Workshop Wednesdays

a welcome break

Instead of heading to AP English and AP Physics on Wednesday morning, Oliva sat with friends around a big worktable in the school’s ceramics studio, etching a design onto a square ceramic coaster. The room was warm—from the heat guns being used to dry glaze—and inviting. “Students are using the Sgraffito technique,” said ceramics teacher Kristen Lowe. “It means scratch in Italian.”

The restful vibe meant success. It was Workshop Wednesday at John Jay High School—one of two days a year created by Senior Class Advisor Patti Dente with the goal of offering juniors and seniors creative outlets and practical skills. The students could opt to take up to three workshops as an alternative to their regular classes.

workshops in creating a balanced life

The students agreed that Workshop Wednesday was just what they needed. “It’s a stressful time,” said one of the seniors at the ceramics workshop. “College decisions are almost all in.”

Ella, one of the juniors, said that it was a stressful time for juniors, too—many of them were taking heavy course loads and this year’s grades would be used during the college application process.

The signup sheets for the day reflected students’ interest in relaxing. Classes including ceramics, yoga, acrylic paint and pour, mason jar cooking, drawing and darkroom photography were completely full.

While most of the workshops were led by John Jay’s teachers, there were guest leaders, too, including Chief Jeff Peck, presenting an inside look at the Vista Fire Department, and a job fair offered by the Lewisboro Parks & Recreation Department.