Students at the high school level are taught the basics of shop safety and carpentry fundamentals such as proper tool use and how to read a tape measure. Once these basic skills are mastered, students work on a number of in-shop projects including swing back chairs, clothing racks, and shadow boxes. As the school year progresses, so does the students’ skill levels giving way to larger, more complicated projects. These projects included building picnic tables, a shed, several greenhouses, restoring an Everglades flats boat, constructing 6 sea kayaks, and a ’66 Ford Mustang!
Our Park Drive Art Class gives our students a place to express themselves in whatever medium we happen to be working with at that time. We offer a variety of projects that include woodworking, pottery, plaster sculpture, drawing, a variety of painting, photography, mixed mediums, and much more. We have also painted murals in the school as a team building project.
YBEC has a mission of molding young adults who can be successful in their communities. Through Affective Education class which meets weekly, students work on character building, life skills, consumer skills, and career/life planning. When a student first comes to YBEC they take part in a life skills inventory. This inventory tracks what the students know and what they need to learn in the following areas: money management, consumer awareness, food management, personal appearance and hygiene, health, housekeeping, housing, transportation, educational planning, job seeking skills, job maintenance skills, emergency/safety skills, knowledge of community resources, interpersonal skills, legal skills, pregnancy prevention/parenting, and child care. Once we have the responses of the inventory we are able to focus on what skills the students need. Teachers help students learn and refine these skills through multiple teaching strategies such as: the book "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens", banking in class, doing laundry, cooking, job shadowing, experiential trips, student purchasing system (Y-Bucks), "The Next Step" curriculum, cleaning, presenters, life stories from celebrities/role models, and career research.
All students are required to attend Adventure class weekly. This class teaches the basic skills students need to know in order to participate safely in the required adventure activities at YBEC. Skills include, but are not limited to, white water paddling technique and safety, rock climbing technique and safety, backpacking, canoeing, kayaking, wilderness survival, and mountain biking. These skills are then applied once a week on an adventure day, as well as throughout the year on extended camping trips. Another significant aspect of the curriculum is teaching the ethics of Leave No Trace. The students are taught how to safely challenge themselves while learning how to be good stewards of the environment.
Every student is our program participates in Taekwondo on a weekly basis. Our Character Fitness training program is a unique approach to physical education by incorporating martial arts discipline that stresses the development of individual character, integrity, and respect for self and others while providing participants with confidence and self-discipline. Class instruction consists of learning the specifics of several form sequences, which increase in difficulty as students progress in the belt system. Students will also learn the technique and discipline required to performing "breaking". If any student wished to advance more rapidly in the belt system to participate in sparing they are encouraged to participate in our bi-weekly Taekwondo clubs after school. YBEC has had the opportunity to award several students with the highest rank, a black belt.
Health classes cover a large range of topics including fitness, healthy living, first-aid, dieting, exercise, drugs and alcohol awareness, and sex education. Depth and content are determined by age and grade. All texts are currently from Glencoe Publishing.