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Mid-May is already upon us, and it’s hard to believe that our academic year will draw to a close in several weeks. In a typical school year, we would be hosting two events focused on our 8th grader students – one of which is the 8th Grade Capstone Showcase. We host this event, as well as the 8th Grade Celebration, in an effort to honor our 8th graders’ time with us over the last three years, to slow down a little these last weeks of school, and to recognize the transition to high school our students are about to make. This year, of course, we’ve had to find alternative ways to observe our year-end traditions.

Our Capstone Showcase event is ordinarily held in the theatre. As you may know, this is an entirely student-emceed evening, one that highlights student work from their English, Foundations of Civilization, and science classes. In previous years, we began with a short program in the theatre, with performances of several student memoirs, scenes from Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, presentations of Sustainability Action Projects (SAPs), and debates on historical topics. Afterward, in smaller groups, students convened in classrooms throughout the school to continue sharing these same projects with friends and family.

In an effort to preserve the presentation and group sharing components of this experience, our 8th grade students have each submitted a video clip of the performance they would have given on Capstone night, and we have compiled students’ performances into a single Prezi presentation, which you can view below.  Though there is loss with this change – as with so many other changes – I am gratified that we’ve been able to preserve at least a portion of this experience in a way that will create a lasting artifact, one I hope you return to for years to come, whenever you’d like to find some joy in the works of your children and their peers.

Written by Jonathan Schwartz, Head of Middle School