Welcome to the Headmaster's Blog where you'll find updates, thoughts, and events regarding Saint David's School, the education of boys, and other items of interest. This is by no means meant to be a complete account of all that happens at Saint David's. Please refer to the school's website for more complete details -- it's more a Headmaster's musings.

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Elevator Doors

The new elevators are installed and functioning in the new Saint David’s. Today the landing doors are going in. Another milestone passed. 

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Out of This World

We are part of this universe; we are in this universe, but perhaps more important than both of those facts, is that the universe is in us.”Neil deGrasse Tyson
Perhaps nothing explores the notion of omnium nobis better than  study of the cosmos. Recently, sixth graders took fellow classmates, parents and faculty into the vast far reaches of the universe for such contemplation when they presented their research-based space shows at the Hayden Planetarium.

Sitting at the controls in the Planetarium, the boys "flew" through space with arresting visuals and well crafted narratives that answered the questions that had intrigued them in their study of astronomy: "How Do Mars and Venus Show us the Future of Earth?", "What Makes Jupiter Unique?", "What Is the Life Cycle of a Star?", and "Is There Life Outside of Planet Earth?" were just some of the riveting topics.

The show was the culmination of the boys' winter interdisciplinary study of the universe through our school's unique partnership with the American Museum of Natural History--Hayden Planetarium. The experience entailed several sessions of learning conducted at the AMNH where the boys had access to the expertise of astrophysicists and astrovisualization specialists, and were able to use proprietary digital tools, including a virtual 3D atlas that represents real-time astronomical data captured with advanced telescopes by dozens of research organizations worldwide. 

The boys worked in pairs on their projects. In English class, they storyboarded their shows, worked on writing and delivering informative and engaging presentations, and on making persuasive arguments based on scientific evidence.

In the end, it was showtime in the dome of the planetarium: lights were down, systems on, stars and planets overhead--an out-of-this-world experience for our boys and audience alike.

Monday, March 19, 2018

The Making of America

Second graders transported us back in time to the Making of America, in their musical re-creation of the Continental Congress of July 4, 1776.

Huzzah! Huzzah!, an original play with music, was written by former faculty members Mrs. Cunningham and Ms. Farrell (2006) and produced this year by Second Grade teachers Ms. Buhr, Ms. Falvey, and Mrs. Patterson, and Music Chair Mr. Moore.

The production is performed in connection with the boys' study of the American Revolutionary times in social studies.

With great self-assurance, our boys assumed the roles of representatives from the 13 colonies calling for independence, including famous Americans Thomas Jefferson, John Hancock, and Patrick Henry.

Equally impressive was the performers' mastery of lyrics in their rousing renditions of several classics from the American songbook.

Fantastic job, boys!

Race Day!

On Friday, March 16, our third graders kicked off spring break with Nerdy Derby Race Day!

The boys had been hard at work and having a blast for two weeks on the Nerdy Derby interdisciplinary STEAM project, a unit that put the boys' creative design, and math and science skills to the test as they built miniature cars to compete in the final race down a 50-foot track.

In preparation, the boys engaged in several hands-on activities that helped them to understand the ways friction, mass and aerodynamics affected the motion of their cars. They plotted the data from experimental test runs of the cars and analyzed the entire class data for insights into how they might alter their own cars' individual designs to increase chances of winning the race.

One of the activities the boys undertook to understand the engineering design process was the Marshmallow Challenge in which they were charged with building towers out of dry spaghetti, with the goal of creating the tallest tower that could stand freely and support a marshmallow at the top.

On Race Day, they cheered their cars and the cars of their classmates as they competed in exciting races for Slowest Car, Fastest Ear, and the edge-of-your seat King of the Hill, in which the car must stop at the top of the race track's hill. The clip below gives just a small sense of the excitement and energy.
Congratulations to the winning teams, including those who won for teamwork, sportsmanship and creative design. Our third grade class demonstrated great creativity, skill, teamwork and sportsmanship--making champions of them all!

Tuesday, March 13, 2018


After viewing three of our four Davids at the Accademia and the Bargello (Verrocchio, Donatello and Michelangelo) it’s time for lunch at ‘the end of the world.’

Monday, March 12, 2018

Il Campanile

At the top of the Campanile in the pouring rain.

On their way down the 450 old steps--a first--in honor of Mr. Kilkeary the boys boisterously sang "I Danced in the Morning..." followed quickly by "Amazing Grace" and "Despacito." I'm not sure what the soaking throng of tourists making their way up the tower thought, but smiles covered their faces!

A bleak day made bright.

It was quite something... had to be the rain!

S. Lorenzo

The boys listening to Rosella, our guide, on the architecture of the Medici family church, S. Lorenzo, designed by Brunelleschi.