It is a busy time of year in the middle school as traditions are celebrated and learning continues in lots of exciting ways. We spent the month of November preparing for our annual community service day, held the Tuesday before Thanksgiving. Middle school students brought in toiletries and snacks to share with shelter guests who attend a community dinner at Brooklyn Meeting on Schermerhorn Street at the end of each month. We have collected so many items in the past that we added another site this year, CHIPS in Park Slope. On the big day the 6th graders worked hard to collate all the items into hundreds of bags they had decorated. In addition, table decorations were made with our art teachers.
Meanwhile, as the 6th graders were working at school, the 7th and 8th graders made their annual pilgrimage to the Quaker cemetery in Prospect Park. Students worked tirelessly to rake leaves and moves hundreds of pounds of debris. They also planted bulbs in hopes of daffodil blossoms next spring. Members of Brooklyn Meeting were very appreciative of all the hard work done for the shelter guests and the cemetery. The day at the cemetery ended with everyone gathering in silence. One student commented that it was the best silence he ever experienced.
The community service day was one of many highlights this past month. 7th grade students ramped up the Rustic Racers they had made in Woodworking class for the big race day competition. Competitions were held for fastest and longest distance. Other awards recognized most aerodynamic, best driver, best creature feature, and most rustic. It was lots of fun watching these terrific creations zoom across the gym, as everyone cheered.
Another important upcoming event is our first annual poetry contest. Seventeen middle school students are competing. Each student selected a poem to memorize and they have been working on perfecting their presentations all month. The competition is Friday, December 12th and the winner will perform at the Winter Performance.
Finally, there have been lots of news events that have caught our attention. Current Events teachers have been providing a forum for us to investigate the news from Ferguson and Staten Island. There has been lots of dialogue as facts have been established, rumors debunked, and questions asked. We will continue to monitor these controversial events in the days ahead. All in all it has been a great month of discovery and learning.