Pressing Pause and Reflecting

Behind all the clay, cardboard and construction paper were the personal stories of seventh grade students who presented their annual Journey projects on Thursday, May 27.

Middle school humanities teachers Mary Chappell and Paul Friedman challenged their students to reflect on their seventh grade experience by choosing five events, people and moments from the year that had an impact on them. They each created a 3D, metaphorical piece depicting their journey culminating in a final presentation.

“Sometimes you have to sit back and reflect on your year to understand all your accomplishments and everything you've been through,” Louisa Knauss ’26 said. “This project let me do that.”

Inspired by the theme of baseball, Lucas Freedman ’26 created “The Brave Ballpark,”  which wove together experiences such as reading an editorial about a racist team logo and learning about diversity like the Black Lives Matter movement. The project also considered themes of bravery, friendship, family and collaboration. Freedman said a quote by baseball great Derek Jeter “has inspired me to work hard for every opportunity that I get if I want to have a chance to be great later in life.”

Journey Projects Highlights:

These self-reflective moments are what Chappell looks forward to every year. “The students are very honest and express deep feelings in these projects. I think they surprise themselves many times,” she said. “They are all different and all personal.”

Friedman was impressed with the “symbolic representations like tsunamis, concert stages, dripping Salvador Dali-esque clocks, trees and hot air balloons” on display and the way students “were able to highlight the impact of the pandemic, being on Zoom, reconnecting with friends, and experiencing various moments here on campus.”

Jimmy Fabian ’26 summed it up by saying: “It was a very interesting experience seeing how everyone else perceived the same year.”

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