Putting a “Ding” in the Universe

After two weeks of a well-deserved spring break, we are back into the routine of school. Well…almost! It is not quite routine to have measurable snow still on our playing fields on the second of April! Mount Derby has definitely diminished but as of yet it has not disappeared.

But it is good to be back, to hear of adventures from vacation, to listen to excitement for what lies ahead this spring. From Grandfriends Day next Friday to the fabulous Talent Show a few weeks later, the “extras” are in place. In the meantime, I had an opportunity this week to experience a three-tiered slice of what Derby is about.

Steve Jobs had said, “I want to put a ding in the universe.” I think I have seen some groundwork laid that may result in such an accomplishment some day.

Today, I was visited by the Pre-Kindergarten class who were out with Mrs. Loud taking pictures of various sites on campus. One of the sites was the Office of the Head of School, an awesome place if I do say so myself! These pictures will become part of a scavenger hunt the students do later, learning more and more about their world: Derby. Yesterday I was talking with some students in Grade 5 about their presentations for International Night, a long-time tradition of the Fifth Grade curriculum. Each student becomes a guru for his or her country. They learn about the world beyond Derby, about the culture, climate and economy of forty-eight countries. Earlier in the week, the third tier of my slice came as I listened to our oldest students give presentations on projects they are undertaking as part of the Global Nomads history curriculum. They are learning about specific issues that cut across borders and about being citizens of the world.

As I play back these conversations in my mind, I am struck by how richly these exemplify our mission statement: “Students are guided toward an awakening sense of personal responsibility in order to prepare them to make ethical and mindful contributions in an increasingly interdependent world.” These three tiers –the world of Derby, the world of many countries, the world of universal issues – provide scaffolding with which our students can frame their future. Who knows? Perhaps we will see one of our own students create a “ding in our universe” at some point down the road!



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