Archives for March 2017

Grandparents’ Day at the High School

HS Grandparents' Day_1By Suzanne Gorman, Head of Downtown Campus

Today we welcomed over 50 grandparents to the High School for Grandparents’ Day. They went to two classes with their grandchildren and enjoyed a delicious lunch provided by our Parent Association and many parent volunteers. I absolutely love Grandparents’ Day because it allows grandparents to get a little view into the everyday life of their grandchildren, actually sitting in class, listening to the discussion, and sometimes even participating themselves! Unfortunately, unless their grandchild has a free period during their visit, grandparents won’t get to try their hand at pool and ping pong, but there’s always next year!

Next Monday is our annual Cultural Day. Each year, we take one day to focus on a particular area and explore our downtown environment – all of the places we visit are walks! The 9th graders focus on media, with visits to the Courier-Journal, Metro TV with the Mayor’s Office, Actors Theatre’s social media coordinator, and Louisville Public Media. The 10th graders’ theme is the arts; Flame Run Gallery, 21C, the Louisville Orchestra, and the Louisville Palace. The 11th graders learn about the legal/justice systems, with this year’s offerings including a visit to the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights, a talk with an immigration attorney, and a trip to the U.S. Attorney’s Office. The 12th graders stay closer to home, focusing on the transition to college and life, with topics like financial literacy and car maintenance. It’s always an interesting experience for the students, and should be a fun way to kick off the week before Spring Break!

Different Forms of Writing Spark Creativity

Preschool Projector Drawings_1By Renee Hennessy, Preschool Director

In our classrooms we introduce many different forms of writing to our preschooler, including story books, information books, magazines, recipes, and credible information from Internet sites such as PBS. These examples are the kinds of writing that our children and teachers are reading together to aid in learning about the topics we are teaching. We then often see our students act out their favorite story, draw pictures of a story they have created, and use materials such as clay and Play-Doh to represent their ideas.     

Here are a few spring books we recommend:

  • What Makes a Rainbow? by Betty Ann Schwartz
  • When Will It Be Spring? by Catherine Walters
  • Grow, Flower, Grow by Lisa Bruce
  • The Lamb and The Butterfly by Arnold Sundgaard
  • Inch by Inch: The Garden Song by David Mallett
  • Wait by Antoinette Portis
  • Planting a Rainbow by Lois Ehlert

Don’t forget that Summer Camp registration is live on our website. Click here for more information.

Upcoming Dates

  • Wednesday, April 12th from 9:15 to 11:00 a.m. is our Spring Egg Hunt

Spring Egg Donations Still Needed

  • 24 plastic eggs per family, filled with items such as stickers, colorful Band-Aids, erasers, non-chocolate candy, small trinkets (remember they can be picked up by a child as young as two)
  • Please tape the eggs shut for ease in hiding and finding
  • Half of the donated eggs will go to Keystone Learning Academy for their egg hunt
  • The deadline to turn in donations is Monday, April 10th

SFS Track on “Track” for Re-opening!

Goshen Track re-openingBy Reed Gabhart, Head of Goshen Campus

As we’ve finally entered spring (and the promise of Spring Break) after the winter that wasn’t, that can only mean it’s time for another action-packed track and field season at St. Francis! And on top of that, we were proud to show off our newly renovated track at our first meet on Thursday! By last season, the lane lines and relay markers had become so faded over time that the colors were difficult to distinguish (and as a sometime volunteer relays judge, I speak from experience). So this past winter, we had the track entirely resurfaced, new lanes painted, and a “dip” on the backside filled in – and our track looks (and feels) practically brand new!

To celebrate, we brought a little pomp and circumstance to our first meet by having the entire track team run an inaugural lap before the meet and breaking a ribbon to commemorate the renovations. Our Wyvern mascot was on hand presiding over the ceremonies. Track and field has a long and storied history at St. Francis, and we’re sure this year will be no different. Dedicated head coach Shavar Cowherd has a fantastic team of coaches assembled once again, highlighted by the return of SFS track legend Mike Black as his right-hand man coaching our distance runners. No one runs a better track meet than Mike Black! Also returning are Goshen alum Chase Carlson G’06, working with our throwers, and parent Mark Green, to work with our hurdlers. The team is a robust 45 strong and ready for action. We have three home meets this year, so be sure to get out for one of them to root on the Wyverns!

Spring Musical_4x6Tonight is opening night for our SFS Drama Project’s spring musical Anything Goes! We had an assembly today to perform three songs in the show so our Lower School students would get a chance to see our Middle Schoolers perform. Tickets for the Friday opening and Sunday matinee are sold out, but plenty of tickets remain for next week’s shows on Tuesday and Wednesday nights at 6:30 p.m. I hope to see you there for a “De-lovely” time!

Photo Gallery for Week of March 20 – March 24

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The SFS Drama Project Presents Anything Goes!

Anything Goes_4x6Music, dance, laughs, and the age-old tale of “Boy Meets Girl” – no musical puts it on stage better than Anything Goes! And the St. Francis Drama Project is proud to present this hilarious shipboard romp as our spring musical!

The story centers around madcap antics aboard an ocean liner bound from New York to London. Billy Crocker is a stowaway in love with heiress Hope Harcourt, who is engaged to English dandy Lord Evelyn Oakleigh. Nightclub singer Reno Sweeney and Public Enemy #13, Moonface Martin, aid Billy in his quest to win Hope. The musical is wrapped around one of Cole Porter’s most magical scores and introduced such songs as “Anything Goes,” “You’re the Top,” and “I Get a Kick Out of You” to the American public. Please plan on joining us for Anything Goes, a show that is quite simply “Delightful, Delicious, and De-Lovely!”

Performances are Friday, March 24th at 7:00 p.m., Sunday, March 28th at 2:00 p.m., Tuesday, March 28th at 6:30 p.m., and Wednesday, March 29th at 6:30 p.m. Tickets online are $9.00 for adults and $6.00 for students and can be purchased here. Tickets at the door are $8.00 for adults and $5.00 for students; however, we cannot guarantee that seats will still be available.

Please plan on joining us for Anything Goes, a show that is quite simply  “Delightful, Delicious, and De-Lovely!”

Steve-o The Magician Delights the Preschoolers

Steve-o The Magician_1By Renee Hennessy, Preschool Director

The preschoolers were treated to a very entertaining magic show by Steve-o, aka Louisville magician Steve Haffner, on Tuesday. The children were delighted with Steve-o’s brand of comedy magic, the opportunities for audience participation, and all the boisterous fun!  

Thank you to all of the families who made donations to the Love from Louisville Drive. We are overwhelmed with your generosity and willingness to support our efforts with a short time frame. Our drive at School will conclude on Monday, March 20th. The drive will continue in the Louisville community until Wednesday, March 22nd. Click here for information about additional items needed and other drop-off locations.

Upcoming Dates to Remember

  • Tuesday, March 21st – Big Sing
  • Thursday, March 30th – Fours class visits the Oldham County Main Library’s Science in Play 2 Go Exhibit

It’s De-lightful, It’s De-licious, It’s De-lovely!

Anything Goes Dress Rehearsal_1By Reed Gabhart, Head of Goshen Campus

For those of you who have been in the Main Amp over past couple of weeks, you have noticed our stage has undergone a major transformation into a cruise ship! The perfect backdrop for the St. Francis Drama Project’s spring musical production of Anything Goes! Here is a description of the show you can find on our ticket reservation page: 

Music, dance, laughs, and the age-old tale of “Boy Meets Girl” – no musical puts it on stage better than Anything Goes! And the St. Francis Drama Project is proud to present this hilarious shipboard romp as our spring musical! The story centers around madcap antics aboard an ocean bound from New York to London. Billy Crocker is a stowaway in love with heiress Hope Harcourt, who is engaged to English dandy Lord Evelyn Oakleigh. Nightclub singer Reno Sweeney and Public Enemy #13, Moonface Martin, aid Billy in his quest to win Hope. The musical is wrapped around one of Cole Porter’s most magical scores and introduced such songs as “Anything Goes,” “You’re the Top,” and “I Get a Kick Out of You” to the American public. Please plan on joining us for Anything Goes, a show that is quite simply “Delightful, Delicious, and De-Lovely!”

Performances are Friday, March 24th at 7:00 p.m., Sunday, March 28th at 2:00 p.m., Tuesday, March 28th at 6:30 p.m., and Wednesday, March 29th at 6:30 p.m. Tickets online are $9.00 for adults and $6.00 for students and can be purchased hereTickets at the door are $8.00 for adults and $5.00 for students; however, we cannot guarantee that seats will still be available.

On a personal level, it is so gratifying to see Middle School kids delighting in the music of Cole Porter! You can hear them singing the tunes walking down the halls between classes, without a trace of sarcasm to be found! Also, to have 54 Middle School kids in involved in the show speaks volumes about their dedication to our drama program. And if you happen to see the Sunday matinee on March 26th, an additional 20 Lower School students will join us for one number, bringing the number on stage from 54 to 74 overall for that one song! I can safely say that’s a new St. Francis record! I hope you get a chance to see this ambitious production and all the work so many have put into it. And I wouldn’t wait on purchasing your tickets – our musicals have a tendency to sell out in advance!

On another fun note, I opened a door in carpool this morning and was suddenly looking at Sophia and Emmy Sower! They are on spring break from their new school in Michigan and decided to pay their “old” classmates a visit. I had forgotten today was that day! What struck me was Andrea Sower’s comment, “Only at St. Francis would kids want to give up a day of spring break to go back to their old school voluntarily (and be allowed to do it!).” Our pleasure. Former students are always welcome here, and we were thrilled to welcome them back!  

The Importance of Discovering Talents and Abilities

Woodworking projectBy Suzanne Gorman, Head of Downtown Campus

I saw some fantastic keynote speakers at the recent NAIS Conference. Alexandra is writing in the upcoming Wyvern Report about Dr. Brené  Brown, so I want to share some thoughts here about Sir Ken Robinson’s talk.

You may have seen one of his TED Talks; he is interesting and engaging in those, as he certainly was in person. His message was that we (society and educators) need to think differently about people’s talents and abilities. In terms of students and education, he believes that if time at school is disengaged from students’ talents and energies, the things that lift them up, then they will become enervated. This resonated with me in terms of the importance of extracurriculars to a healthy school community, so that – in keeping with Progressive philosophy – we educate the whole child. Finding something every student loves and is good at is vital to development, and I certainly believe that when a student finds a passion outside of the classroom, academics actually tend to improve, as well.

Robinson believes that the goal of education should be learning, rather than training. As he notes, we are glad our children have sex education, but we would not be so much in favor of sex training! Education is, he says, not to prepare them for something to come but about who they are in the here and now.

Ultimately, he concludes, if children discover what they’re good at, feel good about those things, and have a solid community around them, they’ll learn better. I couldn’t agree more.  

Photo Gallery for Week of March 13 – March 17

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School Notes for Week of March 13 – March 17

The Science Olympiad Regional Competition is this Saturday, March 18th at KCD and parent volunteers are needed to prepare and run events. Science Olympiad is an all-day competition where Middle School and High School teams participate in 23 events covering all aspects of science; from technology and engineering, to chemistry and physics, to life sciences. Teams from both of our campuses have been working hard collecting materials, studying, practicing, building, breaking, and rebuilding.

The Louisville Regional Competition is the only one in the state that is completely organized and run by teachers and volunteers from the competing schools. For this year’s competition, we are still in need of Event Supervisors for three of the events at the High School level: Remote Sensing (using remote sensing imagery, data, and computational process skills to complete tasks related to climate change processes in the Earth system), Hydrogeology (manipulating a groundwater computer model to answer questions about groundwater concepts, and evaluate solutions based on hydrogeological evidence, to reduce anthropogenic effects on groundwater), and Experimental Design (determining a team’s ability to design, conduct, and report the findings of an experiment actually conducted on site).

If you or anyone you know would be interested in volunteering to prepare and run an event or would like more information about the events, please contact Downtown Campus chemistry teacher Luke Johnson