The Episcopal Schools Day Celebration on October 10, hosted by Beauvoir School at Washington National Cathedral, included 800 children with their teachers, administrators, and parents from 11 different member schools with service bulletin artwork provided by one student, with two choirs and two readers of Holy Scripture, and clergy/chaplains all representing different schools. The procession included magnificent banners from every school in attendance. The new Dean of the Cathedral, the Very Reverend Gary Hall preached a truly wonderful homily with great natural enthusiasm and authenticity on the theme selected by NAES: “The Gift of Joy and Wonder in All Your Works.” Many school groups stayed for tours of the Cathedral as well. It was a truly wonderful morning!
The Early Childhood Conference on October 19 (just last Friday) was another terrific success. The conference was graciously hosted by Julia Berry and the Saint Columba’s Nursery School. There were 140 participants from 12 member schools and 11 non-member schools, with the Rev. Dr. Rosemary Beales as the Keynote Speaker, focusing on issues of spiritual development in the early childhood experience. Twelve different workshops offered in the morning and again in the afternoon covered topics as relevant and wide-ranging as dealing with anxiety in children, technology in the classroom, managing sensory issues, creative drama, memory in the young child, yoga, food and its relationship to learning, speech development, issues of vision development, new ideas for teaching science and mathematics! Presenters came from member schools and the community at large and were all remarkably well-prepared and professional. A magnificent lunch brought everyone together and the entire day was productive, creative and collegial.