Friday was anything but a typical day at one North Country high school. Our Matt Hunter has more about the vast opportunities students in Hudson Falls were learning about.
HUDSON FALLS, N.Y. – Learning how to survive the night on an Adirondack high peak is not something found in most high school lesson plans, nor is honing the finer points of crafting a ferry garden, how to train and care for service animals or mastering the creation of healthy foods -- but it's precisely how Hudson Falls High School students ended their week anyway.
"I think it is awesome our school is giving us a chance to do something different for the day," said Jason Blackman, a senior who participated in both the outdoor survival skills and healthy eating workshops.
The school's second annual Student Professional Development Day on Friday offered more than 90 workshops to choose from.
"We were shown a website and we got to click exactly what we wanted," Blackman said.
Along with the seminars about life skills and other passions, the students are introduced to various career opportunities like law enforcement and health care.
"I think it makes it easier to learn,” senior Emily Labelle said. “Sometimes you need a break to be able to do other things."
By offering such a wide array of topics, teachers hope students will grasp there's more to life than school and their future careers.
"We want our students to be well-rounded citizens of a global community, and sometimes the first place that you need to start is taking care of you," said Kim Shea, a social studies teacher at the high school who organized the event.
Over the course of the day, the classmates also raised awareness and money to combat childhood cancer; it was yet another lesson that didn't come from a textbook.
"My hope is that students take away that school can be a very joyful place," Shea said.
"We are not just sitting in a classroom and listening to our teachers,” Blackman said. “We get to go and go to different parts of the school, meet new teachers or explore different things, do different things. I think it is awesome."