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Discovery Afternoon

Middle School

Students spent part of today preparing for one of our middle school spring rituals - Discovery Afternoon. Teachers - and some students - offer activities that align with areas of their own interest or expertise. The whole middle school is then divided among the dozen or so choices and they spend a Friday afternoon trying something new. 
 
This is one of many ways we invite students to branch out and take risks. It's also an opportunity for older students to take on leadership, introducing their peers to passions of their own. Finally, it's one other way we narrow the distance between school and life, students and teachers, fifth and eighth graders. Learning happens well into adulthood and beyond the walls of 272 Sixth Avenue.
 
Below is the list of this year's Discovery Afternoon offerings. I encourage you to talk with your child about their plans for tomorrow and about their discoveries when they come home. Please also take note of the remiders below - it's such a busy season! See you all at end of year events very soon.
 
DIY Dog Toy Making Workshop
Are you an animal lover? Then come to this pet-friendly workshop where we will make dog toys out of common household objects. Then we will deliver/donate our toys to a local shelter and have a snack on the way back.
 
The Great LREI Pie Bake-off!
Do you enjoy baking? In this Discovery Day activity, you and your team will design and create a DELICIOUS pie, which will be judged by a panel of expert pietasters. We'll prepare for the challenge by watching young master chefs bake pies, tasting pies baked by professionals, and choosing recipes.
 
Explore Prospect Park
On this trip, you will explore one of the city's greatest parks and learn about Brooklyn. We will begin at Grand Army Plaza, picnic at Long Meadow, hike through the Prospect Park ravine, arrive at the old Boathouse, and visit the Audubon Center. Sturdy shoes or sneakers, a bagged lunch, and weather-appropriate clothing are required for this trip. Feel free to bring frisbee or a ball. Come enjoy a day outdoors in a historic park.
 
Friendship Bracelets and (chocolate) Fondue!
We will walk to Washington Square Park and create friendship bracelets; thereafter, we will come back to a classroom and dip fruit and marshmallows into chocolate while listening to Hawaiian music!
 
Comic Workshop
Students can sign up as a writer, an artist, or a writer/artist and will be paired with someone to create an original comic before the day is over. We'll look at story and character creation to help them develop their idea.
 
Art is Interesting and Fun!
Come check out the Whitney Museum. Students will get an educational tour of the museum itself, and learn how to give a good docent talk (tour guide lessons) from the masters!
 
Discover Governor's Island!
We will take a subway and then ferry to the island. We will spend our time learning about the history of the island, visiting historical sites and art installations. I am hoping we can rent bikes for an hour, too! All my explorers will bring a lunch so we can picnic on the grass and play some frisbee.
 
Knitting for Charity
Do you want to help people in need? Do you want to learn how to knit or do you already have knitting skills? There are many charities in NYC that accept knitted squares, blankets or hats. Spend the afternoon knitting together and then we will decide where to donate our creations. We will provide basic knitting supplies but if you have supplies you are willing to share, please bring them.
 
Sun Salutations, Scents and Smoothies!
This workshop will include calming, restful and refreshing activities that will reinvigorate you! You will learn about your "dosha" personality and what scents, foods and types of exercise are best for you. In addition to experiencing a meditation session and yoga poses, you will make a potpourri sachet and sample healthy seasonal fruits in an ayurvedic smoothie that we will make together.
 
Record Music in a Professional Studio
Travel to NYU's Clive Davis Institute and record a song in one of their world-class recording studios! Participants will choose a song or to perform and record.
 
Play in a Day
We will make a play from scratch. Theatre pros call this "devising". We will start with nothing and at the end of the day, we will perform what we come up with. This is highly collaborative and personal, so this activity calls for generosity, big hearts, open minds, and loads of FUN!
 
A Google Day!
Ever wonder how Google works? The search bar that has become such a huge part of our daily lives has office buildings and people that run it! Join us as we go on a walking tour of the NYC Google facilities and learn about the people that make "googling" something possible!
 
Be A Lower School Helper
Did you enjoy your early school years?  Do you like working with younger children? Spend the afternoon helping out in a lower school classroom. Lower school teachers will assign activities for you to do with students. Your afternoon activities may include roof/recess, lunch, reading, siesta, math, or other super fun activities.  
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