Learning Updates for January 24 to January 28

January 28, 2022

Seventh Graders Research Human Traits

In seventh grade science, we are learning what factors give rise to human traits. To investigate this, students identified a trait of interest. There were a range of traits that students were interested to learn more about, from hair color to skin color to height. Next, they did research to identify factors, both genetic and environmental, that give rise to that trait. This led to an in-depth exploration of how genes give rise to traits. Finally, students created posters on the trait they researched and presented their findings to one another. Students were intrigued to learn that most traits have both genetic and environmental components.

– Leal Carter, grades 7 & 8 science teacher

Arts Update: Third Graders Design and Sew ‘Power Plushies’

Thoughtful  *  Self Control  *  Helpful  *  Adventurous  *  Creative  *  Relaxed *  Happy

When the third graders were asked to identify ‘real life superpowers’ for a new exploration in the art studio, they generated a long list that included those words. They had no problem coming up with words, as in their classrooms they had just chosen their intention word for the new year, and had added three action steps to help them focus on their intention. In the art studio, students chose an additional intention word–a ‘real life superpower’–as a basis for a power plushie, or unique stuffed creature that they would then create. To begin the lengthy process, students sketched ideas for their power plushie and sought feedback from their peers; they made adjustments and finalized their design ideas before cutting out a paper pattern, or template for their creature. Students then traced their pattern onto two pieces of felt–one for the front, and one for the back–before tracing and cutting out detail pieces. Next week we’ll begin sewing; students will practice the whip stitch and backstitch on paper first, and then will stitch the pieces of their power plushie together. Look for these colorful and special stuffies after February break!

– Anne Armstrong, visual arts teacher and arts coordinator

Kindergartners Create In-Classroom Vet Office/Animal Shelter

Kindergarten students kicked off their community helper unit a few weeks ago. Every year, we welcome student choice by having an “election” in which the kindergartners can vote for the community helper they would like to learn about most. Although we held separate elections, the results in the two cohorts were surprisingly very similar! The children in Mrs. Hartvigsen’s group wanted to learn about animal shelter workers while those in Mrs. Pryor’s group voted for veterinarians.

This week, we transformed our dramatic play area to be a dual vet office/animal shelter. While some of the items are manufactured ones you can find in a store or online, we are excited to announce that the students have also been instrumental in crafting essential equipment and items from recyclable materials, such as a scale from cardboard and aluminum foil and pet carriers from empty boxes. The children have also been creative and have refurbished items they discovered in our collage or our makerspace, such as making pet collars and leashes from pipe cleaners, beads, string, and scrap paper!

– Betty Chu Pryor & Missy Hartvigsen, kindergarten teachers 

By Anne Armstrong, visual arts teacher and arts coordinator |

January 27, 2023

The Coolidge Art Studio has been abuzz this week as classes finish artworks and transition to new explorations and challenges with various media. First graders recently completed making paper by hand, and are now learning about architect Zaha Hadid, who…

By John O'Neill, Director of Athletics |

January 27, 2023

After trailing by 3 points at the half, the boys’ JV basketball team exploded in the second frame and came away with a 6-point win on the road against Dedham Country Day yesterday. Team captain Anurag Mujumdar powered the comeback…


January 26, 2023

Second Graders Learn About Environmental Changemakers, Including One Here at BDS! Second graders have been hard at work the past few months to learn about environmental changemakers–people who identify problems, find solutions and inspire others to get involved. This week,…

By Alex Tzelnic, physical education teacher and wellness director |

January 26, 2023

Once a winter we give each of our physical education classes the opportunity to sled. After all, sledding combines so many of the elements we love about PE: being outdoors, balancing, taking calculated risks, looking out for others, and above…
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