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Trinity Wins Ken Bastian Award

FALL 2013


Volume 5 Issue 1

Discovering Time - Nurturing Hybrid Minds

All I Really Need to Know I Learned by Being in a Bad Play

Teaching by Design

The Deliberate Nature of a Trinity Education 1

letter from the Head of school

“How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.” ~A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh

Blessings of a Head of School My life has been blessed with many children, thousands of them in fact. As a child, I dreamed of being a teacher like my parents, and I have spent my career doing what I love. As I look back, I remember great teaching moments, terrible teaching moments, learning and laughter, individual students, colleagues and friends, and popcorn Fridays after a productive week. While it was hard to give up being in the classroom, I quickly realized that I would have the chance to guide even more students by helping schools to grow in exciting ways. Every day is different for a head of school, and whether I am sitting in a meeting talking about construction or tying a shoelace for a kindergarten student, I never lose sight of the fact that children are at the core of my work. As I reminisce about my career, I hope in some small way I have had a positive impact on the children in my care. And now as I look ahead, I take with me happy memories about my life so far. I often think of memories as pieces of a patchwork quilt which we hold in our minds linking the past to the present and the future. They are the strands that help connect who we were with who we are and who we will become. The third chapter of my life has yet to be charted, but I know it will include at least one very small child, our new granddaughter, Molly Millicent Adams, a precious gift in our lives.


Pat Adams Head of School

At Trinity Episcopal School we will nurture each child intellectually, physically, emotionally, and spiritually. We will honor each child’s spirit for learning and life, ever mindful that we are all children of God.

T: The Magazine of Trinity Episcopal School HEAD OF SCHOOL

Contents FALL 2013

• Volume 5 • Issue 1 •

Pat Adams


Lisa Zapalac


Shanna Weiss


Bryan Denney CHAPLAIN

Brin Bon


Cheray Ashwill


Melody Harman


Viji Panda


Jennifer Morgan T Staff EDITORS

Cassie Swanson Erik Keithley CONTRIBUTORs

Elizabeth Bayer Melody Harman Viji Panda Sarah Venkatesh Shanna Weiss Lisa Zapalac

Photography by:

Cassie Swanson Erik Keithley Jim Healey

For subscription information and address changes, contact Cassie Swanson,

Letter from Pat Adams inside front cover Blessings of a Head of School

News from Trinity 2

Arts 8-9 Fall Drama Making Music Trinity Featured Artist

Book Festival Smashing Success Q&A with Topher Bradfield Trinity Wins Ken Bastian Award Choir Students Share Songs and Stories

Feature 10-11

Trinity Tomorrow 4

Discovering Time - Nurturing Hybrid Minds Hour of Code

Home Field Advantage NEWSFLASH!

Athletics 14

Advancement News 5

Teaching by Design

Feature 12-13

Fall Sports Highlights

Celebration of Giving, Annual Fund Update Save the Date for A Night to Shine

Tornado Watch Alumni News 15-16

Diversity 6

Profile: Elizabeth Carls - Class of 2007 and Dylan Cole - Class of 2013 Class Updates

Celebrating the Season of Light

Profile 7 Meet Elizabeth Bayer

At the Core inside back cover Season of Firsts

Trinity Episcopal School of Austin admits students of any race, color, religion, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate in the administration of any policy or program.

ne w s from trinity

Annual Book Festival It’s so fun when Sarah and I get to visit schools together. We’re just back from a terrific visit to Austin, Texas, where we spent time with the *power readers* at Trinity Episcopal School. If ever you want to put on a spectacular book festival, ask the folks at Trinity how to do it. They wrote the book on book celebrations! ~Kate Klise Trinity recently finished up its annual book festival, concluding one awesome week of guest visits, fun literary contests and celebrations, and a whole lot of reading. This year’s book fair featured a partnership with BookPeople and was held on campus. “There was something special about having the books actually be in the students’ space,” said Middle School librarian Susan Gaultney. “The kids saw us unpack the boxes and set up the books. It happened right in front of their eyes and I think that showed them how much we care about them and how important reading is.” In addition to supplying the books, BookPeople also supplied their resident youth literature guru and children’s outreach coor-

dinator Topher Bradfield, who sat down with students to talk about his favorite books and to recommend “Topher’s Picks”. The festival also featured a visiting author and illustrator, Kate and Sarah Klise, who are the creators of several exciting children’s book series, including the 43 Old Cemetery Road series and the Regarding series. The sisters gave a special presentation to students and parents at the festival’s flagship evening event which featured the announcement of the Trinity Book Awards. This year, the student-voted book awards recipients included: The Day the Crayons Quit (Best Picture Book), Out Of My Mind (Best Chapter Book), Wonder (Best 5-6 Young Adult Novel), and Legend (Best 7-8 Young Adult Novel).

Q&A with Topher Bradfield You have a really cool job. How did you end up doing what you do? After the first Camp Half-Blood in summer 2006 went well the store’s CEO, Steve Bercu, asked me to stay with BookPeople in whatever creative position I needed to be in to continue doing what I was doing, so I created the Children’s Outreach Coordinator/Literary Camp Director position. I always felt lucky that I was able to have a book store that saw the value in what I wanted to do - introduce readers and at-risk readers to new (to them) stories that would start or continue their passion for reading. I’m very lucky. What do you look for in the books you recommend? Typically I love the humor in books. Even if the book is a dystopian nightmare I try to find the humorous moments that I feel you folks can identify with before I move on to the bones of the story. Often you’ll hear me try to relate ideas in every day sorts of terms to punctuate a story point - often it’s a little anecdotal moment. Hopefully it’s funny 2

as well. I think I always try to bring out the charm of a story, regardless of the book’s tone. What are some of your all time favorite books? In no particular order, here are some of my all-time favorites. 1. The Lightning Thief or anything by Rick Riordan. 2. The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster 3. Peter Pan by J. M. Barrie 4. The Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum 5. The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman The Titan’s Curse by Rick Riordan is dedicated to you. What is the story behind that? I think it was because we were early supporters of Rick’s books and because of the Camp Halfblood camps that I got the book dedication. It’s amazing and something I’m still in awe of. The Titan’s Curse was where the series really broke open and got all the attention it deserved. In my own crazy way, I’ll always be a part of that. Again... so grateful to Rick and his support of what we do with his astoundingly well-written stories.

During the course of the week, students also participated in several fun smaller literary contests and celebrations such as a “Dress Up Like Your Favorite Literary Character” day and a Literary Pumpkin Contest where students created pumpkins based on literary characters that inspired them. One final component of the festival included a service initiative led by the third graders. Students made posters inviting our community to bring new or gently-used books to be donated to El Buen Samaritano and shared with families in Thanksgiving baskets.

Book Fair Award Winners

Trinity Wins Second Ken Bastian Award

Trinity Episcopal School was recently awarded the Ken Bastian Community Service Award at the Southwestern Association of Episcopal Schools (SAES) conference in San Antonio. The Ken Bastian Award is dedicated to the late Dr. Kenneth H. Bastian, Jr., the former Headmaster of All Saints Episcopal School in Lubbock and a member of the Executive Board of SAES for eight years.

Bastian was instrumental in establishing a community service and service learning program that brought national recognition to the school. As a result, the Ken Bastian Award was dedicated to his memory in 1999, and is presented annually to up to three member schools that do an outstanding job of encouraging students to perform community service. In order to win the award, member schools must fill out an application recounting what service initiatives their school is undertaking and how their overall approach to service is unique.

contribution of a day of service at Habitat for Humanity from our Board, and continuing to support the fall El Buen Samaritano “Hands for Hope” food drive.

Trinity listed many different service-related items from the 2013 calendar year in its application, including collecting $4,709.50 for Episcopal Relief & Development’s anti-malaria NetsforLife campaign, receiving the Pat Hazel Award for accumulating a total donation of over $15,000 dollars to The Trinity Center, the

“A lot of schools do the things we do – we’re not necessarily unique in that category,” said Trinity Board member Russell Barnett, who accepted the award on behalf of the school. “What they were impressed with was that our community service reaches across the whole school, and that every grade, from kindergarten on up, has a unique service focus.”

The award presentation took place during the SAES conference in San Antonio at the Westin Riverwalk from Nov. 14-16. In receiving the award, Trinity was cited for its unique schoolwide service structure, where every grade level has a specific service-learning theme that guides service initiatives and ties back to the classroom.

Choir Students Share Songs and Stories More than a decade ago, when Trinity music director Hilary Adamson was the head music teacher at Cedar Creek Elementary, she met a fellow educator named Sharon Monier. Because Cedar Creek is part of Eanes Independent School District, which provides especially extensive services for students with disabilities and learning difficulties, Adamson and Monier regularly worked together with special needs students. Now, even though neither of them still works at Cedar Creek, Adamson and Monier still collaborate once a year when Adamson walks her entire middle school choir across the street to perform for a program of PPCD students (Preschool Program for Children with Disabilities) at Eanes Elementary. “Our kids get to enjoy a performance and practice sitting and listening which is great for them,” said Eanes special education teacher Audra Swiderski. “I see a lot of smiles and afterwards they are always really excited.” Trinity students sing several songs and read stories to the preschoolers, who are in a

blended program where special needs kids are combined with non-special needs kids who act as role models.

member or a performer it provides this kind of magical connection with people you’ve never even met,” Adamson said.

“It is really great to just have fun with the kids and see them smiling and having a good time,” said Trinity middle school choir officer Josh Belisle. “Getting to do stuff like this reminds you of why you are in the choir in the first place – to share music and make others happy.”

One Eanes student in particular could be seen dancing around so excitedly that onlookers would have been shocked to hear what Monier had to say after the performance.

“We are one of the only non-public schools they allow to come in for a service project and it’s because our kids have proven to be very receptive to their special needs students,” Adamson said. “Getting the chance to work with them opens up our students’ minds to diversity and gives them a leadership role.”

“Mrs. Monier told me that that was huge for him and that he normally doesn’t have many words that he uses and is pretty inside himself,” said Adamson. “I guess the music just brought him alive.

Not knowing what to expect from the group of towering middle school students standing in front of them, the preschoolers quickly went from sitting quietly with legs crossed to dancing, clapping, and singing along. “I think that it is a wonderful example of how strong music is because music brings people together and whether you are an audience 3


HOME-FIELD ADVANTAGE It’s more about the HOME than the FIELD Community has always been the cornerstone of Trinity’s foundation. Our new full-size athletic field, Tornado Alley, is scheduled to be completed this spring and will allow us to grow and foster our community while completing our founders’ vision - to nurture our students academically, emotionally, spiritually, and physically. Trinity has been at its current location for 13 years. It is time for our students to experience the transformative effect of having “the home-field advantage.” Football, lacrosse, and soccer teams will be able to host games and competitions throughout the year on their own campus. Athletes will have a convenient practice space which will save on driving time for many of our parents. Those participating in athletics will not be the only ones to benefit. This outdoor space will also enhance Trinity’s PE classes - improving safety and the quality of programming. During the school day, students will be able to play on the new playground, or simply enjoy being outside in nature during recess. Our new field and playground will provide a beautiful green space for students, teachers, parents, grandparents, alumni, and friends to enjoy year-round. This final phase of the Trinity Tomorrow campaign will touch every child on our campus by helping to create new and meaningful memories and experiences, all in the spirit of community and fellowship with each other and our families. After five years of campaigning and over 16.8 million dollars raised, we only need approximately $150,000 to make this dream a reality for all of Trinity’s current and future children. We hope to see you all in September for our first home football game!

NEWSFLASH! A Tornado Alert was issued for Trinity Episcopal School of Austin, Texas. From 8:00 to 9:30am Friday, October 18, the students and faculty of Trinity were on high alert for the ground-breaking of a Force Five Athletic Field. The media was likewise on alert that Trinity’s spirited athletic teams are collectively known as the Trinity Tornado [singular, not plural], in keeping with the school’s belief that while individual Trinity athletes may, indeed, be whirlwinds themselves, it is only when they play as a team that opponents feel the devastating effects of a full-fledged tornado. Tim McClure, father of former Trinity students Madison and Ian McClure, was the first to spot a Tornado on campus. Tim went on to be recognized for his unwavering team spirit, and was named Trinity’s first Volunteer Extraordinaire. The author of Don’t Mess With Texas, the most successful anti-litter campaign in history, Tim sends his best regards to all of us along with this spirited battle cry:

Don’t Mess With the Tornado!

The final playground design is in the works; stay tuned for more exciting details.


advancement ne ws

New Parent Dinner

Celebration of Giving

In September, the board of trustees hosted a dinner for new parents at the beautiful home of Natasha and Gavin Gray. Those in attendance had the opportunity to hear from board members on the financial state of Trinity, as well as gain further understanding about Trinity’s three fundraising initiatives from the chairs of the Annual Fund, A Night to Shine, and Trinity Tomorrow campaigns.

To celebrate a tremendous year of fundraising for the 2012-2013 school year, Trinity held a Celebration of Giving last May at the lovely home of Janet and Wilson Allen, to honor the school’s major donors and fundraising volunteers. Philanthropy is an integral part of the culture of Trinity and we are grateful for all of our families who generously give in so many ways. The event also offered the opportunity for Trinity to welcome new members to the Trinity Leadership Council, a group whose gifts to the school total $50,000 or more. The newest members are Bridget and Samy Aboel-Nil, Michelle and Lorne Bain, Shelly and David Bain, Susanne and Colby Denison, Mary and Drew DiNovo, Rhonda and Stan Erwin, Sarah and Stephen Garrison, Stephanie and David Goodman, Diana and Mark Greco, Karen and Tom Hale, Crary and Hal Jagger, Lili and Federico Martinez, Christine and Shea Morenz, Tracey Davies and Mike Peter, Pam and Mike Reese, Elizabeth and Rob Rogers, Stephanie and Todd Routh, Danielle and Kevin Sweeney, and Michelle and Martin Taylor.

Annual Fund Update

Save the Date for A Night to Shine!


A heartfelt thanks for the steadfast support of Trinity’s board, faculty and staff, parents, grandparents, alumni, parents of alumni and friends who have participated and will participate in the 2013-2014 Annual Fund. Parent Chairs Leslie and Ben Wells have led a fun and enthusiastic campaign with the wonderful help of this year’s class chairs. You may even have noticed Annual “Fun”d Flamingos during carpool! The campaign has made great progress and we are on our way to meeting this year’s goals of 100% parent participation and $540,000.

Annual Fund Chairs Leslie and Ben Wells 5


The Season of Light

Starting early November, light played a significant role at Trinity as we started our celebration of the Season of Light, which connects Diwali, Hanukkah, and Christmas. While all of these celebrations are unique and part of separate religious traditions, they all share the symbol of light.

DIWALI We kicked off our celebration by observing the Festival of Diwali in Lower School and Middle School Chapel. The Diwali festival, which lasts five days and is celebrated by Hindus all over the world, symbolizes the victory of good over evil and light over darkness and is a prominent celebration for Hindus. Lower School students were treated to a presentation done by 4th grade students, Priya Julian, Kate Kadyan, and Arianne Ghatate. Both chapels enjoyed sitar music, lights, and creating a huge rangoli that was decorated with flowers as part of the celebration.

HANUKKAH Our Hanukkah celebration which took place on December 5, was next in our Season of Lights. When the Maccabees at great odds overthrew and retook the temple from the Greek ruler Antiochus IV, they did not have enough oil, but for one day. That little bit of oil, however, lasted for eight whole days until more oil could be prepared. Hanukkah is an eight day celebration of that eight day miracle and the power of will it symbolizes for the Jewish people. The most commonly known and widely practiced Hannukah ritual is to light the Menorah, a candelabrum of nine candles, one for each day of the holiday and a shammas “servant� candle to light the others. Rabbi Neil Blumofe of Congregation Agudas Achim was our special guest at both chapels. Several families, faculty and two No Place for Hate student representatives lit our beautiful Menorah which was handmade by Steve and Sam Glukoster (6).

ADVENT Our third celebration, Advent, is a fourweek period leading up to Christmas. It is a time when Christians prepare for the celebration of the birth of Jesus. An Advent Wreath is one of the visible signs of the season, and has four candles symbolizing that Christ is the light of the world. Each candle has a different meaning: light, joy, love and peace. Every week one of the candles is lit until, during week four, all the candles glow. In addition to the Advent Wreath, Trinity celebrated Lessons and Carols - a service comprised of songs and readings from the Bible. The Lower School Christmas Pageant is the culmination of the season at Trinity. During our season of light festivities, our students and families celebrate the commonalities and differences of three faith traditions and learned that light is a powerful symbol.


Meet Elizabeth Bayer


In neat pencil handwriting the postcard began: “Dear Ms. Bayer, Thank you sooo much…” I smiled. The words continued, and my first note from a Trinity student concluded with, “You are the most FUN!!! Director of Student Life person ever! But I still don’t know what it means. Heart [Third Grader Student].” I chuckled. As I enter my fifth month at Trinity, I’d like to officially introduce my role as the Director of Student Life. When I think back to before I accepted this position, I remember being intrigued by the big-picture nature of this position and how significant student life is to a school. Now that I’ve been at it for a while, I can confirm that this multi-faceted job is the position of my dreams and the job perfectly suited for my training. My main responsibility is to focus on opportunities for involvement, leadership and community building for students. Trinity already has a wonderful culture of warmth and inclusion in place, which is very conducive to the type of work I am doing. When beginning a new endeavor, I tend to read and research as much possible. Before starting at Trinity, I found many articles about student life, building strong communities, and fostering feelings of support, respect, and inclusion through various programs. In one of my favorite magazines, Educational Leadership, I came across an article by Eric Schaps entitled, “Creating a School Community.” This is what stuck with me: A growing body of research confirms the benefits of building a sense of community in schools. Students in schools with a strong sense of community are more likely to be academically motivated; to act ethically and altruistically; and to develop social and emotional competencies. The answer of where to begin my work fell into place long before I arrived. This year’s kindergarteners and eighth graders are part of the first group to participate in the K-8 Buddy Program. These students are matched for the entire year to welcome our new students, to teach them the Trinity traditions, to provide leadership opportunities for older students, and to strengthen community bonds. This new tradition officially began at the first All School Chapel when the eighth graders led the kindergarteners to their seats. Our K-8 Buddies read together on Character Day, walk to All School Chapels together, and spend time together on Connections Days. We hope this will be a meaningful program and tradition that will outlast us all. I am also working with Georgia Denny, our Lower School Counselor, on a leadership group for our fourth grade students. Over the course of eight weeks, one day a week at lunch, we are explicitly teaching leadership skills and pushing our students to think purposefully about their role in living in community with others. Also, I am helping to lead and coordinate the Lower School’s participation in PSIA (Private Schools Interscholastic Association), an academic competition that happens in the spring. This is an opportunity for students to challenge themselves, take risks, and represent Trinity in the greater community. And let’s not forget the fun, “Guess what day it is? Spirit Night!,” video of Coach Washington. I helped to organize that as a way to support the work of Rebecca McClure (MS Dean of Students) and Kyle Robertson (Director of Athletics) on Spirit Night and to get the Lower School students involved in and excited about supporting student athletes in the Middle School. Furthermore, just as “student life” is everywhere, I see my role in as many places as possible. You might see me teaching a fourth grader to think more deeply and critically during Inquiry Seminar, or leading an Extensions group in second grade where we work not only on reading skills but on how to work as a small group to discuss literature. You might see me in chapel or out at carpool, in specials or at the library. And every time I am with students, I am happy. Ultimately, like everyone at Trinity, I see this new role as a vital one in serving students. Thus, I start thinking about my response to my new third grade friend and this is what I come up with: Dear [Third Grade Student], Thank you so much for your kind note. It was my first ever from a student at Trinity and I really appreciate it! I love being Director of Student Life. You can think of my job as helping students get involved in school life, leadership roles, and getting to know other members of our community. Most importantly, as a student at Trinity, I am here to serve you! Love, Miss Bayer 7

Fine A rts

Fall Production Combines Screwball Comedy with Heartfelt Insight This past summer Trinity drama teacher Deb Alexander got some constructive criticism from a source she hadn’t expected – her ten-year-old daughter. “This summer my daughter informed me that I only do ‘sad’ plays and that I needed to lighten up,” Alexander said. “I guess this is what happens when your child enters adolescence – they suddenly become your worst critic.” So, Alexander began the challenging task of finding a quality comedy script suited for a younger age group. She put out a call to theater friends asking for suggestions and then she went straight to the source to evaluate them. “I gave my daughter the big pile of possible scripts and said I want you to read through these and tell me what appeals to someone your age,” Alexander said. “She was laughing maniacally when she got to this one.” Indeed, All I Really Need to Know I Learned by Being in a Bad Play is a hilarious examination of the whole process of putting on a play that pokes goodhearted satirical fun at all of the ridiculous situations that arise between auditions and opening night. In the play within a play, a group of harebrained and neurotic actors attempt to stage a production of Romeo and Juliet under the direction of a coffee-chugging director and a seriously passive-aggressive stage manager. The actors go through all of the normal parts of staging a show, encountering problems and mishaps to varying degrees of outrageousness, such as when the actors find themselves pushed into a “Small Part Support Group” by the insignificant roles they have been cast in. “Hi, I’m Samantha and this was really hard for me to come here today,” laments one of the hapless cast members. “But in a school presentation about tooth decay, I was cast as a piece of celery – my only line was ‘Train your teeth to chew, chew, chew me!’” The production continues through one train wreck of a rehearsal after another, as Romeo and Juliet get into a break up fight via text message, Mercutio calls in sick with scurvy, and the entire cast is subjected to ludicrous warm-up exercises at the hands of their overcaffeinated and neurotic director. “Now, we are going to pretend we are all bacon!” the director yells at the stage full of wriggling actors. “We are all bacon and we are lying on the hot grill and we are curling at our edges! Yes! Yes! Beautiful!” Eventually, the play finally reaches opening night, and as the entire cast is about to spiral downward into one final nervous meltdown, one of the actresses, Kay (played by Avery Lynch), launches into a surprisingly insightful monologue about why they are there. “Hey hey hey, I have a lesson for you. This is the first play I’ve ever been in and I wasn’t even sure I’d make it through the tryouts. I was so scared I was shaking. Then I got a part, a real part. And even though it was a small part, I don’t care - I love it here. I love all of the dumb warm up exercises, I love being bacon and having a script with my name on it. Everybody here is nice and funny and weird and they care about me. I love being in this play and I want to do this for the rest of my life.” At this moment, the pandemonium subsides and the cast realizes that, bad play or not, they are all in it for the same reason. “Most of the play is just funny but that moment at the end where Kay says the reason I’m doing this is because it’s changed my life is really what the play is about,” Alexander said. “It’s the idea that so much of what we do is silly and stupid but we do it because we’ve found the one place where we can be accepted – I think that’s an idea that anybody can relate to.” 8

n t r Making Music q

Drum Line: Drum Line is a class open to seventh and eighth graders where students continue to supplement skills such as rhythm and sight-reading that they begin working on in other core Middle School music classes. The class is taught by Middle School music teacher Mrs. Hilary Adamson and meets once or twice a week. Students perform a mixture of written work and improvisation at events such as All-School Chapel and Spirit Night, where their foot-tapping rhythms drive the crowd wild. This year there are ten students in Drum Line, with four students on bass drum, two on tenor drums, three on snares, and one on trap set.



Rock Band: Rock Band is an afterschool

Guitar: Trinity offers several different guitar

program open to all Middle School students. The program is in its second year and is led by Mr. Gray Parsons, who is a professional Austin musician. In Rock Band, students reinforce many of the skills that they practice in music classes, such as music theory, songwriting, and sight-reading. Students also get valuable experience learning what it is like leading a band and playing with other musicians in a live gig setting. This year, Rock Band includes five students, who comprise a line-up of bass, drums, two guitars, and a vocalist. Rock Band performs several times over the course of the year.

classes to seventh and eighth graders, including Beginning Guitar, Advanced Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, and Electric Guitar. The classes are led by Mr. Chris Gebhard, who is a touring professional musician. In these classes, students learn how to read guitar tablature and chord charts, and also sheet music. Students also work on proper picking and strumming techniques and practice correct fingering and scales. Students perform a variety of music, including many popular songs, and themed music for holidays. Although these classes are only available to seventh and eighth graders, students in grades 5-8 can sign up for after school guitar lessons.

Introducing The Featured Artist of the Month In order to showcase Trinity art students that go above and beyond, Lower School art teacher Mrs. Renwick recently introduced the “Featured Artist of the Month” program. This program shines a spotlight on one talented third or fourth grade artist every month, putting their work on display in the chapel narthex.

me the ways they are incorporating art into their lives outside of the classroom, such as taking classes, going to camps, or even just drawing in carpool or in their spare time,” Renwick said. “I look for students who show me that they have an interest in art that is bigger than what I have them do in art class.”

“I felt that there were some students whose strong point is art but they weren’t quite getting enough of a platform to show it,” Renwick said. “So the goal of the Featured Artist of the Month program is to give them a place to really shine.”

Once chosen, the featured student of the month must then submit ten pieces of work, including anything from paintings to drawings to comic books. Students must also provide an artist’s statement and a photo to accompany their work. The first artist of the month (for November) was third grader Mikaila Ulmer, and the artist for December was Jaden Alvarez, who specializes in comic books.

Renwick looks for artists whose passion for art carries past the classroom walls, who are good community members willing to help each other grow, and who are willing to take risks and roll with mistakes and challenges. “Students come to me and tell

giving students motivation to pursue their art further and to help each other grow artistically. “I think the kids are seeing what others are capable of and that is exciting and inspires them to share their stuff,” Renwick said. “It’s also great to display different types of art so students realize that art isn’t restricted to only one medium.”

Thus far, the program has been a very positive influence on Trinity’s art students, 9

“Trinity teachers work hard to hone the craft of teaching, and in doing so, are better, more effective teachers.”

Teaching by Design

The Deliberate Nature of a Trinity Education By Shanna Weiss, Head of Middle School and Lisa Zapalac, Head of Lower School Our commitment to the professional development of our teachers, and to the betterment of our profession as a whole, leads us to travel somewhat regularly throughout the country engaging in and presenting at educational conferences and conventions, and we see it all the time. Trinity does it differently. We take teaching very seriously at Trinity. If you were to run in professional education circles, you’d hear a lot of talk about the craft of teaching and working to deliberately hone that craft. However, building a culture for continuous improvement and fostering the development of a teacher’s craft is not as common in schools as the conversation around it. At Trinity we understand that teaching requires more than content knowledge, intelligence, and a desire to transform the lives of children. We know that the art and complexity of teaching requires sensitivity, creativity, and constant analysis and decision-making—and lends itself to benefitting from the collective capacity of the teachers and specialists who bring their skills and experience together to implement instruction most effectively. That’s what our teachers are doing when they engage in the many collaborative efforts they do—when the two fifth and sixth grade science teachers sit down twice a week to plan, develop, and assess their lessons for the week; when the K-4 literacy teachers videotape their own mini-lessons to share and critique with a 1210

national literacy teaching expert; when the PE department examines how to design assessments that will inform their next units of instruction; when the math teachers follow a K-8 math department conversation on integrated versus traditional pathways to teaching by jointly working and analyzing problem sets from a newly developed, nationally renowned curriculum—they are approaching teaching as a craft, something that can be learned, discussed, practiced, and improved. Trinity teachers work hard to hone the craft of teaching, and in doing so, are better, more effective teachers.

describes it. And we strategically dedicate time and attention to creating a culture of collaboration, inquiry, and cohesiveness among the faculty. Our teachers work together on behalf of all of our students. They actively pursue research on effective instructional methods, and they collaborate to diligently ferret out and address impediments to student success. As a result, there is coherence among all aspects of the Trinity educational program, and our children are learning at optimal levels.

Project 8 in the Middle School and Inquiry Seminar in the Lower School are two entire programs designed and implemented wholly by faculty teams. These capstone courses are the result of the interdisciplinary, layered, and sustained collaborative Tony efforts of many teachers who bring their Wagner, author of varied knowledge, expertise, and skills sets together to harness the curiosity, creativThe Global Achievement Gap: ity, and invention on the part of our Why Even Our Best Schools Don’t students. Teach the New Survival Skills Our Chil-

dren Need—and What We Can Do About It and

What is it that leads schools like several other books on transforming American Trinity to take such a stance education, deems “collaboration across networks toward developing the craft of and leading by influence” as one of seven skills teaching? As experts on educaessential to the success of both the individual and tion and the economy would the organization. Trinity prioritizes collaboration suggest, we see teaching as a not only within the faculty culture; collabprofession—organizing our work orative skills are explicitly taught and “by professional norms, instead of assessed, preparing Trinity students bureaucratic or administrative norms,” for the workplace of as Marc Tucker, president of the National Center on Education and the Economy, the future.

what does collaboration sound like? “This student’s piece reveals a need for a lesson on paragraphing,” said the seventh grade English teacher about a fifth grade student’s piece of writing. “Yes, is that something you see in other students’ work?” asked the sixth grade teacher. The eighth grade teacher then added, “It’s not that he doesn’t understand the need for paragraphing. Look here at all of the paragraph breaks.” “That’s right,” the fifth grade teacher said of her own student’s work, “he’s trying to employ the right technique, he just needs more instruction on how to determine when to break.” This conversation is one of several you would be likely to hear during a department meeting at Trinity. Trinity English and literacy teachers regularly gather to examine samples of one teacher’s student work in order to help her make important instructional decisions about her next writing unit. There are several important things to note about Trinity instruction based on this example: ➨➨Teachers base instructional decisions on where students are on the learning progression, not what a pre-set curriculum dictates is the next step. ➨➨Rather than coming from a deficit model, teachers look for what is working and build on what a student already knows and can do. ➨➨Our teachers see themselves as teaching all the students. They are concerned with the development of each Trinity student across their academic career and not only those currently assigned to their classrooms. ➨➨Teachers know they can both improve their own craft and build consistency and coherence in the program through continuously reading, studying, learning, talking, and collaborating about their teaching.

The Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) 2012 results have just been released and once again, of the 65 participating countries and economies, the United States falls short of the average in math and right at the average in reading and science. PISA, the global education assessment—created and administered by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) now given for the fifth time, every three years since 2000—measures what 15 year-olds know and can do with what they know in the areas of reading, mathematics, and science. While our scores hold steady throughout the PISA surveys, more systems have surpassed us leaving us ranked 29th in math, 20th in reading, and 25th in science. We expect better than this for Trinity students. This mediocre performance by US students begs the question—not what is or is not happening in the US—but, what is happening in those countries that are consistently outperforming the US? According to the OECD Deputy Director for Education and Skills, Andreas Schleicher, the best performing educational systems in the world are able to help each student find success because “they have high expectations for each of their students, they attract the most talented teachers into the most challenging classrooms, and they combine professional autonomy with a collaborative culture across their teachers and schools.” These variables are at the core of how Trinity approaches education, and Trinity students thrive as a result.

] ] “At Trinity we understand that teaching requires more than content knowledge, intelligence, and a desire to transform the lives of children.”



Discovering Time: Nurturing Hybrid Minds By Rooting Technology In The Natural World By Sarah Venkatesh and Daryl Wong

By inviting very young writers to tell their first stories with pictures because their command of the written word is catching up to their ideas, teachers condition students to see themselves as authors. By presenting math as real world and strategy-based, not a secret knowledge set that you’re either born with or not, we are seeing the active extinction of the phrase “I’m not really a math person.” Trinity teachers think hard about how we scaffold our units of study in ways that invite students to envision themselves being successful in them. If they can see themselves in or through the subject - as a contributor and not just a consumer - the learning is rooted in a deeper place and the prophecy becomes self-fulfilling. As both a discipline and a tool for learning and expression, technology can have an active and, ideally, invisible role in this process. With all of its advances, educational technology still teeters on a slippery edge. It can be harnessed to be the wind in one’s sails of intellectual self-actualization, or it can be the speed boat that leads you furiously into choppy waters and then runs out of gas, leaving you off course and adrift. Metaphors aside, technology in the classroom must be scaffolded (built into concepts and process) with the same thoughtful intent that the fundamentals of math, literacy, or science are when constructing curriculum. It is not about how many gadgets we have but where and how they are harnessed in the curriculum to expand our students’ love of learning and development of positive self-images as learners. Applying the same standards of intentionality to educational technology as to all other curriculum development at Trinity, we look to the end goal first and design backwards.


What do we want students to be able to do with technology when they graduate? Do they all need to reach a certain keyboarding speed, build a digital portfolio, or program a game? Those things will likely all happen but the true goal is that, utilizing digital technologies, graduates will have a facility of mind that enables their deep connections among concepts in the natural world around them. We call this the hybrid mind. “The more high-tech our lives become, the more nature we need,” argued Richard Louv, author of Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children From Nature-Deficit Disorder, at this Fall’s Learning & the Brain Conference in Boston. To an audience of educators and neuroscientists, he posited that the ideal student has affinity for both natural and electronic thinking. She can orient herself in a digital environment as well as utilize all of her five senses when she looks up from the screen, or better yet bring her initial engagement with the natural world to the digital environment. For the five Trinity faculty members who were there, this natural/digital mindset affirmed the direction we have steered our technology integration at Trinity. Computer-enhanced learning at Trinity is directly rooted in natural experiences and complements activities where a student has been able to touch, smell, or make physical observations of the real world. For example, in world language classes authentic conversation is sparked when the teacher projects a range of digital media: colorful, rich images of real historical figures and cultural artifacts of song or dance. In lower school literacy classes, students can move color-coded parts of speech into correct sequences with their pointer fingers, a technique that builds an understanding of language stemming

from oneself. The math software Dreambox is designed on the same premise: math can be visualized and manipulated, which, in addition to its adaptive response and asynchronous accessibility (students can do it at home), is why Trinity has seen positive results and integrates the program into students’ individualized learning rotations.

“The way to solve the conflict between human values and technological needs is not to run away from technology. That’s impossible. The way to resolve the conflict is to break down the barrier of dualistic thought that prevents a real understanding of what technology is – not an exploitation of nature, but a fusion of nature and the human spirit into a new kind of creation that transcends both.” ~ Robert M. Pirsig, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry Into Values A vast repertoire of historic documentaries and samples of artistic works, presented digitally, nourish the middle school art students’ original creations. In lower school art, students are seeing the world through Van Gogh’s eyes using digital technology to layer their hand-drawn sketches over real landscapes, viewed through both photos and the naked eye. One of the soil types that young scientists learn to distinguish by running matter through their fingers is used in the butterfly garden where they later return to observe the young insects with magnifying glasses and journals. Supporting this process, their teachers document the natural life on campus with both moving and still photography that can then be zoomed into or paused for greater detail when available in a digital format. Seventh grade scientists “see data as something you can draw conclusions from” when she has them graph the data collected from their own digital probes. In seventh and eighth grade math classes, graphing calculators generate visual representations of studentgenerated input and “allow us to talk about

context and complex situations with strong, accurate, evidence.” In all of these cases, students play a central role in constructing knowledge; technology assists them in making observations and detecting patterns in their own work. Conclusions drawn from this engagement will resonate much more deeply than conclusions drawn only from looking at someone else’s data or looking up butterflies in an encyclopedia. In history classes, students emulate famous figures of an era and deliver persuasive speeches from those perspectives. In Eng-

lish classes, they argue difficult positions through the lens of a particular character. These historians and literary analysts then review video documentation of their performances, looking to it as both a mirror and a window. Making sense of the present by understanding story (both fiction and non-fiction) is a core objective of our humanities programs. Our ability to use video to pause, rewind, and replay history

(even if it’s the recent past) facilitates the cyclical investigation necessary to peel away layers and come to a deeper understanding of the narrative. Video has transformed the learning of math for some students: they appreciate moving through a problem set while the teacher patiently waits to be un-paused. We believe technology can help us construct and guide the learning story as we bring the riches of the analog, natural world progressively to students’ present and future world. While some reasonably caution that computers speed things up, clutter our lives with information, and diminish our senses, we prefer to rewind

that story, STOP, and play it at our own pace. Louv reported that too many recent collage graduates feel that time is out of their hands; they’ve inherited a broken planet and it’s about sustaining whatever is left. But, he challenges, the most positive innovation is when technology brings the natural world into the manmade one, as seen in life-improving architectural feats, such as green hospitals that optimize natural light

and fresh air and promote a sense of wonder with, yes, butterfly gardens. He believes technology can help bring life to places where there is none. Therefore, it is no longer about sustaining old models but creating new ones. To prepare our students to be innovative creators, not just sustainers, our job is not to ask ”when do you have too much technology?” or “when do you need more?” Rather we should ask “how can more learning happen, for more of our students, through linking primary engagement with the world around us to our tools of analytical and creative expression?” Effective hybrid minds can use the experiences of participating, observing, and perceiving the natural world around us and combine them with the ability to analyze, present, converse, and create in a digital environment. To this end we are committed to pushing the boundaries not in just numbers of devices, but in the amount of authentic learning being achieved with the technology available to us. Whether through manipulating video playback, graphing data or creating 3D models, students can see technology as a vehicle to understanding larger concepts, not as an end in and of itself. They will not suffer anxiety that time is out of their hands but rather operate as though it is in their hands. They will take risks based on true vision and hope for a better future. They will expect more from their learning and they will create more as a result. We believe those students with creative, hybrid minds will be innovators of the future we want to live in.

WHAT’S THE HOUR OF CODE? It’s a one-hour introduction to computer science, designed to demystify “code” and show that anyone can learn the basics to be a maker, a creator, and an innovator.

473 Trinity Students 473 hours of Code = 19.7 days 28,380 minutes 1,702,800 seconds Monday December 2

Tuesday December 3

Wednesday December 4

Thursday December 5

12:20pm: 2nd Grade Tech

As Trinity commits to providing more STEM opportunities (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math), students in all grades joined peers across the globe to take part in computer science lessons on coding in their science, math, and technology classes During the first two weeks of December, every Trinity student participated in an hour long activity - which translated into almost 20 days of coding!

Monday December 9 8:55am: 8th Grade Science 9:45am: 8th Grade Science 1:35pm: 8th Grade Science

Tuesday December 10 9:45am: Kinder Tech 2:30pm: 3rd Grade Tech

Wednesday December 11 8:55am: 6th Grade Tech 9:45am: Kinder Tech 10:30am: 4th Grade Inquiry Seminar 11:40am: 6th Grade Tech 1:35pm: 6th Grade Tech 2:30pm: 3rd Grade Tech

Friday December 6 1:10pm: 2nd Grade Tech 1:50pm: 1st Grade Tech 2:30pm: 1st Grade Tech

Thursday December 12 8:00am: 8:55am: 9:45am: 10:30am:

7th Grade Math 7th Grade Math Kinder Tech 4th Grade Inquiry Seminar 1:35pm: 7th Grade Math 2:30pm: 3rd Grade Tech 7th Grade Math 3:30pm: 4th/5th Grade STEMGirls

Friday December 13 8:55am: 5th Grade Math 10:45am: 5th Grade Math 1:10pm: 2nd Grade Tech 1:35am: 5th Grade Math 1:50pm: 1st Grade Tech 2:30pm: 5th Grade Math




Here are some highlights from the 2013 fall sports season at Trinity: Flag Football 5/6 1A: AIPL champions 5/6 3A: 2nd place AIPL Tournament Volleyball 5/6 2A: Consolation champions 5/6 3A: Consolation champions Cross Country 5/6 girls: AIPL Champions 5/6 boys: AIPL Runner Up (2nd place) 7/8 girls: AIPL Runner Up (2nd place) Golf 5/6 Boys: AIPL Team Champion 5/6 Girls: AIPL Team Champion Joshua Belisle placed 3rd Brant Edmiston tied for 5th Jack Shrewsbury tied for 5th Bailey Bartee placed 4th Laine Trotter placed 5th

Congratulations to all of our Tornado athletes and teams!



How I Befriended a Famous Journalist – Q&A with Elizabeth Carls Elizabeth Carls is a 2007 Trinity graduate who is now a junior majoring in Public Policy at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California. Recently, Elizabeth had the opportunity to meet renowned journalist Amanda Ripley, who ended up interviewing Carls and using her story to promote her new book “The Smartest Kids in the World and How They Got That Way”. Carls is currently studying abroad in Santiago, Chile. How did you meet Amanda Ripley? I had an internship in Washington DC at this think tank called the New America Foundation. They have fellows at the foundation, mostly journalists and researchers who are working on longer projects and need somewhere to be housed. Amanda was a fellow there and I saw her speak one time and was so interested by what she had to say on the topic of international education that

I e-mailed her and asked her if she would get coffee with me. What happened after you met her? She had just finished writing her most recent book The Smartest Kids In the World and How They Got That Way and was in the promotional stage. She asked me if she could interview me and ended up featuring me telling one of my stories from freshman year at Stanford in a promotional video for her book. The story was about my experiences with my freshman year roommate, who is from South Korea. Some favorite memories: Bay to Breakers- a run in San Francisco that maybe 1/10 of the student body competes in together. Being abroad- It’s pretty much cemented my decision that I want to live and work abroad after I graduate. Stanford Dance Marathon- A 24 hour dance party to benefit a clinic in Rwanda. I am on staff and the event and the cause have become a defining part of my experience. Do you have a general idea of what you want to do once you graduate?

I’d like to go into management consulting after I get out of school (preferably in a foreign country, preferably in Latin America) because it would allow me to problem solve without specializing. When I have a better idea of what I like, I would like to go to graduate school. Right now I am interested in food systems and education (which are very difference, hence putting off graduate school until I figure out what I like). When you think back to Trinity, are there any memories that especially stick out in your mind? Mr. Moore’s math class!! How he would always call us Mr. and Ms. because “we were all in the business of learning.” Actually all of the teachers were great, and there are too many to name individually (although Ms. Weiss and Ms. Covino really stand out). I also remember loving learning about the Comanche indians in third grade. Do you have plans for next summer? I wish. Ask me again after recruiting season this coming winter! Preferably, I’d like to work in consulting or do research in Latin America.

Q&A with Dylan Cole - From The Blue House to the Red Carpet Dylan Cole is a 2013 graduate of Trinity Episcopal School. Cole was very active in Trinity’s theatrical productions, and since graduating has already gone on to be featured in the independent drama Hellion, one of only 118 films selected for the 2014 Sundance Film Festival. When he is not starring in upcoming indie flicks, Cole enjoys playing pool and attending St. Stephen’s high school, where he is a freshman. Tell us about the film Hellion you have recently been cast in? What character are you playing? It’s a movie about the lives of a father and his two sons and their struggles after the wife/ mother dies in a car crash. The father, Hollis Wilson (Aaron Paul), has a difficult time coping after the loss of his wife and he isn’t around to be a father to his sons. The eldest of the two boys, Jacob Wilson (Josh Wiggins), is in a gang of sorts with three of his friends, Roger, Lance, and Hyder (that’s me). They are a group of boys around the age of 14 who tear up the town and just become Hellions. Later, the younger brother, Wes (Deke Garner), moves in with his aunt Pam (Juliette Lewis)

and that’s when bad goes to worse. You have to see the movie, no spoiler alert here. Take me through a typical day during the filming process? The cast and crew lived in a hotel in Port Arthur for about a month. Call times varied each day. I would wake up, down some chicken noodle soup, shower, get dressed and head downstairs to the lobby where we were picked up and driven to set. We left the hotel sometimes at 8 am, sometimes 8 pm. I would film for around 5-8 hours, go out to dinner with the cast and then go bowling, swimming, or watch one of my co-stars Deke Garner tear it up on his skateboard, and then go to bed.

lenge themselves in a positive way. And if you didn’t want to participate, she always respected your decision. For example, I didn’t want to be cast in musicals, but was still able to participate in tech behind the scenes where I learned so much. Now that you’ve successfully been cast in a feature film, what is your next goal? I just want to be happy. I have accomplished something I NEVER in a million years would have even considered a possibility 6 months ago. If I get more acting jobs that is wonderful, but if I never set foot on a set again, I will still have the memories of a lifetime from filming Hellion.

Is there a Trinity teacher that you would say had a particularly big impact on you? How so? There are really great teachers at Trinity, but Ms. Alexander had the biggest impact on me. She is also the one who encouraged me to pursue acting outside of school. She taught me the basics and so much more about acting. I owe so much to her and her support. She encourages her students to push and chal1715


Class of 2008

Madison McClure who attends Colgate University made the Dean’s List and was inducted into the Gamma Sigma Alpha Honor Society.

Class of 2009

Sled Allen is attending the University of Colorado at Boulder. Kevin Armstrong attends Rice University. He finished his career at St. Andrew’s by winning the Scholarship Award and was selected by his peers to address the graduating class during graduation. He graduated as a Distinguished Scholar, Artist and Servant. Zack Balaguer attends Norwich University where he plays football. Daniel Buffington attends Southwestern University. He graduated from St. Andrew’s as a Distinguished Artist. Grant Butler attends Texas Christian University. Cole Carper attends Texas Christian University. Carly Chafizadeh attends Louisianna State University. Sofi Chavez attends Bryn Mawr. Riley Cunningham attends McCombs Business School at the University of Texas in Austin. Christopher Currens attends the University of Texas at Austin. He was accepted into the Music Business Program with Piano as his principal instrument. Alexa Davis attends Texas A&M University. Isabelle Derber attends Amherst College. Chrissy Durkin attends the University of California, Los Angeles. Colleen Fennessy attends the College of William and Mary. Emily Gerhart attends Texas A&M University where she plans to major in Anthropology. Christine Hanna attends the University of Texas at Austin. Kendall Hanna attends the University of Texas at Austin. Ian Kocher attends Texas A&M University. He was accepted into the Mays’ Business Honors Progam. Keaton Kratzer attends Southern Methodist University. Kaitie Kudlac attends and swims for American University. She was awarded the Packwood Prize for mathematics upon her graduation from St. Andrew’s Episcopal School. She also graduated as a Distinguished Scholar and Servant. Ian Lenich attends Southwestern University where he plans to major in Education and History. He also plays in the Pep Band. Daniel Mattka attends Southern Methodist University. Ian McClure attends Loyola Marymount University. He ended his Hotchkiss career with a bang by landing the lead in Dog Sees God, solo directing his first full-length drama Boston Marriage by David Mamet, and winning the coveted Chauncey P. Gross, Jr. ’22 Drama Prize. Morgan Mechling attends the University of Alabama where she was accepted into the honors business program. She graduated from St. Andrew’s Episcopal School as a Distinguished Athlete and Servant. Mac Porter attends the University of Michigan where he is persuing a Bachelor of Science in Sound Engineering. He graduated from St. Andrew’s Episcopal School as a Distinguished Scholar. Alex Pylypec attends Texas A&M University in Corpus Christi. Cara Schwab attends Hendrix College where she was awarded three scholarships: an academic scholarship, the Odyssey Scholarship for achievements and a Performing and Fine Arts Scholarship for vocal performance. She graduated from St. Andrew’s Episcopal School as a Distinguished Scholar and Servant. Katie Snyder attends Vanderbilt University. Nikki Spagnola attends Texas Christian University. Patrick Strake attends Texas Tech University. Keith Taylor attends the University of Alabama. Aubrey Todd attends the University of Oklahoma. She graduated as a Distinguished Scholar from St. Andrew’s Episcopal School. Grant Watson attends Texas A&M University. Andrew Wright attends the University of Oklahoma. Jordan Zatopek attends Texas Christian University. She was give the Scott Field Baily Servant Award upon her graduation from St. Andrew’s and graduated as a Distinguished Scholar and Servant.

Class of 2010

Kelsie Payne made the First Team 2013 ACN All-Suburban Volleyball team; Kelsie plays for Connally High and will attend Kansas University on a volleyball scholarship in the fall. PJ Johnson was selected by her peers to be Homecoming Queen at St. Andrew’s. Albert Almanza, currently at St. Stephen’s, has signed a letter of intent to attend Sam Houston State University and play men’s basketball for head coach Jason Hooten in 2014-2015. Alexa Alverdi, currently attending Choate, was selected as a 2013-2014 National Hispanic Recognition Program Honorable Mention (NHRP). This year NHRP recognized 5,300 students selected from a pool of over 259,000. Alexa will be attending Barnard in the fall. Campbell Chupik was named a National Merit Semi-Finalist. She is also the President of the Student Council at St. Stephen’s Episcopal School and earned a place on the Fall Term Honor Roll. Kate Gibson, currently attending St. Andrew’s Episcopal School, was named a National Merit Semi-Finalist. Will Skelton is the 2014 Class President at St. Stephen’s Episcopal School. Kate Zapalac was elected Senior Class President of Student Senate at St. Andrew’s Episcopal School and is also President of the Writing Center. Adam Zeb is the President of the Student Senate at St. Andrew’s Episcopal School.

Class of 2011

Chase Doggett serves as the Day School Representative at St. Stephen’s Episcopal School. He is a member of the Discipline Committee and made the Fall Term Honor Roll.

Class of 2012

Joey Belisle was inducted into TEPS, the sophomore leadership organization, at McCallie.

Class of 2013

Antonio Batista is one of only two LASA students to be selected to the all-region choir. Jackson Castro earned a spot on the Fall Term Honor Roll at St. Stephen’s Episcopal School. Trinity Class of 2011 alums Maxine Rondeau, Lily Renneker was voted Freshman Class Senate Representative at Middlesex. Tia Schwab, Lucy Jones, Laine Porter, Chelise Tori Pylypec made All District in volleyball (second team) and maintained her 4.0 GPA. She is Dekker and Avery Johnson. starting league play and hopes to qualify for Nationals (Junior Olympics) with her team in July. 16


A Season of Firsts By Brin Bon, Chaplain



By the time we leave for Christmas Break, we will have had just over 150 chapel services at Trinity, including Lower School, Middle School, and All School Chapels. That breaks down to over 70 Bible readings, roughly 130 acolytes, and about 300 songs. Altogether that’s more than 3,000 minutes of time spent singing, praying, reading scripture, and worshiping together as a community—an impressive number, if you ask me! I joined Trinity this fall, fresh out of Divinity school and eager to immerse myself in this new world of school chaplaincy. The first days of school, with only a handful of chapel services to my credit, now seem like ages ago. In many ways I feel more like a seasoned veteran than a fresh-eyed rookie. Preaching nearly 150 homilies in just over four months will do that to you! Yet even as we round the bend into the second half of the school year (and at least another 150 chapel services), my days are still filled with “firsts”. Since August I have led my first All School Chapel, complete with seven acolytes carrying banners around open flames(!), and led my first Middle School Eucharist, where we nearly ran out of communion wafers. I have taken my first group of students to Mobile Loaves and Fishes, after which I returned them to their parents covered in peanut butter and jelly, and I have taught my first Religion class, and learned just what interesting and curious young people we have here at Trinity. Through all of these firsts I see the mission of nurturing “each child, each day” woven into the details of our common life. As a new chaplain, adding up these numbers is telling. While it’s hard to quantify the importance of chapel in the life of our school, these numbers give us some idea of just how prominently it figures into what we do to reach the whole child here. Trinity, indeed, practices what it preaches when it comes to nurturing the spiritual aspect of our students’ lives. Even a 20-minute chapel service, every day, over the entire school year really adds up. Multiply that over the course of a student’s entire career at Trinity and the impact is even larger. There are so many “firsts” in the life of the school. Each year, each trimester, each day, brings a whole set of new experiences, and with it the kind of wonder and energy that happens when everything is being experienced for the first time. Over the course of the school cycle novelty turns into knowledge, and the wonder that is planted today stretches into a lifelong curiosity. In some things, it really is the little things that can add up to make a big difference.


Trinity Episcopal School of Austin 3901 Bee Cave Road Austin, TX 78746 512.472.9525

T the Magazine of Trinity  

T Magazine Fall 2013 issue

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