Friends School of Minnesota Blog

A Quaker school blog about progressive education.

Media Literacy and the Penumbra Theater Company

Friends School of Minnesota 7th and 8th graders wrapped up our Race, Gender, and Sexuality in the Media and Pop Culture unit in humanities in May. This unit challenges students to examine the role media plays in their lives, how the media constructs messages about race/ethnicity, gender, and sexuality, and how those messages impact one’s sense of identity. We center the unit around the Center for Media Literacy’s five core concepts.. Read More

All School Crosby Farm Day 2016

It was a glorious day for FSM’s all school Crosby Farm Day! Throughout the year, 7th and 8th grade students traveled monthly to Crosby Farm Regional Park in the Mississippi River Valley. They learned the natural history of the place, measured river height and rates, studied wildlife, and wrote and sketched in a specific habitat. Students went back to the same spot each month of the school year and tracked how the.. Read More

What Makes a Community?

First and second graders have been examining what makes a community. Beginning last fall, parents and other community members came and spoke to Friends School of Minnesota’s first and second grade classrooms about their jobs and roles within our communities. After learning and writing about these jobs, students examined the community around FSM through walks focused on transportation, architecture, and green spaces. Through this process, students chose a committee that.. Read More

Skipping Stones Summer Program Turns 10!

Skipping Stones, FSM’s summer camping trips for our middle schoolers, turns ten years old this year! Each summer since 2006, groups of FSM students have gone camping in one of Minnesota’s state parks for five days and four nights. Trips include outdoor adventures such as inner-tubing down the Root River through Lanesboro, exploring caves in southeastern Minnesota, hiking to the top of Barn Bluff in Red Wing, cycling through the pine forests surrounding.. Read More

Environmental Education at FSM: Walking in our Purpose

Environmental education at Friends School of Minnesota seeks to prepare students to become citizens and stewards of the earth. Whether on a week-long trip to Wolf Ridge Environmental Learning Center, a nature walk in the park, or collecting the school compost, environmental education is woven throughout FSM’s K-8 experience. Here is some great news that demonstrates our community’s commitment to environmental education. Presenting FSM Environmental Education Work Last month, members of.. Read More

Our Work on Race and Racism in 5th and 6th Grade Humanities

Over the past month, fellow middle school humanities teacher Melissa Andersen and I have been engaged with the 5th and 6th graders in some challenging, thoughtful work around race and racism in our society. It began with our field trip to the RACE: Are We So Different? exhibit at the Science Museum of Minnesota, something I recommend that everyone go and see. Before the field trip, we did some preview.. Read More

People of Color Conference 2015

I attended the 2015 NAIS People of Color Conference in Tampa, Florida from December 2nd – 5th. I returned rejuvenated, honored, empowered, and inspired. It was great to be surrounded by the over 4300 faculty, administrators, and students of color from independent schools across the country. It was like one big family reunion with people giving hugs upon meeting you for the first time. Most of the sessions focused on addressing.. Read More