Good Morning Upper School Families,
This morning, I would like to share a quick story from this past week that I believe embodies our community so well. In the (slightly abridged) words of Paul Chanan, one of our fabulous new PE teachers...
"Both US and MS are currently in a volleyball PE unit. Unfortunately, due to Covid-based restrictions, we cannot play real volleyball. So, the kids are playing a modified version called Newcomb volleyball.
We have a very wide range of athleticism in all these classes, as well as a wide range in terms of competitive mindset. It is probably the widest range I have ever witnessed. You might expect the more naturally gifted athletes to basically "run over' those with lesser skills, even if they weren't particularly poor sports about it. That really hasn't been the case here, due to what I can only describe as many random acts of kindness (maybe not so random...):
1. Many of the athletes regularly give up opportunities to dominate to instead pass the ball to those who aren't as skilled, so that those kids get several chances to compete. This despite lowering that team's chances of winning.
2. Several times I have seen situations when athletes give up their place in the game to defer to a less skilled athlete. This is pretty unique in team games.
3. When a less skilled player makes a mistake, the more skilled athletes give that player positive verbal reinforcement. That goes a long way toward building confidence among lesser skilled athletes.
This has been a refreshing experience, and one I have rarely seen without having to do a lot of intentional teaching about sportsmanship and empathy. Those concepts appear to be ingrained here at an early age, and I wanted to let you know how rare and impressive that is."
There is a LOT happening this coming week. Please be sure to keep reading below!
Upper School Division Head