating project for this course will require students to make a short video in the format of an “ESPN 30 for 30” on the topic/athlete of their choice.
Interim Term 2022 Trips (Registration Closed)
- Big Bend Adventure/Kary Kemble and Shelly Edmonds
- Imagineering: The Science of Disney World/Pat Michael, Isaiah Coleman, Robin Owens, and Eric Avera