December Traditions

I am looking forward to our December traditions for two reasons. First, the traditions augment and enhance our mission and therefore improve the educational experience of our students. Second, they represent another step toward a nearly normal world. Let me briefly explain.
Friday, December 3, we have the Hanging of the Greens. This long-standing tradition (note the picture from 25 years ago) involves students making ornaments and hanging those ornaments on trees around the campus. Students after lunch enjoy treats provided by our Parents' Association. And then next week, we have the 3rd grade play. Performing in a play provides the third grade students the opportunity for public speaking, dancing, and singing--learning how to be in front of an audience. Mrs. Braunstein also involves the children in editing and directing the show, which is unique and special. The students who attend the play will also get to practice good audience etiquette, an invaluable lifetime skill. The third December tradition is the Winter Concert to be held on December 14 at Schewel Hall at the University of Lynchburg. This concert allows the middle school band, orchestra, and choir students to showcase their musical and performance skills in a public setting.
Each time our students perform or speak in front of an audience, they become more comfortable doing so. Public speaking and performance are important skills for future leaders and citizens. These repeated opportunities enable the students to be the leaders we know they can be. And it must be working--I frequently hear how our students are the ones in high school and college who initiate class discussions and take on leadership roles in sports, clubs, music ensembles, and theater productions.
As for getting back to normal, I remain hopeful that we will get there and grateful for every small step we take toward it. These performances and events help bind us together in a community. And when we each play our role to protect our community by wearing face coverings, social distancing, practicing good hand hygiene, and getting vaccinated, I can see a way forward. Thank you for your continued partnership.