Welcome to the Class of 2021house teamHouse Principal: Mr. Justin RubensteinSchool Counselor (A-K): Ms. Donna DallamSchool Counselor (L-Z): Mr. Michael CurtisClass Advisor: Mr. Shawn O'Brien
announcements & informationStay up to date during the school year by reading the daily announcements.Scan CB West's FAQ page for answers to common questions.distance learningMs. Dallam and Mr. Curtis will be posting information for students here, in addition to checking email every day.(4/2/20) This one is for the parents! I want to share an article from Psychology Today- it's a quick read, but offers some helpful advice. I'm home with my 6 and 3 year old, and I felt it offered a little reassurance within all of the chaos that comes from young kids being cooped up together all day. Even though we work with high school aged students, many have younger siblings, so I thought it might help.(4/1/20) Due to the cancellation of many SAT and ACT test administrations, Boston University hopes to minimize the heightened stress around standardized testing. Boston University will now be test optional for first time students applying for admission for the fall 2021/spring 2022 semesters. This is a temporary, one year change which will be re-evaluated in the spring of 2021.(3/31/20) Colleges have been emailing counselors to provide us with updates on how they are handling school closures and this abnormal end to the school year. The unknown is the worst part of stressful situations, so we wanted to share with you some answers you may have questions to. Please take a look at what Yale University has provided here: https://admissions.yale.edu/covid-19. This message echoes what many colleges are communicating: they will be understanding as to many of the difficulties you are experiences as a result of this Pandemic, and they plan to adjust their approach to admissions as a result. Here is another example, sent from UVA:"Please know that students will not be at a disadvantage in the admission process as a result of school closures and cancellations associated with standardized testing. Students are not responsible for things they cannot control. With most high schools closed for the spring semester, we will need to be flexible when evaluating transcripts and academic course work, and we will continue to monitor the state of standardized testing nationally and abroad. If testing is cancelled through the summer and into the fall, we will need to discuss our testing requirements for next year. Our enrollment deposit deadline remains May 1, but we will monitor the situation over the next several weeks to determine if changes to our schedule need to be considered."Hopefully this helps to assuage some concerns you have about what this means for College applications.Also, Ms. Dallam and Mr. Curtis are planning to hold “office hours” where we can chat as a group and field some of your questions, as well as provide support. More to come!(3/30/20) As we enter into the new phase of Distance Learning next week, you may have many questions. Many of your questions will be answered by your teachers, but know that your counselors and house principal are available to field questions as well. We may not know all the answers but we will certainly try to find the answers for you. Please reach out and let us know how you are doing.(3/26/20) Mr. Rubenstein sent out a survey to check in on our 11th grade class. Please try and submit your responses so we can take a look! We'll use your feedback to help guide our postings and approach to Distance Learning.(3/25/20) Hopefully you have settled into Week 2 of Distance Learning. However, you may be feeling anxious, overwhelmed or some stress. If so, there are apps for mindfulness and relaxation such as Calm or Aura that might help.Studies have shown that extended time on social media can increase stress and anxiety levels, so rather than constantly checking social media maybe consider spending a little time each day involved in some of the following activities:* Spend time with your family watching a movie, playing board games or working on a jigsaw puzzle.* Go for a walk in your neighborhood or do some exercises at home.* Write in a journal keeping track of what is happening and how you are feeling.* Come up with creative ways to spend your time such as playing an instrument, writing a story or poetry, drawing or coloring or trying out some new recipes - your parents might like it if someone else makes dinner !For Virtual Spirit Week - Wednesday is Professional Day - dress in professional (nice) clothes instead of sweats of pajamas. Post on twitter @CBWestHS.
(3/24/20) As has been the case since these absences started, many things are changing with each day. It can be overwhelming when considering all the unknowns, and possible resolutions to this situation.
One way to help get through such an ever changing, ambiguous time is to focus only on today. Answer the question for yourself each morning, "What do I need to do to today?" That's it. In an earlier post I talked about having a schedule, which fits into this plan, but be sure you limit your scope to day by day. There are times when thinking ahead, and planning long term are essential.. now is not one of those times. In fact, trying to plan ahead when so much is unknown and outside of your control can cause stress. So until things become clearer, take things day by day, and simplify your focus.
Along those lines, try to limit the time you are spending listening/watching/reading The News!
On a little different note, if you’d like assistance with learning, Mrs. Bagnick has several tutors who have offered to tutor through phone, Facetime, or Skype. Email LBAGNICK@CBSD.ORG with your subject and preferred method to schedule tutoring.
(3/23/20) If you are looking for something to do, use Khan Academy as a resource for SAT prep or help with academic subjects.
In the post last week it was mentioned to keep active physically. Mr. Price, one of our Health/PE teachers, is encouraging students to go to his website for some ways to keep physically active. View his site to get active at home.
The College Board just released information about AP exams. The College Board is developing secure 45 minute online free-response exams for each course. In addition, free resources will be available for AP students beginning March 25th. Students can attend optional, free, live AP review courses that will also be available on-demand to be reviewed at anytime.
Also follow West on twitter @CBWestHS - Virtual Spirit Week starts on Monday !
(3/19/20) Now that we are a few days into an extended absence from your normal routine, and the excitement of being off from school is fading, it is important to start thinking about a daily schedule. We are creatures of habit, and routines can have a calming effect. Since we no longer have the block bells to keep us on track, you should put structure into your day, with activities for learning, exercise, and mental wellbeing. Set your alarm for the same time, and plan to do similar activities at different times throughout the day. For example, wake up at 9am, eat breakfast, and then jump on to check out the Distance Learning activities until 11am. Workout for a half hour, shower, and get dressed. You can then do something fun for a while, and then eat lunch. After that, do something for your mental health (Mindfulness, breathing, talking a walk). Read the news and/or checkout another Distance Learning activity. Video chat with friends, or talk to someone on phone. Before you know it, it will be time for dinner, and then you can spend time with your family/do something fun. This is just a quick example, but the important thing is to make a schedule that works for YOU. What it actually looks like is less important than simply having one. Here are a few resources to help you get started!
Your teachers are providing you with learning activities each day as part of the Distance Learning plan. Click on your teacher's page to access everything they have posted so far (link). Keep your mind active!
There are many options for keeping active, but I wanted to share one major resource that is available for free. The YMCA has come up with the "Y Inside Out," with instructions and links to many ways of staying healthy (link). You can stream several free workouts, including Yoga!
Managing stress can take effort, best done each day before a major life stressor occurs. Mindfulness is an excellent way to train your mind to handle stressful events. Continuing along with the "Y Inside Out" initiative, give the Les Mills Mindfulness exercises a try (link). Being cooped up inside all day is a quick way to losing it... be sure you are taking care of yourself, it only takes 15 minutes!(3/18/20)The Central Bucks College Fair has been cancelled and colleges have cancelled Open Houses, Information Sessions and Tours. However, many colleges have virtual tours you can view. Check the college websites for information. Also you can use this time to use the College Search and College Match features in Naviance.Mr. Curtis and Ms. Dallam are available by email if you have any questions or just want to check in and let us know how you are doing. Stay healthy and keep in touch !(3/17/20) In addition to the March SAT being cancelled, the May SAT has also been cancelled. Read this post from the CollegeBoard to learn more, and help plan for taking college entrance exams. As stressful as it is to have such an unexpected thing happen while preparing for college, remember that the entire world is being affected by this pandemic, and so colleges will surely be understanding. Focus on things you can control, such as using this time for additional prep, and keep an eye out for announcements/emails from the CollegeBoard and ACT organization so you can sign up for an upcoming exam date that works for you.presentationsThe key points of Program Planning are reviewed, and College Planning steps for the rest of the year are introduced.11th grade School Counselors visit each Academic, Honors, and AP English class towards the end of the 1st semester, and the first week of the 2nd semester. The key points of Program Planning are reviewed, and College Planning steps for the rest of the year are introduced.Program Planning materials are distributed to students, and procedures for entering and selecting courses for senior year are shown during advisory.A general overview of key topics for junior year, including Career Exploration and College Planning. Also introduces non-college post-secondary options.Colleges send admissions reps to visit with out students at West, and present a comprehensive summary of what their school have to offer. Students can ask questions, and make a good impression on the person who will likely review the applications to that school for our area. This is a brief "how to" for signing up for these College Rep visits to West.important linksPlease view the left column of this page for many topic specific links.One of the best, most comprehensive, and well organized online resources for career exploration. Students in the Class of 2021 will be introduced with several lessons on how to utilize this site in conjunction with Career Plan activities through Naviance.Interested in learning more about a club at West high school? Getting involved is one of the most fulfilling ways to be part of the West community.Explore all options for financial assistance provided to needy families (CHIP, Medical Assistance, Free/Reduced Lunch program).end