What makes for a favorite class in boarding school? Sometimes it is a special course offering- something a little out of the ordinary. Sometimes it is the chemistry of the students. Often it is a beloved teacher or their approach to helping students learn. We asked three White Mountain School students about their favorite classes. We got three very different answers, but they all had one thing in common: great teachers and challenge.
My favorite class is Physics with Renee. It is really challenging, but I like the rewarding feeling I get when I finally understand things. I often meet with Renee after school. She is always available to us. Physics is not fun for me. But she makes it fun. Right now we are working on learning pulleys and lever systems. We’re learning about simple machines. Yesterday we used ropes and pulleys to pull an SUV up the main driveway on campus. We talked about different ways that we could utilize simple machines to move the car easier, without us needing to pull very hard.
I love Ethics with Jim. It’s challenging and it requires me to give my own opinion and be open to hearing others’ opinions. It can be hard to discuss all of our different views. We are studying Utilitarianism in class right now. We have a book that we look to, but Jim also gives us readings that he selects for the class. We talk about charity, about how to create pleasure in the world through our actions. I enjoy the discussions we have in class most. We all participate and that is great.
My favorite class is Studio Art. I like how Linda lets us try a lot of different kinds of materials. There is some structure, but we have freedom to make what we want. We’re working on oil paintings right now. Usually, the material is what our work is based in, and then we can do whatever we want with it. I’m working on some portraits right now. I’m new to oil painting, and I’m new to making portraits. This is a good challenge for me. I don’t feel like I have the skills quite yet to achieve realism, but I’m going to try. Even if I fail or don’t fully reach that goal, I’m still learning so many techniques. That’s an important part of art class at WMS.