Students

The First Casualty

Author: 
Scott
Children are born with one overriding drive. They seek to grow up and to gain mastery over their own lives. Any child who grows up in a wider culture that values freedom is naturally jealous of what s/he feels to … Continue reading

Sudbury and the FEAR OF FALLING BEHIND

Author: 
Associated School: 

Not long ago a parent told me that her son had “never been happier” since he enrolled earlier this spring.  And indeed, that very morning I had seen him running across the back hill with his arms outstretched and his head thrown back; it was like a scene from Free Willy.  His parent told me that, while his former school had stretched itself to make things work for him, he remained miserable there.  His needs, for space and time and companionship, were not being met.  I hear it a lot: it was like trying to fit the old round peg into the unforgiving square hole, but here, at last, there was no hole to conform to.  Out the window at this moment I can see three little bands of kids wandering the grounds, gesticulating excitedly, creating worlds beyond my kin.  One of them has green hair and no shirt.  One of them is carrying a bag by a strap around his forehead.  And one of them is being led by another...on a leash.  It’s so easy to forget that homo sapiens have developed a complex set of needs - and the skills to meet them - over 200,000 years of evolution, and they are embedded in us like algorithms that find expression one way or another.  We need to explore our identities and forge them in the context of intense social interaction in order to be successful, healthy, and happy.  Welcome to our “school.”

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Senate Confirmations, Donuts and the Price of Justice

Author: 
Foss Tighe
Last week I found an example of “life imitating life”. Or more specifically life at SVS was imitating life in Washington. I am fascinated by the quirky details of democratic institutions. So, I got a little thrill when the 50-50 … Continue reading

Reading: The Great Escape

Author: 
Silvia Beier
… all I can do is read a book to stay awake, And it rips my life away, But it’s a great escape … BLind MeLoN, “No Rain” (1992) Recently, I did something very unhealthy. It started innocently enough with … Continue reading

Starting a Corporation

Author: 
Lauren Ligotti
It’s funny how things happen at SVS. Conversation is always a huge part of how students and staff members spend their time. People of all ages are talking about interests, hobbies, and ideas. It flows without interruption. During one of … Continue reading

When Artists Bake

Author: 
Wendy Lement
When I was voted in as a new staff member last spring, I knew I’d be doing a lot of cooking. Since the school’s inception cooking has been a vital part of SVS’s culture. The seeds for my own career … Continue reading

No Morning Bell Rings at the Sudbury Valley School

Author: 
Foss Tighe
Recently I was struggling with ideas on how to get the kids to help out more around the house. I found myself pondering what leverage I had over the kids. We have chosen not to make their allowance dependent on … Continue reading

Our First Open Mic

Author: 
Mimsy Sadofsky
An Open Mic is a scary thing to organize. After all, the success of the endeavor depends not on who says they want to sing, or play a song, or dance, or do an act, beforehand, but who actually steps … Continue reading

Competition and Cooperation at Sudbury Valley

Author: 
Silvia Beier
From my teaching days, there is a particular moment I remember with special sadness: It’s the moment in the semester when everything kind of closes up, and it happened without fail just a few weeks into the school year, coinciding … Continue reading

School Meeting Dispatch: Sleeping at School

Author: 
Associated School: 

Last week a motion to ban sleeping at school(!) came before our School Meeting.  Although sleeping isn’t a widespread practice here, it is common to see one or two students sawing logs at some point on any given day, and occasionally certain of the cozier nooks in the building become de-facto napping spots; it’s the “flipped classroom” concept taken swiftly to its apocalyptic  conclusion.  Anyway, there’s a feeling, at least amongst a few of the staff members, myself included, that there is something just a little weird about it.  While it’s true that our students have full responsibility for deciding how to spend their time, sleeping is unique among human activities because the sleeper is unconscious (and can therefore hardly be responsible for themselves).  Besides, sleeping is generally a private act, not a social one, and it comes wrapped in an aura of intimacy - and blankets, and all those blankets and limbs strewn about willy-nilly look sloppy; it’s a little hard on the eyes and it’s probably pretty bad PR.

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Contact Us

Hudson Valley Sudbury School

84 Zena Road
Kingston, NY 12401
 
Phone: 845-679-1002
Fax: 845-679-3874