After dinner at the Island School, we played games and heard ghost stories for about 15 minutes. We bobbed for apples and got to eat candy. Then we split into two groups and started the tour of the haunted school. The fist group went to an abandoned hospital (AKA the Med Room) where there was a nurse with a drill in her hand who chased us around. There were other people with broken arms and fake blood on them crawling around and trying to catch us. Then we went to the mental institution where a crazy person was playing with imaginary friends. The lights kept going on and off and people were screaming. Finally we went to the boat house where there were some dead people and scary noises. This was the freakiest Halloween Party ever!
Zooming out over the open ocean on the Bay Scout this morning with Chris Maxey, in the still brightening darkness just before sun up, haunted by hints of the Halloween festivities on campus from the night before, we both agreed: it was scary.
When young people are given the creative space to work towards a common goal that excites and motivates them, what they can do is scary, startling, if not downright astonishing. Yesterday,Island School students were charged with the opportunity to plan and perform the annual Haunted Campus for Deep Creek Middle School students. Each fall semester The Island School designs and opens up a terrifying, bio-diesel curdling Halloween celebration that will make the hair on your mosquito bites stand up.
DCMS students arrived in full costume and began the evening with fun and games, bobbing for apples and pinning the broom on the witch. Then, led by teenage guardians of the underworld, they were ushered around campus to visit the half-dead orchard, an insane asylum, a boat house scuba massacre, and the med-room gone maniac. As the night progressed and as sonic screams echoed off of solar panels, I found myself started by the most unexpected thing. It was not Geoff, the head of facilities, running around with a chainsaw that caught my eye—he does this every year—nor was it the ketchup dripping mouths on faces pale with baby powder that stopped me in my tracks, what I was most surprised by was the sheer intensity of energy and creativity our students demonstrated.
Students had all of an hour and a half at the most to plan for the event. Continue reading
Even though the northeast experienced a snowstorm this past weekend, that did not keep the Lawrenceville team from indulging in classic Halloween festivities! Scotty and Hannah visited a pumpkin patch, got lost in a corn maze, and carved some pumpkins with Island School-themed designs. Have a Happy Halloween!
by Spooky Caciques Tyler and Forrest
Slivers of light beamed through the trees, pillars in the dark night. Feet shuffled and nervous giggles escaped passed the lips of the DCMS students as they filed in and out of multiple haunted areas around campus. The night fell silent, eyes darted around the trees attempting to distinguish some of the monsters that surrounded them. Suddenly a dark figure rose out of a hole in the ground, “EEEEEEEEEE!!!! HEEEEEEHEEEEEEHEEEEE!!!!” It was echoed by the terrified screams of students and pound of running feet. The group scattered in all directions, and was met by the roar of a chainsaw, the whisper of a “motherless” Teschna, the melancholy songs of Anika and above all more terrified screams. The DCMS students, in their bright costumes, arrived with high expectations for the haunted campus and they left with pounding hearts and wide smiles.
by Cacique Jane Drinkard
Seeing the blue roofs ahead of us while driving in the van after 8 long days of kayak was both exciting and sad. It marked the end of our kayak journey and the beginning of the rest of our semester here at The Island School. I thought back to the feeling I had the first time I saw the campus and I recognized that same sense of freshness. It was almost unfamiliar now that we had been through kayak. It was almost as if entirely new students had arrived to take on bigger and better roles at The Island School. If there’s one thing I learned on kayak its appreciation. Appreciation for the food I shovel into my mouth without tasting, the warmth of a hug, and for the things we are able to accomplish when everyone works together. On the fourth day of kayaking, during the crunch of the midday heat, we decided to turn our kayaks into a sailboat. Honestly the first thought that came into my mind was no way this is going to work. Continue reading
This year, the Human Ecology, Histories, and Literature Departments have collaborated on a series ongoing assignments. Each week students are asked to write a reflective essay that demonstrates their understanding of the themes from their coursework and effectively links these themes to their unique thoughts and experiences. Enjoy reading how our students have deeply and personally engage with essential questions, important to their course of study at The Island School…
Last Weeks Prompt: How has your experience within the Literature and Histories curriculum challenged the way you understand History and the past?
“Inspired by History” by Kate Maroni
I have studied history throughout my ten years as a student, yet one historical account remains the most prominent in my mind. My grandfather, Jacques Maroni, immigrated to theUnited Statesduring World War II because of the cultural oppression that existed inFranceat the time. He and his older brother were forced to leave their home at the ages of seventeen and nineteen. They both spoke very little English, which hindered their assimilation into the American education system. Eventually my grandfather was able to earn a spot at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and worked remarkably hard in the ensuing years. My grandfather has told me his historical background many times, and each time I am left feeling thoroughly impressed and exceptionally grateful. The emotions that are evident in my grandfather’s voice as he recounts his incredible life story allow me to appreciate the hardships that he has overcome in order to give our family the life that we have today. At The Island School, I have come to understand the reason why his historical background is so compelling in my mind. My grandfather’s story includes such powerful emotions, which enable me to better understand the level of difficulty he faced. Historiographers refrain from including emotion in their work in order to eliminate bias, however the reader is left without any real sense of emotion or personal account of what happened. The reader therefore is unable to grasp anything beyond the literal context. There have been many moments throughout my Literature and Histories classes when I have felt especially inspired by history, and all of these moments have included profound emotions. Continue reading
Congratulations to Spring 2011 alumna, Ami Adams who was named Agriscience Student of the Year Runner Up at the 84th National FFA Convention! She was awarded this honor based on the agriscience-related research she conducted on diamondback terrapins, which are the only sea turtles common to southern New Jersey. Read more about her experiment and the National FFA Convention here. Way to truly carry out The Island School’s vision of “leadership effecting change!”
by Ashley Gibson, grade 9
The DCMS Grade 9 boarding school tour was spectacular! We woke up early Sunday, October 16th, 2011 and met at the Rock Sound Airport to begin the journey where we would interview at boarding schools in the U.S. for high school options. From there we went to New Providence where we would soon board our U.S Airways flight to Washington D.C. The flight to Washington was two hours but we were occupied with music and studying for our upcoming SSAT exam.
When we arrived to Washington we drove to Virginia. For that night we stayed in an old faculty house that belonged to St. Margret’s School where two girls interviewed and toured the next day. We then moved on to New Jersey where we stayed at the Maxey’s house. On this journey we stopped in Downtown Philadelphia to try a famous “Philly cheese steak.” Continue reading
by Cacique Tessa Tracy
Today was a busy day of Island School life! On Sunday we had a routine school day, so today was our free day for the week, but with more Kayak andDownIslandgroups leaving tomorrow, the day was packed. Last night, when I was on my night dive, the first kayak group to finish their 8-day came home. I was excited to hear that they all had an amazing time, and a bunch felt it was the best part ofIslandSchoolthus far. But still, they were reluctant to tell us too much, especially in terms of our 48-hour solo. After a long day of packing and logistics I am at the edge of my seat in anticipation. Part of me is nervous, because I know it will be long and hard, but most of me is excited for bonfires and beautiful sights. My group, K3, is changing it up by having some students hiking along shore while other students are kayaking. Between kayaking through the windy weather we have been getting, and snorkeling stunning reefs, this will be an action packed trip. Every challenge I have faced here so far has proven to be for the best, so I have no doubt that I will gain something from this adventure. I can already tell these will be eight days that I will remember forever.
by Cacique Grace
Skimming over clear blue water in the setting sun, we raced towards Tunnel Rock before dark set in. After several attempts thwarted by bad weather, several students finally got the chance to go night diving. Excited chatter and worries about man-eating sharks filled the boat ride to the reef. Before we knew it, we had plopped backwards off the boat into darkness. Slowly, we made our way to the seafloor forty feet below. Swimming around the base of the reef, we watched coral polyps filter the water with tiny fingers, fish hide in crevices for the night, and stingrays dodge our bright lights. The reef at night is a completely different world than in the daytime. The purple and yellow fairy basslets and colorful parrotfish were replaced by small, translucent fish, crabs and squirrelfish that darted in front of our lights. Through the water, glowing lights from other divers pierced the darkness, illuminating tiny circles of sea fans and coral.
Following each other’s lights through a tunnel in the reef, we felt like aquanauts exploring a new world as we swam through the tight pass. Continue reading