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640 Humboldt Avenue
St. Paul


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Interim Courses

2023 Interim Slideshow




Each spring, OWL students participate in a week of intensive, experiential courses called Interim.  The courses are designed to give students the opportunity for in-depth focus on a compelling topic or experience of their choice that most often takes students out into our Twin Cities community and beyond. Each class is open to students in grades 6-12. Listed below are the course offerings for spring 2024.

2024 OWL Spring Interim Courses



Course Description:  In Sports & Design, students will play a variety of team sports, such as volleyball, ultimate frisbee, yard games, soccer, etc. throughout the week.  Tournament style play, team participation, and fair play are highlighted.  Students will also participate in a shoe/team apparel design contest.  Contest winners will get to keep their winning design. There will be a field trip to Highland Frisbee Golf Course.  Students will engage in all activities and interim projects. 

Week Outcome/Product:  Poster Project showcasing your design skills for sports apparel. 



Course Description: In Team Crisp Season Finale, students will work with Film Director “Rino Liberatore”, Damon’s father, and Damon on the season finale of Team Crisp.  This episode will air during the June Community Meeting.  Students will work in one of the following departments to help make the episode: art department, camera crew, production and special effects.  Students will help with various tasks and may even have minor roles as actors in the episode.  This is our second year having Director Rino, who helped direct last year's epic finale of Solitude and Reflection. 

Week Outcome/Product: June episode of Team Crisp: an 8 to 15 minute episode for the June Community Meeting. 



Course Description:  This is a one week cycling skills and a basic bicycle mechanics course.  It is offered to students who want to gain the ability to safely ride in the city, on a road, ride off-road on mountain bike trails, and maintain a bike.  Plan on riding 10-20 miles each day.  All students who take this interim class should already be able to ride a bicycle.  Students are encouraged but not required to bring their own bicycle.  The routes will be on bike trails, paved and dirt roads which will get hilly in some cases.  Students will be expected to carry some of their own gear, but not all (unless they want to). 

Week Outcome/Product: Students will learn about basic bicycle maintenance, cycling culture, bicycle riding skills, group rides, and navigating the city on a bicycle. 



Course Description: This course will explore fishing in Minnesota!  We will learn about fishing equipment and knots, laws and rules related to fishing, species of fish you may find, and techniques with live and artificial bait.  Then, we will take our skills to nature and see what we catch.  One day will be spent exploring equipment, practicing basic skills and a visit with a representative from the Minnesota DNR (Department of Natural Resources).  The rest of the week we will explore lakes, rivers and streams to apply learned skills. 

No experience or equipment necessary:  Rod, reel and tackle will be provided - you may bring a rod, reel and tackle from home if you have it. 

Week Outcome/Product: Testing skills in the field.  Awards given for “largest fish caught”, “smallest fish caught” and “most inches of fish caught”. 



Course Description: Students will study the history and culture of skateboarding.  Students will design a skateboard on their ipads.  They will learn how to build a skateboard from parts.  Most importantly, students will be able to experience riding a skateboard safely, while also respecting public and private property.  All students must have a waiver signed and must wear a helmet.

*Students do not need to own a skateboard.  We have boards that have been donated.

*Students must be willing to walk/skate miles each day. 

Week Outcome/Product: Students will have a deeper understanding of skateboard history and culture.  Students will also have improved their RAD skateboarding skills.



Course Description: Students in this course will learn specific vocabulary related to jewelry and tools.  Students will learn how to make different types of jewelry with resin, beads, leather and metal.  Students will also learn how to attach hardware to jewelry for clasps. 

Week Outcome/Product: Students will have unique pieces to take home.  We will also be selling OWL earrings at the Celebration of Learning. 



Course Description: Perform a play in a week!  You will learn everything you need to know to start acting.  Join us for Assembly, a play about a school assembly gone horribly wrong!  Where we talk about “How to Stop a Bear from Attacking your School”, the Jalapeno Creamed Corn Cookies for the school fundraiser, and so much more! 

This interim is a place to explore all things theater.  Over the course of the week, we will explore different types of theater, both in the Twin Cities community and at OWL.  We will play theater games, act and learn about technical elements like sounds and light, costumes, and  staging elements.  Students will audition for, rehearse, and perform a play in a week.  Students will have different roles: actors, design crew, backstage/directors, etc. 

Week Outcome/Product: Short Performance: 15-30 minute one act play, student showcase of interim. 



Course Description: Do you love animals?  Have you always wanted to work with animals?  Would you love to train animals or rescue them?  Then, this course is for you! Students who participate in this course will get to spend time with animals every day.  Who knows, by the end of this course, you may understand more about what makes animals great! 

Week Outcome/Product: One minute commercial or print ad for a cruelty-free product (shampoo, deodorant, detergent, cosmetic).  



Course Description: Do you want to help put the final touches on publications, podcasts, documentaries, and displays around the school?  If so, join this interim and help Leo and Tom do just that.  Students will be responsible for taking down and putting up displays around the school. Taking podcast episodes and turning them into a season.  You should join this Interim if you take pride in doing quality work and want the work of OWL to live in the halls, on the web, in print, and in everyone’s earbuds. 

Week Outcome/Product: Podcasts and documentaries will be published.  We will lay out the calendar.  We will “freshen up” the displays around the school.  



Course Description: Bake with a team in this fun, everybody-wins competition!  Learn to bake delicious meals that meet your health and nutrition goals.  Bake bread from scratch and get outside to harvest greens and herbs.  Build your own personal cookbook with both tried-and-true and aspirational recipes. Note: This Interim involves long walks and strenuous garden work.

Week Outcome/Product: OWL Bake Off Vegan Cookbook (digital, or print if the Publication Interim wants to get involved). 



Course Description: Explore different products of writing!  Activities include blackout poetry, flash fiction, zines/comics, book binding, photography stories, and script writing.  Anything and everything for someone with a love of the written word.  Small walking field trips will take us off campus, but most of the interim will take place at OWL. 

Week Outcome/Product: A polished collection of student work that they are proud of. 



Course Description: Wizards!  Druids!  Rogues!  Dragons!  Role playing games have long been popular at OWL, and are a great way for students to build self-confidence, public speaking skills, and creativity.  In this Interim, students will play in (or run) a short D&D campaign, from character creation to dramatic boss fights!  However, students will also experience a variety of other role playing games, such as games without Dungeon Masters, games without combat, and games without dice.  Other role playing game related activities (such as miniature painting) will be available, and teachers will be running one-shots for interested students.

Week Outcome/Product: A completed mini-campaign with a fleshed out character that could be used in other games.  



Course Description: Students will tour around St. Paul and Minneapolis, looking critically at the design of the Twin Cities, and the thinking behind the design.  Students will ultimately create a plan for the design of their own ideal city or work to find solutions to modern day urban problems.  We will be looking and assessing various aspects of our cities: architecture (design of our buildings and streetscapes), transit (buses, light rail, bikes), parks (big and small), and culture (restaurants, museums).  This interim will be walking intensive, with walks to downtown St. Paul happening most days. 

Week Outcome/Product: Design Your Own City Mapping Project 



Course Description: Students will watch fun films and participate in some science activities related to the movies.  Pairings may include Rio and visiting the Raptor Center, Hidden Figures and building rockets, We Bought a Zoo and visiting the Como Zoo, Night at the Museum and visiting the Science Museum, Cars and building CO2 cars, National Treasure and creating a science related scavenger hunt, etc. (movie titles and activities subject to change).  There may be a significant amount of walking (to get to/from city bus lines). 

Week Outcome/Product: Movie trailer showcasing the science experiments and movies.  Grand prize. 



Course Description: Service Adventure is an interim choice for students in grades 9-12 who have joined the group.  Students will travel to Outdoor Environmental Learning Centers  in Maine, Colorado and Northern Minnesota.  This partnership authentically benefits our partner organizations and empowers students through service, challenge and reflection.  The students average around 30 hours of service work during the trip.  Service work includes tasks such as trail maintenance, fence building, painting, deep cleaning, cooking, and course prep.  When not working, students may climb mountains, traverse ropes courses, swim in wild rivers, hike in the woods, canoe, roast marshmallows, and stargaze. 

Week Outcome/Product: The outcome of this interim:

  • Satisfied community partners whose base camps are ready for the busy summer season

  • Students who are bonded with their trip mates, satisfied at a job well done and exhilarated by a trip to a beautiful part of the world 

Sports and Design

Film Interim

Biking St. Paul

Jewelry Making

Play in a Week

Lizards, Snakes, Raptors and Dogs, Oh My!

Publication Studio

Writing Exploration

The Great OWL Bake Off

Urban Design

Outward Bound Service Adventure