They came from places far and wide – North Carolina, Wisconsin, and Puerto Rico to name a few! – to spend precious time with their grandchildren and the young people in their lives.
Grandparents and Special Friends’ Day brought more than 170 visitors to campus last week, and the crisp fall morning lent itself to warm, fuzzy feelings of family and fellowship. Many of those on hand were past parents, now turned grandparents; and even some alumni, such as Luna 2028 and Alexander 2032 Polinsky’s Poppy, Bill Polinsky, Class of 1958.
Head of School Bob Izzo welcomed guests and shared with them the uniqueness of our school community in terms of the bonds formed between older and younger students as well as faculty and parents.
“The sense of community that we feel every day is what you will experience a little bit of today,” said Mr. Izzo.
Those bonds were on full display as 16 Upper School students stepped up to act as special friends to those youngsters whose grandparents couldn’t be on hand. Sophomores Lacey Bozzuto, Michael Ferneini, Rahul Kapur, Gabriela Rosen, Joshua Tenedine, and Ava Vingiano; juniors Yaco Pastor, Charlotte Ren, Ivy Tian, Samantha Yang, and Steven Zhang; and seniors Emma Acampora, Eduardo Pagliaro-Haque, Orly Richter, Eliana Ross, and Mitchell Swick all forfeited their day off to ensure that everyone had a buddy with whom to enjoy the activities.
Lower School Director Lorri Carroll prefaced the morning’s goings-on with remarks about daily happenings in our classrooms.
“We have a lot of excited students who cannot wait to share The Hamden Hall Experience with you. This morning’s activities are a sampling of some of the things that happen in our classrooms every day,” she said.
Parents’ Association volunteers waved signs in the air to shepherd guests to various sites on campus. Activities varied by grade with PreSchool and PreKindergarten students and guests engaging in music, art, and play in the Early Childhood classrooms. The song Skidamarink
was particularly received as students pointed to their loved ones in conjunction with the chorus, I Love You!
Guests of Kindergarten and Grade 1 students settled into Swain Library with a good book – How to Babysit a Grandpa
. The appropriately selected story lent itself to an art project and engaging dialogue.
Square dancing was a hoot in Taylor Gymnasium for Grades 2, 3, and 4 as experienced caller and physical education teacher Mark McEachern prompted various do-si-dos and other steps. Students first showcased their moves with one another before encouraging their elders to commence to the gym floor for a whirl or two.
STEM lessons were in full force for Grades 5 and 6 in Lender Refectory. Science teacher Steve Jewett challenged students and guests to design lunar landing modules replete with marshmallows for passengers. Once created, students moved to the “testing stations” to ensure that their modules could withstand flight.Click here
to view a slideshow of all of the day's highlights.