by Felicia Wilks, Upper School director
It's inspiring to be part of a school community that continues to evolve throughout the year, trying out new ideas and approaches. Lakeside faculty and staff regularly reflect on our practices to ensure that what is in place responds to the needs of our current student body. One development is the new technology guidelines in the Upper School.
This fall, Head of School Bernie Noe assembled a committee of Middle and Upper School students, faculty, and administrators to examine the impact of technology on the Lakeside community. As a member of the group, it was great to hear so many different opinions on the topic. We looked at how cell phones enhance or interrupt face-to-face connections and real-time experiences. Consistent with Lakeside's approach to building student agency and independence, the committee developed cell phone guidelines and best practices rather than a list of rules. A few new practices include reinforcing that no cell phones should be used in class unless the teacher has included them in the lesson and designating a few lunchroom tables as "technology-free."
The goal of these new approaches is to inspire our students to look up from their phones and experience all their lives have to offer. There is no doubt that students use their phones to connect and create in incredible ways that were not possible just a short time ago. Our hope is that with their phones, as with other aspects of their lives, our students seek balance and learn to be intentional about how they use their free time. I personally hope students find themselves so engaged in their activities on and off campus this spring that they forget to check their phones!
The coming months offer many opportunities for all of us - students and adults alike - to lose ourselves in fun community events. Below is a brief listing for March; details about times and locations are located on the web calendar. Have a great start to spring!
Friday, March 2: On the 10th-grade retreat, sophomores will enjoy a retreat proposed, designed, and planned by a group of their fellow 10th graders. These students have come up with activities including a talent show, discussions, and games to encourage students in the class to make new friendships and to further bond the class for their next two and a half years together, as they move into leadership roles in the Upper School.
Monday, March 5: Music in the City. Come enjoy the Middle and Upper School music students in their performance at Benaroya Hall in downtown Seattle! This evening of music is a fun opportunity for our musicians to showcase all they have learned so far this year in a professional performance space. There's a reception starting at 6 p.m. and the concert starts at 7 p.m. We hope to see you there!
Saturday, March 10, 8-11 p.m.: The Spring Fling, this season's formal dance, will be held at the Seattle Art Museum. Students received information about the dance at assembly and in their email.
Wednesday, March 14, 8-9 a.m.: We hope you join us for a breakfast with Upper School administrators in the Fireplace Room of the Wright Community Center. Watch for an email from Lynelle Ehart to RSVP.
Tuesday, March 27 – Thursday, March 29: Upper School drama students present the annual one-act festival "Circus!" We hope you will join us for this great opportunity to see student-directed and in some cases, student-written work. Twelve directors and 24 actors will light up the Lakeside stage in eight plays. Performances start at 6 p.m. Stay tuned for more information.
Thursday, March 22: Photo day. It's free to get a photo taken to update a student's ID. Order forms for printed photos are sent home with students.
Wednesday, March 21, 7-8 p.m.: The Mark J. Bebie '70 Memorial Lecture features Julie Lythcott-Haims. The lecture is free, starts at 7 p.m., and everyone is invited. Learn more.
And don't forget the Rummage Sale on the weekend of March 17 and 18!
Felicia Wilks is Lakeside's Upper School director. You can reach her at 206-440-2721.