Category Archives: Social Justice

Gaze in Film (Sadie)

Sex Ed and Health (MS) (elizabeth ortega)

Note: This class is open to middle school students only.

We will work to create a space where you can learn relevant information about sexual and relational health. Talking about sex and our bodies openly and honestly can be hard, but it doesn’t have to be. It can also be enlightening, informative, and exciting!

This class will be a place to build confidence and friendly curiosity, rather than shame and judgment. Cultivating a relationship with one’s sexuality and body is a journey – and it’s better if you feel informed and aware along the way.

We will utilize the book: Sex is a Funny Word: A Book about Bodies, Feelings, and You “This candid, inclusive, stereotype-defying, and absolutely wonderful primer on sexuality and gender identity embraces diversity in all of its dimensions.” To further inform the curriculum we will also use the age appropriate curriculum: The Get Real middle school curriculum.

Please reach out if you have any questions about the content of this class!

Sociology of the International District (hannah)

How does our school community connect to the International District community? What is the history of the ground we walk on? How can we be in just relationship with our neighbors? 

We go to school in the heart of a rich historical and cultural urban enclave. The International District is a multiethnic concentrated area that includes Chinatown, Japantown, Little Saigon, and Manilatown. Chinese immigrants first came to the PNW in the 1850s. Since then, the sociology of the International District has been shaped by legislature, migration, war, environment, business, gentrification, racism, culture, and resistance. 

Sociology is a science focusing on society, human behavior, relationships, and interactions. In this class, we will learn about the history of the ID in order to understand the sociology of the area over time and today. Class will include visits to local businesses, museums, and parks throughout the term. I hope to have members from the community come speak with us. 

Diverse Voices & Yummy Things (elizabeth ortega)

In this class, we’ll gather to consume and discuss media by and about diverse humans. We’ll hear from various voices on topics like identity, queerness, institutional racism and human rights, global issues and we’ll pull from assorted forms of media including podcasts and news sources. Each class one of you will provide either a yummy treat or a yummy beverage for everyone to share!

I’ll provide options each day, y’all will vote and bam! We listen and discuss.

Whiteness/straightness/cis-ness/male-ness etc. in media is the norm; this is an opportunity to approach important topics from a different viewpoint and perspective. 

No homework, just come ready to contribute to discussions each day and eat yummy things and THINK and PONDER and FEEL!

Queer History and More! (elizabeth ortega)

This class is going to be a mash up of queer history, biographies, queer theory and queer identity, queer as a verb and current issues surrounding being queer and how to navigate it all. My goal is for you to walk out of class with a fistful of information, deep perplexing possibilities and even bigger love and gratitude.

Every week I will provide a reading or a piece of media related to one of these areas. We will unpack, repack and wrap our minds and hearts around the content with deep discussion, writing, a personal interview and I am committed to bringing at least 1 guest speaker.

Join the class at any level of knowledge and NO you DO NOT need to identify as queer/LGBTQQIAA2s.

We will ALL be learning new ideas and information and deepening our awareness of self and others.

In this class we’ll be learning about key historical moments and people who shaped queer life and history in this country. We will dive into some queer theory,


High school only unless you are an 8th grader and feel up to the challenge and come to discuss with me.

Indigenous People’s History (Cont) (HS) (Sam)

Note: This class is open to high school students only.

Indigenous People’s History (Cont) (HS)


When we hear about the start of this country, it always begins with the landing on the East Coast (Plymouth Rock). We all know by now that much more was going on way before then. This class will read and analyze the book, An Indigenous Peoples’ History Of The United States by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz. We will talk about the many people groups and nations that were a part of this land before the invasion of British settlers. We will be learning about groups that lived in many regions and how they survived and thrived. Also, we will learn about the similarities that we come across in our state that reflect Native cultures, practices, and ideas.

Note: You are welcome to join this class if you were not a part of the class last term.

Some class activities to expect:

Note Taking


Short Answer quizzes

Short Writing Assignments

George Orwell’s 1984 (HS) (elizabeth ortega)

Note: This class is open to high school students only.

A classic. Nineteen Eighty-Four has become a classic literary example of political and dystopian fiction. Written more than 70 years ago, this novel is a chilling prophecy about the possible future. And while 1984 has passed along, this book is a timely read. Thematically, it centers on the consequences of totalitarianism, mass surveillance and repressive regimentation of people and behaviors within society. More broadly, the novel examines the role of truth and facts within society and the ways in which they are/can be manipulated. Come join the journey of reading this quintessential novel and put it under your literary belt.

“Who controls the past controls the future. Who controls the present controls the past.”

Each week we will read, take notes, engage in critical writing reflections and complete a personal project throughout the term.

HIGH SCHOOL ONLY (8th graders talk to me)