Winter Sports and Scheduling

Hi WMS Families!

Remember me?  I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving and those of you who has your students home, I trust that the time was restful and invigorating for all.
Hi WMS Families!

Remember me?  I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving and those of you who has your students home, I trust that the time was restful and invigorating for all.  Thanks again to those of you who hosted WMS students who are not your own.  Students (and we!) really appreciate these experiences when they are unable to travel home for certain vacations.
As we dive into winter, Mother Nature has blessed us with a few inches of fresh snow blanketing the campus (following 2 straight days of icy cold rain!).  Many skiers and snowboarders will head to the mountain today for the first time and other sports groups have been (and will be) getting outside to enjoy the winter weather in the coming weeks.  Girls basketball has their first game of the season at home on Saturday at 2:30 against KUA.  Please note that WMS plays all of our home basketball games at Profile School – just 2 miles down the road from our campus.
This weekend is E-block Project Block and there are again some exciting things happening in classes Saturday morning.  Among other things, students in Research Seminar will be getting 1 on 1 feedback on their writing as they start to finalize their LASR Project papers and move forward to prepare their final community presentations.  In World History II, students will be researching the history of state boundaries in Africa, their imperial origins, and the impacts of imposed boundaries on the continent today. Students in ESL 1 will leverage the longer class time by listening to and examining a range of cultural and journalistic resources.
As we transition to winter, there are a couple of important schedule notes.  While most important for students and faculty obviously, these are hopefully things that parents might take note of as well.  Our winter academic schedule is somewhat different with the end result being classes that generally end a bit earlier in the day.  This allows for our outdoor winter sports to happen in the daylight of the day (and before the ski lifts close).  As a result, we also move up our evening responsibilities in the winter as well.  Dinner is now at 5:30 on weeknights, with dorm check-in at 7pm and Study Hall running from 7:15-9:00pm.  Final dorm check-in and lights out times are also now 30 minutes earlier as well.  I know faculty appreciate the earlier times, but it is interesting to note that I’ve already had had multiple students tell me that they “like” the earlier bed time (and this happens every year).  On that note, we have recently undertaken an initiative to revise our weekly academic schedule, which has remained largely the same for many years.  The primary goal of this is to develop a schedule that truly aligns with the school’s new mission and the unique and engaging academic programming that we are doing with students.  We are excited to have both faculty and student input in this process and I will also share some of our work with you all as well in an effort to engage your thoughts and ideas as well.
These three weeks in between breaks can be hectic for sure, but they are also filled with great energy for new sports, holiday activities and meals, special events, and more opportunities for hot chocolate!  Students have returned to campus with a great vigor and enthusiasm (within 20 minutes of the snow starting yesterday there were already people sledding up on Hood’s Hill) .  While I know this may wane a bit come February, it is great to be a part of now.  This can also be a stressful time as well with so much happening (and for seniors who begin to receive early decision notifications) and we remain aware of and on top this.  Advisors often do holiday events with their advisee groups and dorms are planning their own celebrations to engage and support students.   There are awesome community service opportunities (students dressing up like elves to bring the joy of reading to kids on the Polar Express is a personal favorite!) and a lot of great school traditions to mark.  As always, we will try to keep you updated as to the happenings both collectively and for individual students, but please also reach out to us if you have questions or concerns during this (or any) time of the year.
Thanks to those of you who have already communicated travel plans for the upcoming break (so soon again already?!?).  If you have not yet done so, please forward these to Jessica so we can make sure we best support your student’s travel from our end (#sunnytraveldaysplease) as we get closer.  The travel plans link on our website is live if that is an easier way to do this.
Thanks again for sharing your wonderful students with us!
Have a great weekend!

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