A Team Effort

Check out the new article in Community Playthings about project-based learning, co-written by MHS teachers Geralyn McLaughlin (K0) and Kathy Clunis D’Andrea (K1/K2).

The Project Approach: Using Schoolyard Ecology to Support Student Learning

project_image

 

 

 

 

 

Farewell to Ancient Greece!

This morning, the Mission Hill School community celebrated the final days of the school-wide Ancient Greek curriculum. Families and friends gathered for a Greek-inspired potluck breakfast, which featured everything from Greek salad to honey cake and stuffed grape leaves. Harpist Mason Morton played exquisite music while children showed off art work and discussed architecture and history with adults. Displays ranging from detailed mosaics, to myths and renditions of the Greek alphabet covered the walls, adding to the festive atmosphere. Below is a slideshow with some images of our last few months, studying this fascinating ancient culture.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Recollections

We congratulate our fifth grade students and families who celebrated their Mission Hill School Recollections today!

Recollections is a tradition which acknowledges the first six years (or less) of a student’s time spent at Mission Hill School. It is a year-long collaborative project which uses an archived collection of work to help the student reflect on his or her past and also consider his or her future as a middle school student. Fourth/fifth grade teachers James McGovern and Nakia Keizer, work with tutor/newsletter editor Betsy Caruso and long-time volunteer Caroline Hoppin, to help children translate their memories into finished essays. Students then create self-portraits with art teacher, Jeanne Rachko, and the two pieces are edited and bound into a book, which is presented at the event.

An excerpt from the Recollections booklet welcome letter reads: “The Recollections project began one evening ten years ago in May, when children shared work from their Mission Hill School archive folders with their families. On that night the children’s work spoke eloquently-the self portrait from Kindergarten, the science journal from third grade, the King Tut poem from fourth grade-telling the story of our thematic curriculum as well as the history of each student’s individual journey. What our students did that evening-recollecting, making connections, and demonstrating what was most relevant to them-we now do in a more deliberate way with our fifth grade class each year.”

Below is a slide show of student self-portraits alongside their learning record photo portraits from this year.

Students and the World of Work

MHS has always believed in the importance of young people learning and partaking in the world of adult work. As we begin our third and final school-wide theme of the 2011-12 school year, the World of Work, it is fitting that middle school students are busy with a work-related writing project, supported by the amazing literacy volunteer program 826 Boston.

826 Boston supports children ages 6-18 in creative and expository writing. They work in and outside of schools, helping to find ways to inspire students to write. This year MHS sixth, seventh, and eighth graders have worked closely with 826 Boston to produce a feature publication, which will be released in coming months. The book will focus on student-lead interviews with adults who have fascinating careers and jobs. Students have been involved in every aspect of book publishing, from concept creation to planning the publication party.

This week, eighth graders Malick and Sela conducted an interview with a very interesting adult: the Honorable Mayor Thomas M. Menino!

The students traveled to City Hall along with 826 Boston Executive Director Daniel Johnson, where they were welcomed by the Mayor. Questions ranged from “What are the challenges of your job?” to “What are you most proud of?” Both students conducted the taped interview with poise and humor. They were however, a little unprepared when the Mayor spontaneously began questioning them!

“What are your plans for the summer?” “Are you reading enough books? What is the last book you read?” “Are you involved in sports?” “What do you do after school?”

During the 30-minute interview, it was clear that Mayor Menino felt happy and relaxed in the company of young people. And it was also obvious that Malick and Sela felt confident and relaxed spending time in the company of an interesting adult with an interesting career.

Photo Credits: Isabel Leon, City of Boston