The end of the school year leads us to anticipate new experiences and reflect on the year. Have we learned all we can learn to be prepared for what is to come? Did we manifest our core values and carry out our mission as a school in this academic year?
Emilia Fieseler of Friedrichshafen, Germany, recently spent five weeks as a guest student in the Upper School of Shorecrest Preparatory School. Her time at Shorecrest was a new experience for her and for the students who got to know her. Emilia’s thoughts on her time at Shorecrest give us a more objective lens for reflection on whether the community at Shorecrest lives up to its philosophy and mission. Emilia shared her impressions and opinions with us.
- Our Mission in Action
Part of the educational philosophy at Shorecrest is to develop students who excel at academics and in their personal lives. As written in the statement of the Philosophy, “The Shorecrest community is united around our responsibility to nurture in our students a respect for themselves and others. Whether on the playground or when doing a service project, we encourage our students to understand and empathize with a diverse range of people both locally and in the broader world.”
According to our guest student this mission is being accomplished. Emilia says, “What really surprised me about Shorecrest was that all the students are so kind and helpful.” After only five weeks, she wishes she could take her new friends back with her to Germany. She goes on to say, "Also, the students and the teachers have a really good relation to each other, more like a friends than like Teacher-Student relation. Some students can also call their teachers by their first names, which is great. You don’t have the feeling like the teachers are the boss."
- Varied Learning Environment
Shorecrest’s Statement of Philosophy says that the curriculum is intendeded to develop pragmatic, life-long learners, who can inonvate and take risks by creating an atmosphere of mutual respect and community. In the hustle of Shorecrest's Upper School, it can be difficult to know if that development is happening in the moment. Everything from a varied schedule, to technology can play a part. Emilia Fieseler took note of the differences to her German High School, and how Shorecrest stood out to her.
She says, “I actually like the daily routine of Shorecrest. First it was a little bit difficult to understand the Schedule because it changes every day, but after I checked how it works it was pretty easy. In Germany, we don’t have such a Schedule. We have a timetable (Stundenplan) for the whole week and it repeats every week, so for example you have the same schedule every Monday, Tuesday,....
We also don’t have such long breaks or community time either, which is really sad because I enjoyed these long breaks. Also, school starts in Germany always at 7:40 in the morning and ends at different times, for example one day it ends at 12:50 or on other days at 5:00 in the evening. The lessons are always 45 minutes long and not 55 like here. It also was quite difficult to find all my classrooms, but after the first week I luckily found them all with the help of my friends!
The atmosphere during the lessons is also very nice and it is fun to learn new things. What surprised me, too, was that the students can use their phones or iPads at any time, also during the lesson which is really cool. The teachers work with electronic devices and let the students work with them, too, which is different to Germany.
The most surprising challenge was mainly my Spanish class, because I had to translate the vocabulary first into German and then into English. But I got used to it and in the end it worked really well. It also was quite difficult to find all my classrooms, but after the first week I luckily found them all with the help of my friends!”
Through Emilia’s observations, we can see the excellent community that surrounds our students every day. It makes one wonder if there is any room for improvement. Emilia did have one suggestion. When asked what she would leave behind for Shorecrest to remember her by, Emilia suggested that better food could be her legacy. Although, she says she very much enjoyed the snack options.
Emilia says if she could take anything with her it would be her friends. She tells us, “I had such a great time at Shorecrest! I am really sad to leave it.”
We are proud of our students and faculty and the way they practice the values and mission of our school on a daily basis. We invite you to see our community in action by scheduling a personal tour.