Back to School 2020 is certainly one like no other. As we return to school virtually, in-person, or in-between, we continue to grapple with the effects of the coronavirus pandemic as life nevertheless marches on.
Yesterday, my daughter left her favorite pair of shoes near the shoreline and didn’t realize it until after high tide had carried them away.
To help her work through her sadness, we began to imagine a new life for the shoes: as a shell for a hermit crab, as an unexpected catch for a lobsterman. We imagined one day, years from now, walking along the shore and finding her tie-dyed Crocs and laughing that they had finally come home.
Today, we found the shoes. Washed up, covered in seaweed. Her brother and I cheered. She shrugged. After a few minutes, she whispered.
“I’m kind of sad we found them. I liked the stories more than the shoes.”
On February 1, 1919, my grandmother Eliza Ellen turned four years old. Twenty days later, influenza stole away her mother.
A guest post from Anna Bachiochi, a member of the Montrose School class of 2020
In this unprecedented time of confusion and fear, the news is full of stories about people who react in the craziest of ways: people buying every roll of toilet paper in the store, others sharing obviously fake remedies and cures, and still others ignoring our government’s physical distancing mandates and attempting to live life as if nothing has changed.
So I wanted to know: what causes people to act in such irrational ways? How can we ourselves know if our own decisions are rational or not? I spoke with our resident psychologist, Associate Director of Montrose’s LifeCompass Institute Mrs. Kris, to find out.
Writer and director Greta Gerwig’s 2019 movie adaption of Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women earned six Academy Award nominations. In a moving scene pulled from the novel’s pages, Jo confesses to Marmee, “When I get in a passion I get so savage I could hurt anyone and enjoy it.” It’s a disquieting confession, but even more surprising is her mother’s reply, “You remind me of myself.”
Feeling on edge? A little strung out? Wondering daily—as my family, colleagues, students and friends are -- “When is this going to end? How long will it be? I just want to know!”
This week, we watched thousands of teachers around the country reinvent school, moving it online in record time -- these agile, creative dedicated educators are heroes!
Now, how do we help the students who are also being tested by these changes?
My colleague, Katie Elrod, often reminds me that, “Practical wisdom is knowing what to do when you don’t know what to do.”
I’ve been thinking about that a lot lately as a parent. In light of the COVID-19 epidemic, how do we make wise choices? How can we be responsive instead of reactive? What do we do when we don’t know what to do?
This week, the world lost a mathematical pathbreaker. Katherine Johnson was one of NASA’s “Hidden Figures” – a brilliant mathematician who calculated the trajectory for the Apollo 11 flight. It was her precise calculations that got Neil Armstrong to the moon and back.
Ms. Johnson passed away on February 25 at age 101, and her extraordinary legacy as a female, African-American scientist will long outlive her.
Recently high school junior Neha Sunkara ‘21 spent weeks studying Katherine Johnson for a research paper. Neha is a student in Montrose School in Medfield, MA.
“She transformed the space race for America, but she wasn’t as well known until the movie Hidden Figures came out,” said Neha. “I want to be an astrophysicist, and sometimes I feel alone in my passion. Knowing someone else like Katherine Johnson is in the math world made such a big impact on me.”
When I was fifteen years old, I worked as a waitress behind the soda fountain at a Norman Rockwell-esque ice cream parlor and homemade candy shop: Conrad’s Confectionery in Westwood, New Jersey.
Conrad’s was a delightful place. The regulars from town met at the counter each Saturday morning: the owners of the jewelry shop and the shoe store, the undertakers from the local funeral home, and the boy I had a crush on from the record shop. I grew confident in my skills and familiar with all the regulars’ names. I could make an excellent ice-cream soda, pour the perfect egg cream and keep the dishes washed and put away -- even when it was busy.