We choose to go to the moon. We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too. ~John F. Kennedy, 1962

It’s difficult for our kids to imagine what it was like before the lunar landing, to imagine a time when going to the moon was one of the greatest challenges set before our nation. We spent some time reflecting on the greatness of landing on the moon by looking both to the past, as well as to the future. What future? What is our “next giant leap”? Mars!

The middle school took our learning out of this world by diving in to a multi-grade investigation of the solar system. Fifth grade stayed somewhat close to home with their research of the Sun, Earth, and Moon. Sixth grade traveled far and wide as they studied the other planets and moons of our solar system, including the dwarf planets (can we please bring Pluto back?). Seventh grade took a deep look into what it would take for humans to live on Mars. Each student and grade shared their findings with one another in whatever manner they found most effective and engaging. We had great fun learning, as the students became the teachers.


In History, the 7th graders have been studying Mesoamerica. After trying spiced hot chocolate in our Aztec study last week, this week students demonstrated their knowledge of geography through landscapes of the Inca empire. Each student was given a large piece of paper and asked to review their notes and represent the effects of geography on Inca culture. Their work turned out beautifully and each shows how the Andes Mountains was a central part of Inca life.

Susannah Joyce