PatChat is your inside view of GA from students' perspective

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

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

Summertime at GA

This summer, I was a CIT (counselor in training) at the camp I have always loved, Germantown Academy’s Day Camp. As a CIT, I not only had more responsibility, but also a lot of fun. In the mornings, the CIT’s (there were about 10 of us) would go to “training.” By “training” I mean learning how to deal with different scenarios the campers would go through each day. For example, we learned what to do when a child gets a bee sting. We also learned how to perform CPR and how to calm down a group of children when they are riled up. After “training”, we went down for lunch. We would eat lunch in the cafeteria at the CIT table. After lunch came the best part of the day: being with our assigned troops. We were usually assigned a troop for one week and then rotate the next one so each CIT would be able to experience different age groups and genders. I personally loved being with D Troop. D Troop was filled with energetic, hyper 6-7 year old BOYS. I loved being in D Troop, in fact it was my favorite week. During the day, the troop had different activities all over campus. There would be the ropes course, wilderness, games, performing arts, science and more. The boys loved each and every event and if they didn’t we made sure to make it as appealing as possible to them. Once a week, the troops would go on a field trip.
Popcorn for all at Ambler Theater. 
Sometimes they went to the Ambler Theater, other times to Skyzone. But my favorite was when we went to the zoo. I liked going to the zoo because it was a great experience and the kids were so excited. Also, my friends Maddie and Annabel were also CITs with me. So when we went, Maddie took her GoPro and made a fun video of us feeding the giraffes, ziplining, and just walking around looking at the animals. I loved being a CIT and doing it with my friends made it better. I also met some new friends like Kira, Alise, and Sophie.
2016's Counselors in Training.
The best day of camp for me was Carnival Day. This was the day that the camp brought in a cotton candy machine, sno-cones, multiple moon bounces, and more. And as a CIT I got to manage each activity. Unfortunately, when Carnival Day finally came around, it was raining. But that didn't stop us from having a great time. Kids were running around going to the moon bounce, getting their faces painted, and having a blast. Being a CIT this summer was great and now next year I get to be a counselor. I feel fully prepared to become a counselor because I know what it takes. I had a great summer and I learned a lot. I can't wait for next year.
~ Sasha C. ‘20

Monday, October 31, 2016

Building Connections Through Field Trip

When I was in Lower School, I always admired and looked up to the Upper School kids. I could not wait until the day I would step into the next building over and be one of them. Everyone would anticipate the days when there would be collaboration between the two schools. Mrs. Ritz, the best Upper School art teacher (no bias), decided to create one of these days for the 4th graders to collaborate in a creative way with the 10th and 11th grade honors sculpture art classes
On the hunt for building materials.
We started the day getting to know the 4th graders. The creative challenge was to fit the entire team in a fort made up of only resources from the forest space. The kids gathered large sticks as the base of the structure. We worked with them to decide what the structure would look like but the decision was ultimately their own. We assisted them when we were asked but mainly we wanted them to figure out how to solve problems. Our structure, again, not bias, was the best out of all the groups. The day was a huge success as the Upper School kids joined forces with the 4th graders to create a fortress built from imagination, creativity and nature.
 ~ Josh F. '18
Josh and friends proudly display their fort.