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Showing posts from December, 2012

Peace and Light

At the Annual Alumni Christmas gathering last night attended by more than 140 alumni, alumni parents, and faculty, I was reminded of how much I love this time of year. This week, after the terribly disturbing events of last Friday, we have all been living in the shadow of something we can't possibly understand. This is when the healing power of community is so important. Saint David's theme this year is 'true community' and drawn from our mission's subsequent words, it is defined as 'compassion' and 'kindness'.  Celebrating Christmas together tonight as a true community, a symbol of peace and light, is an antidote to violence illuminating somewhat the shadows cast.

In celebrating community, the school also gathered to celebrate one of our own, an alumnus who has expanded and promoted that definition of community.

Jamal Lucas, Class of 1992, was named Alumnus of the Year in recognition of his global economic initiatives. Mr. Lucas' aim is to use s…

Purposeful Integration of Technology

Saint David's teachers are innovative and creative. We believe that technology should only be employed where it makes teaching and learning more efficient, effective and powerful.
Fore example, in the First Grade our teachers are working 1-on-1 with boys to assess their ability to use a variety of strategies for addition and subtraction. Boys use a teacher-made activity on an iPad and talk through what they are doing and why they are doing it, as they drag “chips” across a number line, and use other “digital manipulatives” to communicate their thinking.  
The app our teachers employ records the boys' voices and also the movements of the objects on the screen – it basically creates a movie that makes plain how the boys are thinking through the processes of addition and subtraction. This tool (method) enables the teachers to “see inside the boys' minds” to gauge their understanding (and identify misconceptions) better than they could have by looking only at the end result, whi…

Holiday Cheer ...

... spread through the school this afternoon thanks to the 2nd Grade.  Here they are outside my office at 2:40 on one of their many stops around the school singing Christmas carols and reciting Christmas poetry.  They could be heard throughout the entire school, voices echoing through our halls and classrooms -- good cheer abounds ... and they can draw quite a crowd!

Horizons National ...

... our summer program affiliate is recognized as one of America’s top-performing nonprofit organizations.

The S&I 100 is the first-ever broad index of U.S. nonprofits to feature organizations like ours that address the country’s most pressing issues in education, health, youth and poverty. Horizons National was rigorously screened and selected for our proof of impact and ability to expand our program to thousands more children.

Change the World Before Bedtime ...

... If only I could! I often think quietly to myself about changing the world. ... anyway ...

... Today Josh Chalmers, the author of Change the World before Bedtime and CEO of Earth2 visited the Omega boys as part of their career study and our ongoing Author Series, sponsored by the Parents Association. Mr. Chalmers began by reading his book to the class and then provided an opportunity for questions. The boys had many! They were most curious to learn about his life as an author (this is his first book). Mr. Chalmers commented that his favorite part of creating the book was seeing the illustrations the artist developed to complement his text; he loves how the illustrator, in an effort to underscore Chalmers' commitment to being green, used scanned images of vintage fabrics and recycled materials to create the illustrations.

Read, read, read to your children.

Here's more on the book: “Change the World Before Bedtime” -- Publisher's Press Release:

"We all have the pow…

How Children Succeed

This is a great read for all parents and teachers. Focusing on character development, something valued at Saint David's, Tough challenges many of today's current practices.

This is an interesting NPR article and Morning Edition interview with Paul Tough (NPR, 9/04/12) about his book.

West of the Hudson!

This past November 29, I took a quick trip out to visit alums at Lawrenceville and Peddie in Lawrenceville, NJ and Hightstown, NJ respectively.  Traditionally, not many Saint David's boys have ventured west of the Hudson for high school. Those who have though seem to have gained from the experience immensely.

I enjoyed a tour of the Lawrenceville campus with Nader (who presented his business card at the end just in case I had any questions after my visit), and then lunched with all three, Nader '09, Miles '09, and John '11, in the Senior Dining Hall.  John was quite in awe. Apparently he never gets to experience the fancy senior spread found only in the esteemed Senior Dining Hall. We enjoyed a spirited lunch together.

Nader is excited to be taking a creative robotics course this semester.  He received his latest assignment while touring me--a very cool looking project box.  Miles is proud to be one of 4 heading off to Houston, TX to represent the school at the Nationa…