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2015 Capstone Symposium

Last Wednesday, we hosted our very first Capstone Symposium!

This year, eighth grade students worked hard on their Capstone projects. They picked a topic that they found interesting, wrote and researched papers on that topic, and then developed a long-term project. On Wednesday, they presented their hard work to friends, family, and the greater Seabury community. For their presentations, they were asked to reflect on what they had learned through the process.

Here are the Capstone projects that students did this year:

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An avid artist, A.A. researched the importance of public art, and worked on designing and painting a mural at the end of Court C. She had to submit a design and artist’s statement into Spaceworks Tacoma, and was granted a space in which to paint her mural! Her final design was based on a woman who, while growing up, reflects on the way her city has changed.

Ben

B.S.’s project was based around learning graphic design, and creating an open-source website for the images he created. He is interested in graphic design, and learned about design elements, Photoshop, and web design during his Capstone project. You can check out his website here:

http://bencapstone.businesscatalyst.com/index.html

Connor

C.H. has been an athlete for his whole life, and so wanted to base his project on athletics. Because social change can also be seen in professional sports, he researched athletes who broke down social barriers in order to play professionally and who had an effect on the civil rights movement. He also learned the elements of Photoshop to create informational posters, which he put on a blog. You can see them here:

https://connorcapstone.wordpress.com/

Lucas

L.B. is interested in both geography and teaching, so he thought he would combine the two for his project. He worked with Seabury teachers to develop a geography curriculum, and then taught it to classes at our lower school Campus. During the process, he learned a lot about lesson pacing, classroom management, and curriculum development.

Maleah

M.B. has been making jewelry since she was young, so she incorporated that passion into her Capstone project. She undertook a complex research project that looked at the history of marketing and fashion, and how they affect our society today. She then filmed and edited a video where she explains how to create a piece of jewelry. She submitted the video in a contest on instructables.com, and won! You can see it here:

http://www.instructables.com/id/DIY-Glitter-Moon-Necklace/

Aaron

A.W. researched solar power. He looked at how it works, the pros and cons of solar energy, and what makes it better than energy from fossil fuels. Likewise, he interviewed experts in the solar energy field and looked at how miniature solar power generators can help people who don’t have access to consistent power.

Annabel

A.G. is an avid musician, singer, and songwriter. She wanted to use her talents to create an EP, so she researched the process, wrote two original songs, and, with the help of Mr. G, recorded them along with two covers. During the process, she learned a lot about songwriting, and the technical aspects of recording music.

Z.K. wants to be a doctor when she grows up. In order to get a good sense of what that entails, she interviewed several doctors on their experiences. She also researched important medical professionals throughout history including Virginia Apgar, and Ivan Pavlov. She wanted to also volunteer in a hospital but unfortunately, there were age restrictions. She’ll be continuing her project next year as well!

We are so proud of all of the hard work that the eighth graders did this year! Their Capstone projects required a lot of research, insight, and creativity, and they all did a fantastic job!

Theater Worksop with Tacoma Youth Theater. 

The students had a chance to work with artists from Tacoma Youth Theater the last few weeks. They performed improv and short scenes from famous plays. Everyone had a chance to participate in the many elements that make up the theatrical arts.  

Vocal warm ups
  Beauty and the Beast, or something…
  Improv is much harder than it looks! 

  Robin Hood! 
  An incredible moment of magic onstage.  
 “Oh Tom, I’m all ashiver.” Tom Sawer and Huck Finn. 

Normandy

We started the day with a bus ride from Paris to the town of Arromanches, home of the Mulberry Harbors. Remnants of these portable harbors made from sunken ships and floating barges can still be seen today.  

          

We then made our way to Omaha Beach and the Normady American Cemetery. It is a powerful testament to the sacrifice made by the thousands  of soldiers and other helpers that died in the Normady attacks. 

   

                

In the gale force winds it was uplifting to see the kids bring joy to this hallowed ground. 

   

     

 Our last stop was Point du Hoc, 

     

The Louvre, crazy metros, and French Pizza

Bon nuit!

We have been quite busy here in France! Yesterday, we made it to Paris from Amsterdam, and then headed to Notre Dame Cathedral. After looking around a bit at the amazing gothic architecture, a few students headed over the river to check out Shakespeare and Co. Bookstore.

We then went to a lovely dinner in the Latin Quarter and to the Eiffel Tower. Sadly, the top was closed so we went to the second floor, which has great views of the city.

The next day, we headed out to the Louvre Museum. Students got to see the Mona Lisa and then broke into smaller groups to check out the other parts of the museum. It was great going with this group of students because they would offer interesting tidbits to whichever exhibit you were looking at. For example, one group was lucky enough to have a amateur Egyptologist with them while looking at the Egyptian artifacts.

After lunch, we went on a great bus tour of Paris. Highlights included Napoleon’s tomb, the Arc de Triomphe, parliament buildings, the Pantheon, and the Champs de Élysées. For dinner, we had Flammekueche, which is a pizza-like food traditional to France. We were proud of the students handling very crowded metros and new foods!

                         

  

  We’re off to bed! Tomorrow-Normandy!

(Note from Tacoma: The official photographers on the trip have been dealing with scarce and slow wifi in uploading pictures to the blog. Several photos that were originally on this post didn’t load all the way, so we’ve deleted them for now. They’re doing a great job despite the technological difficulties and we promise a big show of photographs when they get back!)

Anne Frank Museum and Windmills

Hallo again!

Today we had the great opportunity to see the moving and poignant Anne Frank House. In the words of one student, “She represented those who didn’t have a voice.” The experience was meaningful and really brought Anne’s diary and the experience of those in hiding during the holocaust to life.

After that, we stopped for a quick lunch and drove to two traditional Dutch villages where students got to see the inner workings of windmills (one even made paint!), learn how cheese and chocolate are made, and see the process of making a wooden clog! We also got to stop for some souvenir shopping.

For dinner, we had wonderful Indonesian food. There are a lot of Indonesian immigrants in Amsterdam and its food has become popular with native Dutch people. We were particularly proud of the kids because everyone, including some notoriously picky eaters, tried new foods!

We’re up again early tomorrow morning to catch our train to Paris. More updates to come!

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Hallo from Amsterdam!

Hallo! The kids (and adults) are doing great here in Amsterdam! We’re well rested after a good night’s sleep and a busy first day.
After a walk through the city, yesterday, we took a beautiful canal cruise (did you know that Amsterdam has more canals than Venice?) and then stopped for a delicious lunch. After that, students explored the Rijksmuseum and got the opportunity to see Rembrandt’s Night Watch.
Right now, we are standing in line for the Anne Frank house and later we’re visiting traditional Amsterdam villages. We’ll post more as we go along and as wifi allows!

Pics to follow (wifi is being… Interesting)!