October 12, 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

October 15
Builders Club VDOT Trash Pick-Up

October 16
One-Day Griffin University for
K-4th Grade Parents

October 17
Open House for Prospective Families

October 20
WPC Trivia Night
Kindergarten Visits Green Meadows Farm
The kindergarten students visited Green Meadows Farm last Friday. The children spent the day learning about all of the many jobs on a real working farm. They got to touch and feed some of the farm animals and even got to milk a cow! The students each picked out a pumpkin from the pumpkin patch to bring home. Science class is devoted to the study of nature and animals right now, so this was a perfect tie-in to their classwork. The teachers were so proud of how well-behaved all of the children were! They were very gentle and kind to the animals. Thank you to Mrs. Donner for arranging this engaging experience with nature.
Author, J.H. Diehl, Delights 2nd-6th Graders
What is the one key element that makes a story compelling? According to author J.H. Diehl, it’s something thoroughly unexpected! This was one of the thought-provoking questions that Ms. Diehl asked during her inspiring presentation to the students in grades 2 – 6 on Thursday, October 11. 

Ms. Diehl also spoke about the importance of doing research for writing, tips for aspiring writers, and how she was personally inspired to write her three books. This visit was made possible through the Westminster partnership with George Mason University in conjunction with the Falling for the Book Festival.

A native of Washington, D.C., Ms. Diehl was raised in the Maryland suburbs although she has traveled extensively throughout her life to places such as Buenos Aires, Warsaw and Jerusalem with her journalist husband. Her most recent novel, Tiny Infinities, is a Fall 2018 Junior Library Guild Selection. All three of her books are rich in STEM content, and the students had the opportunity to have copies of the books personalized after the presentation. 

Many students could be seen reading the personalized inscriptions after receiving them, and wondering how they could stay in touch with the author. “How can I get in touch with Ms. Diehl?” asked a curious fourth-grade student at the end of the day. “I have some more questions for her, and I need answers!” Many thanks to Ms. Diehl for a wonderful day and to Mrs. Foster and the English Department and Falling for the Book for helping to arrange the visit.
Cross Country Meet
The Griffins ran hard at the Cross Country Meet this week. Congratulations to the Varsity Girls, who came in 2nd place overall. Also, big congrats to 7th grader, Mealy, who came in 1st place for the second year in a row! Everyone had a great time and showed good sportsmanship.
In Search of Babysitters/Mother's Helpers
We often get requests from parents for babysitter referrals. We would like to gather a list of Westminster Upper School students and graduates to provide to interested parents. Please click on the button below to be added to the Westminster Babysitter Referral List!
Tell Your Friends!
The most effective marketing for Westminster School is and has always been WORD OF MOUTH! YOU have the power to make sure people who are searching for a classical education enhanced by the arts FIND Westminster School. Despite the fact that Westminster has been in the same location for 56 years, it is still the best kept secret in Fairfax County! Please help us spread the word about our first Open House for Prospective Families coming up next Wednesday evening. Please forward the flier below to your friends and colleagues. Thank you!
Trivia Night is Coming! Don't Miss Out!
One of the most anticipated events of the year is just around the corner! The WPC Trivia Night is October 20 . Last year, we had the biggest turnout ever. This year's event is likely to sell out; do not miss out on the fun! Sign up today! Reserve a whole table or join an existing one! Deadline extended to Monday, October 15.
Deadline for this Contest is Sunday!
Is your child a future reporter? Does he/she have a radio voice? Check out the contest below! We can think of quite a few Griffins who would be contenders to win this! Please click here to enter!
Sign Up NOW for the Certified 5K Race on Nov. 3
Don't miss the chance to participate in this year's big 5K Race! Last year was a huge success and we expect an even bigger turnout this year. This event is open to the public, so bring your friends! All ages are welcome as there will be a 1K and fun run for the younger participants.

Own a business? Consider being a sponsor! This is great advertising for your company and can be written off as a business expense. Help Westminster! Help your business! It's a "Win Win!"

We also need volunteers to help make this day a success! Please sign up to man the registration table, water station, or first aid station.
Cash Prizes
1st Place--$250
2nd Place --$150
3rd Place--$100
Alumni News
We recently caught up with Koorosh Farchadi, graduate of the Class of 1998. After graduating from Westminster, Koorosh attended Lake Braddock High School and then earned his BA in Media Production and Criticism from George Mason University.

Thank you to Mrs. Moghaddam for conducting this interview with Koorosh.

What have you been doing since graduating from Westminster?

After I graduated from Westminster, I broadly continued my worldly education. I worked in a public access TV station all through high school and college and continue to contribute as a teacher there. This experience snowballed into becoming the Executive Producer of a student-produced, close circuit TV station in college. After that, I explored a wide range of different options in search of my passion and discovered that my interest is what I have been doing already.

After graduating from college, I agreed to be the Executive Producer of the station. Later, I worked with Persian TV stations for a few years. I did some freelance work for nearly the next decade, and continue to do some projects today. 

About four years ago, a collaborator and I began working on what has evolved into an award-winning documentary series called Harvests of Hope. The project has been recognized by a few film festivals recently, including the 2018 Farm Film Festival in Sicily, Italy, and won the Thomson Reuters Foundation and Barilla Foundation’s Good Food Media Award for reporting on sustainability and the food system. Click here tor read more and see a trailer of Harvest of Hope.

I love to garden and received my Permaculture Design Certification last year. I’ve also been working at the National Science Foundation as their Production Coordinator for the Office of Legislative and Public Affairs for almost three years.  

What impact has your Westminster education had on your life?

I think and talk about my Westminster days now and again. When we were students, we did not appreciate what we had, but the merits of it became more evident as we moved through high school and college. The Westminster education, structure, and discipline made it much easier to keep up with classes later on and I felt I was ahead of others. It most certainly has contributed to who I am today. Those were indeed the formative years of my life. The social interaction and the structure has impacted my life in many ways. One of the most important ways Westminster School impacted my life is the curiosity and interest created by its offering of extracurricular activities, academia, and projects. I feel it has instilled a sense of exploration and passion to look for more information and to have the freedom of researching and learning about different fields--not be limited to just a particular degree. I really feel I was well served by having attended Westminster school. In fact, I am hoping and would love to be able to send my children to Westminster School.

What is your message to current students?

You are going through an experience that many do not get the chance to benefit from. You are sharing this journey with people who will become lifelong friends and will come to your side and help you all through life. Try to savor the time you have with both your teachers and classmates and realize that it will be a lasting benefit.

And your message to parents who might be considering Westminster for their child?

If you are considering Westminster School for your child and wondering if it is the right choice, I advise you to choose the school and ask yourself how you can make it happen. Have no doubt that your decision and effort will have lasting effects and will provide your child with tools to be more successful all through life. 
Word of the Week
ev·a·nes·cent
ˌevəˈnes(ə)nt/
adjective LITERARY

adjective:  evanescent

  1. soon passing out of sight, memory, or existence; quickly fading or disappearing. "a shimmering evanescent bubble"
  2. synonyms:vanishing, fading, evaporating, melting away, disappearing; More
  3. antonyms:permanent
(PHYSICS)
  • denoting a field or wave that extends into a region where it cannot propagate and whose amplitude therefore decreases with distance.
Origin
early 18th century (in the sense ‘almost imperceptible’):

from Latin  evanescent-  ‘disappearing,’ from the verb  evanescere  (see evanesce).
Food for Thought
Our children are exposed to the news through social media, television, radio, print, and other sources. We want our children to grow into adults who are engaged citizens of the world. However, it is sometimes difficult to know how to share the news of the day, especially when it is sad or scary. This blog post from Common Sense Media offers a guide for parents.
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