You Are What You Read.

September 10, 2012 by Guest Faculty Bloggers

Filed Under: Teaching, Grades 7-12 and PG, On Education, Boarding and Day, Parenting, On Parenting, Reading, All Girls Education, In the Classroom, The Faculty Perspective, Stoneleigh-Burnham School, Education

The Best Day

September 10, 2012 by Bill Ivey

"You're dripping." I looked down to see a few drops of coffee on my shorts, not a complete surprise since I had to take a few sips off the drip guard of my Joe Bean's coffee cup when I picked it up. Before I could act, my son took the cup from me, gently wiped my hand off, wiped down the cup as well, and handed it back to me. I thanked him, and we resumed our conversation as we continued heading north to Charlottesville where my son was moving in as a first year student at the University of Virginia.

Filed Under: Middle School, Grades 7-12 and PG, School Happenings, On Education, Bill Ivey, Boarding and Day, Parenting, On Parenting, All Girls Education, Stoneleigh-Burnham Middle School, The Faculty Perspective, Stoneleigh-Burnham School, Education

Nesting Instinct

September 05, 2012 by Bill Ivey

Lately, my Twitter feed and Facebook timelines have been filling with the ritual "Going in to set up my classroom," "Did y'all know today is Teacher Appreciation Day at Staples?" and other such comments that show we teachers are hard at work preparing for the imminent arrival of our new students (bearing in mind some schools have already been in classes for some time). Of course, the ritual behind those postings dates back many hundreds if not thousands of years, before social media was even conceived of. By stretching your imagination, you can even picture early cave people checking the firewood or examining weapons as they prepared to teach their children the art of survival.

Filed Under: Middle School, Teaching, Grades 7-12 and PG, School Happenings, On Education, Bill Ivey, Boarding and Day, Girls Schools, All Girls Education, In the Classroom, Stoneleigh-Burnham Middle School, The Faculty Perspective, Stoneleigh-Burnham School, Education

To Infinity... and Beyond

August 06, 2012 by Bill Ivey

"Is algebra necessary?" Andrew Hacker, in a recent op-ed piece for the New York Times, argued that it isn't, provoking a storm of reaction from math teachers in particular and educators in general. To be fair, once you read past the attention-g rabbing headline, Hacker points out that his "... question extends beyond algebra and applies more broadly to the usual mathematics sequence, from geometry through calculus." His main points seemed to be that a misplaced focus on rigor leads to kids dropping out and that math taught in schools has little relation to skills needed for success in the workforce. (Hacker) He closes by stating "I want to end on a positive note" and calling for the creation of exciting new courses such as "Citizen Statistics."

Filed Under: Middle School, Teaching, Grades 7-12 and PG, gender, Science, Algebra, On Education, Math, Bill Ivey, Boarding and Day, College Prep, All Girls Education, In the Classroom, Stoneleigh-Burnham Middle School, The Faculty Perspective, STEM, Stoneleigh-Burnham School, Women in Technology, Education, Admissions

Don't Walk, Mosey (lessons from the South)

July 25, 2012 by Bill Ivey

So far, it's been the kind of summer most people assume teachers spend. Mornings consist of waking up when my body tells me to, relaxing and reading over breakfast, eventually going out on a run, and finally getting ready for the rest of the day. My family is on roughly the same schedule, and the time together is beyond wonderful. The rest of the day? Well, most of our extended family live within a two-hour drive, so we have been seeing a lot of them. It's a pace that agrees with me, and I feel more rested and refreshed than I have in several years.

Filed Under: Middle School, Teaching, Grades 7-12 and PG, summer, On Education, Bill Ivey, Boarding and Day, Parenting, relaxing, All Girls Education, Stoneleigh-Burnham Middle School, The Faculty Perspective, Stoneleigh-Burnham School, Education, slowing down

Growing Out of Over-Thinking

June 29, 2012 by Guest Faculty Bloggers

The following post was originally published in our Spring 2012 Bulletin. It was written by Bryna Cofrin-Shaw, a graduate of the class of 2010.

Filed Under: women in sports, Alumnae, Grades 7-12 and PG, On Education, Boarding and Day, Girls Schools, college, College Prep, All Girls Education, growth, Stoneleigh-Burnham School, Graduation, Uniquely Stoneleigh-Burnham School, Education

Vigorous Love and a Frenzy of Renaissance

June 14, 2012 by Bill Ivey

Spring is often an intense time of transition in kids' lives as the school year ends, and as such is frequently marked by rituals such as the 8th Grade Moving Up Ceremony, Upper School Awards Ceremony, Vespers, and Farewell to Seniors at Stoneleigh-Burnham, Baccalaureate in my son's school, and of course Commencement in both schools plus thousands of others. Another important marker of transition for young people of the Christian faith is Confirmation, and my niece went through that ritual this morning in her church. The similarities to some of our school ceremonies are striking but unsurprising - identifying and celebrating what makes each kid special, marking the bond they created with other, marking the bond their advisors created with them, and always looking to the past as the crucible which formed us as well as the future which shines with such promise. As these young people, only one of whom I had ever met (my niece!), shared memories of their baptisms, their journey through the year in Confirmation classes, and personal perceptions of their special gifts and how they planned to use them in service, the sense of community was striking.

Filed Under: Middle School, Teaching, Grades 7-12 and PG, On Education, Bill Ivey, Boarding and Day, Parenting, On Parenting, All Girls Education, Stoneleigh-Burnham Middle School, The Faculty Perspective, Stoneleigh-Burnham School, Graduation, Education

As Best We Can

June 14, 2012 by Bill Ivey

I still have vivid memories of the first SBS Vespers ceremony I ever attended, 26 years ago. A graduate of a public high school, I was wholly unprepared for the depth of emotion, the sheer, inconsolable sadness some of these kids were feeling. When I graduated, we were all going off to parties afterwards and were still looking forward to a whole summer of fun together before heading off to our various colleges and life destinies. I knew our true separation was inevitable, but it still felt like a long ways off and was easy to put out of my mind. These kids, on the other hand, were about 14 hours away from saying goodbye to people who had truly become family to them, people with whom they had lived 24/7, sharing the ups and downs of their lives and relying on each other for the kind of deep down solid support you always seek but don't always find in life. And now the Class of 1986 was saying goodbye with a virtual guarantee that they would never again be all together in the same place, and some of them would really and truly never see each other again. The closest friendships, of course, would survive, and others would be renewed at reunions. But caught up in separation anxiety, it was hard for them - and for that matter, for me - to keep that in mind.

Filed Under: Alumnae, Grades 7-12 and PG, On Education, Bill Ivey, Boarding and Day, Parenting, Girls Schools, On Parenting, All Girls Education, Stoneleigh-Burnham Middle School, The Faculty Perspective, Stoneleigh-Burnham School, Graduation, Education

What's Simple Is True

June 01, 2012 by Bill Ivey

The middle school recently celebrated Founders' Day, a tradition initiated (logically enough) by the 10 founding students. Seven years ago this month, they asked if future middle school students could have a special day off just for the middle school, to have fun and feel special and to remember the Founders. Since then, traditions have built up and although MOCA (middle school student government) technically plans the day from scratch each year, the schedule generally comes down to breakfast and a movie, tie-dying t-shirts, a barbeque and an afternoon of fun and games. Each year puts their own stamp on those traditions, but the general outline stays pretty much the same.

Filed Under: Middle School, Teaching, Alumnae, Grades 7-12 and PG, School Happenings, On Education, Bill Ivey, Boarding and Day, All Girls Education, In the Classroom, Stoneleigh-Burnham Middle School, The Faculty Perspective, Stoneleigh-Burnham School, Graduation, Education

Appreciate This

May 24, 2012 by Bill Ivey

Back when my son was two or three years old, we used to spend a lot of time over at Ferdon visiting his best friend who was the son of Kim Shillieto, the Dean of Students, and his wife Pam, the Director of Student Activities. The two kids played wonderfully together, giving Pam and I (most often the two parents in charge) lots of time to talk. One day, she was complimenting me on my way with the kids, and commented that if I ever wanted to open a day care center, she thought I would be really good at the job. I thanked her, and added, "But it would never work." "Why not?" she asked, and I responded, "Imagine you're looking for a day care center for your child. You look down the list of providers. Jennifer, Diane, Sue, Liz, Bill... What are the chances Bill is going to get the first call?" Looking sad, she acknowledged my point.

Filed Under: Middle School, Teaching, School Happenings, On Education, Bill Ivey, Boarding and Day, All Girls Education, Stoneleigh-Burnham Middle School, The Faculty Perspective, Stoneleigh-Burnham School, Education