8th Grade Weekly Note

Dear Eighth Grade Parents,

Even though it was a short week, we managed to pack in a lot of teaching and learning! In cultural studies we ended our study of the rise of democracy in ancient Athens with a meeting of the Ekklesia, or Assembly, to debate whether slavery should be abolished and whether women should be granted citizenship. Students learned a great deal about the workings of a direct democracy. In language arts we ended our Greek mythology unit with a visit to the Philadelphia Museum of Art to see how these enduring stories are inspiration for artists of all eras, as well as getting more inspiration for the pediment projects in art classes. This morning each pediment group made their pitch to Pericles (thank you, Dan Lai and Hilary Hamilton, for joining each class as Pericles) for why their temple should be included on the Acropolis.

At Encuentro this morning we enjoyed a presentation of Latin music and dance, and this afternoon we were treated to a Faculty/8th grade volleyball match. It has been wonderful to have these all school events to celebrate the variety of ways we are a cohesive community. Next Friday we will meet in our family groups and circles to take part in a morning of activities focused on our all-school mystery theme!

We’ve heard from several students about their visits to high schools over the long weekend. They seem quite enthusiastic about what they are seeing and are carefully observing classroom dynamics. We practiced interviewing this week in our Decisions periods, as well as strategizing about projects for those students interested in Science Leadership Academy. Students will have opportunities to give their presentations in advisory periods going forward. Students who took the SSATs or ISEEs also shared tips on what they found useful in preparing for those experiences.

We had visits from Friends Select, Springside-Chestnut Hill Academy, and Abington Friends admission directors this week; we look forward to learning more about the admission process to Science Leadership Academy when alums Sydney Rogers and Avi Cantor visit us Wednesday, October 21 and Monday, October 26 at 3:20 to speak about their experience last year. A reminder that our Alumni Panel will take place Monday, October 19 in the Middle School at 7:15 pm. Please come and hear our alumni talk about their high school experiences.

Independent (private) school forms should go to Terri O’Connor as soon as you have them so we can begin the process of writing recommendations. Those of you applying to St. Joseph’s Prep, La Salle, and Roman Catholic High School need to send in the request for transcripts and recommendation forms soon, as the deadline for applications is November 6. Note also that there are entrance/scholarship exams that need to be scheduled at all three parochial schools.

If you have not signed up for conferences on November 2 and 3, please do so as soon as possible. We also encourage you to meet with specialists.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Emily, Ethan, Ashley, and Wendy