What is Advisory?

The West Sound Academy Advisory program promotes meaningful relationships between staff and students while creating community, building school spirit, providing academic support to students and supporting Social-Emotional skill building.  

Through weekly meetings with their advisor, students experience a personalized learning environment with a structure and set of practices for creating multi-grade level connections, learning what it means to be an active and contributing member of the WSA community, practicing interpersonal skills, as well as monitoring and encouraging academic progress and career and college readiness.  

In the beginning of the academic year we set academic and extracurricular goals and revisit them in Learner-led conferences with families and teachers.  Our learning objectives in advisory are to build student skills that make us lifelong learners and successful academically, and to get to know our passions and strengths so that we can all engage in our WSA community and give back in authentic and meaningful ways. In doing this, we foster local and global citizenship.


Action is learning by doing and experiencing. Service is part of action and it is where IB learners strive to be caring members of the local and global community, by demonstrating personal commitment to services that make a difference to the lives of others and the environment. One component of the International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme (MYP) is called Service as Action. This is our students’ opportunity to take their service outside of the school building and move into action in the community. Action will be different from student to student and from context to context. It will allow and teach the students to feel empathy towards others, make small scale changes to behavior, take physical action, and to have an opportunity to persuade people in more influential positions to act. The IB has outlined learning outcomes that are the goals of Service as Action.

The emphasis is on:

  • Developing community awareness and concern
  • Learning to balance social, academic, and recreational avenues in life while maintaining a healthy lifestyle
  • Becoming independent
  • Developing the skills needed to make an effective contribution to society including personal reflection, resilience and working collaboratively.

Each grade level has a specific number of projects or activities they are required to complete over the course of the academic year.

In the 8th grade year students are expected to complete a Community Project that they can complete as an individual or in a group.

In the 10th grade year students are expected to complete a Personal Project. The personal project is a student-centered and age-appropriate practical exploration through a cycle of inquiry, action and reflection, which allows students to consolidate their learning throughout the program. This long-term project is designed as an independent learning experience of approximately 25 hours.

Through the Service As Action projects, students experience the responsibility of completing a significant piece of work over an extended period of time.

The community project focuses on community and service, encouraging students to explore their rights and responsibility to implement service as action in the community. The community project gives students an opportunity to develop an awareness of needs in various communities and address those needs through service learning. As a consolidation of learning, the community project engages in a sustained, in-depth inquiry leading to service as action in the community.

The community project may be completed individually or by groups of a maximum of three students. The personal project encourages students to practice and strengthen their approaches to learning (ATL) skills, to consolidate prior and subject-specific learning, and to develop an area of personal interest.

The personal project provides an excellent opportunity for students to produce a truly personal and often creative product/outcome and to demonstrate a consolidation of their learning in the classroom. The project offers many opportunities for differentiation of learning and expression according to students’ individual needs. The personal nature of the project is important; the project should revolve around a challenge that motivates and interests the individual student. Each student develops a personal project independently.

The Service as Action projects are student-centered and age-appropriate, and they enable students to engage in practical explorations through a cycle of inquiry, action and reflection. These projects help students to develop the attributes of the IB learner profile; provide students with an essential opportunity to demonstrate ATL skills developed through the coursework; and foster the development of independent, lifelong learners.

For more information and resources visit the WSA Service as Action website. 

What is CAS?

11th and 12th grades 

Creativity, activity, service (CAS) is an integral part of the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme and student life at WSA.

Developing a commitment to community is fundamental to a West Sound Academy education at all grade levels. 11th or 12th grade IB Diploma Candidate students participate in activities that inspire learning, encourage a healthy lifestyle and/or give back to the community.

The three strands of CAS, often interwoven within any single endeavor, are as follows:

Engaging in enterprises that involve creative thinking, learning new skills, experiencing culture or other ventures that involve creative thinking in the design and implementation of service projects.

Physical exertion contributing to a healthy lifestyle, not only from participation in individual and team sports but also when taking part in expeditions and in local or international projects.

An unpaid and voluntary exchange that has a learning benefit for the student. The rights, dignity, and autonomy of all those involved are respected.

 CAS projects must involve:

  • Real, purposeful endeavors, with significant outcomes
  • Personal challenge—tasks must extend the student and be achievable in scope
  • Thoughtful consideration, such as planning, reviewing progress, reporting and reflection

Students are expected to reflect on their experiences and be able to articulate or demonstrate learning outcomes that resulted from having participated in the projects. It is the experience and reflection upon the experience that counts; this is not merely an exercise in logging hours. By discussing their CAS work with their Advisor and fellow students, the Advisor helps the student to document their experiences and growth.

For more information and resources visit the WSA CAS website.AS website.

Service Opportunities

Students interested in learning more about service opportunities available in our community should contact Georgia Chehade, CAS Coordinator at West Sound Academy or their advocate. Some organizations that students have worked with in the past include:

  • Bainbridge Island Parks and Recreation
  • Bainbridge Performing Arts Center On-Site Garden Maintenance
  • Helpline House (Bainbridge Island)
  • Kitsap Humane Society
  • Kitsap Regional Library
  • Martha and Mary
  • North Kitsap Fishline
  • North Kitsap Fishline / West Sound Academy tutoring program
  • PAWS
  • Poulsbo Parks and Recreation
  • The Vera Project
  • West Sound Wildlife Shelter
  • West Sound Academy Flower and Vegetable Gardens

New listings for volunteer opportunities for WSA students are always welcome.