PatChat is your inside view of GA from students' perspective

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Upper Schoolers Serve in Westchester County

Over Presidents Day weekend, a group of GA juniors and seniors piled into two GA vans and headed for Westchester County, New York. This was the beginning of the 2017 Upper School Service Trip. About five years ago, Middle School faculty members Kate Cassidy and Sarah Blake began the tradition of the Upper School Service Trip. They took a group of students to Staten Island on that first project to help rebuild homes damaged from Hurricane Sandy.

They have continued to chaperone the trip each year since. This year, the seniors on the trip, Ale G. ‘17, Jake D. ‘17, Ali C. ‘17, Lindsay N. ’17, and me, contacted various Habitat for Humanity locations at which we could potentially volunteer. The Westchester location responded with excitement willing to host our group.
GA students left their mark beyond their work.

The group of 14 stayed in a converted convent home, associated with a Church in New Rochelle, New York and spent three days working with Habitat of Westchester.
This year group in Westchester County, New York.
Some tasks included painting rec rooms at the local YMCA and others included putting up siding on a house under construction.  Overall, the trip was a weekend of incredible service into which each student put their heart. It was also a weekend of bonding among the group. This year’s juniors are already looking forward to working with Mrs. Cassidy and Ms. Blake on planning the trip for 2018.

~ Alex K. ‘17

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Swim Teams Train in Bermuda

Over Winter Break, the Germantown Academy Boys’ and Girls’ Swimming and Diving teams had the amazing opportunity to practice in Bermuda. Last year for their trip, they went to Puerto Rico.
GA divers training in Bermuda.
Their days consisted of long practices rewarded with nights of freedom on the beach. They got to explore the island for about a week, going snorkeling and jumping off cliffs. Senior co-captain Jimmy P. ‘17 said Bermuda was, “stunning, absolutely stunning.”
Some scenes from the group's trip.
The team spends a good amount of time together throughout the school year with practices running from early morning to late night. Due to this close-knit relationship, Jimmy said it was, “like going of a vacation with your best friends and your family.” The team made sure to bring along a camera and make a video to share with the entire school during a Morning Meeting.

~ Sarina S. '17

You can view the video here.

2017 Heads to NYC for a Day

Sarina's stunning view of New York.

This fall, the entire senior class was taken on an annual trip to New York City. This is one of the first bonding experiences the Class of 2017 has in our final year of high school. This trip is one that many look forward to when finally becoming a senior. The trip is all day, and students are exempt from homework, papers, projects and tests for the next day. School of Rock (adapted from the movie with Jack Black). They had incredible singers and the cast consisting of mainly middle schoolers genuinely sang and played their instruments. Their skill level in the band was beyond anyone’s expectations.
Members of the Class of 2017 pose during their whirlwind day.
Finally, before dinner, we all gathered around street performers in Times Square, typical for NYC. They danced, did some flips, made jokes and jumped over people. We ended the trip with dinner overlooking Times Square. Overall, the trip was a wonderful way to begin our last year at Germantown Academy. The itinerary each year consists of visiting Rockefeller Center and going to the Top of The Rock, free time for lunch, a play on Broadway and, finally, dinner at Bubba Gump’s in Times Square. It was a beautiful day to be outside and walk around the city. After getting a stunning view of the city at the Top of the Rock, we were allowed free time for about two hours. Everyone met back at the theater where we saw an amazing production of

~ Sarina S. ‘17

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Upper and Lower Schools Assemble to Assemble

Students set to work planning their project.

For Upper School students, the opportunity to interact with the Lower School students is always a fun experience. We are fortunate that our school holds all ages of students and creates an inviting environment for us to collaborate across all divisions. During the Science Assembly with the Lower School, each of the seven Upper School Houses connected with a Lower School grade and completed an art/science project. Groups of students made sun dials, 3D glasses, and green army men. These are the days that continue to build upon our school community and spirit.
A 5th and 11th grader share a laugh during a break.
As the younger students watch your every move, you realize just how much of an impact you can have on them. Most times, we do not remember that these are the kids watching us, waiting for the day they get to be like us. For those Upper Schoolers that have been here since Lower School, connecting with the younger grades becomes a time to reminisce on our own Lower School experiences. We remember the exciting days when we got to conduct fun science experiments with the Upper School through KTK, or the times we saw them supporting us at Field Day. Whether we are playing sports, performing on stage, or just walking down the hallway, GA students support each other across all divisions and grades and embrace our school pride.

~ Katie W. ‘17

Monday, November 21, 2016

Field Hockey Hosts Unique Event

In 2006, a group of GA seniors on the varsity field hockey team decided to begin a charity field hockey tournament for middle school teams to enter. They donated the money made to the Ronald McDonald House. Little did they know that this tournament, Hockey for the House, would continue for ten more years and counting. Each year to come the group raises more and more money for the cause. The tournament is completely student run. Students donated baskets and gifts to be raffled off, ran the snack stand and refereed all of the games. This year was extremely successful making over $3,272 through entry fees, the snack stand and raffle tickets. The Upper School and Middle School teams bonded over this event with all of the money going to a great cause.

GA's varsity field hockey team, hosts of Hockey for the House.
The event was extremely successful and the students discussed all of the fun they hand in practices to come. A few weeks after the event, the Upper School team received a letter from the Ronald McDonald house thanking the team for the efforts and partnership. The team was so proud of the successful event and work they had done to better a cause and make a small difference. The current juniors look forward to planning the tournament for the next year.

~ Alex K. '17 

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Preserve Day Welcomes Many to Campus

Preserve Day is an annual event held by Germantown Academy that is open to the community. It’s used as a celebration of GA’s outdoor spaces. Events were spaced periodically throughout the campus on a Saturday in October. They included ziplining, home-made salsa and chips, s’mores, and mini bridge building.
One of the guests puts a bridge to the test.
Different groups from the GA community were present, like the Patriot Ambassadors and my sculpture class. Last year, my Sculpture 2 class was tasked with building a functional bridge out of wood. We brought them outside on Preserve Day for inspiration. Kids were invited to build small bridges out of popsicle sticks and clay. The event attracted many different people (and animals). Overall, the day brought out many members of the GA community and allowed them to experience the natural aspects of the school.

~ Sarina S. ‘17