As the Head of the Lower School, I’m often asked what makes the Lower School a special place. This is difficult to answer in just a few words; there are just so many reasons why I think this is a special place.
We have classrooms and hallways full of joyful children who love to learn. We have families that support and nurture the educational journeys of their children while encouraging them to be good people. Our teachers consider teaching a vocation, and they genuinely respect and enjoy children. We feel strongly about the importance of providing a challenging academic curriculum while supporting the social-emotional growth of all our learners. We recognize that play is an important part of learning and celebrate the growth that occurs in music, art, PE, and foreign language classes. I could go on and on, as I have the benefit of seeing so much of what transpires here on a daily basis.
But really, what do I know? I’m just an observer! For a true test of the pulse of the Lower School, we need to ask the experts. At the start of each new school year, we invite fifth graders to apply to be Lower School Ambassadors. These students complete an application and interview for these coveted positions. Those selected become the faces and voices of the Lower School students at various events on campus. Just last week they escorted our visiting authors and illustrators around the buildings and later in the year, they will speak to prospective parents during our open houses.
During this application and interview process, the ambassador candidates were asked a number of questions. Keep reading to learn more about what these fifth graders had to say about our amazing school!
The Walker School is a special place because…
- everyone at Walker cares most about the joy that everyone shares.
- everyone is nice and caring and empathetic and welcoming. Even if you make a mistake the kind people here will accept it and help you learn from it.
- it makes you feel like you’re a part of one big family. It is also special because the teachers bend over backward to meet each student where they are.
- everyone who walks in the Walker community walks out a part of it.
- of the people. The teachers at Walker teach us so much and they commit to teach us to our fullest potential.
- kids can learn different techniques and strategies in a fun atmosphere. Our teachers encourage us to think outside the box and want us all to have a fantastic elastic brain.
- you can be yourself and can learn a lot of cool subjects. It is a place that is unique and our students and adults are unique.
- the teachers genuinely care about my progress and education. I feel safe voicing my opinions. It allows me to focus on subjects I like the best and pushes me on those I don’t.
- everyone is valued at Walker.
How are you different than before you came to The Walker School?
- I feel more valued and I’m more confident. I am now able to say ‘I don’t understand’ and I am more outgoing and friendly. Now that I’m at Walker my love of reading has been unleashed!
- I love to learn especially in math and science. Now I have many more friends who also love to learn.
- I learned to a be a leader, a good friend, and a role model.
- I am taller.
If someone is unfamiliar with Walker, what would be the most important thing you’d like them to know about your school?
- There is something for everyone at Walker. You can do sports, you can create art, or join a club.
- The teachers meet you where you are as a person to help you be the best you can be.
- It’s okay to make mistakes. People will help you learn from them.
- It’s a great place for learning.
- Everybody matters whether old or new.
- The Walker community is very diverse, and I am grateful for the chance to experience different cultures, religions, and traditions through the eyes of my peers.
- The teachers are caring and enjoy teaching. They make learning interactive and fun! They challenge us to be ourselves and make us feel accepted and loved. Walker builds character and helps us take risks.
- You would be crazy if you didn’t come to The Walker School.
I couldn’t say it better myself! Here’s to another school year filled with the wonders of Walker!
Molly M. is a new fifth grader in the Lower School at The Walker School. She is a guest blogger and a Lower School expert author for our Discovering Walker Wonders blog series. She writes about how Walker just…feels different:
Coming to a new school was hard for me. I had lots of friends. But coming to Walker was different. When I came, everyone I met was so nice and helped me with what ever it was I needed. The teachers were always so welcoming; it was like I knew them all my life.
Everyone I met knew I was new, but it didn’t matter to them. To them, I was the same as all their other friends they had before I came. Walker is one of the best schools I will ever go to.
Gustavo W. is a new fifth grader in the Lower School at The Walker School. He is a guest blogger and a Lower School expert author for our Discovering Walker Wonders blog series. He writes about the opportunities that abound at Walker – for students and adults!
I am a new student at Walker. I am loving Walker so far. The environment overall is stupendous and everyone is amazing! The teachers and my friends have been super kind. The campus has been outstanding since I know kids of all grade levels. Another quick thing is that the lockers are pretty cool, I haven’t used lockers in 5 years! I signed up for football, so I met friends before school even started!!
So far, I have met so many nice people and I continue to meet nice people. I am not the only new student at Walker in fifth grade, but I think everyone has adapted very well. One thing I notice is that everyone is trying to do more than one thing: for example my football coach Coach Farrington helps with football, wrestling, and in the cafeteria. I think everyone at Walker is very determined to complete a task.
Madeline M. is a new seventh grader in the Middle School at The Walker School. She is a guest blogger and our Middle School expert author for our Discovering Walker Wonders blog series. She writes about her love of performing and the opportunities that abound at Walker:
Last weekend, I was inspired by the actors, singers, dancers, and musicians in The Addams Family Musical. I love to perform! Walker gave me several opportunities to perform this fall. I was a tomboy, girly teenager, and professional intern in the Middle school comedy in September. I can’t wait to perform in an Upper School musical!
I also performed in the fall orchestra concert. Did I mention that I love to perform? I play violin for Mrs. Kyna Elliott.
She inspires me every day to improve my technique and to perform with my violin.
Mrs. Elliot played along with the student orchestra pit during The Addams Family Musical. The student musicians were amazing, including a violinist from Camerata. At the fall concert, Camerata – an Upper School Quartet – was breath-taking to hear and inspiring to watch the movement of their bows.
I also perform in the classroom at Walker. Last week, I performed a thirty-minute presentation teaching my Spanish class about dance in the Spanish culture. Whether in Life Science, Early American History, or English, I perform as a writer every week and see my progress in expression.
I am grateful for the inspiration I have received at The Walker School! Did I mention I had a performance coming up? Come hear the Middle School orchestras, bands, and choruses on December 8th for our Holiday Concert.
Sofia P., a new ninth grader at The Walker School, is one of our Upper School expert authors for our Discovering Walker Wonders blog. She writes about her first few days as a Walker Wolverine:
I absolutely love Walker so far! I knew I would have an unbelievable experience because when I came home after the first day of school, my jaw ached from smiling so much.
The people you meet are incredibly inclusive, almost like they were simply waiting at the door for you to arrive.
The schedules are very tricky, but I was able to figure it out after a few days due to helpful teachers! Also, the classes may seem intimidating but the teachers emphasize that they are always there for extra help, so I definitely feel comfortable about emailing and contacting my teachers about work or anything about the lesson.
One of my favorite parts about Walker is the free time and study hall you receive. I am used to a pile of homework as soon as I get home, but at Walker you can use study hall time or lunch time to get ahead on homework, which is very important to an athlete like me! I’m still a little nervous around some of the students that I don’t know, but as I scream that Walker cheer I know I made the right choice all along.
Madeline M. is a new seventh grader in the Middle School at The Walker School. She is a guest blogger and our Middle School expert author for our Discovering Walker Wonders blog. She writes about her first few days as a Walker Wolverine:
My first two days were full of excitement, intrigue, and friendship. I was most excited about exploring the campus, decorating my locker, and learning about after-school clubs. The classes on my schedule were intriguing. I feel I have a variety of classes from Early American History to Orchestra to Computer. The Walker School also gave me the opportunity to take placement tests in math and Spanish allowing me to continue my progress in two of my favorite subjects. Most importantly, I started friendships and relationships that I hope will last all year.
Walker was a different school environment for me. New student orientation, friendly teachers, and the new student bowling party made the transition easy.
At the end of my first day, I did not want to leave.
Walker is wonderful! I know I made the right decision to attend The Walker School for seventh grade.
Aryan P. and Ayaan P. are new to Walker this year and are experiencing all of the fun and learning that our first grade has to offer! They are our youngest bloggers and are excited to start typing their blog posts soon!
Can you tell they are twins too!?
First Grader Aryan writes:
“I like my teacher. I had fun playing in the garden.”
First Grader Ayaan writes:
“My first day at Walker was fun. I loved playing with my friends.”