Voyager 2017

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Creating a Culture of Leadership: Her Style, Your Style, Our Identity “I

ngrained in the culture of KPS is that everyone has the potential to lead,” says Sue Bosland, our Head of School for 18 years. This inclusive philosophy mandates that every adult on campus consider how students can learn and practice leadership skills and recognize leadership traits within themselves. The result is that each of our girls and young women achieves an individualized set of skills that will fortify her to lead in the area she chooses and in the style that fits her. KPS programs across all three divisions emphasize leadership development. Students benefit from curricula specifically designed to highlight such skills as self-advocacy, communication, collaboration, problem-solving, questioning, listening, reflecting, ethical decision making, empathy and independence. In the fifth-grade LeaDS curriculum, for example, in the eighth-grade Portraits of Leadership history class, and in the Upper School Global Competency and Ethics seminars and the advisory-based leadership self-assessment plan, students reflect on their own values, work to recognize their own strengths and then enjoy a range of opportunities to act on what they’ve learned. Girls identify themselves as leaders. Through their years here, students have the freedom, encouragement and support to try a skill, perhaps make a mistake, reflect and understand, and then during the next class, the next month, the next year . . . try again.

“She will have developed, practiced and showcased her own unique leadership style, advocacy skills and voice.” — Kent Place School Portrait of a Graduate

Beyond the dedicated curriculum, every course, club, committee, performing group, team and global trip points to role models and/or asks students to take a step to try a leadership style. Because opportunities abound in every division, students are able to recognize their own growth and bolster their confidence. Most important, our young women discover what it means to be looked up to when they mentor younger students. Imparting knowledge builds self-confidence for young women, and the younger girls thrive with these close role models. In this way, students propel, and faculty guide, a culture of leadership in which students identify as leaders. From acting to robotics, from women’s health and wellness to world languages, from GLAM’D to social studies, from athletics to the visual and performing arts — in all facets of a Kent Place education, leadership skills are essential. We are a community built on encouraging girls to discover their strengths and voice; leadership education at Kent Place maintains this tradition and continues to evolve to serve today’s girls. What are we doing to achieve the goal set forth in the KPS Portrait of a Graduate? This year’s Voyager explains how we guide our students to become leaders in their own style in school, in their communities, in their careers, today, tomorrow, and throughout the rest of their lives. V

Each student is challenged to push herself academically, step outside her comfort zone and make a difference in her class and community.

Recommended Reading Hufford, Mariandl M.C.; Sarah Anne Eckert; Wendy L. Hill; Darlyne Bailey; Melissa Emmerson; Donna Linder. “Living Leadership in the Lower School.” National Association of Independent Schools. 2016. Sax, Linda J. “Women Graduates of Single-Sex and Coeducational High Schools: Differences in Their Characteristics and the Transition to College.” The Sudikoff Family Institute for Education & New Media, UCLA Graduate School of Education & Information Studies. 2009. Schlegel, Margaret. “Women Mentoring Women.” American Psychological Association. 2000.

To view the Portrait of a Graduate, snap this QR code or visit

Musings from the Head of School, Sue Bosland

Kent Place: Where Girls Learn to Lead Developing leaders is a hallmark of the Kent Place School experience. Integrating leadership development into our academic and cocurricular programs starting with our youngest students encourages each to develop her own leadership style and, most important, believe in herself and her ability to make a difference in the world. Ingrained in the culture at KPS is the understanding that everyone has the potential to lead. We recognize the value that accrues when each student understands her strengths as a leader and acquires the corresponding set of skills: thus, our basic assumption incorporates the premise that there are a myriad of ways to lead. We teach our girls to lead with purpose, empathy and a collaborative spirit. To listen actively, to develop and ask probing questions, to be comfortable speaking in public, to dialogue, to vision and to work with a variety of leadership styles — these are among the core skills our girls and young women learn. However, the nuanced skills that leadership entails also need to be encouraged, practiced and built over time.

Each graduating class elects a class speaker during the Commencement ceremony.

Problem-solving, analyzing case studies, considering multiple ways to reach a desired outcome and studying leaders and their potential for positive (or negative) uses of influence are woven into our curriculum and assist with leadership development. We teach our students to approach conversations candidly and diplomatically, to live each day with the highest degree of integrity and not to be discouraged when they make a mistake (and to learn from it); they come to appreciate the concept of resilience and gain courage as they prepare to be leaders in college and beyond. V

Intentional Leadership For more than a century, Kent Place has been a school where learning and leadership go hand in hand. We provide a focus on leadership — starting in Kindergarten — that few schools can match. Below are some of our unique leadership initiatives.

LeaDS Leadership, Diversity and Study Skills are key components of the fifth-grade experience. Each has been intentionally integrated across various subjects to provide opportunities for our students to analyze their identities and roles within the KPS community and the world. Students explore Leadership through a variety of hands-on activities and discussions relating to such topics as leadership styles and skills, application of leadership skills and influences on everyday attitudes and behaviors. The Diversity aspect focuses on understanding the value of multiple perspectives in relationship to one’s individual identity and culture and on building trust and respect within a community. Empathy and listening, consensus-building, investigative analysis, cultural competences and responsiveness, character building, inclusion and anti-bullying strategies are central. The Study Skills component builds on ensuring that our girls have effective work habits. They learn organization skills, how to create a study space, time management, active listening, note- and test-taking skills and memory strategies.

Peer Education Peer Education is a Health and Wellness leadership opportunity for seniors to provide mentorship and support to ninth-graders during their transition to the Upper School. Trained peer educators facilitate discussions with the girls on a variety of topics, such as coping with family, friendship, schoolrelated problems and responding to peer and cultural pressures. Students apply to become peer educators; Upper School faculty and the Middle and Upper School health educators review their applications. There are some rigorous requirements: Peer educators must attend an intensive training session before the senior year begins, and they meet throughout the academic year with the program director.

Portrait of Leadership Class A university president, a CEO, a Tony Award–winning actress: these are just a few of the leaders whom Kent Place eighth-graders have interviewed as part of the innovative Portraits of Leadership class. For more than two decades, this class has provided students with unforgettable lessons on leadership. The course begins with a study of identity, civil rights and authority and assesses the human struggle for voice, justice and equality. It continues chronologically by tracing events from the fall of the Roman Empire to the

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20th century through the perspective of use and abuse of power. The lives and ideas of great leaders are examined for their influence. After studying the impact of leadership through history, each student arranges to interview a leader off campus. This unique history course was developed at Kent Place and is taught by Middle School instructor Chris Clemens.

Senior Seminars Each year, seniors participate in Senior Seminars in the week leading up to Commencement. These special workshops are developed by the students themselves to learn skills or to acquire information they believe would be beneficial before they enter college. Among the workshop topics have been financial literacy and personal branding; there have also been author talks, Prepare/Impact training and trips to Wall Street. The Senior Seminars kick off with a movie on the turf, where the seniors can bond and begin their final days on campus together. Senior Seminar coordinators are volunteers who are selected through an application process.

Shore Conference Held at the conclusion of each academic year in Spring Lake, student leaders come together to vision and plan the next school year as they work to make Kent Place the best it can be. With attendance by faculty on the first day, the Senate President leads the group of 35 or more students and the faculty in exercises and discussions related to the Honor Code, the Four Pillars (see page 6) and the mission of Kent Place. The second day is dedicated to helping the student leaders understand their personal leadership style, maximize the group they are leading, and take practical steps to meeting the vision and tasks of their organization. By the end of the time, students are energized with a summer action plan and goals for the following year.

Washington, D.C., Leadership Trip During Spring Break, seventh- and eighth-grade students embark on a fiveday, four-night leadership tour of Washington, D.C. Students not only visit the most captivating memorials, monuments and museums in the United States, they also explore their own leadership potential to be one of our country’s leaders. During the trip, students have toured the Capitol and local businesses run by women, met on the “Hill”, visited Google and took part in specially designed workshops. One of the highlights of the trip is joining Kent Place alumnae in D.C. for a leadership panel and networking dinner. V

What Does Leadership Look Like in the Primary School? By Dr. Adunni Anderson, Director of the Primary School


s the first-graders enter the classroom, they shed jackets and dispense their homework folders while the co-teachers confer. The children are winding down from the independent early-morning routines when one of the teachers steps forward to welcome them. She monitors a count-off to ensure an accurate attendance; calls on a child or two to review the calendar and the day’s agenda; poses a question (e.g., If today is Wednesday, what will be the day five days from now?) and then facilitates a whole-class literacy exercise: calling on various students to edit the displayed easel-writing for grammar, spelling and punctuation. The co-teacher? One of the children — a seven-year-old classmate! That’s what leadership looks like in the Primary School. Approximately 100 guests are at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum to hear from the student scientists about their proposals and experiments that have been selected to travel into space. From private and public schools throughout the nation, across multiple school divisions from grades 5 to 12, the teams prepare to present their hypotheses, experiments and data for inclusion on the space shuttle. A team of Kent Place fifth-graders, in conjunction with Middle School students, wait patiently until it’s their turn. They’re to follow a group of high school seniors. As luck would have it, the clicker used to advance the slides appears to be missing. Without skipping a beat, our girls step up to the podium and nod to the tech crew to manually advance their slides at the appropriate time — and then give a stellar presentation. That’s what leadership looks like in the Primary School. During a fall recess, a class of third-grade girls toss the ball using only their left hand. The other hand, their right one, is tucked behind their back. One student sports a bright pink cast, having broken her arm (off campus) several days earlier. Taking the lead from a fellow student, the girls had agreed to disable their right arms in support of their classmate with the broken right arm. That’s what leadership looks like in the Primary School. In Junior Pre-Kindergarten to grade 5, we deliberately model and then take a step back to allow our girls and Preschool boys to problem-solve and engage in myriad opportunities designed to help them grow as leaders within our community of learners. From independently unbuttoning, unzipping and hanging jackets to filling water bottles and wiping spills; from removing, using and returning materials to Show & Tell using loud voices; from peer conferencing about a

Primary Schoolers are actively engaged during assembly time.

persuasive essay to being the reader or scribe in a literature circle; from publishing a memoir to being the Bell Ringer or Morning Meeting Chimer; from executing one of many weekly classroom jobs to organizing all-school community-service projects; from competing on the math team to being the Greeter with a firm handshake and a warm smile; from being the office runner to working hard, playing fair and being kind; from being an Admission Panelist or a Tour Guide to being the Convocation speaker; from being an Admission Student Ambassador to reciting the Leadership Pledge from memory; from leading Dance Ensemble warm-ups to you name it — no matter how big or how small . . . . . . that’s what leadership looks like in the Primary School. As the first tier in a 123-year-old educational institution of which leadership is the hallmark and as the Primary rung in the three-divisional trajectory known as the Kent Place experience, leadership is defined through a broad perspective that is developmentally appropriate and varied in scope, practice and application. Our goal in growing young leaders is to plant the seeds to serve as both cornerstones and catalysts as our girls ascend to the height of all their possibilities — cognitively, socially, emotionally, creatively and culturally — through our three divisions and then college, career and beyond. Just as Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. stated that “anybody can be great, because everybody can serve,” we believe that every student can be a great leader because every student can also serve, influence and guide others.

Learning to lead begins in a student’s first days at Kent Place because it is the school’s belief that the earlier girls are exposed to the idea of leadership, the more likely they are to take on leadership roles later in life.

Kindergartners take on myriad leadership roles during Circle Time.

Our goal in growing young leaders is to plant the seeds: to serve as both cornerstones and catalysts as our girls ascend to the height of all their possibilities — cognitively, socially, emotionally, creatively and culturally. For the most part, our students fall within the age range neuroscientists have dubbed the Magic Decade (JoAnn Deak, in Your Fantastic Elastic Brain, Little Pickle Press, 2010). The period from newborn to 10 years old is one of unprecedented brain development and growth. Children travel the cognitive, affective and physical domains of human development, moving from the concrete to the abstract. Learning experientially — that is, by doing — is fundamental to the Primary School experience. It’s here where we introduce the soft skills, habits and traits of leadership by creating opportunities and venues so our girls (and Preschool boys) can practice them daily as they audition, or try on, various leadership roles. (continued on next page) Voyager 3

What Does Leadership Look Like in the Primary School? (continued) Leadership abounds within the walls of the Primary School. Every day our young students bear witness to it in action from and by those who look like them — other girls. As though gazing out a window at role models or mirrored in a reflection of themselves, they experience the give-and-take of what it means to be a leader. Peer-to-peer moments, cross-grade interactions and simply playing at recess are gently structured to demonstrate mentoring, guiding, facilitating, helping, supporting, problem-solving, advocating, speaking and rejoicing with, for and to one another.

Leadership abounds within the walls of the Primary School.

Second-graders collaborate while out working on the garden.

Grade-appropriate discussions around traditional and nontraditional styles, skills, attitudes, examples and behaviors of leadership are also integrated throughout the curriculum and the instructional day to raise levels of awareness about what it means to be a leader. Lessons in leadership are more specifically undertaken in fifth grade through the interdisciplinary LeaDS curriculum, which covers leadership, ethics, diversity and study skills. Our older students are invited to join the Ambassador Leadership Program through the Primary Admission Office. Each opportunity within the Primary School focuses on the outcomes and qualities typically associated with being an effective leader: good listener, problem-solver, decision maker, proactive, honest, organized, generous, fair, contributor, responsible, communicator, self-control. The Ethical Leadership Model also helps to frame the values (honesty, trustworthiness, integrity, loyalty, humility, respect, responsibility, empathy, equality, service) indicative of a good leader. The C2OP3R2 formula serves as a quick reminder of many of the attributes that symbolize leadership: confident, compassionate, open-minded, prepared, present, prompt, respectful and responsible. Especially within a school for girls, connectedness, confidence and competence are among the top goals (JoAnn Deak and Dory Adams, How Girls Thrive, Green Blanket Press, 2010). These are traits that, like other qualities of leadership, can’t be willed or drilled; rather, they must be experienced.

Leadership’s potential is as varied and diverse as the learning capabilities and personalities of each of our students. What’s common to all potential is a can-do spirit and growth mind-set. At its core is our respect for the child. In addition to the hands-on, practical opportunities created by teachers for students to lead, there are evidence-based tenets that add value to the charge to foster young leaders at the Primary School level:

• A strong sense of community, based on mutual respect between adults and children, in which we learn and grow together

• Nurturing and caring relationships that inspire all to bring their best selves to school, which reinforces a positive vision of ourselves

• High but achievable expectations that incorporate effort, mistakemaking and responsible risk-taking as encouraged, supported and expected

• Mindfulness and grit — that is, students learn how to think about their own thinking (metacognition) and to persevere

• Emotional intelligence and social emotional learning for modeling empathy and multiple perspective–taking in developmentally appropriate ways

• A comfortable sense of belonging and acceptance in learning spaces that feel like home

In an article posted at on September 15, 2016, Marisa Porges, the newly appointed head of an all-girls school, wrote that of a possible 195 heads of state, today there are just 22 female presidents, prime ministers and chancellors. She then gives us a brief history lesson: She cites the number of “female firsts” — those who cracked the glass ceiling — dating back to the early 1900s, but then points out the 60- to 90-plus-year gap before other women followed. She sums up her assessment: “[E]ven as we celebrate ‘firsts’, we [should] also try to teach every girl that what matters most is the ‘lasts’ . . . the last time she spoke up, the last time she supported a friend or the last time she pushed her limits to try something new . . . ‘[F]irsts’ matter,” Porges writes, but “it’s the ‘lasts’ that make the lasting difference.” So what does leadership look like at the Primary School? Intentionality — deliberate opportunities to grow competence, confidence, connectivity, problem-solving, creativity, communication, teamwork, joy and Girl Power! Leadership in the Primary School . . . an investment in one girl (and one Preschool boy) at a time! V

Fifth-graders lead their own ceremony for faculty, family and friends during their spring celebration.

Both fifth and eighth grade teams presented their scientific research at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum.

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Leadership: A Middle School Mind-set By Dr. Karen Rezach, Director of the Middle School


group of Middle School students asked to meet with me and our Dean, Mrs. Ray, about an unpopular (in their opinion!) decision regarding our Halloween celebration. The girls respectfully expressed their opinions about their (in)ability to wear “group costumes” for the annual parade, a practice fraught with the potential for exclusionary behavior. Mrs. Ray and I listened, gave them the rationale for our decision and told them we appreciated their opinions but that it would stand. At this news, one girl became somewhat agitated and confused. When I asked her what was wrong, she said, “I thought this school was about making ‘brave and brilliant’ girls into leaders! That’s why I came here!” I replied, “Here’s an important lesson about leadership: Leaders don’t always get what they want just because they want it.” The student looked a bit puzzled. I continued, “You demonstrated true leadership in your courage and willingness to meet with us and to explain your perspective on the Halloween rule. That’s being brave and brilliant. That’s what leaders are made of, but it doesn’t mean you’ll always get your way.” She looked at me, smiled and then said, “Really? Okay. Thanks.” Developing a leadership mind-set in middle school–aged girls is complicated. At a time in their lives when they’re sensitive, afraid to stand out, cautious about making mistakes, we’re asking them to be brave, to stand up, to take a chance. Developing that ability is about the process more than it is about the product. Sometimes we equate “leadership” with “position” and judge our approach to leadership development by measuring whether or not each girl has held a leadership position. Parents frequently ask me about leadership positions as if they’re the only indicator of whether we’re developing in our students leadership skills and traits: the leadership mind-set. It’s well known that we keep track of each girl’s leadership positions during her years in the Middle School. We make a pledge that every one of our girls will have the opportunity to have a leadership role and to be a leader of a club, a class, a committee or a team. This is an important part of leadership development, but it’s not the only part. Perhaps we do our students a disservice by defining leadership in the narrowest of terms: that is, by the “leadership positions” they fill during their years in the Middle School.

Eighth-graders may receive special leadership awards during their spring celebration.

Developing a leadership mind-set in middle school–aged girls is complicated. At a time in their lives when they’re sensitive, afraid to stand out, cautious about making mistakes, we’re asking them to be brave, to stand up, to take a chance.

The leadership development that needs to happen for all of our Middle School students is the type that happened for the girl who came to talk about Halloween. To have a leadership mind-set, one must have the courage to approach, the confidence to speak, the thoughtfulness to consider multiple perspectives, the wisdom to discern and the humility to accept “defeat” diplomatically. These are the traits we strive to instill in our girls. In the Middle School, leadership is about much more than a position. It’s a way of being, a way of thinking and ultimately a way of living. Thoughtfulness, courage, confidence, wisdom and humility are the hallmarks of leadership we want for all of our Middle School students as they develop their individual selves. And that happens in the everyday and in every way, in meetings and in classrooms, on the field and in the dining hall. We may not see the full result of this process until years after Middle School, and that’s fine. What matters most is who our girls become: the thoughtful leaders of the 21st century. V

A leadership mind-set begins in the classroom through active participation and collaboration.

Middle Schoolers lead a Mini Robo-Dragons team.

Kent Place 2016 Girls on the Run team finish their 5K race.

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A Path of One’s Own: How Leadership Is Individualized By Carol Gordon, Upper School Dean of Students


f I asked a student to do an Internet search for perspectives on leadership, she would find a dizzying, if not inspiring, number of viewpoints. Forbes alone offers 100 “Best Quotes on Leadership.” What if I then asked the student to choose the one quotation that best defines what leadership means to her? Would she choose George Patton’s “Lead me, follow me, or get out of my way” or perhaps this one, from Bill Gates: “As we look ahead . . . leaders will be those who empower others”? Are leaders defined by their confidence or by their effectiveness in bringing out the best in the people around them? Would young student leaders be well served if adults held up a single definition as the goal for all them? Of course not. No two students follow the same path as they develop as leaders, and the Upper School honors students’ individuality.

Part of the KPS mission is “to inspire young women to leadership.” But what does leadership actually mean? Our mission also honors a student’s potential as an individual; how do we fulfill that? A few years ago, Upper School faculty tackled these questions in formal discussions, and the following ideas emerged.

Upper School students participate in Club Fair each fall to showcase opportunities to get involved both on and off campus.

• Leadership begins with self-leadership: respecting others, being aware of oneself in a community and exhibiting a high degree of integrity.

• There is no one way to define leadership, and students can be leaders without holding an official title. Students lead in classrooms, on the field and in their social groups, as well as in traditional roles.

• Students can develop as leaders in a way that makes sense for them, on their own path and at their own rate. Faculty also noted the importance of encouraging students who demonstrate genuine passion in their interests, whether in or out of the classroom. It’s no surprise that those students naturally become more and more involved with and committed to those interests and are often recognized by their peers not as “résumé-builders” but instead as authentic leaders.

English teacher Lisa Cohen works with her advisees to help them, as she puts it, “identify honest strengths and weaknesses.” She says she’s noticed that even “outwardly confident and boisterous students will often focus on weaknesses rather than strengths. As a result, I try to support all of the positive actions they each take, and we discuss problems or challenges strategically so that every one of my advisees knows that I see her as a multidimensional, complex, valuable person.” Young leaders also look at older students and individualize their own journey by choosing whom they would like to emulate. Seniors Stephanie Napoli, now a Cargoes editor, and Cait McGovern, a Ballast editor, remember being ninth-graders. Says Cait, “When I was a freshman, I looked up to one of the seniors. After seeing everything she had done, I knew I wanted to be just like her. I’m definitely not her carbon copy, but I’ve tried to apply myself as extensively and push myself as hard academically as she did.”

Young leaders also look at older students and individualize their own journey by choosing whom they would like to emulate.

Stephanie says, “Watching older students inspired me because I saw how different everyone was, but despite their differences they somehow all always managed to create similar paths for themselves, whether it was about colleges or clubs or publications. They were all very bright and driven girls.” She underscored the idea that each student’s leadership journey is different: “It took me a year to find the drive in myself that I saw in the seniors,” she says, “but I found it.” Leadership at Kent Place is perhaps best summed up not by men discussing leadership but by a woman talking about life in general. Oprah Winfrey once said, “Understand that the right to choose your own path is a sacred privilege. Use it. Dwell in possibility.” Our Upper School students dwell in infinite possibilities every day. V Scholar-athletes participate in an athletic panel during our admission Open-House season.

Upper School Latin teacher Elizabeth Farshtey puts this idea into practice: “I try to help students see that true leadership is not just being in charge. When you find your passion and enjoy what you’re doing and you’re bringing light into someone else’s life, people will want to follow you. And that’s being a true leader.” As young leaders develop, their faculty advisers play a key role in helping them find the right path and a comfortable pace. In order to understand how students view themselves, advisers ask each advisee to complete a questionnaire about her personal history, feelings and goals in relation to leadership. These responses — combined with their own careful observations — provide valuable insights.

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Four Pillars of Leadership in the Upper School Pursue Passion Model Integrity Live Respect Think Community

Leadership and Design Through an Ethical Lens By Sally Snyder, Fifth-Grade Teacher, and Victoria Tong, Middle School Teacher


t’s all about the squiggle.” That’s what five teams of students from Kent Place and Trinity Hall, two independent all-girls schools in New Jersey, were told when they came together in July 2015 for the weeklong launch of the Ethics in Action Design Thinking program for high school students. Georgetown University professors and other experts in ethics, food, advertising and branding were on hand to impart their knowledge, to ask questions and to push thinking. It was the job of the student teams to “get messy,” “lean into the squiggle,” take a leap of faith and get comfortable with the unknown. Not an easy task for students (or their adult mentors) who are used to following an outline, completing a project and tying it up in a neat bow.

One aspect of the project was fieldwork, and for some students this was their first time getting in touch with real people in their community to build bridges, look for answers and collaborate. Students had to advocate for their ideas but also be ready to accept critical feedback from the intended beneficiaries of those ideas. The program culminated, in April, with a community summit. Teams presented their progress to a full audience of parents, peers and teachers. Questions from a panel of experts compelled students to think on their feet. Every voice was heard, and whether or not a speaker’s ideas were successful, all students walked away with the sense that they can make a difference. According to Forbes, a leader must be honest, be able to delegate, have the ability to communicate well and be confident. The Ethics in Action program enables students to apply those leadership skills in ways they never expected. It teaches them an approach to creative problem-solving that extends the boundaries of what they think is possible. For more information about our Ethics Institute’s programs, please visit V

The “squiggle” model of design thinking, illustrating the messy, often back-and-forth trajectory students take before arriving at their final solution to a problem.

With “design thinking,” students have the opportunity to learn a unique set of skills, some of the most important for the 21st-century employee. Teamwork, risk taking and thinking outside the box are some of the most useful skills, and design thinking pushes people to achieve them. In this model, they examine every angle of a problem, consider all the stakeholders, identify with the “user,” ideate and prototype. The process is uncomfortable and time-consuming and at times it can feel as if a whole bunch of hard work was done for nothing. Rather than the typical A-to-B trajectory, it drives people to go way beyond the obvious.

Students from Trinity Hall refine their ideas after a “crit” session.

The Ethics in Action program took place over a period of 10 months. After introductions to both global and local food issues and a few organizations working toward solutions, five teams of students sought to design a solution to a problem centering on a food issue that faced their communities. Groups comprised four or five students spanning grades 10 through 12, which in and of itself proved a challenge due to everyone’s busy schedule. As students brainstormed, they were encouraged to suspend judgment, avoid immediate solutions and refrain from filtering their ideas. Sticky notes were how teams practiced hearing all voices. Throughout the process, groups participated in “crits,” during which progress was discussed and faculty from the Ethics Lab at Georgetown University gave feedback. Their comments were both positive and critical; back to the drawing board was often the result. Leaders are not afraid of that. Our students worked to develop resiliency and maintain positivity in the face of discomfort — both characteristics integral to strong leadership. As this was a non-graded project that required considerable effort beyond their typical daily school workload, students had to take the initiative, delegate responsibilities and keep one another inspired to dig deep within.

Kent Place students explain their progress during an informal “crit” session in which they receive feedback from a panel of experts at Georgetown University’s Ethics Lab.

Students from Kent Place organize and review the group’s collective thoughts after a brainstorming session.

A group of students from Kent Place present their proposed solution to issues around healthy food access by children after a weekend of discussion, brainstorming, research and creativity at Georgetown University’s Ethics Lab.

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Cultivating Dynamic Leadership Through Creativity By Molly James, Kindergarten Teacher


indergartners are curious folk! They aren’t afraid to ask “Why?” as well as “Why not?” “What if?” “Are you sure?” “How might we?” “Can we try?” “Would you help me?” and “How did you do that?”

Curiosity is an important quality of leadership. Curious leaders — in all arenas — empower and enable those they guide to take risks, question, discover, understand, communicate and innovate. Our Kindergarten Makerspace is dedicated to creative thinking and doing. Curiosity and inquiry are encouraged, enjoyed and acted on. Uncertainty and possibility are embraced as part of the sweetness of curiosity and creativity. “Will it work?” “Can it be?” “I’m not sure!” “Let’s experiment.” “Can we research it?” “Would you look that up on your laptop?” “What do you think?” “Let’s try.” The girls eagerly live and work within the uncertainty of their inquiry. Curiosity drives our students as they build, make and create. They have bold ideas, which are sometimes inaccurately perceived as simply the cute or silly ideas of kindergartners. But as creative educators, we recognize their ideas as seeds of great leadership.

Another student posts on our idea board, “Let’s try to hug twenty people a day!” She leads with empathy, which drives her to connect and comfort others. Often she’s in deep conversation with friends building connections and understanding. Still another declares, “I’ll make fairies real!” She is confident in her statement, and others are drawn to join in conversation about how this may happen. She leads through her belief in the power of possibility, discovery, research and experimentation. Creativity and curiosity encourage our students to collaborate as they lead together. They make room for one another as they work. They exchange ideas, ask permission to join in a creative mission, explain their hopes and dreams, and ask for help. It’s rare that they squash a friend’s lofty goals with “No, that can never work.” Instead, they lead with humbleness, inclusivity and openness as colleagues and teammates.

As she builds in our block center, one student says, “I want to create a tower of eleven acrobats on the roof of the apartment building I just built.” She’s testing the limits of her tools, her materials and her very self. As she builds, others gather around to watch and to ask about her work. She leads through her curiosity and sensible risk taking, and all emerge with new understandings and innovative methods.

After many design sessions for a free build, friendships and teamwork form through collaboration.

As they work to bring their bold ideas to life, sometimes they fail. But they don’t give up. They make suggestions, try new experiments, observe, notice and learn. As with all great leaders, they accept failure as a natural part of discovery and progress.

Kindergartners imagine castle designs and suggest ways to make them happen.

These creative kindergartners are growing as leaders. They have curiosity, bold confidence and brave hopefulness. They engage in humble inquiry and collaborate with joy. The creative experiences of our Kindergarten Makerspace help them navigate our complex and ever-changing world. They are, and will be, leaders who change the world for the better. V

The Humanities: Learning from the Masters By Erin Hennessy, Chair of the English Department, and Mark Semioli, Chair of the History Department


he study of what makes us human, the humanities encompass art, literature, history, music, languages, theater, film: all disciplines that descend from the ideas and stories that create advanced cultures. Studying the humanities promotes empathy, imparts communication skills and develops creative thinking — three of the basic elements of leadership.

At Kent Place, we’re taking the study of humanities a step further. By way of interdisciplinary perspectives, our scholars make sense of the past and grapple with current issues, not only through the development of their content knowledge and critical-thinking skills, but also through their aptitude for and application of significant principles of ethical leadership. At its most basic level, our girls and young women examine the concept of leadership in the study of those individuals and groups in history who exhibited qualities that enabled them to transform, and sometimes transcend, the significant events and ideas of their era. They consider works of fiction and how writers and thinkers have made intellectual sense of these events and ideas and explore alternative scenarios. By identifying those who learned and led, discovered and revealed, risked and failed only to forge ahead, burnished

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by experience and by interpreting its meaning, the girls will have models to emulate and from whom to get inspiration. Studying the “failed experiments” and ethical lapses of historical figures can be equally valuable: knowing and seeing leadership that is ineffective and shortsighted is sometimes as eye-opening and revelatory as are those models we hold up for emulation. The studies of these individuals and groups are not confined to those who enjoy a lofty title, an official designation or a position of power and influence. Instead, they’re women and men who transformed the way a group of people lived and thought. They range from political leaders such as Cleopatra and Hatshepsut, of ancient times, to Meir and Thatcher in more contemporary studies. They’re leaders of religious or secular thought and reflection embodied by the ideas of Confucius and Socrates, Malala Yousafzai and Gloria Steinem, Mother Teresa and Martin Luther King Jr. They’re dancers (Martha Graham) and artists (Picasso and Chicago) and writers (Fitzgerald, Atwood and Shakespeare), artists who sought to capture the zeitgeist of their times. They’re cultural icons named Sappho, Beecher

Leadership Training for Athletes By Bobbi Moran, Director of Athletics


ne of the many reasons I love sports is that athletic competition fosters leadership. Leaders are role models, in both word and deed. Being an athletic-leader means continually raising the bar for yourself and for others, caring about other people and putting the needs of a team above your own.

This year some returning student athletes are working as “ambassadors” during preseason. These young women are stepping into a leadership role that has little or nothing to do with winning games and everything to do with setting standards and then bettering them. I’m asking our student athletes to do their personal best every day on the field and off. I want our girls to have the courage to set lofty goals.

“True leaders understand that energy is contagious.”

Pretty simple, right? Try these “three times two” when you’re faced with your next challenge and take notice when you feel compelled to stray from the boundaries they lay out. Next to this mantra is another one — perhaps more important than the first because it helps me stay balanced. It reads “The Position of Peace Is the Position of Power.” I have to read this several times a day, especially when I’m thrown off my rhythm, and have shared this mantra with my athletes. True leaders understand that energy is contagious. The energy I bring to every situation spills out onto those I encounter. What I try to remind a student athlete is that in every situation we can control only three things: what we say, how we feel and how we react. That’s it. We can’t control officials, the weather, the opposing team, our teammates; we can control only our reactions and our mind-set. Varsity athletes teach their skills to younger students during Family Fun Day.

Our amazing coaches are eager to support them: we encourage them to work hard, challenge themselves and achieve more than what they thought possible. Good leaders inspire others to be their best. They’re patient, kind, thoughtful and honest. Leaders are acutely aware of the consequences when we lose sight of our own greatness and choose to compare ourselves to others. One of two things happen when we do that: either we think we’re better than other people, and that’s not a good approach to teamwork, or we believe we can’t measure up to others, and this affects our self-esteem. A good leader recognizes the value in each individual and works to bring that to the surface.

This year the student leaders have decided on their mantra: “Make It Happen.” Okay, ladies, I’m throwing down the gauntlet: How will you make it happen? How will you be leaders for others, in word and in deed? Be. Do. Say. Be brave and brilliant! V

Pinned to my office wall is “Two Sets of Three,” my mantra when making personal decisions and as a leader. Set One: Never Lie. 2. Never Cheat. 3. Never Steal. Set Two: Don’t Whine. 2. Don’t Complain. 3. Don’t Make Excuses. Sportsmanship and collaboration are core mind-sets for our team leadership.

Over the course of the year, the girls meet, interview and interact with local, national and global leaders in “real time” through various clubs, activities and projects. Stowe, Chanel and Angelou and economic gurus such as Hamilton and Keynes. Over the course of the year, the girls meet, interview and interact with local, national and global leaders in “real time” through various clubs, activities and projects. This reinforces the idea that ethical leadership occurs right in front of our eyes — sometimes the most overlooked place. This immersion in past and present leadership is only the beginning: our scholars look and learn beyond these exemplars by assessing — and constantly revisiting — how the concept of ethical leadership applies to their present and future lives as global citizens. Our hope is that by studying these models of leadership, our young scholars will identify and even prioritize those qualities in themselves and utilize them to confront the unique challenges of their 21st-century lives. So what does this approach to ethical leadership provide? Daily our scholars will feel more and more comfortable in consistently applying multiple

perspectives through investigations into a range of communities that have grown to become increasingly interdependent. As a result, they’ll come to envision and continuously reassess their roles as leaders of these communities. In addition, they’ll develop habits of mind that enable them to think and act as ethical global citizens. Our girls, in their understanding that all people have their own unique story, will learn to respect the dignity of every person by valuing individual identity and diversity. They’ll make ethical decisions and take responsibility for their actions in relation to others and respond creatively to challenges and setbacks. And they’ll work for equity and social justice by acting with empathy, courage and compassion as they partner with local and global communities in a socially responsible manner. The girls at Kent Place will learn to be both brave and brilliant in their ethical decision making as they begin to understand — and embrace — what it takes to lead in our ever more complex world. V

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Understanding: The Key to Inclusive, Responsive and Fair Leadership By Henaz Bhatt, Director of Diversity


earch Google images for leader and you’ll see stock graphics of one figure in front of or above a group of people, clearly commanding them. As we become more interconnected via social media and globalization, and as demographics of the workforce change along gender, generational, racial, nationality, religious, sexuality and ability lines, there’s a demand for a change in this vision of leadership styles and skills.

It’s crucial for our young women to know the importance of their voice and, as they take on leadership positions, to ensure that same opportunity for empowerment for those who may otherwise be under- or even unrepresented.

To prepare young women for global, inclusive leadership requires taking these shifts into account and using this diversity as strength. The goal is a leader who is curious, humble, fair-minded, reflective, adaptable and empowered. The multidimensional road to inclusive leadership begins with understanding: understanding self, understanding others and understanding systems. These three paths, though separate, ground and inspire one another, and any path, when we explore it, inherently connects us to the other two. Our diversity and inclusion work follows these three avenues. Deloitte, a professional-services firm, measures inclusion as the point when “people feel they are treated fairly, that their uniqueness is appreciated and they have a sense of belonging, and that they have a voice in decision making.” In this statement is the recognition of the balance needed between individuality and community, between uniqueness and belonging. Inclusive leadership means treating everyone beyond stereotypes, valuing each person’s individuality. It means accepting all as members of the group and using the diversity of perspectives at the table to find the best solutions for the common good. The basis for all of this is a love of learning fueled by respect for oneself and for others in our global community. Understanding self. The more a leader knows herself, the more she real-

izes that her values are framed by her own lived experiences, which will differ vastly from those of others. With humility comes an understanding that we don’t know what we don’t know, that we all have blind spots — biases — and that with curiosity and an open mind, we can become aware of those biases and reduce their impact. Here are some questions we grapple with in our Seeking Educational Equity and Diversity (SEED) Seminars, Kaleidoscopes Mentors Program (our all-school affinity group) and advisory sessions. We invite you to reflect on and use them in your spheres of influence, as they may help paint a picture of where you and where those you’re leading are from, both literally and figuratively.

• What is the story and meaning of your full name, including

nicknames? Why and by whom was it chosen? How do you feel about it?

• How do you identify yourself? Consider your roles, identities and passions.


• What meal most signifies “home” to you and why? • What are the values and beliefs that most guide your life?

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Understanding others. We must take a moment to put our feet under

someone else’s table. This connection is what helps counter bias and build connection and comfort across difference; it’s also what enables us to develop cultural intelligence. When I listen, I realize that my thought process is just one way of thinking and being, not the way. A leader who can remove herself from the center in this manner gains fluency in multiple cultural contexts. Empathy and deep listening skills are crucial for an inclusive leader. They come from a commitment to seeking out different perspectives, asking questions with purity of motive and suspending judgment of others’ values and life experiences. The more diverse the team and the greater the level of understanding and respect within it, and the more members understand and respect one another, the fewer the blind spots and the better the results. Understanding systems. In her TED Talk, The Danger of a Single Story, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie reminds us that we can’t think about stories without thinking about power. Whose stories are represented and valued? Which perspectives are held up as Truth? Whose voices are missing? What are the benefits or obstacles the stories illuminate? What are the reasons that certain stories are missing while others are shared repeatedly? The individual story must be seen against its greater societal context. In this digital era, we all have the chance to tell our own stories and have them “published” via social media. The hard work is seeking out those stories that seem “other” and feeling sincere empathy with them.

In a school for girls, building inclusive leaders is a matter of mission. Women have always been the numerical majority in the world, yet their representation in academic and professional settings, until recently, didn’t mirror this reality. In the United States today, although women’s representation in the workforce much more closely mimics their percentage in the general population, quite a few gender gaps persist. For example, women control 80 percent of consumer spending but make up only 3 percent of creative directors in advertising, and globally the percentage of women in board seats is only 12. It’s crucial for our young women to know the importance of their voice and, as they take on leadership positions, to ensure that same opportunity for empowerment for those who may otherwise be under- or even unrepresented. V

Leadership Self-Assessment Tool? One of the pillars of leadership in the Upper School is Pursue Passion, and most students take that to heart through extracurricular sports, the arts, committees, clubs and publications. For many, these interests are an integral part of their identity and goals: students may dream of being, for example, the president of French Club, a Senate representative or a yearbook editor. Until a few years ago, though, faculty advisers didn’t always know what an advisee was passionate about, what she had already experienced, goals she might have set and how she viewed herself as a developing leader. Enter the Leadership Self-Assessment tool, a grade-specific questionnaire advisers now use annually to learn about their advisees’ passions and leadership goals. Perhaps even more important, the questionnaire enables students to self-reflect in an age-appropriate manner. The first part of the questionnaire for younger students asks them to list their activities and rate them on the Passion Index (1 = “I may never go again” and 5 = “It’s my LIFE!”). Another question asks about their “personal path to leadership: bumpy? smooth? in between?” and their “thoughts and feelings” on the subject. Ninth-graders are asked to consider all the ways in which they can be leaders in addition to the standard elected positions — a question designed to open their minds to other definitions of leadership.

By Carol Gordon, Dean of the Upper School

For seniors, the questionnaire has a different focus: They are asked to consider their roles as mentors to younger students, discuss how their expectations of themselves compare to reality and assess what they’ve learned about themselves as leaders. The questionnaire serves to start conversations and foster underA student inspires others to join Mock Trial standing between adviser and during Club Fair. advisee. One teacher recalls learning that her advisee had run for a certain position three times without success, an important piece of information the student was unlikely to reveal in a group setting. With that door open, the adviser was able to provide encouragement and reassurance. More specifically, she asked the student to reflect on her strengths and how others might perceive her; together, then, they determined what opportunities made sense for her to pursue next. The path to leadership can indeed be “bumpy,” “smooth,” or “in between,” but with self-reflection and conversations with a caring adult, our girls and young women have support and guideposts along the way. V

Building the Next Generation of Ethical and Entrepreneurial Leaders By Eva Lazar, Ethics Institute Program Coordinator “The Ethical Leadership & Entrepreneurship program was an empowering and engaging experience through which we learned from experts . . . about the complexity of ethics in business. Not only did we expand our knowledge about ethics and business, but we also exercised our collaborative, innovative and creative minds, which made for an enjoyable academic undertaking.This program was arguably the best part of my summer!” – student participant

Sarah Barry ’16, our Ethics Fellow, presents her research exploring B Corporations

organization after its ethical breach and to revitalize and reestablish it to ensure its future fiscal and ethical success.

2016 participants


eveloping ethical leadership skills is an ongoing journey. To this end, the Ethics Institute offers the Ethical Leadership & Entrepreneurship summer program for students entering grades 9–12. Welcoming students Students ran a Tootsie Roll competition to illustrate principles to from schools throughout supply/demand and marketing. the area, this coed program presents an opportunity to socialize, learn and network with peers who have similar academic interests and a passion for learning about business. A major emphasis is on examining how real companies have come under scrutiny for their ethical decisions and practices. Last summer, students analyzed how large corporations regroup from significant ethical lapses and high-profile crises. Teams selected one company as the subject of a culminating final project; their task was to develop a plan to rehabilitate the

Students explored the mission and history of a particular company, as well as key financial data, such as annual revenues, net income/loss, total assets and market capitalization. Teams utilized the Ethics Institute’s decision-making model to tackle and explain the challenges that vulnerable corporations can face in times of crisis. At the end of the program, the teams presented a commercial that reflected the rebranding and a rehabilitation plan with the hope of regaining the stakeholders’ trust to a group of potential investors (local CEOs and business leaders). The goal was to ask investors (program judges) for money needed to revitalize the company. As part of the “ask,” teams projected how much incremental net income the investment would generate in the year following the ask. Mark Semioli, an instructor of Ethical Leadership & Entrepreneurship, said, “The most powerful part of this program is that students are at the heart of this experience. By identifying their own strengths and weaknesses as ethical leaders, visiting a diverse group of companies such as Google, Celgene and Chipotle, and designing solutions to real-life challenges in the contemporary entrepreneurial world, they were able to construct a learning environment that is by them and for them on a daily basis.” Our hope is that participants learn that those who lead ethically not only improve their business and work culture, but also help make a difference in the world. Applications for the 2017 Ethical Leadership & Entrepreneurship summer program, to be held June 19–29, are available on our website, V

Ethical Leadership & Entrepreneurship participants visit Google in New York City.

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Growing Girls’ Leadership By Holly Doyle and Erin Hennessy, Codirectors of the Girls’ Leadership Institute

The Girls’ Leadership Institute (GLI) has been developing and inspiring female leaders since its founding, 22 years ago, by Christine Clemens and Elizabeth Woodall. This year we’re thrilled to be able to offer our very first Upper School and Primary School summer institutes in addition to our hallmark Middle School program.


ur unique summer institute started in the Middle School because this age group offers the ideal opportunity to help girls begin considering how they lead themselves and others.

In adolescence, girls are trying on different identities, and their peer groups and their relationships take center stage. Although this is when girls typically begin leading in a more organized fashion, it became clear to us that our GLI graduates were craving more opportunities to build their skills before they moved into the Upper School and would begin to be club leaders and community activists. We also decided to examine ways in which we could strengthen our leaders in the Primary School. There, our young girls are developing how they conduct themselves each and every day. GLI has always embraced the idea that leadership can be taught, and even though everyone is a different and unique type of leader, there are certain concepts that are important to strengthen a girl’s ability to lead. These concepts are communication, social and emotional intelligence, taking action, ethical decision making, understanding different types of leadership and cultural competence. All are woven throughout our programs to developmentally appropriate degrees at each level. In the Primary School program, emotional and social intelligence forms the backbone of many of the activities. In Middle School, communication and turning vision into achievable action are the skills we highlight. In the Upper School program, cultural competence and higher-level leadership theory are in the forefront as our young women hone the strong skills they’re already applying in various positions within their school and in their communities. All of our programs are open to members of the community as well as to Kent Place students. To learn more, please visit our website, at, or contact either of the directors, Holly Doyle or Erin Hennessy, at We look forward to having your daughters join us this summer! V

Physical challenges help participants learn to solve problems creatively through collaboration.

This summer, the institute schedule is as follows. Primary School, for girls entering fourth or fifth grade: June 26 through June 30 Middle School, for girls entering seventh or eighth grade: July 18 through July 29 Upper School, for girls entering ninth grade: June 26 through June 30

Outstanding women leaders (OWLS) design utopias based on their preferred leadership styles.

Active listening skills are practiced in daily ethics circles and discussions.

Recent graduates showcase their newly honed public-speaking skills.

Every girl pushes past her comfort zone to learn that her potential is boundless.

Volunteering at the Community Food Bank of NJ teaches students how to turn compassion into action.

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Students from many surrounding communities form lifelong friendships at GLI.

Student Voices As always, we’re proud of our students as they take on a variety of leadership roles both on campus and beyond the walls of Kent Place. Sima Parekh ’17 and Julia Cozine ’17

Keerthi Jayaraman ’19

GLAM’D and International Day of the Girl


Our involvement in Girls Learning and Making a Difference, GLAM’D, has made us acutely aware of the importance of protecting the right to education. To shape the future, we need to shape the present. Girls’ education is particularly at risk across the world; 62 million girls are denied this right. Promoting safe education and healthy lifestyles ensures that girls develop into strong, mature women capable of supporting themselves and their families. Support during adolescence today leads to an empowered tomorrow. GLAM’D members are dedicated to take the steps necessary to ensure equitable opportunities for women, because an investment in a girl’s present is an investment in the world’s future. This year, one of our main goals in celebrating International Day of the Girl was to get the community talking and realize how women’s issues affect everyone. Our student-led workshops tackled problems such as self-image, the importance of literacy in the developing world, representation of women in the media, feminism, the gender binary and a woman’s rights. We wanted to start what we hope will become a chain reaction of discussions to address how these systemic issues can be removed and to recognize Kent Place girls’ active roles in the global revolution for gender parity. Kent Place student leaders live responsibly to develop respect for themselves and others in the global community and are built to be at the forefront of changing the world. We encourage all voices — both men’s and women’s, young and old — to speak out and stand up. We have no doubt that GLAM’D has the power and potential to have an impact on the world.

Annie Schiffer ’17 The Mountain School and Environmental Activism at Kent Place

This time last year, I was a student at the Mountain School of Milton Academy. The Mountain School is a semester school that takes 45 students each fall and spring who live and work together on a farm in rural Vermont. I made amazing friends, learned many new things and solidified my passion for environmental science. However, one of the most amazing aspects of the Mountain School was seeing how I transferred the lessons learned there back to Kent Place and life in New Jersey. One key Mountain School value is learning to live well in a place. I learned about many sustainable practices such as solar panels, geothermal energy and recycling. I was taught that it’s up to us to live responsibly in our home and it’s our job to make it a better place. On returning to Kent Place, I studied AP Environmental Science, and when we were assigned a research project, I decided to gear mine to the Kent Place community. I delved into ways our community could be more sustainable. I identified plastic use as an area for improvement. With the help of my teacher, Mrs. Chaffee-Cohen, I was able to present my project to the school and educate everyone on why plastic waste and microplastics are a grave problem. It was great to see people’s reactions to the problem and their desire to live more responsibly in their place.

GenHERation is a femaleempowerment organization for aspirational young women. By using media, the organization enables students to explore career opportunities by reading and watching interviews with female executives. There are even opportunities for girls to go to events during which they can meet such executives! My role as a contributor for GenHERation is to conduct interviews with highly successful female executives. This opportunity has been tremendous for me. Not only have I been able to speak with women who are accomplishing so much, but I’m also able to learn about career opportunities while doing so. GenHERation also hosts many events during which female students can talk with female executives and learn about women’s role in the working world. It’s a wonderful organization. For more information, visit

(Additional Student Voices on next page)

Jacqueline Cook ’17 Assistant Coach for Mini-Dragons Field Hockey

This year I was delighted to take on the role of assistant coach for the fifth-/ sixth-grade field hockey team. I was more than excited to be able to coach with Mrs. Moran and the two people (Mrs. Benthien and Mrs. Dunne) who taught me how to play the game six years ago. I had decided not to play field hockey for the high school team this year but still wanted to be involved with the sport in any way I could, and this was the perfect opportunity to do so. My experience was awesome because I met the most fantastic girls, who are now familiar faces I see in the halls every day. Each of the girls tried her best to learn the game, and I admire everyone’s perseverance and determination during games and in practices. My role as a coach did get harder as the girls found the positions they liked, but I needed to make sure everyone had a chance at playing every position. Their willingness to step out of their comfort zones to try something different was very admirable, and I’m so grateful that I was able to meet great girls and help coach this team!

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Student Voices (continued)

Adithi Jayaraman ’20 nAEYC Convention and Girls Empowerment Camp

Jenna Smith ’21 nJCTS Youth Advocate Program

I’m part of the New Jersey Center for Tourette Syndrome’s Youth Advocate Program, which is a group of teens who have experience with Tourette’s. The youth advocates are trained to give presentations about the disorder to schools and other community groups within New Jersey. I haven’t been a part of the NJCTS for long, but for the time that I’ve been there, not only have I have seen great improvements with my leadership skills, but I’ve also had an amazing time meeting people and having different experiences. The presentations I’ve given so far have been at elementary schools for younger grades and it’s been wonderful to see how interested the kids are in what we have to say. The questions from the kids have also caused me to do a lot of research about Tourette’s and learn things that I wouldn’t have if I wasn’t part of this organization. I’m really looking forward to seeing where this takes me, and seeing what other leadership skills I gain from this and what else I learn as I give more presentations and keep improving.

Charlotte Hayward ’24 volunteer

Helping at Meals on Wheels, teaching religious education with my sisters, and donating to Smile Train and Miracle Walk are some of the leadership roles I am involved in. First, ever since I was 6 months old I have been doing Meals on Wheels with my mom, brother and twin sisters. We deliver to an apartment building in Summit and over the years I have made lots of friends. In second grade my KPS classmates and I went on a field trip to SAGE in Summit. The SAGE building is where you pick up the food for Meals on Wheels and they also have programs for senior citizens. My KPS friends and I also delivered food together when we had a half day of school. It has been fun sharing what I love about SAGE and Meals on Wheels with my KPS community. Second, I also love teaching kindergartners religious education. My twin sisters are the head teachers but when one of my sisters cannot make it to a CCD class, I substitute for her. I have taught five classes and I really enjoy helping kindergartners learn about our faith. Third, for my communion, I asked everybody who came to donate to Smile Train instead of getting me presents. We also have been part of the St. Barnabas Miracle Walk for 16 years because my siblings were in the NICU (neonatal intensive care unit). I was very lucky because I was the only one out of my siblings who didn’t have to go to the NICU when I was born. These are some ways I like getting involved in my community and helping other people.

Lily Tan ’24 Junior All-Stars

Outside of school, I love to do musical theater. I like to sing, act and a little dance. On Tuesday, I do a Papermill Playhouse class called Junior All-Stars. The Junior All-Stars is where kids work on a show throughout the year. Then, in the spring, the group tours around the community to schools with children who have disabilities. This is my first time doing this class. I really like the fact that I can do what I love and at the same time give back to the community.

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This fall, I was fortunate to have the opportunity to present my paper, “Development and Implementation of a Girls Empowerment Camp in Newark, New Jersey,” at the annual conference of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), in Los Angeles. The NAEYC is an organization that works to disseminate fine education to young children all over the world. At this conference, I was able to interact with educators from all over the world and share my experiences as a leader and instructor for young children. As the title suggests, my paper was on the Girls Empowerment Camp, which I developed and implemented the summer of 2015. This camp lasted a total of four days and on each day we focused on a particular facet of leadership: public speaking, problem-solving, self-confidence and teamwork. We incorporated several hands-on activities and discussions to keep the girls, who ranged from 8 years old to 13, engaged. Every day I noticed the girls becoming more comfortable in sharing their ideas and more engaged in the activities. I was also growing alongside these young ladies, as I was pushed out of my comfort zone and emerged as a more confident and empowered leader. My experiences as a presenter at an international conference and as an instructor at a leadership camp enabled me to metamorphose into a strong leader and a brave and independent young lady.

Shefali Kamilla ’21 Girls on the Run

I participated in a program called Girls on the Run (GOTR) from fourth grade all the way up to sixth, and it was an experience I’ll never forget! GOTR is a program for girls all around the United States to learn how to run a 5K. I learned that you don’t need to be a “good” runner to do this program because with all the practice, you’ll definitely get better! At the beginning of every practice, the group discusses a different topic or issue involving girls or girl empowerment. Sometimes we talked about very serious issues but we would learn in a fun, comfortable environment. The running practice always had something to do with the topic we discussed. This way it was a fun activity to do while running and helped us learn about an important topic in a different way. My experience with Girls on the Run was amazing. GOTR was a great opportunity for me to make new friends and gain leadership skills. This program helped me to become more comfortable in sticky situations. GOTR helped me get an interest in running (and also helps you recognize the progress you make). Now I’m confident in running, and after finishing my first 5K at the end of GOTR, I felt accomplished! It’s like you just did the hardest thing you ever thought you’d do. GOTR was my first real team and it was a great way to get active before I started participating in Middle School sports. At GOTR I started to learn what the true meaning of team is. I was able to do this because GOTR was a great way for me to acquire leadership skills. Meeting new people, setting goals, pushing yourself, learning how to be confident in yourself and others . . . it’s all part of being a leader. GOTR overall gave me a new interest and the joy of running, but it was also the foundation for me to gain courage and independence as a leader at Kent Place School.

News & Views Middle and Upper Schools Begin New Academic Schedule By Julie Gentile, Director of Studies


he 2016–2017 year opened with students and faculty experiencing a new academic schedule. The rotating-block concept that has existed at KPS since 2007 continues, but in the new schedule the majority of classes occur in hour-long blocks (instead of periods of 40 minutes). In addition, the school day has been lengthened by 15 minutes. After much research and evaluation, the following priorities for the changes were identified:

• Opportunities for deeper learning and interdisciplinary

teaching (particularly important for humanities and STEM learning)

• Pace to the day that will provide a healthier schedule for students, thus facilitating performance (such as increased focus, retention/ durable learning and creativity)

• Increased time for teacher–student conferences and teacherwith-teacher planning

• Time for students to collaborate, which will complement resources and space available in the new Center for Innovation

• Increased time within the school day for Middle School clubs and for the Middle School Athletics program

• Opportunities in the school day for Upper School students to extend learning off campus in the form of internships, research or community service

Genius block learning has tackled issues of interest during the Presidential Election, Trep$ (entrepreneurship project) and independent projects.

Among the new aspects of the 2016–2017 schedule are a daily conference block during which Middle School students may meet with faculty and use on-campus resources to support their interests and learning, and a Genius block in both the Middle and Upper Schools during which students have time to discover and explore interests beyond the curriculum. Seniors will have the option to spend this time off campus in a directed internship or learning opportunity. The use of the Genius block (referred to below as Genius Hour) will expand over the next few years, supporting students’ desire to apply their skills in the Innovation Center and in learning or community engagement off campus. V

Six Principles of Genius Hour in the Classroom 80/20 provides a usable pattern — and structure — for learning in the classroom.

80/20 Rule The purpose of learning is studentcentered, sourced, and dependent.

Without teachers “packaging” content that frames and scaffolds content, students are left to design their own learning experiences.

Sense of Purpose

Socialization GEnIUS HOUR Genius Hour provides students freedom to design their own learning during a set period of time during school. It allows students to explore their own curiosity through a self-manifested sense of purpose and study while within the support system of the classroom.



Students connect with teachers to plan, peers to produce, and experts and community members to establish a sense of purpose for their work.

Whether students “make,” publish, design, act, or do, “creating” is a core principle of Genius Hour.

Inquiry Through surveying possibility, navigation of unfiltered content, gathering information, and narrowed research, students make sense of ideas important to them.

teachthought thought Printed with permission from Terry Heick, TeachThought

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Exciting Things Are Happening at KPS 1 Summit Keeper of the Dream Award Three seniors were honored by the City of Summit on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day with a Keeper of the Dream Award. Lena Anglin, Carly Moskowitz and Babi Oloko, who are members of the STAR (Summit Teens Against Racism) executive board, were three of seven individuals who received this honor. 2 Third-Grade Dance Third-grade students held open dance classes for family and friends, performing pieces they choreographed themselves.



Mrs. Bosland Honored at Ring Luncheon 3

During the annual Sophomore Ring Luncheon a special class ring was given to Head of School Sue Bosland to commemorate her 26 years of service at Kent Place. 4 Computer Science Education Week Middle School students could code during PLC block, during Genius block and in technology class. Activities included games and tutorials from, as well as creating original animation using Scratch.


5 Middle School Pumpkin Challenge Middle Schoolers catapulted pumpkins as part of a science and math activity. The students guessed how far the pumpkins would travel and measured how far they rolled. 6 Random Walk Math Activity Middle and Upper School students created a human bar graph as part of Dr. Ralph Pantozzi’s Rosenthal Award–winning lesson on probability called “Random Walk.” 7 Mix It Up Day Students sat in mixed age groups at lunch for the annual Mix It Up at Lunch Day. The national campaign, created by Teaching Tolerance, “encourages students to identify, question and cross boundaries.”




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8 Pre-K Career Expo Pre-Kindergarten students held a career expo where they dressed as “community helpers” and spoke in front of family and friends about their jobs. 9 Investment Lesson CNBC Fast Money commentator Guy Adami visited Kent Place and spoke with Upper School NextGenVest and Investment Club students. 10 Lisa Damour Talks Untangled The author of Untangled: Guiding Teenage Girls Through the Seven Transitions into Adulthood, Lisa Damour, spoke to students, faculty, staff and parents during Global Perspectives Week. 8

11 Watching Construction Second-grade science classes watched the Center for Innovation construction progress from Upper School windows to get a real-life lesson about building. 12 Alphabet Fashion Show Kindergartners each dressed up as a word beginning with a different letter of the alphabet. This fashion show celebrated the students’ unit learning the sounds of the alphabet.



13 Limitless Possibilities During the Limitless Possibilities: The Campaign for Kent Place School launch party, children enjoyed building and creating in a STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics) room led by Kent Place Middle and Upper School students. (continued on next page)




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Exciting Things Are Happening at KPS (continued) 14 A Seuss Spectacular! Fourth-grade students presented a musical called A Seuss Spectacular, in which they performed Dr. Seuss–themed songs and dance numbers. 15 Banaji Visits Campus The Kent Place community was thrilled to welcome author of Blindspot: Hidden Biases of Good People Mahzarin Banaji to campus as part of Global Perspectives Week. 16 Fencing Wins Big! Our fencing team brought home a first-place trophy. 17 Grandparents and Special Friends Day The Kent Place Parents’ Association organized the annual Grandparents and Special Friends Day.


18 Tennis Champs Our championship-winning tennis team was honored at a New Jersey Devils game. The hockey team hosted all New Jersey state champions at a special game. 19 Colors of India Preschool and Primary School students were treated to a “Colors of India” dance assembly. Students loved watching the performers present traditional dances from India. Some students were even invited on stage to perform with the dancers! 20 China Studies As part of the China unit in Grade 2, students took part in a special presentation from the China Institute of America. Educators gave the girls a glimpse into the Mandarin language and how the Forbidden City was constructed. The girls had an opportunity to work in teams and use their imagination to create bird’s-eyeview blue prints of what their ideal palace would look like.





21 Hour of Code Grade 9 students participated in the Hour of Code during their Genius block. Scholar leaders from AP Computer Science, juniors Rose Chrin and Angela Maliakal, led the ninth-grade workshops.



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22 Upper School Winter Play Brava to the Upper Schoolers who performed Daisy Pulls It Off for the campus community. This is the fourth production of the play at KPS. 23 The STAR The annual Upper School winter concert, The STAR, brings Kent Place students, faculty, staff, parents, friends and alumnae together to celebrate the holidays. Alumnae are always invited to sing along during the performance of “O Holy Night.�



24 Chinese New Year Middle School Chinese-language students made lanterns during their Year of the Rooster celebrations. 25 Math League Competition Grades 3, 4 and 5 Math League participants earned second place in the regional competition. Kent Place hosted 118 students from nine participating independent and public schools, who completed four very challenging tests spanning more than two hours. 26 Martin Luther King Day of Service On Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, community members supported the beautification and infrastructure of Down Bottom Farms, a project of the Ironbound Community Corporation in an abandoned parking lot of Newark. Students, faculty, staff and friends painted murals and barrels for rainwater collection for Down Bottom Farms, sorted donations for women in crisis and much more.


27 Kent Place Heads to Canada Our Spring Break stop to Canada provided many opportunities for our student travelers. The group even enjoyed dogsledding before stopping in Montreal. 28 Summit Cup Comes Home Again Varsity Ice Hockey brings the Summit Cup home again, beating Oak Knoll 9-2. 25




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Kent Place Is Going to Space: A Countdown By Jim Flakker, Chair of the Science Department


he Kent Place Space Program, in conjunction with the National Center for Earth and Space Science Education, is formally launching the Flight Operations Phase for the SSEP Mission 10 to ISS Casper experiments payload, which is to be carried to ISS aboard the SpaceX CRS-11 (SpX-11) flight. The Casper payload is currently scheduled to launch out of the Cape Canaveral Air Station, in Florida in mid-May. Eighth-graders Isabella Diaz, Aya Mtume and Elizabeth Wyshner and sixthgraders Olivia Adamczyk, Alexandra Anderson, Nora Lee and Abigail Wall — and their science teachers, Becky Van Ry and Maura Crowe — have worked diligently throughout the summer and fall to make sure their experiments have the best chances of success once they’re at the International Space Station. Over the past six months, the students completed many experiments centered on the viability of Painted Lady butterfly eggs after having been in cold dormancy. They also confirmed the optimal amounts of nutrients and fixatives required to successfully carry out the experiment at the Space Station.

Aya Mtume examines the fluid-making environment that will house our experiment while in space.

Our testing indicated that we could hatch healthy caterpillars after a two-week dormancy in cold storage. As a result of multiple tests, we feel confident that the storage period could be increased in order to adhere to SpaceX’s storage and shipping criteria. We did detect some evidence of slightly stalled hatching and development, for which we will adjust our experiment accordingly. The offspring of refrigerated eggs followed the typical timeline into healthy butterflies, bolstering the possibility for generations of butterflies to survive in space. To confirm and validate the decision to use the Painted Lady, during the summer we experimented with another species, the cabbage white butterfly (Pieris rapae), chosen because it’s available year-round. The results of our experiments found that the eggs weren’t resistant to cold storage and none survived. Thus, it was the Painted Lady that was a good subject. We’ve created our own colony of Painted Lady butterflies and continue to experiment: We’ve tested several generations to monitor the health and reproductive capabilities of Painted Lady eggs that have undergone from one to five weeks of cold storage against those in control groups.

The sixth-grade team, Nora Lee, Olivia Adamczyk, Alexandra Anderson and Abigail Wall, prepares its experiment.

Based on our work, we decided to increase the number of eggs from four to six. As seen in our data, the eggs that were in cold storage for nine days had a survival rate (that is, hatched) of 50 percent. The eggs that were in cold storage for 14 days had a survival rate of 33 percent, of which 60 percent moved onto the larval phase. Given that the larvae will be competing for room and food and applying these survival rates, we determined that six eggs would be the most productive number for the small enclosure we have for the experiment. The fall trials tested the optimal amounts of food and formalin for the FME tube, along with the viability of the eggs and larvae in it. At this point, the decision has been made to decrease the food supply from five grams to four. We will continue to conduct experiments in preparation for the launch.

The eighth-grade team, Elizabeth Wyshner, Isabella Diaz and Aya Mtume, performs an experiment to determine how much food will be needed to sustain the larvae in space.

Our student-scientists experiment on the effects cold dormancy has on the butterfly eggs.

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The program is undertaken by the National Center for Earth and Space Science Education (NCESSE; in partnership with NanoRacks LLC, which is working with NASA under a Space Act Agreement as part of the utilization of the International Space Station as a National Laboratory. V

The team releases the clamp on the fluid-making environment. In space, this task will be performed by astronauts.

Kent Place Around the world


Please follow our student adventures on our social media using the hashtag # KPSGlobal.


Women in Leadership (WASHINGTON, D.C.) March 10–14 (Grades 7 and 8) The “Women in Leadership” tour of the nation’s capital is a Kent Place signature program. Throughout the five-day, four-night trip, 23 students visited our country’s most captivating memorials and monuments, took in extraordinary museums and — most important — explored their own potential as a future leader. The group toured the Capitol building, attended a meeting on the Hill and participated in specifically designed leadership workshops. Students enjoyed visiting the Smithsonian Museums and taking in a show (with a backstage tour!) at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. One of the highlights was joining some of our own KPS alumnae who now live and work in Washington, D.C., for a leadership panel and networking dinner. Bilingual Perspectives in Canadian Art and Cultures (CANADA) March 11–18 (Grades 8 through 12) This trip exposed students to the vibrant, bilingual nature of our neighbor to the north. They visited three Canadian cities, one Frenchspeaking (Quebec), one French/English-speaking (Montreal) and one English-speaking (Ottawa). Students participated in activities from dogsledding to observing Canadian art in the great museums of major cities while they considered what it means to be bilingual and multicultural. The group spent a few days in each city, with the objective to compare the impressive richness and variety in Canada.

Where we’re going... South Carolina Costa Rica


Where we’ve been... Washington, D.C. Canada • Cuba

Isle of Palms Habitat for Humanity (SOUTH CAROLINA) June 18–24 (Grades 9 through 12) Students will help Habitat for Humanity (HFH) achieve its mission, which is to provide everyone with a decent place to live. Not only will our students build houses, but they’ll also work with the families who will eventually occupy the houses by getting to know them and listening to their stories. In addition to leveraging the skills they’ve learned in math class while measuring lumber and other materials, students may begin to envision themselves as architects or engineers. Costa Rican Culture and Wildlife Adventure (COSTA RICA) June 19–27 (Grades 6, 7 and 8) On this eight-day trip, students will experience la pura vida (that is, an optimistic way of living) by exploring several regions of Costa Rica. Through hiking, canopy tours and boat tours, they’ll see native wildlife up close in their natural habitats, for example, in Braulio Carrillo and Tortuguero National Parks. Between adventures, students will be immersed in Costa Rican culture through their accommodations and meals. They’ll even get to take a Costa Rican cooking class and sample more local cuisine. A highlight will be volunteering at La Marina Wildlife Rescue Center, an animal sanctuary dedicated to rehabilitating sick and injured animals.

Cuba: History, Culture and Transitions (CUBA) March 12–19 (Grades 10, 11 and 12) Students joined Kent Place faculty on a nine-day trip to Cuba during a historic moment of transition in the relationship between the island nation and the United States. The group visited UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Old Havana and Viñales Valley and chatted with local artisans, farmers and students to learn about the Cuban heritage and discuss current political and economic changes.

SPRING FLING 2017 Save the date

kent place summer camp • • • •

Join us for the annual fundraiser Spring Fling 2017 featuring our silent and live auctions.

Saturday, April 22 6:30–11:00 p.m. • KPS Field House

For Open House & registration information, visit our website!

June 12–August 25 Coed, Ages 3–15 June & August Mini-Camps Extended Care & Afternoon Clinics • Creative Arts Workshop • Day Camps • Preschool Camps • Summer Academy • CIT Programs • Sports Camps

Get your ticket to support the party of the year! To follow Spring Fling, please snap the QR code with your smartphone or visit

Summit, NJ (908) 273-0900, ext. 297

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Maximizing Latin and French Learning: A Halsey Grant in Action By Nadine Bernard, Middle School French and Spanish Teacher, and Holly Doyle, Middle School Latin and History Teacher


ith the shift from four classes a ways to embed culture within the newly week, mostly of 40-minute length, added input activities (for example, to three 60-minute classes a week, our audio clips from different FrenchWe know that in language classes, Middle School World Language curricuspeaking sources and videos of weather especially in an immersion experience, lum needed to be revised in several ways. forecasts in Latin). Especially with our Last summer we were thrilled to be able culture activities, we look for ways by it’s very important to vary the types to do this important work, restructuring which to create informed global citizens. as well as supplementing our curriculum of activities so that students With meetings more spaced out, we felt with new materials and activities, with the stay enthusiastic. the need to review more frequently and added benefit of making the learning more to give students time to practice the hands-on and engaging. Our overall goal language daily through ongoing input. was less about changing the content than We’ve begun using the assessments about improving how we teach it to maximize learning, spurred by the great feature of MyKPS, in addition to traditional in-class quizzes, as both formative opportunity the block schedule presents. and summative assessments. In Latin class, based on students’ suggestions, We know that in language classes, especially in an immersion experience, it’s we’re doing what they call “Take 5” quizzes, based on what they said they very important to vary the types of activities so that students stay enthusiaswere doing in math class. These are very short review quizzes that are often tic. The longer periods lend themselves naturally to our style of teaching. As used as an opener. examples of what we added to engage students through the longer blocks, With the frequency gap in mind, we also discussed how best to use homethere are now online interactive activities, such Kahoot and Quizlet Live; work without increasing the amount assigned each night. We found and hands-on materials; listening activities and songs; and frequent openers and incorporated more videos and readings to help flip the classroom to take closers. In Latin class, we’re also incorporating speaking and listening activities advantage of the opportunity to read and listen more at home providing modeled on what happens in the French classroom to strengthen our ultimore interactive practice in the classroom. mate goal: the ability to read Latin literature. The longer blocks also offer the incredible opportunity to visit the material much more in depth. There is the potential to do more project-based activities, which we worked on developing to include more problem-solving and real-world applications. All French students have a yearlong project in the form of a journal or creating a fictional family and telling about its life. In both languages, we looked for

In recent years, most of the proposals funded by the MacDonald Halsey Grant have centered on curricular development, particularly aligned with schoolwide goals. All faculty are encouraged to work collaboratively to submit proposals in the spring. V


This one-week program, for girls in grades 6–10, will engage students in science and technology learning through the design and creation of underwater robots. Interactive, hands-on activities will facilitate the understanding of some basic principles of physics, the engineering design process, and what it means to be an engineer or a scientist in marine research. Astronomy Exploration | July 10–14

In this one-week summer program, open to girls currently in grades 6–10, students will form a general perspective on the universe we live in through investigation of the properties and evolution of stars and galaxies, as well as the cosmological background of the universe as a whole. Codebreaking | July 31–August 4

In this one-week program, open to all girls in grades 6–10, students will be creating and solving puzzles, cracking codes and investigating cryptography. Camp Invention | August 7–11

In partnership with the National Inventors Hall of Fame, Kent Place School is pleased to offer the nationally acclaimed Camp Invention program to boys and girls entering Kindergarten–grade 6. In this exciting one-week summer program, students will explore connections among science, technology, engineering and innovation. Summer Academy | June 12–August 4

Our Kent Place Summer Camp offers exciting summer “academies,” for boys and girls in Preschool–grade 8, which provide children the opportunity to focus on a specialized area of interest through dynamic weeklong programs. Summer Academy features unique programs in sports, dramatic and creative arts and STEM. For more information and to register, please visit

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Summer Programs for Primary, Middle and Upper School Students

Girls leading the way Communicate more effectively Set goals to accomplish a vision Make ethical decisions Identify your leadership styles Resolve conflicts Have an impact on your community Connect with women leaders

2017 Primary School: June 26–30

Open to students entering grades 4 and 5

Detailed information about each program, the registration process, fees and financial aid is on our website,

Middle School: July 17–28

Open to students entering grades 7 and 8 Upper School: June 26–30

Open to students entering grade 9

Girls’ Leadership Institute 42 Norwood Avenue • Summit, NJ 07901

KPS Upper School Academic Achievements 2016–2017 ADvAnCED PLACEMEnT SCHOLARS nATIOnAL AP SCHOLARS Amara Balan ’16, Alyssa Hwang ’16 and Joannah Otis ’16 AP SCHOLARS WITH DISTInCTIOn Carolyn Bailey ’16, Amara Balan ’16, Camille Brzechffa ’16, Elizabeth Cook ’17, Julia Cozine ’17, Sophie Dewar ’16, Amanada Donaghue ’16, Mariella Evangelista ’16, Julia Greenberg ’16, Molly Gump ’16, Lillian Higgins ’16, Alyssa Hwang ’16, Sarah Brigid Konefal ’16, Caitlyn McGovern ’17, Carly Moskowitz ’17, Olivia Mukherjee ’16, Joannah Otis ’16, Katrina Peterson ’16, Olivia Peterson ’16, Simran Puri ’17, Priyanka Ray ’16, Madeline Reynolds ’16, Corinne Russell ’16, Lisa Sangree ’16, Samantha Silverstein ’17, Morgan Strong ’16 and Laura Whelan ’16 AP SCHOLARS WITH HOnOR Sarah Barry ’16, Hana Charnley ’17, Alexa Davy ’17, Claire Eckles ’16, Lara Gajewski ’17, Kathleen McAloon ’16, Bailey Mikytuck ’16, Katherine Miller ’17, Sydney Miller ’17, Bridget Reynolds ’16, Anna Salamone ’16, Annecy Schiffer ’17, Kara Schindler ’16, Catherine Serratelli ’16, Evelyn Shi ’17 and Elizabeth Yoss ’16 AP SCHOLARS Anna Agathis ’17, Natalie Anzevino ’17, Dayna Beatty ’16, Gabrielle Branin ’17, Alexis Broussard ’16, Noelle Broussard ’16, Ariana Cacoulidis ’16, Amelia Coffey ’17, Alaina Cohen ’16, Lilah Connell ’17, Olivia Cornish ’16, Ella DeBode ’17, Marisa DeSilva ‘16, Danielle Ditommaso ’16, Elizabeth Fallon ’16, Nadia Fradkin ’16, Madeleine Gapusan ’17, Audrey Godwin ’17, Gersandre Gonsalves-Domond ’16, Tyler Goodwin ‘16, Annika Gude ’17, Allison Herr ’16, Erin Hollenbaugh ’16, Laryssa Horodysky ’17, Sara Hull ’16, Madeline Irvin ’16, Joy Jack ’16, Lauren Johnson ’16, Anna Kanengiser ’17, Michaila Kaufman ’16, Jessica Levy ’16, Margaret Lohuis ’16, Olivia Manousos ’17, Sophia Mastrangelo ’17, Monica McGavin ’16, Daniela Moreira ’16, Anna Moskow ’17, Halle O’Hern ’16, Ajibabi Oloko ’17, Oluwabunmi Oyenusi ’16, Sima Parekh ’17, Gabriella Parlapiano ’16, Maya Ramakrishnan ’16, Paige Reddington ’17, Marni Rosenthal ’17, Kristen Rusas ’17, Noa Segal ’17, Radhika Siva ’16, Caroline Snyder ’17, Isabel Sottile ’17, Emma Tillyer ’17, Samantha Uy ’16, Hanna Van Cleef ’17, Ashley Villarreal ’16, Tiana Woods ’16 and Jiaqi (Sophie) Zhang ’17

2017 nATIOnAL MERIT SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAM FInALIST Sima Parekh ’17 COMMEnDED STUDEnTS Julia Cozine ’17, Alexa Davy ’17, Audrey Godwin ’17, Sophia Mastrangelo ’17, Katherine Miller ’17, Carly Moskowitz ’17, Simran Puri ’17, Evelyn Shi ’17 and Samantha Silverstein ’17

From Pen to Paper to Writing Across the Disciplines By Elizabeth Woodall, Director of the Upper School


aught solely by members of the English Department, Pen to Paper gave our girls an opportunity to hone voice via various types of writing and to polish syntax, mechanics and grammar. Initially, with its focus on analytical writing, it was geared to success in English classes. Recently, as part of our ongoing evaluation of our ninth-grade curriculum and to add skills that have a multidisciplinary impact, we decided to take a different approach to learning how to present ideas with insight and precision. We have constructed Writing Across the Disciplines to encompass more writing-to-think strategies, which, as lead teacher Jennifer Dwyer puts it, “enable students to generate more incisive observations with extensive experiences in various forms of prewriting — guided free writing, student-generated questions and thinking maps.” Concentrating on purpose and thought, not just the form of writing, combined with collaboration with other ninth-grade teachers and department chairs, the program will help students see themselves as scholars, develop their ability to draw connections among a variety of disciplines and, says Dwyer, “develop confidence to draw their own conclusions and express them in an engaging, unique, scholarly voice.”

Writing Across the Disciplines has four main units: Writing to Comprehend and Explain Writing to Analyze and Describe Writing to Evaluate Writing to Persuade Within each of these units, students will look at multiple means of communication, from traditional academic writing to visual forms of media, working independently and in groups. Feedback comes from ninth-grade teachers in all subjects, who get together frequently to identify specific assignments and projects that can be supported in Writing Across the Disciplines. This means that our girls see the consistency of expectations and the desire of all of their teachers to make sure their students have something worth saying — and then say it well. V

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Kent Place School 42 Norwood Avenue Summit, NJ 07901 NON-PROFIT ORGOrg. Non-Profit US POSTAGE U.S. Postage



NEW BRUNSWICK, NJNJ New Brunswick, PERMIT NO 5274 Permit No. 1

Our Social-Media Presence Is Expanding!

Primary School (Preschool–Grade 5) Admission Information Session Wednesday, April 26 9:30–11:30 a.m.



Please help to spread the word to friends, colleagues and relatives!

Snapchat: kentplaceschool Our Green Key guides snap “Day in the Life” stories on most Tuesdays and Fridays.

Dragon Instagram: @kpdragonpride Our new official athletics account is run by members of the Student Athletic Association.

Middle/Upper School (Grades 6–12) Admission Information Session Thursday, April 27 9:00–11:00 a.m.

Innovation for Brave and Brilliant Girls Blog: The Admission and Communications Offices are excited to announce the launch of our school blog. This blog will showcase our faculty, staff and community as thought-leaders on innovative ways to teach and support bravery and brilliance in girls.

Explore KPS with Your Daughter! (Kindergarten–Grade 5) Saturday, May 20 10:00 a.m.–noon

Register online at or call (908) 273-0900, ext. 265.

Continue the conversation using the hashtag #kpsvoyager.

Voyager Credits Editor Rachel Naggar

Professional Photography Vinny Carchietta Peter Chollick Will Hauser Mark Wyville

Contributors Julie Gentile Sara Sultanik Doris Troy

Design Abbie Moore Design

Direct comments about Voyager to the editor, at (908) 273-0900, ext. 217, or