May 4, 2018
Welcome to this edition of The Westminster Weekly, where you will learn about what's been happening recently at Westminster School! We welcome story suggestions from parents, students, teachers, and alumni. Please email your news to Mrs. Nancy Schuler .
Mark Your Calendars
Upcoming Events

May 7-18
Student Art Exhibition
May 9
Science Fair
May 10
KG-4th Grade Dance Showcase
May 11
Kindergarten Play
May 14-18
ERB Testing for KG-6th
May 17
Family Open House / International Day
West Side Story is a Smash Hit!
Congratulations to the Class of 2018 for their triumphant performance of West Side Story this past weekend! This is a very sophisticated and challenging show to expect of 8th graders. Mr. Glover had faith that this talented group of students would rise to the occasion and he was right!

West Side Story is really an opera, a ballet, and a love story all rolled into one. Add to that the fact that the characters are tough gang members in New York City, and you start to get an idea of what these 13- and 14-year-olds had to pull off.


Congratulations to Mr. Glover for yet again helping the children to realize their full potential and to gain the confidence that it takes to step out onto the stage and give it their all.

Kudos to Ms. Glazier for the extraordinary dance numbers which she meticulously crafted and taught to the students. Accolades also go to Mr. Roebuck for inspiring confidence in the children to sing with all their hearts.

Mr. Le Moigne is to be commended for his creative sound and lights work on the show. Mr. Shipman and Mr. Dasek created a beautiful set that would rival anything found on Broadway. Ms. Glazier, Mrs. Grant, Mrs. Hearn, Mrs. Oh-Minayar, and others worked on costumes, hair and make-up, which combined to produce a final product that was nothing short of extraordinary!

Also, a huge pat on the back goes to the three brave staff members and one Board of Trustees member who stepped up to play roles in the show. Thank you to Mr. Branum, Mr. Crook, Mrs. Jacobson, and Mr. Moore!

Finally, thank you to Mr. Joe for capturing it all on film with his gorgeous photography.

Most of all, congratulations to the talented and brave Class of 2018! You were awesome!
7th Grade Explores Agecroft Hall
On April 25, the seventh graders went back in time to Tudor-era England with a visit to Agecroft Hall in Richmond, Virginia. Through this annual Westminster tradition, the students experienced what life was like in a real manor home that once stood in Lancashire in the 1400s. They toured the home’s great hall, dining room, bedrooms, and kitchen, discovering the roles of the upper class family and the working class servants who lived there. 

This was followed by an interactive presentation of several reproduced artifacts, and through their powers of observation, the seventh graders had to deduce the purpose of each 15 th century object. Click on the video below to see some highlights.

The day was capped off in Agecroft's back yard by playing some outdoor games of the period, including whimsical weaving through a grass maze and some competitive matches of lawn bowling. The day was the ideal supplement to and culmination of weeks of study of Renaissance England as well as being a wonderful bonding event for the class. Thank you to Mrs. Jacobson for this fantastic trip!
1st Grade Visits Spark! Lab in Washington, DC
First grade visited the Museum of American History's Spark! Lab for a Social Studies field trip. It was a great way to take their "Inventors and Inventions" unit of study outside the classroom.
The children had an opportunity to become inventors. Just to name a few, they were challenged to create different ways to design a metro interior, invent a bicycle accessory, create a way to move animals from place to place and invent a flying machine! After all that inventing, the students enjoyed an outdoor lunch on the National Mall. Thank you to Mrs. Basir for arranging this great trip for the students!
6th Graders Enjoy a Beautiful Day at Inner Quest
Inner Quest has been a part of the Westminster student experience for three decades. This outdoor program challenges the students to overcome their fears and offers a wonderful opportunity for them to work as a team to tackle physical and mental challenges.

Students in grades 4-6 take day trips while the 7th and 8th graders enjoy overnight Inner Quest experiences.
On Monday, the 6th graders had a beautiful day for their much-anticipated outward bound trip. Activities included rock climbing, ziplining, and team-building challenges, such as getting the entire group over a high wall.

Every time, it seems there is a great story about a student overcoming a fear or emerging as a leader, and this trip was no exception.

About a month prior to the trip, in anticipation of the upcoming event, a student wrote to Mr. Glover expressing her worry about doing the zipline. She is afraid of heights and really wanted to be excused from the task. Mr. Glover met with the student and shared that he too has a fear of heights; he recommended that she give it a try as he knew from personal experience how proud she would be of herself once she did it.

Long story short--that student DID conquer the zipline, not once but twice! Her classmates cheered and she felt great about it. When she returned to school, she stopped by the office to thank Mr. Glover and share her good news. Way to go!
Alumni News
A Graduate Pursues Her Dream
Megan Lee, alumna of the Class of 2014, has been very busy during her four years at Annandale High School! Megan has always been interested in the arts. While at Westminster, she excelled in painting and drawing and even taught herself how to play the ukulele.

While in high school, Megan has become particularly interested in making documentary films. She is now finishing up her IB diploma at Annandale and, as a culminating project for her IB Film class, she and a few other students created and submitted a documentary film called Dreamer. This documentary features a fellow classmate who is an undocumented immigrant. Their documentary has recently been named as one of only eight finalists in the state being screened at the Virginia High School League Film Festival in Charlottesville, VA on June 2. We will have to wait until then to see Dreamer. However, Megan worked on another film last year featuring her lacrosse coach that won Best Documentary and runner-up for Best Picture in Annadale High School. You can view last year's submission here.

In addition to her very busy academic schedule in the IB program, Megan is the captain of her varsity lacrosse team and the president of the English Honor Society. She also helps with photography and videography for the yearbook and other Annandale High School publications.

Megan will attend the VCU Film School this coming fall. She is one of only 25 students to be accepted to this very competitive and prestigious program. Her dream is to become a documentary film maker; she would also love to be a videographer for bands touring around the country!

We asked Megan if her Westminster experience had influenced her choice of career pursuit and she said, "Something that indirectly led me toward making film a major in college is that at Westminster, I never saw the arts as an extreme or out-there kind of career pursuit because the arts were such a part of our core classes, and they were so valued that it never occurred to me that I shouldn't make it a career. Stereotypically, parents or people in general think that you shouldn't want to do anything in the arts because you might not make a lot of money or whatever, but at Westminster, the arts are so respected and I think that's the reason that I never even thought about not going for it."
A Creative Writer is Recognized
Avery Townsend, graduate of the Class of 2015 and a junior at Flint Hill School, recently received an award for his creative writing. Avery wrote a short story for one of his classes that was submitted to a school-wide writing contest. Avery's story "Death of the Author" won first place in the short story category.

Avery describes the story as a metafictional "bad romance" story. The two primary characters are aware that they are characters in a book and Death of the Author explores how these characters interact with people in the real world. Avery was recognized at an award assembly at Flint Hill.

While busy with his many AP courses, Avery still manages to find time to be an active member of the Flint Hill community. He is a member of a book club, the chess club, and will perform a lead role in the upcoming spring play, Feiffer's People on May 11 and 12.

Congratulations to Avery on his award, and break a leg in the show!

Food for Thought
"Age-Appropriate Chores--Divide and Conquer Household Chores"
Chores are a part of the students' everyday routine at Westminster School. How about letting them be a part of their home life too? 
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