Capstone Night highlights 8th graders yearlong work
Months of hard work came to fruition at the third annual 8th Grade Capstone Night on May 23.
At this year’s event, 8th graders read from their memoirs and/or presented their Social Action Projects (SAPs), both of which were a culmination of work accomplished by each student over the course of the year.
The Memoir Project starts in October, when English teachers encourage students to recall childhood events and reflect on moments of growth, all while guiding them through the writing process of drafting, editing, revising, and polishing. At the Capstone event, 29 students read from their memoirs, including Aaron Sandhu (pictured at right), whose entertaining memoir was titled “The Right to Bear Arms.”
“[In writing my memoir] I learned a lot about myself,” reflected Sandhu. “It really taught me to reach outside my comfort zone and be more experimental with my writing.”
Students also presented their Social Action Projects, collaborative exercises that involve real-world issues and problem solving. Over the course of a few months, students probed into their selected topics, including child rights, sustainable fuel, eating disorders and steroid use. After conducting thorough research, students designed an action project that would raise awareness about their chosen issue.
“We did our SAP on sweatshops,” explained Helen Kulka (pictured on right with Kelsey Mussio). “I learned that the problem is much bigger than anyone thinks. Basically there’s a sweatshop behind almost everything we wear and use. I am now much more conscious and aware of the problem.”
Raising their own, as well as others,’ awareness of important world issues is precisely the goal of the Capstone projects.
“This is exactly what vigorous and inspired 21st-century learning should look and feel like in the middle school years,” concluded Hein.