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Showing posts from March, 2016

Flying Through the Universe at the Hayden Planetarium

While many parents may be taking their children to places domestic or abroad this spring break, this week our sixth graders took their parents to the far reaches of the universe and beyond. The boys presented their own original space research multimedia presentations, which they wrote, designed, narrated, and navigated, in the Dome of the Hayden Planetarium to an audience of parents, faculty and staff. Through our  one-of-a-kind partnership with the American Museum of Natural History - Hayden Planetarium, the boys were taught to "fly through" the Digital Universe as a means of studying the cosmos during a series of extended field study visits to the AMNH that began in December. The boys were able to use the Plantetarium's software to explore topics of interest to them and turn these into arresting creative audio-visual experiences. The culminating projects were spectacular, both visually and in terms of the content mastered and the questions posed!

Last Lunch at the Edge of the Earth


Uffizi and S. Croce

After touring the Uffizi, the boys learn from Coach Murphy of a gamed played in the Piazza Santa Croce where they are standing--a game Michelangelo is known to have played. Like speed ball, the ancient Romans followed by the Florentines played this game--a mix of soccer, rugby and wrestling called Calcio Istorico. Crazy. Still today, once a year the tradition is continued.

Bargello II

Sketching either of the David's (Donatello or Verrocchio) concluded the academic portion of our day, then it was off to lunch and now the boys are at sports for the remainder of the afternoon. What a spectacular day!


After viewing Michelangelo's David the boys are in the courtyard of the old gaol preparing to see the other two David's of their studies, their school's patron--Verrocchio and Donatello. This makes it all four when we include Bernini's from the Borghese. Michelangelo's Bacchus 

Dinner 14 Marzo

A fun dinner: Maiale con spinaci e patate. Here's before and after panoramas of our dining space.

S. Lorenzo

The San Lorenzo group present Brunelleschi's design for the flagship church of the Medici. This perfectly proportionate building, shaped in a Latin cross, was the first to use Corinthian columns for stabilizing support, post antiquity.

Brunelleschi's Dome

From below, the boys hear from their peers about the incredible ingenuity of Brunelleschi and his followers--the dome's two layers, revolutionary design, and massive size held the Florentines of the Renaissance and all who have visited since spellbound. 

S. Maria del Fiore

The boys learning about the cathedral and Giotto's Tower from each other.  They focus not only on the stories told on the tower and its architectural features, but also why it doesn't lean, unlike Pisa's tower, which does. 

Giotto's Tower

We climbed the 414 steps of the campanile late in the afternoon and took a few snaps and selfies from the top.  Everyone made it. Loads of fun. All is good.