Minimester Courses


Many would argue that these courses are at the heart of Minimester. Faculty teams enjoy teaching content that is of particular interest to them and sharing that passion with students during extended educational sessions. There’s usually a classroom component mixed with local and regional travel and hands-on group activities.

2016 Minimester Courses

Art Mine

The “ArtMine” Minimester course is an art enrichment program specially created for art enthusiasts who aim to explore new areas of artistic development. Activities include museum trips, gallery visits, interactive discussions, lectures, creative writing, and hands-on workshops lead by art-professionals. Students will explore media and techniques not included in SMS fine art classes, as such as: The Ancient Technique of Encaustic, Fantasy Collage, Assemblage, Found Objects, Wire Art, Manga Characters, and Virtual Gallery Tours.

Be All You Can Become

Be All You Can Become is a sports and activities-themed Minimester class with a research component. During the course students have the opportunity to explore activities and areas of particular or potential interest. Every year the activities offered are different over the past several years girls who chose to take the course have participated in go-karting, roller skating, paintball, flag football, indoor rock climbing, ballroom dancing, and more!

Crime Scene Investigations (CSI)

CSI Minimester is a course which focuses on the fundamentals of investigative crime scenes using forensic science principles. During the course students have the opportunity to explore activities and areas of particular or potential interest. They will collaborate as teams to document crime scenes with measurements and diagrams, use advanced digital photography techniques to record both visible and invisible evidence, and learn to collect and process physical evidence. The course aims to utilize science and math skills while also providing a fun experience.

Games, Games, Games

Games, Games, Games is a brand new Minimester course! This two week adventure will begin with each student joining one of the Harry Potter Houses and throughout the course students will have opportunities to earn points for their house. The course will explore games and activities of particular or potential interest to the students including board games, dice games, geocaching, laser tag, and a field trip to an Escape Room.

The Joy of Cooking

In The Joy of Cooking course students will explore the world of food including kitchen hygiene, knife skills, table setting, flower arranging, and basic cooking and baking. There will be film viewing~ranging from Ratatouille to Julie & Julia, Food, Inc. and Chocolat. Students will also take field trips to various shops, restaurants, and cafes and spend a day at the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History, viewing Julia Child's kitchen. All this delicious fun will culminate with a formal dinner party at the end of the course.

Next Steps

*This course is specifically designed for juniors. Click here for more information.


Educational trips abroad have included studying history and culture in Israel, Spain, Morocco, Egypt, Costa Rica, China, Italy, the Bahamas, Peru, Greece, England, Belize, and France, to name a few. Domestically, students have hiked the Blue Ridge Mountains, shadowed professional alumnae along the Eastern Seaboard, gone scuba diving in Florida, and roadtripped to the Grand Canyon.

2016 Minimester Courses

Neighbors Outreach Worldwide in Kenya

This year, SMS is offering a minimester travel experience to Githioro, Kenya to the home of alumnus Susan Elliott Eastwood in partnership with her nonprofit Neighbor's Outreach Worldwide. The primary focus of the trip is to offer support to the newly built shelter for women facing domestic violence. Students traveling on this minimester trip have been fundraising for the past six months to contribute to the in-country projects related to the needs of The Haven and a local preschool. The goal of the trip is to make an impact for the villagers, women and school children while simultaneously learning what life is like in rural Kenya. Upon leaving Kenya, students will have not only experienced the power of making a difference in a developing nation, but also will have spent three days in the magnificent Masaii Mara on safari. Our goal is to make Holy Trinity a sister school for St. Margaret's and our hope is to support the efforts of The Haven in years to come from afar.

Rivers and RVs in Florida

This Minimester course features an RV road trip to and through Florida to explore and learn about its rich variety of sub-tropical aquatic ecosystems. Activities will include snorkeling on a tropical coral reef, kayaking through a mangrove swamp, biking through the Everglades, a sleepover with the manatees at Sea World, seashell hunting on Sanibel Island (one of the world’s 10 best shelling beaches), and wildlife watching at a cypress swamp, estuarine lagoon, tidal flats, barrier islands, and a warm freshwater limestone spring (manatee haven) …plus a cultural detour: the Daytona 500 NASCAR race! Students will keep a field notebook and complete a final project for a grade.

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