It has been a great start to the year.
It began for me with an inspiring faculty retreat in August to discuss “21st Century Learning and Leading” which I look forward to reflecting on over the year on this blog.
Back on campus, days before school started, students arrived to be trained as WEB leaders (Middle School) and Link Crew (Senior School) to learn to welcome and orient Grade 6 and 9 students into life at SMUS. On the orientation day, the students led large and small group activities to get to know each other and to share some valuable tips to being successful at SMUS.
Check out some of the footage! Link Crew 2011
Grade 12 boarders participated in workshops for a full day to learn valuable skills to be house leaders and then once school began resisted the temptation to focus only on their own friends and made sure new students were settling in well. Meanwhile, over the first weekend, Heads of Council and Free the Children participated in leadership training at a local farm working with horses to learn about themselves as leaders. Through guided discussions and reflection they set themselves some commitments for the year which will allow them to run their groups to their full capacity. This past weekend, the School Prefect council participated in a similar experience with a weekend retreat at a farm in rural Washington. While learning about their own leadership style, they also connected as a group who is looking forward to being a productive and effective team.
The Middle School ran a successful WEB orientation for the grade 6’s and the newly created Student Ambassadors program ensured that all new grade 7’s and 8’s were greeted warmly. These connections will continue to be nurtured over the school year. The extracurricular clubs and councils are underway with full force ready to welcome new and returning students who are ready to make this another great year at the Middle School.
The first few days at the Junior School were equally filled with buzz as the grade 5’s embraced their important role as leaders. My daughter, in grade 1 at the Junior School, spoke of the grade 5’s with admiration and hopes to be an equally good role model to her grade 1 buddy. Using the language of the virtues she hopes to be respectful and generous this year.……
The summer feels like it was a lifetime ago but there is nothing that can compare to the energy and enthusiasm of the students at this school. They will each make contributions, be encouraged to challenge themselves to explore something new, and grow as leaders.