School News

farrow_headshotThe next installment of our four-part 75th Anniversary Community Lecture Series will take place on Tuesday, February 12th at 7pm in the Hill House. We are excited to announce that the featured speaker is global youth activist, Ronan Farrow. A writer, human rights lawyer, and diplomat, Farrow (age 25) founded the State Department’s Office of Global Youth Issues for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

dsc06636Author Ann Hood recently visited students in grades three through eight. Hood was on hand to speak about her historical fiction series “The Treasure Chest”, which is set in Newport. Crediting a grammar school teacher for her love of reading, she explained how an idea she had while sitting in the classroom blossomed into her popular books about famous historical figures, such as Clara Barton, Alexander Hamilton, and Harry Houdini. In addition to “The Treasue Chest”, Hood has written several adult novels and her work has appeared in The Paris Review, Parade, and O, The Oprah Magazine.

dsc06622The Yaghan were a nomadic tribe indigenous to Tierra del Fuego, an island group that is divided between Argentina and what other country?” Do you know the answer? Seventh grader Ainsley Weber did! Her correct response of “Chile” secured her first place in our 2013 Geography Bee. She will represent St. Michael’s in the statewide competition in Providence later this Spring. St. Michael’s fourth through eighth graders competed in the school finals for the National Geography Bee this morning. Placement in the finals is determined in preliminary rounds held in the classrooms in December. The Geography Bee is an annual event at St. Michael’s and is sponsored by the National Geographic Society. The ten finalists that make it past the preliminary rounds answer questions that include a mix of economic, social, and historical themes at a whole school assembly.

dsc06575St. Michael’s is pleased to announce that, thanks to the generosity of its students and families, we were able to donate $1,500 worth of children’s toys to the Providence Ronald McDonald House. At this evening’s Holiday Assembly Michael Fantom, Executive Director at PRMH, was on hand to accept the donations. He stated that the items will be used to create boxes for each of the 18 families currently staying at the facility, so that they will have something to open on Christmas morning.

poetryslamEmpire Tea and Coffee was the setting for today’s fifth grade Poetry Slam. Each student performed their original poems for their classmates, teachers, and parents. Afterward, they enjoyed some hot chocolate before returning to school.

dsc06499_0This morning the sixth grade held the premiere of their “Where I’m From” videos for parents and faculty. The annual project combines original poetry from Mrs. Sullivan’s English class along with work using iMovie software in the computer lab with Mr. Foehr. The videos offer a personal look at what makes each student truly unique.

governorchafeespeakingtostudentsStudents in Mrs. Ellyn Eaves-Hileman and Mr. Whitney Slade’s public speaking class at St. Michael’s Country  Day School recently received a visit from Governor Lincoln Chafee. The Governor observed four teams of three students in a mock debate on two topical and thought provoking issues – is homeland security more important than the protection of civil liberties and should voting rights for U.S. felons be reinstated after they have served their time? “Public speaking is an essential life skill,” stated Slade, who is also the Head of School at St. Michael’s. He added, “The ability to communicate is critical for success in the 21st century workplace.” The debate was a culminating experience in the course. Preparing a persuasive speech tied in important skills such as critical thinking, writing, delivery, and presentation. Following the debate, the Governor shared some feedback on the students’ performance and spoke of his own experience in the debate forum while campaigning for office.