After all Realms students returned from their backpacking trips, classes and trip planning started right away. First week of classes was a success, and trip proposals have been made. Everyone seems to be excited to find out which country we will be visiting this school year, and the anticipation is driving us mad.
We had a blast seeing old friends and talking with new families at the picnic. Thank you all for coming out!
A few items of note:
- Attendance and punctuality. Please make an effort to be on time to school and to classes. We begin at 8:40 am and have important things to address each morning meeting. If your student is tardy or will be absent, please call or email Karri. Whenever possible, vacations should be scheduled during school breaks. Students who are consistently tardy and/or absent may be placed on an attendance contract.
- Technology this year. We would like each student to have their own Chromebook (or equivalent). These can be very affordable if purchased refurbished from e-bay, or other discount sites. Students may borrow a device if they need some extra time to get one, or if they forget theirs.
- Technology policy. We want our students to be responsible internet users. Realms has unfiltered internet access and it is important to Realms to keep it. When students are inappropriately using technology (whether it consists of distraction tabs during work or phone calls during class) a warning will be issued and the student will lose the device for the day. A second occurrence will result in parent contact to retrieve the device. A third event will trigger a meeting where a technology contract will be instituted.
- Pack check for Upper School and College Prep trips will be Friday, August 18th. Please bring your pack and all gear for inspection.
- Parent Handbook can be found here
Leaf a Thon
On Friday, Oct. 28, was our 26th annual Leaf-a-Thon at the Tracy Aviary! We had so many hard workers who raked as many leaves as possible while having a blast. We were able to help our community while looking at many beautiful and interesting birds around us. We were able to raise money that will go into the international trips and scholarships. And we can't forget about the giant leaf pile we made, obviously we had to jump in it before leaving the Tracy Aviary.
Welcome back, Realms students! We start every year with an 8- to 10-day backpacking trip. Some of our new parents have been asking why we consider this trip to be an integral part of our year. Our primary reason is to build our community. By the time we have spent 10 days hiking over mountains, cooking meals, and sharing experiences, our students know each other better than they might have after a year of only attending classes. They learn to trust their teachers as mentors and guides, and they learn about themselves and their ability to meet challenges. Students come back with new confidence and friendships that last a lifetime. Realms' unique learning environment depends on the growth mindset and strong relationships built on this trip.
Another important reason is the vital need to connect students with nature. In his book "How to Raise a Wild Child", Scott Sampson gives a compelling argument about why it should be a national priority to get our children outside. He says that in addition to myriad studies citing the positive impacts of nature on mental and physical health, unstructured outdoor play is central to development in young children. Nature also gives teens a chance to connect with peers and challenge themselves in a learning environment. Finally, Sampson says that we have about one generation to connect to nature if we want to be able to respond to the ecological challenges we are facing, and build a sustainable future. If we don't teach our kids to value nature, he argues, they will have no reason to invest in it. You can listen to Scott talking with Doug Fabrizio of KUER here:http://radiowest.kuer.org/post/how-raise-wild-child