I sat in my chair, with Christopher McNeil, Upper School Dean of Student Life, at the front of the classroom telling us it was time to learn Latin verb conjugations. To my surprise, he started to sing the tune of the Mickey Mouse song, but with different letters. “O-S-T-MUS-TIS-NT,” we chanted over and over. This lesson plan made me giddy because a teacher had permitted, nay encouraged, me to sing, all in the pursuit of language learning. Fourteen years later, and I can still remember how those verb endings go as clear as day.
Upon graduation, who ever really thinks they are going to return to their high school to teach? We grab our diplomas and sprint from Derryfield to start what will unquestionably be the bigger and better College Experience. Yet for most, that fantasy is quickly gone in September after encountering your roommate, your first exam, and/or your first load of laundry.
Jake Harwood ’10 is a junior at Whitman College in Walla Walla, WA, majoring in Politics with minors in History and Philosophy. He is an avid member of the cycling and rock climbing communities and also leads tours for the Admissions Office and tutors in the Writing Center.
I learned many things during my six years at Derryfield. I can discuss the symbolism in Lord of the Flies, conjugate Spanish verbs in the subjective tense, find the derivative of almost any function, and pretend to calculate a variety of physics equations. The truth is, though, that the most important lesson I received from my Derryfield education was not something I gleaned from classroom work or written labs, but rather from the performing arts program and its people.
Located in Manchester, NH, The Derryfield School is a private day school for grades 6-12. Students benefit from a challenging academic program, fine and performing arts, competitive athletics, and a wide selection of extracurricular activities.