Literature: Slow and Steady and Sacred

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

We only read a few books, relatively speaking, each year at Flint, which is funny considering that books are our very favorite things. But that's exactly the reason - we refuse to be rushed! We take time to narrate and discuss, hypothesize and illustrate, explore and play, savor and cherish each story that we experience together as a class. The official rule at Flint as always been, and will always be, to read a few wonderful books thoroughly rather than skim through a lot of books rapidly.

It's a slow process, but it's beautiful. The literature lessons, if not hurried. are the ones where the children get to experience new things and figure out what they think about them, learning from the trimuphs and failures of the characters and putting themselves in other people's shoes, all from the safety of the classroom. 

When each class was reading Treasure Island last semester, one teacher made a treasure map and then tore it into pieces for their students to find in a scavenger hunt. The children had to work together and run around the school solving clues and assembling the map so they could dig up treasure chests on the playground. 

Once each class finished reading Treasure Island they had a party with themed snacks and activities, and most of them watched Muppet Treasure Island, which is really the best Treasure Island movie anyhow. From first grade all the way to the high school, everyone had to have essentially the same party!

The classes are all reading different books for literature now, of course, we only started the year with a school-wide assignment, and we've read varying difficulty levels of Treasure Island depending on grade level. So different classes finished at different times and moved on to different things. Right now, for example, pre-k is reading Peter Rabbit, 1st and 2nd is reading Pinocchio, and 3rd and 4th is reading Pilgrim's Progress!

Flint Life Lately

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Well this is totally unlike me, but I barely have any pictures for this post! The flu has been hitting our Flint family hard, and we’ve been missing various teachers and students for nearly the entire month of January, so we’ve been focusing on keeping everyone well and educated. We’re about ready to be finished with this flu nonsense already! 

We’ve finished our our basketball season this past week, ending with a Senior night that was so bittersweet because these guys have been at Flint since they were freshmen and even earlier. I can’t even imagine what the team and the school will be like without them next year!

And I also managed to grab some pictures at our last Parent’s Night Out, which had a superhero theme. We have been loving these. Once a month the athletics program runs a fundraiser and provides childcare with dinner and themed activities...mostly because I love themes! This time we had a crepe paper laser maze, balloon “bombs”, create-your-own comic books, a theoretical superhero and villain battle, and a viewing of The Incredibles. What’s awesome is the teens who help out also get service hours for their GreenCord project...and get to watch The Incredibles, which I’m pretty sure was more exciting for them than it was for the younger kids! 

I'm having fun coming up with themes for the next few Parent's Nights Out, and would love any suggestions! 

We've been busy getting back into school mode after our nice long Christmas break, and kind of switching gears out of athletics season and into focusing even more on the fine arts than usual. We have cast the grammar school play - it's Peter Pan this year! - and begun rehearsals, and the classes are all busy preparing presentations for our annual Barnes and Noble fundraiser event. The students display their artwork and the classes perform songs and poems that they have learned. We also have a group of students who are meeting on Fridays to work on a musical ensemble to perform, which should be absolutely wonderful!

This past Thursday the entire grammar school went on a field trip to Casa Manana to see a performance of Neverland, to kick off our Peter Pan rehearsals. Look at our darling Mrs. Izzy and her pre-k babies at the show!

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Right now we are gearing up for our spring Open House this Saturday! Make sure to tell your friends and family to come and hear about the school philosophy from Dr. Flint as well as meet the teachers and get a glimpse into their different teaching styles. 

On top of all of that, the teachers have all been hard at work completing progress reports for each student. And not sleeping at all! These reports come out every other nine weeks and are insanely detailed and individualized. If you want to know what a labor of love looks like, just read these!

Flint Life Lately: All Things Fall

Monday, November 6, 2017

 Okay, so we definitely pack a LOT into the last half of October at Flint. We had our pirate-themed Fall Festival...

The cheer squad had an epic playdate...

The pre-k through the fourth grade classes went on a field trip to a pumpkin patch...

We had way too much fun for Halloween...

PLUS an upper school field trip to Bass Hall to see a performance of Romeo and Juliet, another field trip to see the Same Kind of Different as Me movie (the upper school kiddos have been reading that book during Christian studies) and a bunch of pirate-themed class parties as each class finishes reading Treasure Island - that's going to be a whole other post, though! Now we're jumping right into Spirit Week, gearing up for the beginning of the basketball season AND getting ready for this Friday's football game because oh, um, we're in the PLAYOFFS. Not really sure how, but we are, so GO FALCONS!

Frequently Asked Question: Uniform Policy

Monday, October 23, 2017

FAQ for the day: Why don't you have uniforms/ Will you ever have uniforms at Flint? 
"Flint Academy will never adopt a uniform policy, which would distract from the goal of reaching the hearts and souls of students. There is a very simple dress code in place, but no restrictions are placed on external adornments such as hair color/style, jewelry, hoodies, hats, piercing, tattoos, etc. It is a firmly held belief that this would alienate many wonderful children who need the education and care of this school."

In other words, we really, really don't care what the kids wear. We care what they do, what they learn, what they become. Dr. Flint is fond of saying that the dress code is, essentially, "cover all your private parts and don't wear shirts that say bad words." The idea of having uniforms at our school, where nothing is uniform, is crazy. Uniforms and sensory issues? Uniforms and behavioral challenges? Uniforms and angsty adolescent rebels in search of causes? These are very bad combinations! And honestly, not battles worth fighting. 

We want the students at school, comfortable, and ready to learn. If they need to wear a hoodie all day in order for that to happen, no problem. Other than, you know, it's Texas and odds are you're going to get heatstroke, but you do you, baby.

We're strict about things that we think really matter in the long term. How the children look just isn't one of those things. 

Flint Life Lately, A Very Hands-On Edition

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Time for another photo-dump! Here's a peek at just a small portion of the hands-on, experiential learning that has been going on in our classes for the last two weeks!

The Upper School history classes (and a few of the Grammar school classes too!) learned about the development and uses of gunpowder. And obviously we're going to take any opportunity to incorporate fire into our lessons! 

The pre-k and kindergarten went next door for pumpkins to study.

They also had a class party to celebrate their completion of Winnie The Pooh

And listened to a violin demonstration by one of the upper school students as part of their composer study about Vivaldi.

The fifth grade made masks as part of their study of the kingdoms of West Africa in the Age of Explorations...

And began creating maps to chronicle Christian's journeys in Pilgrim's Progress.

Upper school students learned to make and use inclinometers...

And overall we've just really enjoyed each others company! 

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