Winter Study

Winter Study Electives

During the winter term, Buxton offers an array of intensive six-week classes to further enrich students’ educational experience. These courses emphasize integrated learning, hands-on experience and team-teaching. Listed on this page are the 2024 Winter Study courses.

Digital to Physical: CNC and 3D Printing

Students will work with Fusion360 to learn the fundamentals of 2D and 3D modeling. Students will be encouraged to work across mediums and create sculptures/pieces that push the limits of the materials they are working with. This class will require 100% attendance and will demand significant lab work outside of class.

Creative Writing and Bookmaking

This class is for creative writers who are interested in learning how to edit, design, and print their own books. Class time will be devoted to creative writing, exploring DIY publishing, and learning printmaking and bookmaking techniques. We will meet with local publishers and learn about their work. Projects will include students printing their own books and launching aBuxton literary magazine!

Death and Dying

This class will be a meditation on death and grieving rituals. We will have visiting artists and scholars come visit the class whose practices engage with death. There will also be visits with people working in various aspects of the death industry (death doulas, hospice workers). We will discuss various grieving practices and traditions of connecting with the dead and dying. For so many, death is a terrifying and taboo subject. We hope to create a space where we can demystify this universal fact of life and share our own experiences/fears/hopes surrounding death and grief. No experience is necessary, just an openness and willingness to engage. There will be a few short readings. Attendance is essential.


Throughout winter study, we will be putting together a musical and performing it at the end of the term! We will explore and practice the arts of singing, dancing, and acting as we build the production. We will choose the musical based on the number of students interested, and auditions will be held to determine roles—if you sign up, you should expect to be cast. Attendance will be absolutely essential, and there may be a need for some extra rehearsals outside of class, particularly in the week leading up to performance.

Objects in Space

This class will be taught as an upper-level Art History elective. Students will work to gain the skills necessary to respond to and think critically about artistic objects in the museum setting. In this class, we will travel to local museums to spend extended time with singular works of art. The class will place this piece in a historical context and respond to the piece in various mediums. This class will require a significant amount of in-class writing.

Social Documentaries: Differing Narratives in the Middle East

This upper-level class will explore the relationship between the Israeli and Palestinian narrative through documentary film, various historical documentation, and literature. We will look at how social, historical, and geo-political processes shape each and differing narratives and discuss self-representation, there presentation of the Other, the relationship to land, diasporas, and the narratives of nation-building. This will be a discussion-based class in relation to film screenings, reading reflections, in combination with other forms of art/mixed mediums.

Natural Systems and Sustainable Agriculture

This class will explore our food systems to compare the different ways food gets to our table. We will look at the development of industrial agriculture, its effects on the environment and our health, how food is distributed and varies in its accessibility, and, more generally, how agriculture helps define our relationship to food. Accordingly, we will look at “alternative” means of food production, focusing on small scale regenerative agriculture, whole systems thinking, and permaculture principles. We will source materials from various, and at times, opposing perspectives to reflect on the fundamental question of how we go about feeding the global populace, to include articles, documentaries, and talking with local farmers. Additionally, throughout this course, we will engage in practical demonstrations, and community engagement to comprehend the real-world applications and impacts of regenerative agriculture, both for the Buxton community and our external community. You can expect to do a fair amount of reading to prepare for inclass discussion, though our coursework will most likely remain in class and project based.


  • "Buxton has given me the freedom to be the person I want to be, make the art I want to make, and learn the things I want to learn. At Buxton we learn not only in the classroom, but in the community. We learn how to be good to each other and how to support each other. Buxton has so much to offer students, both inside the classroom and outside of it."
    Sadie Great Barrington, MA
  • “At Buxton you get to focus on what you want to be learning; whether it is social skills or in-depth studying- you learn to take responsibility of your education.”
    Francis Magai
    Francis Magai Troy, NY
  • “Living your education means to not only learn things, but to use what you learn in your everyday life.”
    Naima Nigh
    Naima Nigh Mexico
  • “To me, living your education means to be independent, to take charge, to not be afraid of asking for help, to learn from your peers, to love to learn, to take what you have learned from a loving environment and take it into the world.”
    Kat Hallowell
    Kat Hallowell New Hampshire
  • “Your education is more than just your time in class, it’s your life as a whole. Learning is not limited to a teacher teaching you something in a classroom.”
    Cynder Johnson
    Cynder Johnson Missouri
  • “To me, at Buxton, it’s not boundaries that you make, but the ones you break through.”
    Roy Malone
    Roy Malone New York, NY
  • “At Buxton, I can choose what I want to do with my education. I can design my own path and invest my time studying topics that I’m really interested in.”
    Nora Mittleman
    Nora Mittleman New York, NY
  • “At Buxton you can experience your intellectual development in a community that accepts your perspective of the world.”
    Ben Nigh
    Ben Nigh Mexico
  • “I felt instantly at home when I stepped on the campus. At Buxton, we are in school 24/7. We learn things in the classroom, but we really learn valuable things outside of the classroom. We learn how to work with others and respect each other’s spaces. Our education surrounds us and we learn new things everyday.”
    Emily Woodside
    Emily Woodside Albany, NY
  • “I chose Buxton over public school because I think I function better in a smaller environment. You’re able to get to know students and faculty on a deeper level, which is rare.”
    Charlie Starenko
    Charlie Starenko Williamstown, MA
  • “Students should be happy when they are learning. They should not feel like studying is a burden to them. You learn things from your living space and environment - you are learning every second you are living.”
    Jiayi Cao
    Jiayi Cao China
  • “Buxton has shown me that it is possible to forge close bonds with teachers as well as students. It also gives you the ability to try new things in an environment where there is no judgment.”
    Kristhal Ayala
    Kristhal Ayala Puerto Rico
  • “I chose Buxton for a small community-based education with focus on the individual as part of the world at large, along with the learning settings.”
    Katie McAvoy
    Katie McAvoy Boston, MA
  • “I love the atmosphere and how tightly knit the community is. At Buxton you take what you learn in the classroom and use it in everyday life - you learn from the world around you and see how you can make it better.”
    Cheyanne Williams
    Cheyanne Williams Boston, MA
  • “At Buxton you bring your education into everything you do, and learn important, relevant things that you can utilize all the time.”
    Rebecca van der Meulen
    Rebecca van der Meulen New Lebanon, NY
  • "In the last year, Buxton has become my home. It has provided me with a place where self-exploration is encouraged in and out of the classroom. I have made unbreakable bonds with faculty and my peers."

    Aurora Albany, NY
  • "To me living your education means enjoying it to the fullest. Do the things that make you uncomfortable, like activities, clubs, or sports you wouldn't normally participate in. Like the saying goes, "you miss 100% of the shots you don't take."

    Adrian Boston, MA
  • "Buxton has given me room to fully realize what inspires me and the resources to create it. The next big grade is no longer a constant worry. I have more space to be and do what I want."

    Lola Williamstown, MA
  • "Buxton has given me the freedom to be the person I want to be, make the art I want to make, and learn the things I want to learn. At Buxton we learn not only in the classroom, but in the community. We learn how to be good to each other and how to support each other. Buxton has so much to offer students, both inside the classroom and outside of it."

    Sadie Great Barrington, MA
  • “A sense that everybody matters, that you are in a community where everyone can make a difference and reach their full potential, where you are interdependent and you work together, and most importantly where you understand that you can do whatever you want to do and whatever it is that you do, you have got to make a difference. I think that, more than anything, defines my experience at Buxton.”
    Peter Shumlin
    Peter Shumlin Governor of Vermont, Buxton Alumni

Start typing and press Enter to search