Archive for the 'Academics' Category

Hydroponics Lab

by Christy Swafford, Assistant Admissions Director at Cherokee Creek Therapeutic Boys School

Christy Swafford - Boys Boarding School AdmissionsCherokee Creek now has a new hydroponics lab!

If you do not know what a hydroponics lab is, follow us on this journey to find out. The boys and staff couldn’t be more excited to start this fun process.

One of our students, Reid R wrote this blog about it.

“In class recently, we have been learning about hydroponics, or food grown without soil. Collectively the classes are going to take care of 15 different plants. The seeds we are planting are Wild Bergamot, Lemon Verbena, Strawberries, Lemon Balm, Lemon Basil, English Lavender, and Chocolate Mint. I am excited for this because Ben (the Environmental Science Teacher) said we could make tea out of the plants when we are done. Also, I have only seen hydroponics on NOVA and stuff like that. We also recently got our seed starters, so we are ready to begin.”

Hydroponics Lab at Therapeutic Boys SchoolIt is really rewarding to see the passion from the boys about the process involved with a hydroponics lab. They are interested in every detail and really want to make sure they do it correctly. All of us are on pins and needles with excitement to see what happens next.

In the pictures you can see the seed pods. The boys put the tiny seeds in the hole in the middle. Once the roots grow 1-2 inches, they will be placed in water inside clay pots. This will allow the roots to expand. Stay tuned to see what happens next!

I’m really proud of all the hard work the students are putting into this project. The boys have done all the research with how it works. Next time you visit our campus, remember to stop over and see how our plants are faring.

I personally can’t wait to sample the goodies when the time comes!

posted by Judy Leslie in Academics,Activities,Gardening,Nature,Students and have Comments Off on Hydroponics Lab

Lego Bears are STATE-BOUND!

Therapeutic Boarding School goes to Lego League State Competitionby Nick Linscott, CCBS Math Teacher and Lego League Coach

I am proud to report that the Cherokee Creek Boys School LEGO Team finished fourth out of 25 teams at our local qualifier in Seneca, SC.

That means we will be taking our show on the road to the Western South Carolina State Championship for a 60 team tournament.

It was really neat to see our team, out of all of the other teams, chosen to be interviewed in front of the whole crowd of tournament attendees. All eyes were on the Bears – all teams, coaches, officials, and families – as they answered questions about their project. How cool is that?

The guys also earned the Second Place trophy in the Project Presentation category.  Quite a day! This team did all of us proud–great teamwork and very positive and appropriate interactions with all other competitors, volunteers and visitors.  They showed up and represented themselves, their families and our school as Warriors–and we made State.  My goal for them was met.

Therapeutic Boarding School goes to Lego League State CompetitionThe championship tournament happens Saturday, Feb. 6 at Easley High School in Easley, S.C.  There are many logistical details to work out to prepare for the Lego League tournament. We will let you know as soon as I have anything definite.  We hope to see you there cheering on our Bears!

Here is the home page of the tournament:

Editor’s Note: This is Nick’s 12th year to take a team to a Lego League competition. We are so grateful for his hard work and dedication to our students.

posted by Judy Leslie in Academics,Activities,Lego League,Students and have Comment (1)

Major League Preparations for Lego League

Lego League Cherokee Creek Boys Boarding Schoolby Christy Swafford, CCBS Assistant Admissions Director

What all goes into a Middle School Lego League Competition?

Many of you may think you just simply build Legos, OR as many of us did growing up, you get the adults around us to do it. That is not the case with the Lego League Competition taking place this week.

The boys are designing and programming the robots on their ownNick Linscott, CCBS’s awesome Lego League Coach is there for moral support only.

The boys are judged in the following areas: Robot Design, Project, Core Values, and Robot Game. What do each of these mean, you may ask?

Lego League - Cherokee Creek Boys Boarding SchoolRobot Design: The boys must give a 4-minute presentation on their robot design and why they designed it the way they did. This involves speaking in front of complete strangers and presenting as a team. There are no adults doing the speaking for them. Wow, that takes a lot of courage for anyone!

Project: This year the competition’s project deals with recycling. They boys have to write a script, act it out, and make costumes to get their point across. The specific problem our boys are wanting to solve is how to minimize the number of paper cups we go through on a daily basis for medication distribution. These boys are not afraid to be authentic with anyone. That is enough to win in my book!

Core Values: The boys are judged as a team on how they cooperate together, whether or not they are “professional”, and if they are “gracious” with one another. We believe that they will be heads and shoulders above the competition since they practice cooperation and grace on a daily basis!

Lego League - Cherokee Creek Boys Boarding SchoolRobot Game: The game this year has to deal with picking up trash with the robot they have created. The boys program the robot in order to complete the tasks at hand. They will score points for the tasks they complete.

Needless to say, there is a lot that goes into the Lego League Competition. Our Lego League teams have had wonderful success in the past. Let’s wish the boys good luck as they tackle Lego League Regionals in Seneca on Saturday!

posted by Judy Leslie in Academics,Activities,Lego League and have Comment (1)

21st Century Academics

by Christy Swafford, Assistant Admissions Director at CCBS

3D Printer at Cherokee Creek Boys Boarding SchoolAt Cherokee Creek Boys School, we use different experiential tools within our program to connect middle school boys with nature, technology, and other unique learning environments. Technology can be a scary thing for most parents. They immediately think of cell phones, video games, iPads, and the list continues. Some great tools we’ve discovered for learning involve technology such as smart boards, mechanical engineering experiments, and 3D printing.

The neat thing about this technology is that it creates excitement and intellectual stimulation within the middle school boy. It becomes something that they can connect with and put their on stamp on, inside and outside of the classroom.

3D Printer at Boys Boarding SchoolCCBS recently had the privilege of getting a 3D printer. The boys were excited about this new tool and many of them viewed it almost as if it was a new toy (the same could be said about some of our staff members!).

Important lessons that our students can learn from 3D printing include: problem solving activities, creative skills by designing and making new objects, and project management aptitude as they follow their project all the way to its completion.

3D Printer at Boys Boarding SchoolWe’ve found that a 3D printer really gets the brainstorming going within a young mind. Each student is tasked with generating an idea of what they would like to make. As they begin the process, their project may not come out the way they had hoped. There may be times that they want to give up when things get tough. However, our boys are learning to endure and finish something that they started, which is rare for a lot of middle school boys. And when their project has successfully been completed and they can hold their product in their hands, there is much joy and a sense of accomplishment.

There is so much that can be learned from these cool tools!

Some of the creative things the boys have already made: mugs and an octopus. What other things are possible?

Here’s to fun learning in 2016!

posted by Judy Leslie in Academics,Activities,Lessons,Students and have Comments Off on 21st Century Academics

Career Center Fun

Christy Swafford - Boys Boarding School Admissionsby Christy Swafford, Assistant Admissions Director at CCBS

It is so much fun to try new things. At Cherokee Creek Boys School, boys are able to use their creativity with their Medicine Wheel work (from the “Four-Fold Way” by Angeles Arrien), Wilderness Trek adventures, and so much more. They are always coming up with new activities and hobbies they want to explore.

CC Boys Boarding School at Career Center For the majority of the time creative opportunities don’t revolve around academics. Many of the boys have had a lot of school frustrations prior to coming to CCBS. They’ve had a hard time embracing a successful mindset when it involves academics. Once they do, however, they realize that they are capable of so much more than they ever could have imagined.

Denise Savidge, our Academic Dean, and the other teachers have helped the boys bring their creativity to light in the area of academics. The boys have a true love for experiential learning. This was clear seen when several of our boys started going to the Hamilton Career Center recently.

CC Boys Boarding School at Career CenterAt this time, some of our boys are working on a 3-D design program and learning how to use software to recreate a drawing in a book. The class is called Mechanical Drawing. This is the modern version of the “drafting table” that architects used to use.

The second group of CCBS students is learning how to weld.

We can’t wait to see the projects they are creating!

A big THANK YOU  to those at the Hamilton Career Center for their programs and instruction for our boys. They truly are making a difference, and our boys are greatly benefiting from the learning of new skills.

posted by Judy Leslie in Academics and have Comments Off on Career Center Fun

Et tu, Brute?

Boys Boarding School students read Julius Caesar Our students were required to read Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar this summer. Believe it or not, there wasn’t a single boy who had requested to read it. Go figure!?! For some, they learned that Caesar was much more than just a salad!

Anyway, we required them to not only read the book, but to be involved with acting the play out in class. As we gave campus tours to prospective families last week, you could hear a lot of stomping going on upstairs in the classrooms. One of the visiting parents quipped that it sounded like that often at his home when his son does homework. The difference? Our boys are having FUN doing their schoolwork!

Boys Boarding School students read Julius CaesarAt our Family Seminar last week the boys were given an opportunity to perform a Julius Caesar play for their families. They even created costumes for the occasion!

Because of this experience, the students grew deeper in their understanding of some of the Medicine Wheel values. If you are familiar with the CCBS Medicine Wheel, can you think of any values that may have been utilized and enhanced?

posted by Judy Leslie in Academics,Activities,Lessons,Students and have Comments Off on Et tu, Brute?

A Week in Review at Cherokee Creek Boys Boarding School – P.A.T.H Style

It’s been an exciting week at Cherokee Creek Boys Boarding School as we prepare for Spring Break. We thought it would be fun to share some updates through the lens of the P.A.T.H.  (The model we use to help create balance in the key areas of Personal Enrichment, Academics, Therapeutics, and Health and Recreation.)

Beautiful artwork donated by Garlinghouse Family to our Boys Boarding School

Garlinghouse Family


We were honored to receive a very thoughtful and generous gift from Jeff and Kim. The gift is truly a labor of love!  With 250,000 stitches, Kim created an intricate Medicine Wheel for us. Jeff made an easel to display this one-of-a-kind project. They spent over 9 months making this beautiful piece of art.  That is right, 250,000 stitches! As the boys would say, THANK YOU MAMA AND PAPA G!

Teacher Nick and the boys looking at Smart Board at our Boys Boarding School


Nick hasn’t missed a beat! After returning from the State Lego League Competition he jumped right back into class. He continues to have fun in his classroom by finding creative ways to use his new Smart Board tool.  The image to the left gives you a peek into a lesson with the boys on angles. That sure makes geometry look more approachable and interesting!


Parent Passages Transition WorkshopTHERAPEUTICS

Today wraps up a 2-day Parent Passages transition workshop. With 17 families attending, we know that the collaboration and support will help them to gain many additional tools and ideas to begin the process planning for their son’s graduation.

We had the privilege of Dr. Tim Thayne, author of the book Not By Chance to speak at this workshop. He is helping to fortify, heal, and inspire the family unit. We are excited for these families to start a new season in their lives. Keep up the good work everyone!

Jacob C represents Cherokee Creek Boys Boarding School at a local high school track meet.HEALTH AND RECREATION

Cherokee Creek Boys Boarding School had their first track meet with a local high school. Our boys did great! It was a fun experience for all of them.

Reno got 3rd in the 800 meter and 5th in the 400 meter. Frankie got 2nd in the 400 meter. These boys competed against other high schoolers! How cool is that!? Talk about being powerful and strong!

Let’s get a ‘Go Bears’ on the count of three…

1…2…3…GO BEARS!


What a terrific week!

Stay tuned for more exciting updates! We have a group of boys and staff leaving for Costa Rica today for the first Cherokee Creek Boys Boarding School International trip. We look forward to sharing pictures and stories soon!

We hope everyone has a wonderful Spring Break!

posted by Judy Leslie in Academics,Athletics,Donations,Families,Students and have Comment (1)

Smart Boards in the Woods?

boy diagrams a sentence on one the smart boards

Carson and the students are having fun diagramming sentences. Don’t you wish you could be a part of this class?

We have been having fun the last couple weeks as we learn how to use our new Smart Boards!

Smart Boards are interactive whiteboards that use DViT (Digital Vision Touch) technology for user input such as scrolling and right mouse-click in the same way as normal PC input devices. This camera-based touch technology for interactive whiteboards and interactive displays uses digital cameras and proprietary software and firmware to detect finger or pen contact with the screen.

boys boarding school student writes on one of the smart boards

Math teacher, Nick, gets a lesson from the boys on how to use the smart board. Who said the teacher is the only one who can teach?

Each Smart Board interactive whiteboard operates as part of a system that includes interactive whiteboards, computers, projectors and Smart Notebook collaborative learning software.

At Cherokee Creek Boys School we know it’s important to incorporate a variety of teaching styles and methods to meet the needs of our students. These Smart Boards will certainly enrich our efforts and offer a more successful learning environment for our boarding school for boys.

After all, our mission states: ‘We are a learning community!’

Thank you to the friend of Cherokee Creek Boys School for this generous donation of Smart Boards! These extra tools will be of great value to our teachers and will benefit many CCBS students for years to come!

posted by Judy Leslie in Academics,Donations and have Comments Off on Smart Boards in the Woods?