IB Bootcamp: Back and Better than Ever

Team Platypus, led by Gregoire Winston, posing for a picture after a game of charades.

Ingrid Moises

Team Platypus, led by Gregoire Winston, posing for a picture after a game of charades.

For International Baccalaureate sophomores, IB Bootcamp is a rite of passage as they prepare to enter their first year in the program. From Mar. 29 to 30, the IB Executive council, supervised by Mrs. Van Wyk, aimed to make the event a positive learning experience by filling the two days with games, activities and presentations to break the intimidation of IB examinations and assessments.

The council and volunteering seniors decorated the auditorium with safari-themed balloons, signs and tablecloths. Each senior who led a group dressed up as a safari guide, and their groups had unique names corresponding to random animals, like tigers, cheetahs and hippos.

Day 1: Extended Essay

Ms. Van Wyk and seniors going over the Extended Essay presentation and how to choose your topic. (Ingrid Moises)

The first presentation detailed all the aspects of the Extended Essay, such as the maximum word count, the junior year timeline and finding a supervisor. The groups then split up into all the different subjects that an EE can be written on: psychology, English, math, history, environmental science and biology. There was also an undecided section for the students who were unsure of what path they wished to take with the EE. These sections were led by seniors who have already completed their papers, like IB executive council members Gregoire Winston and Esperanza Barrios.

“Before IB Bootcamp, I felt unprepared and nervous for my EE, but now that they have broken it down for us, I feel like I’m more ready to write and at least choose the topic I want,” sophomore Victoria Largaespada said.

A break was taken for students to destress with a game of charades between the entire sophomore IB class. Group leaders were responsible for guessing the words their group was acting out, and the auditorium erupted in cheers as different teams took the lead.

Day 2: CAS and IB assessments

Team Jaguars act out the charade words on the projector for their team leader. (Ingrid Moises)

As part of the program for day two, the executive council chose to go over Creativity, Activity and Service projects and experiences. The students logged into their ManageBac accounts, where they learned how to turn in future assessments and access platforms they can utilize for access to credible research. Additionally, each group had to brainstorm CAS project ideas for each of the United Nations’ sustainable goals as an activity.

The last few hours were spent playing a competitive game of Jeopardy that included ultimate trivia involving teachers, comparing assessments covered in the Bootcamp and EE questions. In this game, Team Butterflies was victorious, and the winners received ribbons along with IB merchandise.

“As part of the IB Executive council, it was difficult to make something so intimidating into fun activities that the sophomores enjoyed. I was happy to hear that most of them felt like they learned something over the course of the two days,” senior Kylie Alvarez said.

With the help of the IB Executive Council, the goal of IB Bootcamp was to prepare sophomores for the assignments and course load they will face in the coming years. The two-day long camp offered an opportunity for underclassmen to get real advice from experienced seniors and gain insight on what the IB Program has to offer.