Agora Days '11: Let the proposals begin
Published: Friday, November 19, 2010 - 11:28pm
URBANA — French teacher John Garvey, who sponsors Agora Days, announced Wednesday that course proposals are now being taken for this year's edition of Agora Days, which will be held Feb. 22 to 25.
For students, Agora Days is always a much-anticipated tradition.
Agora Days is Uni High's annual four-day break from regular classes. During that time, students, faculty, parents, alums, and community members teach mini-courses on just about anything that interests them.
Garvey organizes the annual event, using an online registration system created by 2008 Uni graduate Micah Berman.
"Mr. Garvey just does a great job with the whole thing," said senior Charlie Newman-Johnson, who taught Belegarth class last year. "It's crazy."
According to Garvey, the goal this year is to have 100 course proposals by Dec. 15, the last school day before winter break.
The 2011 site, which became active Wednesday, had already received 25 proposals as of 10 p.m. Friday. Visitors can use the site to propose courses, view Agora policies, and get up to date on the latest announcements.
To propose a course, go to this link, click "Propose," and follow the sequence of tabs. Uni students and staff must log in with their user name and password in order to propose classes.
All students and staff members proposing courses must log in to standardize the database and ensure accurate scheduling. Individuals from outside the school may also propose classes but do not have to worry about user names and passwords.
It is possible to go back and edit course proposals after being submitted.
Video games classes will be limited to one per period. Spaces for sports classes will also be limited, depending on the availability of Kenney Gym and Uni Gym.
"Priority will be given to sports classes with the most to offer, not necessarily the biggest classes, but the ones that could interest the most people," said Garvey.
Planning on the part of Agora Days teachers will be emphasized more when proposing this year, especially for classes that require projectors or computers. People who are offering film and television classes will be expected to indicate what their lesson plans are.
The purpose of teachers planning their course schedule more thoroughly is to ensure that substantive teaching is associated with each of the four days.
"The whole idea here is that people get exposed to things that they don't get exposed to on an everyday level," said Garvey.
Garvey cites basic car maintenance, bicycle maintenance, languages, and advanced math as examples of classes that people may find interesting.
"I'm pretty psyched to submit the Belegarth class for the fifth year running," said Newman-Johnson. "It's gonna be another good Agora Days and I'm looking forwards to it."