Students at Tremont School have a strong voice and are encouraged to use their developing problem-solving skills and understanding of democratic processes to contribute to the life of the school. Combined with the more formally structured activities like All School Meeting (held once per week) and advisory groups, there are many opportunities for Tremont students to connect with each other and be a part of creating a strong student-centered school culture.
All School Meeting
On Mondays the entire school gathers for a 30 minute meeting, usually led by a teacher. All School Meeting is a time when announcements are made, projects are shared, or planning and decision-making happens. Student Activities are a good example of how this works. Each class brainstorms ideas for student-interest groups to be held once a week for the length of a trimester. The ideas are then brought to ASM and shared. Teachers and students suggest options for evaluating and deciding on an outcome. In the case of Student Activities and the many ideas generated, a vote is often the agreed upon solution. There are usually at least two rounds of balloting in which students vote to narrow down the list of offerings to 7 or 8. Over the course of time, students experience the advantages and disadvantages of this decision-making strategy and may discuss adjustments to the process in their classrooms or in Community or Applied Sociology class.
Advisory groups offer students and teachers the opportunity to develop stronger relationships in a small group, usually 4-5 students assigned to each faculty member. While the group meetings tend to be primarily social in approach, the depth of conversation and connections formed support students in all areas of school life, including academics. Advisories meet once per week.
Movement Break and Recess
We believe that movement, physical fitness and outdoor experiences are critical to healthy development of students and adults alike! Each morning all students and teachers take a 15-minute movement break. This re-energizes some and provides a needed physical energy outlet for others, allowing all to approach the second half of the morning’s academic time with a fresh start. While students socialize during movement break, they are generally active – popular activities are foursquare, catch, basketball, and walking.
Recess for all ages occurs each day after lunch. Some students will opt for a more active recess while others take the opportunity to organize board games, card tournaments, and other activities.
Students at Tremont bring their lunches. We have microwave ovens in the school that are available for heating lunch items.
One of the most anticipated times of the week, Student Activities is a 45-minute block in which students participate in activities of their choice, driven by their interests. These are student led, with a teacher or administrator providing supervision and guidance. Examples of recent activities include creative writing, 3D graphics, singing, dance, science, snow play, knitting, laser cutting, art, sports, chess, and a perennial favorite, cooking.
End of Unit/Course Fun Days
At the end of a unit or course, students participate in a “Fun Day” – a relaxed day to regroup after working hard to meet the project deadline of showing work at the Celebration of Learning the evening before. In addition, it provides a day to focus on practical social and emotional learning. Fun Day usually combines some elements of on-campus and off-campus activities. Off-campus trips have included bowling, laser tag, Sky Zone trampoline, and a trip to a local thrift store.
Although we are a young school, Tremont already has some favorite traditions. There is a beginning of the year welcome event for families – usually a picnic or other outdoor activity. The annual Halloween Party (sponsored by TPAC) is a blast, with students and faculty alike coming in costume. December brings “secret snowflake,” a special All School Meeting in which students and faculty exchange handmade gifts based on research into the recipient’s likes and dislikes. This is not only an activity in which our community’s thoughtfulness is evident, but it is also an important practical experiential learning opportunity that is part of our social and emotional curriculum.
Other activities throughout the year include the Winter Dance (also sponsored by TPAC), a volunteer day, the talent show, class trips, and an 8th grade “passage” ceremony to recognize Middle School students who will be embracing the new challenges of secondary school the following year.