Offerings - Meristem Offerings - Meristem


We don’t do things to people or for people. We do things with people and then watch them do it themselves.

At Meristem we offer a wide range of classes that satisfy a diversity of interests, all of which enhance Executive Functioning skills such as:

  • Focusing
  • Organizing, planning and prioritizing
  • Completing tasks
  • Empathy
  • Regulating emotions
  • Self-monitoring

Students develop these critical skills through planning and completing tasks, experiencing success, confronting failure, and reflecting upon the process. These skills are directly transferable towards their long-term goals such as employment, attending college, and/or successful independent living,

Popular Offerings

Independent Living Skills

Students gain practical life skills by creating hygiene routines, weekly shopping, preparing meals, organizing social events, and more. Meristem facilitates training in driver’s education and certification in first aid and CPR. Students also plan, train for, and execute field trips that progress to be completely self-powered, self-managed, and self-sufficient adventures from start to finish.


Students develop tactile sensitivity by transforming soft clay into a fired and finished piece. Through this process, students build self awareness and analysis to understand the form, texture, and thickness of the piece they are creating.

Culinary Arts

Our Culinary Arts program is made up of three classes for different skill levels. Each class has a beginner, intermediate, and advanced level. Students generalize these skills to prepare and serve meals in the dorms and at home.

Culinary Arts: Students execute basic culinary concepts, including safe working practices, use and handling of culinary tools and equipment, nutrition, reading and following recipes, measuring, preparing food, and food storage/handling.

Bakery: Students focus on the more precise science of baking. Working together, they learn about ingredients, techniques, and timing.

Café Internship: Students prepare meals using organic produce harvested from our garden. Students work in a busy kitchen, serve food to the community, and receive customer feedback. Students practice rectifying mistakes, preparing recipes from multiple cultures, and cooking for a range of dietary needs (gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian, etc.).

Iron Forge

Offered on campus at our outdoor forge, students learn proper heating and shaping techniques for metal work.

Herbal Arts

Students collaborate to create healthy products that promote self-care. Working with natural ingredients like herbs sourced from our garden and essential oils, Herbal Arts teaches natural hygiene and basic first aid. Process is important as students learn commercial preparation of products that may be given as gifts or sold. Advanced students develop diverse business skills as they produce, market, and sell their product line.


Currently in a “soft” re-opening for special events, students run an on-campus Bed and Breakfast. Students conduct cleaning routines, take reservations, greet guests, and understand business processes.

Job Readiness

Students explore careers and reinforce critical skills like communication, dependability, punctuality, problem solving, teamwork, professional attire, etiquette, and confidence. Student build job search skills such as developing a master application and resume and mock interviewing. Students role play work scenarios, during which they may videotape a workplace social scenario or interview for constructive review. Overall, students work towards self-awareness in their interests, abilities, values and skills, and career-awareness to learn what career opportunities exist and what is required to pursue them.

Land Stewardship

Students engage in a range of activities on our three-acre organic farm inspired by biodynamic and sustainable agricultural practices. Through land stewardship, students learn to manage the care of the soil, compost, seeds, annual/perennial crops, pastures, and orchards. Animal care of chickens is included as a source of natural pest management and soil enrichment. Students engage in our seed-to-plate curriculum, which allows them to see where their food comes from and to collaborate with Culinary Arts to transform fresh produce into nutritious meals.


Students work with copper and other metals to create bowls, bracelets, ladles, hooks, and much more. Students are shown how the uniform, unbroken hammering of a simple area teaches them to be exact and accurate. Bending copper with hand tools develops a feeling for form and symmetry.


Students attend individual and large group lessons based in Transformational Movement Education. Students move through a progression of neurologically beneficial movements, cooperative movement conversations, and body awareness activities to practice grounding and flow. Activities help develop spatial orientation and integration. Cultural Dance classes practice rhythm, coordination, moving in synch with others, and additional skills beneficial to nervous system regulation.


Self expression, rhythm, coordination, and confidence all flow from practicing and performing music. Students can take music classes focusing on vocals, an instrument, or band jam sessions taught by professional, life-long musicians.


Students challenge themselves by increasing their level of stamina and strength, improve coordination and balance, build resilience, and concentration through recreation activities. Examples include: rollerskating, nature walks, and trips to the gym or pool.


Students build hand-eye coordination through hand sewing, felting, crochet, and embroidery. Working on a project like hand sewing a bag from start to finish builds executive functioning and experience with self initiation.

Visual Arts

Visual art is an invaluable tool for communicating as it transcends language barriers. Our Visual Arts class encourages students to communicate and share their personal voice through non-verbal means. Students learn and apply techniques to class assignments and personal projects in drawing and illustration.


Students hone skills and executive functioning by planning, prioritizing, and self-monitoring. Students work with greenwood to create candle holders, spoons, spatulas, bowls, stools, coat racks. Students master basic tools, materials, and safety.

Work Experience

Students learn hands-on work experience through grounds-keeping, landscape and maintenance work, event support, campus projects, and even the use of power tools.

Student Life