How to Be a Student: Executive Functioning Skills (Section 1)

with Mrs. Joelle Hodge

Term: Summer 2017: June 12, 13, 15, 19, 20, 22, 26, 27, 29, July 10, 11, 13, 17, 18, 20, 24
Instructor: Joelle Hodge
Grade Level: Rising 10th–12th graders
Schedule: Mondays, Tuesdays & Thursdays 10:15 a.m. (ET), 75 min.
Price: $215

Please note: Registration for this course is closed. Check back in February 2018 for our 2018-19 academic year course offerings!

Restful learning is what we’re after. But, oddly enough, “restful” can be achieved only after planning and preparations have been made. Only then can a student approach his subject with calm, enjoyment, and delight. Too often, sufficient planning and preparing are overshadowed by deadlines or volume of work. Students need to learn the executive functioning skills of (1) time management, (2) prioritization, (3) note taking, (4) organization, (5) reading (not just for content, but theme and co-disciplinary connections), (6) academic integrity, and (7) personal responsibility. Students who possess these skill sets are more likely to succeed in their academic endeavors. This course, then, is designed for academically mature students who are ready to adopt and employ these skills largely independently. These upper-school students should be ready to take initiative and begin the process of owning their education. In doing so, students should be able to approach their future academic course calendars with confidence and the tools to engage in scholé—restful learning.

A must-take course before leaving high school!

Placement: Please note, this course is designed for rising 10th through 12th graders only. Students outside this grade range require pre-approval from the course instructor.

Course Syllabus: How To Be a Student Summer 2017 Syllabus

Please note that Section 1 and Section 2 of this course are identical in content. Due to the demand for this course, we have opened a second section to accommodate more students while maintaining a low student to teacher ratio.

How To Image*Required Text:
How to Read a Book: The Classic Guide to Intelligent Reading by Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren (ISBN 978-0-671-21209-4)

*Required texts are not included in the purchase of the course.

Red checkmarkComputer: You will need a stable, reliable computer, running with processor with a speed of 1 Ghz or better on one of the following operating systems: Mac OS X with MacOS 10.6 (Snow Leopard) or later; Windows 8, 7, Vista (with SP1 or later), or XP (with SP3 or later). We do NOT recommending using an iPad or other tablet for joining classes. An inexpensive laptop or netbook would be much better solutions, as they enable you to plug an Ethernet cable directly into your computer. Please note that Chromebooks are allowed but not preferred, as they do not support certain features of the Zoom video conference software such as breakout sessions and annotation, which may be used by our teachers for class activities.

Red checkmarkHigh-Speed Internet Connection: You will also need access to high-speed Internet, preferably accessible via Ethernet cable right into your computer. Using Wi-Fi may work, but will not guarantee you the optimal use of your bandwidth. The faster your Internet, the better. We recommend using a connection with an download/upload speed of 5/1Mbps or better. You can test your Internet connection here.

Red checkmarkWebCam: You may use an external webcam or one that is built in to the computer.
WebCam Recommendations: Good (PC only) | Best (Mac and PC)

Red checkmarkHeadset: We recommend using a headset rather than a built-in microphone and speakers. Using a headset reduces the level of background noise heard by the entire class.
Headset Recommendations: USB | 3.5mm

Red checkmarkZoom: We use a web conferencing software called Zoom for our classes, which enables students and teachers to gather from around the globe face to face in real time. Zoom is free to download and easy to use.
To download Zoom:

  1. Visit
  2. Click to download the first option listed, Zoom Client for Meetings.
  3. Open and run the installer on your computer.
  4. In August, students will be provided with instructions and a link for joining their particular class.

JoelleHodgeHeadshot2Joelle Hodge holds a BA in history/political science from Messiah College in Grantham, Pennsylvania. She began her career as a staffer to United States Senator Arlen Specter (R-Pa) before finding her professional home in the world of classical education in 1999.

She has more than eighteen years of logic-teaching experience—many of which were spent at a classical school in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. There she also developed much of their logic and rhetoric curricula. She has coauthored two logic books, The Art of Argument: An Introduction to the Informal Fallacies and The Discovery of Deduction: An Introduction to Formal Logic, both published by Classical Academic Press.

Currently, Classical Academic Press hosts Joelle’s consultant offerings, where she engages with educators across the country, tailoring workshops for classical schools and co-ops that seek to train their teachers in the fundamentals of dialectic and rhetoric-stage pedagogy. Through Scholé Academy, she continues to offer online courses in logic and rhetoric, as well as summer tutorials in mathematics and student-skills development. Beginning with the 2016-17 academic year, she will also serve as Senior Teacher for Scholé Academy, where she will not only continue to offer courses, but also assist other SA teachers in developing their most productive and inspiring classrooms.

Concurrently, Joelle provides year-round, private, multidiscipline tutoring services to a classically educated family living abroad.

from Classical Academic Press