A historically packed and fun-filled two-day trip to Philadelphia provided Allen-Stevenson sixth graders a chance to experience key sites around the city and coincided with the boys’ history studies as they transitioned from the Revolutionary War to the Constitution.
A celebration of Black History Month took place at the Friday Morning Meeting for Middle School and Upper School boys on February 9. Emcee George Lucas '18 did a wonderful job introducing and thanking speakers throughout the meeting, which incorporated a mixture of music, poems, research and impactful facts, all moving tributes to the lives of Black people and their history.
Passing by Kim Kyte’s office on a Wednesday afternoon, Middle School boys can be found chatting in a relaxed manner as they congregate over their knitting projects in the Middle School Knitting Elective. The boys picked up knitting quickly, with several of them already on to their second project. "We also have the community scarf to which many different boys have added rows," said Middle School Head Kim Kyte, one of the teachers of the elective.
Lively, thoughtful discussions amongst avid readers took place in the Library this past week as the boys who read a number of the books for this year’s Adi’s Reading Challenge, named to honor the life of Aditya Srinivasan '19, joined in voting parties to select their choice for the ALA’s Newbery Medal. Adi’s Challenge included some of the best children’s books published in 2017.
The Peace Project, an NYC-based organization that provides human rights and global citizenship education programs, launched its human rights workshop series in the fifth-grade classrooms on Friday, February 2. The founder of the program, Aima Raza, an A-S parent, came in with the Peace Project team to work with the students. The Peace Project addresses a critical need for civics education in New York City schools, specifically working to inform, inspire, and ignite students to address human rights issues that directly affect them, their peers, their community, and their generation.
Digital Fluency is an important part of the Fifth Grade curriculum. Media literacy is one component of the course. Before the boys can understand the concept of ‘fake’ news, they need to comprehend standards in journalism. To give the boys a real-world perspective, Library Director Sarah Kresberg invited her friends, Randy Smith and Mary Chung, both journalists, to speak to the Fifth Graders at Allen-Stevenson about their profession. Mr. Smith, a Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter, has worked for a number of publications over the past 30 years, including The Wall Street Journal. Currently, he is working as a freelance journalist for The New York Times. Ms. Chung is the Founder and Managing Partner of Smash Street Media, having worked previously at the Financial Times and Chicago Tribune.
With stunning views overlooking the Hudson River, and the Statue of Liberty in the distance, families, faculty and staff, including Headmaster David Trower, gathered at Chelsea Piers for the Community Ice Skating Party on the evening of January 31.
Fourth graders have been studying American Indians, with an aim to having the boys see what life might have been like as an indigenous person, as well as having them consider the impact that others can have on a person’s life.
Tech Tuesday on January 30 involved teachers manning a wide array of stations at which parents could learn about the many different tech tools that are being used by their sons at School, many of which are accessible at home.
A number of these resources are available through Allen-Stevenson’s Library database page. Go to aslibrary.net, click on databases and log in with your school website credentials to access these private pages.
Middle School boys in robotics, along with their coaches Lisa Anderson, Sarah Luposello and Chap Warren, can be found on weekday afternoons and some weekends carefully contemplating computer code, designing and building through experimentation Lego robots, and researching the impact of unclean water on a community. The boys’ commitment and collaboration paid off this past weekend at the Manhattan Qualifier in the First Lego League 2017/18 Robotics Challenge. The Fourth Grade Team, all new to robotics this year, won an award for Best Robot Design and the Fifth Grade Team was awarded for Outstanding Teamwork in the Core Values category. The fourth graders also made the podium in the All-Around Competition and were awarded a Golden Ticket to the New York City Finals, being held on March 11, at CCNY.
Ally Week kicked off with a Lower School Assembly on Friday, January 19, at which the Third Grade Ally Week ambassadors explained what an ally is, who some famous allies are and how A-S boys can be allies. (See attached video.) The Lower School classrooms spent time during their morning meetings all week discussing scenarios in which an ally is needed and how one can be an ally. (Click here for a sample scenario.) Homerooms read books about gender identity and different family structures as part of the conversation.
All Souls Church was the perfect setting for incredibly beautiful singing on January 23 as the Allen-Stevenson Middle School and Upper School Choruses performed their Winter Choral Concert. While not the usual venue or time of year for the choruses to perform, it was, as Headmaster David Trower said referring to a hymn that suited this instance, "New occasions teach new duties."
Fifth Grade Teacher Lisa Anderson and Digital Media Specialist Chris Caccamise have created a Makerspace for fourth and fifth graders during Break Time on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. The boys are eagerly learning skills that they might not otherwise have mastered, such as soldering, sewing, knot tying, joining wood and simple circuitry.
As part of the Sixth Grade Health and Wellness program, the boys were tasked with creating their own anti-smoking videos. Working in pairs, the boys researched numerous facts about the negative impact smoking has on one’s life, then decided how they would compile their own public service message to communicate why smoking is bad. Their minute and a half videos had to be creative and compelling.
Opening for the Friday Morning Meeting on January 12, Aleeza Meir played a variation from the first movement of Mozart's Piano Sonata in A Major, KV 331. MCs Valen McCallum '18 and Jonathan Moya '18 welcomed the Middle and Upper School boys and faculty and staff before Head of Music Michelle Demko led everyone in singing "Down by the Riverside."
The spirited John Legend song "Glory" (with Common) was the inspiration for the 4L class discussion on Friday, January 12, about Martin Luther King, Jr. Sarah Luposello, 4L Teacher, played the song and shared the lyrics with her class asking the boys to think through the words before researching the life of MLK, Jr. She said she believes that "music is the easiest way to connect with anybody."
In Sixth Grade, students focus on developing their drawing skills working both from observation and imagination, with the goal of creating a stop motion animation. Students watch and analyze several stop motion videos, including those by the group Blu, who created videos in the streets of Buenos Aires. The boys then created storyboards for their own stop motion projects, incorporating visual transformations based upon the concept of creating a narrative through movement and change.