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Learning Updates for May 1 to May 5

May 5, 2023

PE Update: Flinging Frisbees

During our frisbee unit in physical education, our students get to fling it all: foam frisbees, beamos, plastic discs, and even giant frisbees that we launch onto Claflin from the top of the hill behind the tennis courts in order to set distance records. And in the midst of all that flinging and fun we also practice proper form, keeping our thumb on top, toes pointed to the side, bringing our arm across our body, stepping forward, and ensuring that our follow-through points in the direction we want our frisbee to go. Frisbees, after all, can be a frustrating implement, as they are subject to crosswinds and strange rotational whims, but when we learn to control them they become like flying saucers that we’ve sent on important missions to the far reaches of the gym or the field.

While our pre-kindergarten, kindergarten, and first graders worked on skills through station work and games, our third graders built up to an ultimate frisbee scrimmage, incorporating offensive and defensive principles that we’ve been practicing all year in a variety of sports. They let it fly, and it is only a matter of time before they are rocking the blue and gold and using these skills as members of our middle school ultimate team.

– Alex Tzelnic, physical education teacher and mindfulness director

First Graders Develop Their Green Thumbs

This spring, first graders have been heading out to the BDS garden to plant a “Three Sisters Garden”. Students learned that local Indigenous communities such as the Wampanoag, planted gardens that consisted of corn, beans, and squash. These plants and crops are hugely important to local Native American agriculture, traditions, and culture. When planted together, the “sisters” work together to help each other thrive and survive. First graders also planted a “fourth sister” – sunflowers. They started sunflowers from seed in the classroom and will transplant them to the garden later this spring. First graders will see their hard work come full circle when next year, as second graders, they will harvest crops that have been growing all summer from the Three Sisters Garden! Happy planting!

– The First Grade Team

Pre-kindergartners Grow Squash Plants for the Garden

At the end of March, Ms. Solomon visited pre-kindergarten to plant acorn, butternut, and delicata squash seeds. We learned that there is an embryo within the seed that has everything that the seed needs to germinate. We knew our seeds were growing deep inside the planting trays even if we could not tell by looking at them. Our planting trays were warmed by a heating pad and growing lights in our classroom. We saw the first visible signs of growth on Day 5! We even talked to our plants to encourage them to grow. We kept track of which plant was growing the fastest and sketched observational drawings. After several weeks of growing in container trays, this week our squash plants were ready to be transplanted into larger pots. We will continue to take care of them in our classrooms until the seedlings are ready to be planted in the garden. As a bonus, each student had the opportunity to take one of our squash plants to grow at home!

– Maria Choi and Nicole Siverls, pre-kindergarten teachers 

By John O'Neill, Director of Athletics |

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The track & field team traveled off campus this week for a tri-meet against Shady Hill & BB&N. The Blue & Gold jumped out to a fast start with notable performances in the field events. Eighth grade classmates Alexander Meredith…

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Second Graders Host ‘Read For Seeds’ Read-a-thon On Wednesday, you could hear a pin drop in second grade. How is this possible, you might ask? We were holding our 17th annual Read-a-thon! The second graders spent all day reading to…
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