JU-C Weekly Note

Dear Families,

This week, we continued our theme study of "What Makes a Hero?" by beginning our fourth hero paragraph. Before launching into the February Hero study, we analyzed our first three hero pieces, answering questions,  such as How many of our Hero Paragraphs feature women? and How many of our pieces are about people of color? After finding the answers to these questions, we talked about various influences and circumstances, which may have affected who we chose to write about.

We continued our work in civic engagement within the TPS community, this week during Agora time. As this process continues, we're learning to pay attention to details in policy and protocol in order to fully understand why specific decisions have been made. JU-C has combined with JU-D and formed three different committees. Ask your child for details about the work he or she is doing!

On Thursday we traveled to the HMS school for Children with Cerebral Palsy and rehearsed with our partners. It's exciting to think that our first performance of "Halley's Comet" is in three weeks! After rehearsal, we came back to TPS for a short lunch, followed by a walk to the Penn Museum. There we explored the exhibition "The Golden Age of Kind Midas."  Midas ruled the Phrygian kingdom, the area that is now known as "Turkey," from 750 to 700 BCE. Although Midas is a historical figure, he also shows up in Greek mythology and was known as an extremely wealthy ruler. Ask your children about his wealth and whether or not his kingdom lived up to the legend!

Junior Unit will be launching a new curriculum that focuses on identity. Please take a few minutes to read below about what we'll be covering:

Through a series of activities and conversations, we’ll examine various important facets of our individual identities and discuss and challenge the ways that we, others, and society at large create static, pre-determined “boxes.”

We’ll begin next week with gender identity. Because the “boxes” that define gender are associated with human anatomy, one of our first classes will include a discussion of male and female reproductive anatomy. The terms we will discuss are: vagina, vulva, ovaries, fallopian tubes, uterus, breasts, penis, scrotum, and testes. We will not discuss sexuality or sexual health. Students will divide themselves into groups by self-identified gender, and will be taught this class by a teacher of their same gender. We hope that this class will provide important background knowledge and equip all students with common language to use as we examine gender identity as something more than “the sum of our parts.” 

If you have questions or concerns about the curriculum, please reach out directly to Matt Eskin (meskin@tpschool.org).

And now a message from art teacher Catherine Bogart Rome:  I would like to invite you to sign up for a conference so we can talk about what's been happening in art. You can sign-up at http://doodle.com/poll/7r42s3ppzyv7a77i. If none of the times work for you please contact me to set up an alternative time.  

Lastly, a reminder: Your children will be performing "The Return of Halley's Comet" in partnership with students from the HMS school on March 3, March 10, and March 16 (this is an evening performance)! We will let you know the show times as soon as we get them.

Take care, and enjoy the warm weather with your loved ones this weekend!

David and Laura