Summer is a wonderful thing—a time for reading, family and play; yet, in my opinion, nothing beats the first day of school. The anticipation of a fresh start, the opportunity to reconnect with friends, and the realization that you can remake yourself into something and someone new combine to create an almost palpable energy. What would most adults give to have this same opportunity to renew and begin again? It is a true gift that we consciously provide every student each fall. My hope, of course, is that our students seize this moment to grow, change, and become the person and student that each has inside.
There are many wonderful aspects of Colorado Academy. The grounds and facilities are terrific, the resources for learning are plentiful, and the teachers are caring and professional. Equally important, students have the opportunity to grow by being actively involved in thoughtful, well-instructed academic classes, myriad artistic endeavors, and a wide variety of physical activities. In all cases, it is by “doing,” not “watching,” that students discover and hone their physical, intellectual, artistic, and emotional skills. Sitting on the sidelines is not an option at CA in the classroom, art studio, or athletic field; instead, on a daily basis, students will be invited to shape their future.
Change and continuity
On our end in the Middle School, we have been working over the summer to improve facilities and revise curricula using what we learned last year to tweak our units and lessons in ways that we believe will inspire increased student learning. We have brand new Sixth and Seventh Grade science labs that we are excited to share with students. We also have a new Advisory curriculum designed to help students develop and practice social and emotional learning skills. While we will never abandon our belief that students learn the most in an environment that provides the right balance of nurture and challenge, each year we actively tweak the formula in an effort to give students ever greater opportunities to explore and grow.
We make the most progress when home and school are mutually supportive of student success. This means that we will try to keep you informed appropriately of what we are up to at school. We will send push pages and updates, invite you to Back-to-School Night, share insights at conferences and, in general, try to keep you up to date on what we are up to and why we believe it will be helpful to your son or daughter. We will also work carefully to cultivate independence in each child. Our goal as parents and school, ultimately, is to have our children launch into the world as autonomous, resilient, and successful adults. Little by little, we want to help children to understand that it is their education, and over time, assume more and more responsibility for progress, achievement, and decision-making.
The train has left the station
The magic of school happens in the many small interactions between teachers and students during our one hundred and seventy days together. Looking for growth over an eight-hour period is often fruitless, but looking across nine months can be profoundly heartening from an academic, athletic, artistic and character perspective. I am looking forward to a wonderful school year, one filled with good fun and good learning. If I can be helpful in any way, please do not hesitate to contact me.