Right now it almost 6:45am and I’m staring at the pinks and oranges of the rising sun over the clear and shallow waters of the Caribbean. It didn’t hit me until this morning that I would only have maybe two more sunrises on or flying above the island, not many in the scheme of the one hundred we’d already almost had.
Two days ago, even earlier than right now, most of us ran Farther than we’ve ever thought we were capable of. Waking up at 4:30am, we mentally prepped for the thirteen mile stretch to Mount Zion Church next to Peter’s house and back. We gathered around the flagpole in pitch black with only the stars illuminating the outlines of people laughing. The race would begin with shooting stars overhead, at least Summer and Gretchen saw them, and us not knowing where our feet were. We were flying. Every few miles and with the sun a little higher in the sky, there were crowds of swimmers passing out water and applause. Vans drove by with crowds cheering and I’d swear I’d never seen my friend Alliea get so excited. Kiley and Olivia gave me high fives as I neared the turn around and they had already made it. I was so proud of them. When I reached the halfway mark, saw Will, Morgen, and a few others dancing and ready to handoff oranges, Gatorade, and further encouragement. I was the last one to the finish line, and running over the CEI Bridge had never felt so satisfying. My hero Edie Widder was even taking my picture! Everyone had lined up, and I sprinted as fast as I could through the roaring tunnel of cheering and adrenaline. I’d never felt so much at home. I touched the flagpole and the noise just erupted as the 2013 half marathon was over. I fell over, but landed in a pile of hugs as people reminded me I did it. Little Krissy who could barely half walk/half run a mile in the beginning, had ran a half marathon, without stopping and with a smile on her face the entire time. And it was all before my sister had probably rolled out of bed.
During the super swim, the runners got the chance to cheer on their bunkmates as the faced choppy waters and currents running both ways for four miles. There was some confusion when we shouted “Go!” but once underway, they looked like the ocean was their natural habitat, gliding gracefully through the seemingly impossible waters. I was on the sweep boat, so we went up with the back, and then back with the front. We couldn’t identify people as well with swim caps, googles, and swells of waves, but regardless we cheered until we were hoarse for anyone we went by. We later anchored at the finished line, and push them through the final, and most mentally exhausting strokes until they touched the boat. Leigh killed it in under two hours, and Anita was not far behind. From our greatest to our most improved swimmers, we so equally, incredibly proud. They were all heroes and I am so blessed to consider them a part of my Island School family.
Hey everyone! I hope Thanksgiving was a time for relaxation and feasting on amazing food, like it was here. The past twenty-four hours have been a blast for Island Schoolers, along with some bitter sweet feelings as this semester draws to a close. We have finished our last Human Ecology block working on our Change Bombs and prepping for our final presentations. My group, underwater sculpture, is putting together our last clips from our dive and installation of our project Wednesday morning. We have made a 9 by 4 by 1 pyramid out of square blocks which we have assembled in the Saddle, right off sunset beach. Seeing all the other Change Bombs that other groups have made is exciting, and people, including me, are starting to get butterflies in their stomach as presentations loom ever closer.
After lunch, we headed over to Deep Creek Middle School for the annual Basketball Jamboree. It was cooler and there were showers here and there setting a huge contrast from our normally blazing hot Community Outreach days. However, once we were with our buddies and everyone was settled on their respective team, the fun began. There was food, drinks, basketball, dodgeball, football, and dancing. Music was blaring and spirits were high. Coupled with the excitement and festive atmosphere from this holiday, I saw that everyone was enjoying themselves and bonding with their buddies, who we will be saying bye to for the last time today. This sad thought only added to the festivities and we played and ate till 4:30. After our ‘goodbyes’ and see-you-tomorrows’ we went back to Campus for advisory were we worked on our upcoming DOL’s and Portfolios.
All the day’s events were leading up to our Thanksgiving feast. We moved the tables on the deck into horseshoe formation, so we could sit family-style and filled our plates with turkey, ham, cranberry sauce, gravy, stuffing, and mashed potatoes (or clouds as I call them at home). People were laughing and having fun throughout the meal and talking about the days to come. The meal ended with a delicious pumpkin pie to rival any grandmother’s special recipe topped with frosting. An amazing end to an amazing day. Thanksgiving might have been different this year for many of us students as it was, at least for me, the first time being away from home on this holiday. This did not stop us however from having one of the best days this semester enjoying this holiday from afar.
Happy Thanks Giving from The Island School! Yesterday, the day began with a well-deserved sleep-in and an optional free dive. At 6:30 a group of friends and I went out on the free dive to Tunnel Rock. At Tunnel Rock my free diving buddy Cutter and I dove down and observed the several Parrot Fish and Queen Angel Fish swimming beneath us. Several kids also successfully swam through the swim through at Tunnel Rock which is one of the longest ones we go to. At 7:45 we boarded the boat and raced back to school to be in time for 8:00 circle. After normal morning activities were finished, we had our final research classes of the semester. My team spent our time making our final poster for our upcoming Research Symposium, catching a few lobsters, and discussing a way to continue our Lionfish project next semester. We had several ideas which will hopefully be picked to be in next semester’s curriculum. The second half of the day was a large Human Ecology block where change bomb groups met and worked on their projects. My team, Team Meathead, consisting of five boys doing resource construction, worked on sanding down sand and glass aggregated tables we made, making forms for these tables, and making bio char in the bio char unit we built. It was a very successful day because we completed all our goals we had set out to do.
Later in the night Dr. Edith Widder, the mother of the Medusa, a large underwater camera which can go down into the ocean 2000 meters, and our key note speaker for the Research Symposium arrived for her stay for a few days. All students were very excited to talk to her and learn more about her deep water knowledge. The night went on normally and students went to bed. In the morning the boys dorms woke up to screams of “HAPPY THANKSGIVING” from our peers. We all went out to circle and the exercise for today was announced. Today we had our own advisory thanks giving day Turkey Bowl. Each advisory was dressed in their own uniforms and were ready to play. We ran down to the marina fields and began to play. After the several games had been played it was time or the finals. Jon F.’s advisory versus Kate’s advisory were the two teams left. Each team had one possession and Kate’s advisory emerged victorious after throwing a hail marry down the field to Liam for a touchdown. It was crazy. Kate’s team won the turkey day title and all students returned to campus for chores. Message from Boy’s Dorm: Dear families and friends, Happy Thanks Giving!
The Island School held the final admissions reception of the fall at the Ball’s home (Kaitlin F’12) in Darien, CT. There was an impressive turn out of both alumni and prospective students. Kaitlin Ball led the presentation, utilizing the public speaking skills she acquired during her semester at The Island School. We want to extend a huge thank you to the Ball family for hosting on Friday evening.
Yesterday was an eventful day. With a large period of our day committed to our Human Ecology Change Bomb projects we accomplished a lot of work. Students could be found gardening, pouring concrete, conducting interviews, drying plants, and all sorts of other jobs for their perspective projects. My group created some wooden molds for us to pour concrete into for our underwater sculpture. Our underwater sculpture is designed to be a meaningful underwater art piece that students and other people will be able to visit and explore after we sink it. After cutting the plywood to size we made our form. Once we finished the molds we poured our glass and sand aggregate concrete mix into them to start to form the components of our underwater sculpture. Later that evening we were all able to kick back at the Guy Fawkes Day Celebration. After growing up in England for most of my life it was great to celebrate one of my favorite English holidays. The holiday originates from when a man named Guy Fawkes put barrels of gunpowder under the famous houses of parliament in a plot to blow it up. He was caught and then hung, drawn, and quartered. There was a bonfire on boys dorm beach, sparklers, candy apples, fireworks, and even a traditional Guy Fawkes dummy to throw on the fire. It was a fantastic way to take a break during study hours and enjoy the evening with fellow students, teachers, and CEI interns. This morning we had an exhilarating and strange morning exercise. The whole school joined in on a game of quidditch. There were soccer balls, footballs, frisbees, and a human snitch to comprise out match. It was a heap of fun and hopefully we will get to do it again.
Thursday evening, the Janulis family (Helena S’13) graciously hosted a reception at The Explorer’s Club in New York City for interested students and families and a number of alumni spanning from the most recent Spring 2013 semester to Spring 2004! Helena did a great job sharing her Island School experience with the full room of prospective Island School students. Throughout the night some of our older alumni also contributed stories and experiences from their time at IS. Thank you to the Janulis family for hosting such a successful evening!
Great turn out at NYC receptoin!
Sharon Jarboe, Jensen Lowe (S’04), Helena Janulis (S’13), Maya Tepler (S’06), Jimmy Nannos (S’06), Mary Assini; front: Taylor Hoffman, Hilary Becker (S’04), Tracey Dansker (S’04), Chris Maxey
To find out where we will be next, visit our website. For any questions about admissions or admissions receptions, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
As October comes to an end, exciting events are occurring non-stop! Halloween being one of them. This Saturday night we dressed up and met up with our DCMS buddies for a haunted house at the Levy Preserve, the local native plant preserve. There were numerous things to do there: walk through the haunted trails, watch a scary movie, get face-paint, and more. We had a great time and it was a great way to celebrate Halloween. The next day was our day off. I personally spent mine working on my essay, going to Sunset Beach, playing basketball in Deep Creek, and finally slack lining. Slack lining is a something new that we had never tried before. A line was put up between the docks and over the water. Each of us attempted to walk over the water to the other dock. No one was able to make it, but we all had some good laughs trying. It was a great way to end the week! We are now beginning our last academic week before Parents Weekend, and we are all very excited!
Hey Alumni! For the week of November 3rd-9th the Fall 2013 Island School students have a challenge for you! If 48 alumni or more donate to the CONCHtribution campaign The Island School faculty have to do dish crew for one day. Any size donation counts!
Happy Halloween from The Island School! It’s a little late but we’re ready to celebrate. On Thursday, we had some time to plan costumes with our Community Outreach buddies. Tonight the whole school is going to the Levy Preserve in Governor’s Harbor. On out Down Island Trip, we visited this natural plant haven and learned about many medicinal plants. However, we have more exciting plans from this evening. We are dressing up and attending a haunted house will all of the Deep Creek Middle School kids as well as some of the local kids.
After all that fun, I’m sure we will be tired. Good thing we have a sleep in tomorrow! I know everyone here is excited to wake up late and have a relaxing morning. I’ll probably go on the free dive tomorrow morning. Since learning to free dive, I have improved greatly. At first, I could only go down maybe 15 feet and everyone else was going through tunnels down at 50. It was a little discouraging at first, but with some tips from Maxey and my fellow students I began to get much better. Although I still can’t hold my breath too well, I’ve started to make it down to about 35 feet most dives. This is the case for many other budding divers, but we are all really improving and having fun and get up early to show it.
Tomorrow there will also be other activities. A few weeks ago we went to Deep Creek to play basketball one afternoon and my five on five team won! It was really fun and even though I only scored one basket I’d love to do it again. On the opposite end, last week there was a softball game versus some local kids and we got destroyed 28-4. Even so, it was really exciting and a great way to spend a Sunday. Who knows what I’ll do tomorrow? I might bike out into the inner loop and spend the day really exploring.