On Wednesday of this year’s Adventure Week, the Phoenix Kids went to do a workshop with two self-defense instructors at Forged Martial Arts Studio. The kids did some exercises, some games, and some drills to help them do better teamwork and learn about self-defense.
The instructors started by having the kids do some warm-up exercises to get them ready and making sure everyone was excited to participate. The students were super energetic and excited while warming up, and they kept that energy through the whole day. The students were great at listening to the instructors and following the directions.
The first priority of the instructors was safety, making sure the kids were always safe. They gave very specific instructions and the kids did a great job following them. The older kids were great and helped the other kids focus their energy, and helped the instructors keep everyone safe. A lot of the focus of one of the games was teamwork and leadership; the game was for teams to silently work together to form the shape of a letter or number. The kids got the hang of it really quickly, and the older kids were great student leaders.
After all the warming up and playing tag games the instructors started teaching the kids some Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. But before they started they started teaching any techniques they talked to the kids about bullying. They made sure that the students knew that the point of martial arts isn’t to fight, to only use it as a last resort if someone tries to hurt you physically, and that talking should always be what you try to do first.
After they made sure all the kids understood they started practicing techniques for defending themselves if someone tries to tackle them. The kids had a lot of fun wrestling with each other on the mats while the instructors made sure everyone stayed safe. The instructors finished up by talking about the philosophy of martial arts, and how it’s about self-discipline and learning from one another. The Phoenix Kids made sure to all thank their instructors for what they learned before heading back to the school to eat lunch.
Cassandra, Montserrat Intern
Two weeks ago Rotary welcomed the Phoenix School as the students gave a presentation on their recent trip to the Everglades.
Prior to leaving, students completed research on what to expect when they arrived in Florida, specifically the plants and animals they might encounter. Upon arriving in the Everglades, the students were amazed at how many alligators they saw, along with the amount of wading birds, especially little blue herons.
The presentation included drawings, photos, sketches, and excerpts from journals that the students kept while on the trip.
The highlights of the trip included a solo walk at night when they first arrived. The focus of this walk was to use their ears instead of their eyes, and they certainly heard a lot of sounds in the darkness.
This was followed by walking the Anhinga Trail the next day where the students saw many alligators, mangroves, and water lilies.
Another highlight of the trip was the Slough Slog where the students got right in the waters with alligators and cypress trees nearby. They came out of the water soggy but happy!
Students also went canoeing down a canal, which they loved. They did have to pay attention and got very wet, especially Charlie who fell in the water. They saw lots of wildlife while on the canoes, notably crocodiles and many birds.
The trip wrapped up with a 15-mile bike ride where the students had the chance to climb a tour. A final highlight was a trip to “Robert Was Here”, a fruit stand that makes delicious smoothies that has been around for 63 years.
The Phoenix School students stayed at a hostel in Florida where they got work done, journaled, ate, and had fun. It even had a huge treehouse!
When the trip was wrapping up, students reviewed their journals and compared notes. It was clearly a trip of a lifetime where students learned a lot about the natural world.
Tala and Ragad, 10th graders from Saudi Arabia, have worked with our students for the last 2 years. They work collaboratively with our 5th-8th grade students to create a curriculum to explore together.
We strongly believe exposing our students to global collaboration builds cultural understanding, communication skills, and knowledge and awareness of the wider world. We participate in multiple global collaborations yearly, some are one-off collaborations and some are ongoing relationships built with other schools, students, and educators across the globe.
Each Friday morning we gather together on zoom. This particular Friday they had a fun science experiment for our students to dive into. This time we had our TK-4s join in on the fun! The goal of this experiment was to understand animal cell size and how that affects medical research.
Students had to use raw beets and cut measured cubes, ½ centimeter, 1 centimeter, and 2 centimeters. Once these measurements were made, the students soaked the beets in bleach to find out how the different-sized beets (cells) had different penetration volumes.
It was concluded that the size of the cell plays a big role in determining what is able to travel in and out of the cell. It was an interesting experiment for our students.
Engineering is a HUGE part of our curriculum here at Phoenix. It provides the opportunity for curiosity and exploration through design, experimenting, building, testing, and trialing.
Each team or individual designed their own airplane, based on the challenge they wanted their plane to go through. First, we brainstormed ideas as a whole school.
Some challenges were to see how far the plane would fly, what height it achieved, how long it stayed in the air, and how many flips it could do.
We experimented with an app called Wind Tunnel to experiment with different shapes, aerodynamics, and wind flow.
For the older students, it was a mathematical challenge to figure out the speed of their airplane. They used testing tables and documented their data after each flight so that they could learn from their mistakes and create better designs.
This is how we view failures at The Phoenix School…
Experimenting, and eventually