New High School Classes for 2021-2022 School Year


Wauwatosa West Media Leadership and Management teacher Christopher Lazarski talks with a student about the course.

Shannon Damuth

The Wauwatosa School Board approved multiple new classes available for high school students to enroll in for the 2021-2022 school year, including two regular courses and two LAUNCH strands. 

Descriptions of each class can be found below.

Animation and Moving Images

Animation and Moving images is a 0.5 credit, one semester long art course. Students can expect to use flipbooks and stop motions to begin their understanding of animation, as well as Rotoscoping: a drawing technique used by Walt Disney to begin the process of digital animations. Students will create both hand-drawn and digital animations and utilize the school’s computer lab and video cameras. 

Animation and Moving Images teacher Jessica Belich is very excited about the possibilities of the course. 

“If you really pay attention to the world, everything has become so visual, but it’s more than just pictures now. We’ve got all of this action around us all the time and so the impetus behind designing [the course] was understanding that the visual culture and world we live in is important.”

Sophomores, juniors, and seniors need no prior art classes or experience to take Animation and Moving Images. However, freshmen interested should sign up for both Art Foundations and Animation and Moving Images to gain background into drawing, something especially helpful in the first year of high school. 

Media Leadership and Management

Media Leadership and Management is a 1 credit, one year long hybrid English journalism course. Students can expect to be given the time, space, and mentorship to run and manage the journalism website and social media accounts. Students will meet with other students from Tosa East to coordinate and lead the individual journalism programs.

“The journalism program provides students with numerous opportunities to engage in real world learning. This year students have told interesting stories about what it is like to be a student going to school during the COVID pandemic and how our school district and school board are balancing safety with education,” Media Leadership and Management teacher Christopher Lazarski said. “Students enrolled in this course are leaders of our program who make serious decisions about the stories that get told. Their website and social media accounts get several thousand views a month.  These students are running a real journalism company.”

Students must have taken Writing for Publication, Media Communication, or be approved by Lazarski to be eligible for this class. Students should have shown interest in either journalism or leadership and have some experience in one to be approved. 

LAUNCH: Health and Disease

Health and Disease is a 1 credit, one year long LAUNCH course. Students will gain a better understanding of health literacy by looking through a diagnostic lense at how different disorders affect different body systems and also how medical professionals work with this information. Students will be exposed to a variety of health career paths and work with businesses in the community to apply what they have learned in the classroom. 

“Our goal is to introduce [students] to health careers and the different aspects of health sciences, going beyond the fact that ‘oh let’s all become doctors.’ There is so much more that goes into that so we are going to give them a chance to explore that through different projects, community mentorships and internships, and real world experiences working with people in those fields,” said Health and Disease LAUNCH strand instructor Christian Tiling.

Juniors and seniors are eligible to take this LAUNCH strand. There are many ways to sign up. Students can look around the school for LAUNCH posters with URL codes that you can scan for the direct link to the application. Other options are to find the registration form link in the email students and families receive each Friday, sign up through your counselor, or click this link

LAUNCH: Mathematics for the Skilled Trades

Mathematics for the Skilled Trades is a 1 credit, one year long LAUNCH course. Students will be reinforcing and learning new math skills around the Algebra II level, and will be introduced to different trades such as construction, plumbing, electrician, and HVAC. This project-based learning course will develop various math skills through project-based assessments. Students who have taken Algebra and Geometry are eligible to take this LAUNCH strand.

“We are hoping that, especially for students who might not be looking at an upper level math class like calculus, they understand that math is still used everyday. These are the types of skills you are going to need, and hopefully open it up to the trades, because that’s one area that, for years, we’ve been hearing from people in the trade industry that it’s hard to find people coming to it,” described Mathematics for the Skilled Trades teacher Jeanine Berggruen.