Family, friends, board members, alumni and faculty came out in unanticipated sunny weather as we watched the Class of 2017 take their seats for the final time as North Cross students. In the coming days we'll be posting more about the addresses given that day, but for now, enjoy the photographs from a truly heartwarming, bittersweet, and proud day for our entire community.
In the Lower School, instead of an end-of-the-year exam in Spanish, students in the 3rd, 4th and 5th grades have a different type of assessment to exhibit how far they've come: the end-of-school-year skits. Students have the chance to display their oral skills in front of an audience of parents, family members, and friends. The events are the culmination of a year of hard work with oral skills (including reading out loud), vocabulary items specific to each skit, grammar structures explored according to plot and story line, reading comprehension, and writing/spelling—not to mention teamwork!
The skits are only one part of a series of activities conducted before, during, and after students have the final draft of their scripts ready. There are individual, group, and whole-class activities and conference sessions that provide key information about the skills students have in Spanish by the end of the school year. While Señora Hermosilla watches the evolution of these productions, she evaluates commands, classroom language, expressions, fillers, connectors, linkers, and sequence words that students review while prepping for this final day of skits. The students create the story, scripts, furnish the costumes and "sets," and then answer questions after their performance about what they've learned throughout the process.
As the school year comes to a close, we say goodbye to our beloved seniors, but this year, we also bid farewell to two dedicated and long-time teachers, Mr. Richard Cook, and Ms. LeeAnn Sigmon-Farley. We have compiled some reflections, including testimonials from colleagues and students, past and present. Click "Read More" to download.
On Thursday, the Upper School held a special assembly in the commons to recognize Richard Cook's upcoming retirement. Everett Ward ’18 spoke of his experiences with Mr. Cook as a history teacher and golf coach. Afterward, Mr. Thompson presented him with a framed print that included signatures from every student in the Upper School. To further honor the legacy that Mr. Cook created for himself, the Upper School presented him with a box of Hershey's bars and Lays potato chips (Mr. Cook's daily snack). To make the deal even sweeter, Mr. Cook will get unlimited chips and chocolate bars from the Snack Shack on days that he subs.
When we visited Mrs. Farley and her students, they were knee-deep in fabric markers, designing their Hobbit T-shirts (below), a favorite tradition among many of her students. Adding these extra layers of creativity and dedication to a subject is what makes her so special to her students and as Ms. Sandy Patterson put it in her remarks, "Another teacher might step into her job, but LeeAnn will never be replaced."
This morning, leading members of the Upper School faculty and Head of School Dr. Proctor gathered on stage to honor those students who have shown outstanding accomplishment in various disciplines, in campus life, and overall academic achievement. Also, the names of the Class of 2017 valedictorian and salutatorian were revealed as Ashtyn Gerhart and Margaret Lawrence, respectively. Below is a complete list of awards given, and we congratulate all of those who were honored and the entire Class of 2017 for their impending graduation.
Families, friends and students turned out in spite of the rainy weather to fill Lemon Dining Hall Tuesday night for this year's Spring Instrumental Band Concert. Four different groups representing Beginning Band (fourth and fifth grades), Concert Band (sixth and seventh grades), Seventh Grade with Symphonic Band (eighth through twelfth grades), and Symphonic Band performed various selections ranging from classic to modern, swing to Hollywood.
Perhaps the most moving moment of the night was the seniors' tribute to Band Director Ms. Jimmie Donnini. Albert Newberry ’17, who will attend the prestigious Mannes School of Music in New York next year, composed an original piece for Ms. Donnini and invited the other seven band-member seniors, and two violinists (Margaret Lawrence ’17 and Ocean Ding ’18) to perform it for her last night. Much to her surprise and delight, the students had practiced over lunch periods the last several weeks the piece entitled "Jaguar," the brand of automobile for which Ms. Donnini has always expressed a longing. Though not a car, the piece illustrates a fast-car journey through winding roads and slick straightaways, always driving. He joked, "Forgive the overused metaphor, but, the car is new, we're still learning how to drive, but we hope you enjoy the ride." Given the standing ovation at the end, it's clear everyone did.
The concert was a wonderful display of the many talented musicians we have, who, whether it's their first concert performance at North Cross or their last, all exhibited the same dedication, skill and commitment which seems to follow them in whatever they endeavor to accomplish here. Many thanks to the wonderful Fine Arts faculty and staff, Friends of the Arts, parents and friends who have supported the arts this year.
With the season barely ended, the Upper and Middle Schools gathered this morning to honor the participation and achievement of this year's spring athletic teams. Beginning with the middle school, which had girls lacrosse and soccer teams, and boys lacrosse, baseball and tennis teams, the students took the stage to receive their certificates after hearing from each coach about their season and progress as a team.
This year, for the first time since its inception six years ago by parent Rich McGimsey ’82, North Cross not only had a girls varsity lacrosse team, but the team competed in conference matches as well, making it to the BRC Semi-Finals. Girls' varsity soccer showed great improvement as the season progressed, but perhaps most touching was Coach James Brown's remarks regarding his predecessor, Richard Cook, who formerly acted as coach and is retiring this year after 44 years of service to the school. Golf, Baseball and Lacrosse were also honored on the boys side, with Lacrosse getting the closest this season to a state championship title, but losing in the VISAA semi-finals. Each of the varsity teams' coaches awarding their Coach's Award and Most Valuable Player award before the teams were dismissed from the stage. Read more to see the list of awardees.
The rainy weather was not friendly to our spring athletic teams this year, so it was with great relief that the senior game was bathed in sunshine and blue skies. Coach Eric Lawrence honored his three seniors: Lucas Allara ’17, Josh Greenway ’17 and Charlie Lemon ’17 for their commitment to the team, the sport and in helping to shape the next generation of baseball players at North Cross. Joined by their families, coaches and Dr. Proctor, the players accepted flowers and a memorial baseball as a token of their time as a Raider. We look forward to hearing of their accomplishments—on or off the field—as they head to college this fall.
Monday afternoon, surrounded by their families, members of the Lower School Spanish Society, which consists of the fifth-grade class, held its annual awards ceremony. The awards given recognize academic excellence, community involvement, and for promoting the Spanish language and culture in a spirit of friendship. This year's members all received the Service to School award; 18 members were recognized for Academic Excellence; and three received an Honorable Mention for Academic Commitment. Other awards included recognition for those student's and their families who hosted an international student or are planning to in the coming year. Ashton Shannon ’24 was recognized for The Friendship Award—for which members vote to recognize a member who displays all the qualities of a good friend and a loyal and active member of the Society.
Señora Hermosilla sponsors the Society and distributed the awards in Fishburn Auditorium. The members are as follows (alphabetical by homeroom): Selden Burns, Amelia Cullen, Austin Frantz, Dajah Garrison, Teea Hash, Eleanor Lake, Hudson Lawrence, Uzair Mirza, Xavier Mitchell, Mason Murchison, Hania Raza, Ashton Shannon, Paula Storm, Ned Tower, Dami Bankole, Attilio Ciccozzi, Cate Cook, Harry Daugherty, Alexandre Dickenson, Nilaa Elangovan, Thomas Greer, Maddox Haskins, Alexandria Helmer, Lydia Horner, Kaeleigh Howlett, Umair Rasul, Paul Schueler, Torri Tickle and Elle Williams.
At today's Upper School assembly, Polly Jones presented promotions to the chapter of the International Thespian Society (ITS) members of North Cross School. At the end of her remarks, she inducted four new members who then took the oath of the Society, administered by the current president of the North Cross chapter, Zack H'Doubler ’17.
This morning at the Upper School assembly, Eric Lawrence, Director of Athletics and Wellness, presented a championship banner and rings to the Girls Varsity Tennis Team whose VISAA State Championship was won this fall. Coach Amy Bagliani said a few words to her team and the assembly, reiterating that it was the hard work and dedication of these girls who made this all possible. We congratulate the team again on its win and for adding a little more decoration to the CAC walls.
For more photos, visit the Featured Content Section of onCampus.
The Crossties Blog provides timely updates about activities from the campus of North Cross School.