April 2, 2015 â€¢ Volume: 2014-15, Issue 30
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Campus Update

Spring Long Weekend

School will be closed for the Spring Long Weekend tomororw and Monday, April 6. Classes will resume Tuesday, April 7. Enjoy your long weekend!

Big Flea Brings in Big Crowds

Thank you to the Big Flea committee, led by Jenn Mitchell, and thank you to the parents, students, faculty, staff, and friends of North Cross who volunteered, donated items, and shopped. Through your combined efforts, Big Flea raised over $26,000 after expenses.
Though we measure success in dollars raised to support the tuition paid by every family for each student, we also measure success by the involvement of our community and the people we help through our sale.  We estimate that over 3,500 people came to find bargains and shop for their families. The CAC was packed all day on Saturday.
Thank you for contributing to our â€œrecipe for success.” Great volunteers + great items to sell = a great event and great revenues for North Cross!

April Admission Events Next Week

The school is hosting a number of Spring Admission Events next week. Please share these events with families who might be interested in learning more about North Cross School. Interested families should contact Amy Jackson at 540-989-6641 or ajackson@northcross.org for more information or to reserve a space.

Early Childhood Program Tour
Thursday, April 9, 2015

8:30–9:30 a.m.: Prospective parents are invited to learn more about the NCS Early Childhood Program while observing our child-centered and academically rich environment in action.

Visit Days for Prospective Students
April 8, 9, and 10, 2015

10 a.m.–1:30 p.m.: Prospective students in grades 1–11 are invited to shadow a current student, visit several classes, and eat lunch.

Dad’s Hoop Nights

Dads, after a suggestion from Kevin Bloomfield to start an evening Dad's Hoop Night, I've reserved the gym from 7-9 p.m. every Monday and Wednesday in April and May.
Like a lot of you, Kevin and I are loving the games and March Madness and yearn for the days we could step out on the court, shake and bake (I'm doing a lot more shakin' now, if you know what I mean), and sink a shot or two. And while I'm a couple steps slower and my wind and legs are not where I'd like them to be, I still hope to play with the guys and have a good time.  If you feel the same way—you like hoops, want to play, like the competition but are not in zero body fat shape—come on out, shoot the ball, meet some other dads, and play a game or two. We're thinking that we'll start out with some 3 on 3 and work on our game, our wind, and our legs.
Let me know if you are going to make it - dlake@northcross.org.  Our first night will be Wednesday after Easter.  Give it a try!

David Lake

Academic Update

Lower School Spanish Festival

Last Friday morning, the lower school students performed their annual El Festival del Español in the Carter Athletic Center for parents and members of the school community. Students in each grade sang, danced, and performed to celebrate hispanic culture. The program was organized by lower school Spanish teachers Mariana Hermosilla de Casco and Jennifer Boush.

Click the photo image to view photos on our Facebook page.

Click the video image to view a short montage from the event on YouTube.

Meet the Authors

First grade students in Betsy Cook and Annie Robertson’s classes presented their originally composed and illustrated stories to parents on Tuesday afternoon. Each class set up a podium and students took turns reading their books to the audience.

Technology-Free Day

Students in Eaton Hall are asked to take part in a Technology-Free Day this weekend. Students will be challenged to go 24 hours (midnight to midnight) without using their cellphones, iPads, video/gaming units, laptops, or MP3 players on either Friday, April 3 or on Sunday, April 5. When students return after the long weekend, advisory groups will have discussions about this experiment. Earlier this week, Mrs. McGinn, in photo, helped Sam Karlen ’20 and other students prepare for the experiment.

Ed Dickenson, Director of the Middle School, sees this as an opportunity for students to engage in different activities. “For some students, this experiment might be fairly easy, and for others it might be a major adjustment. It will provide a great opportunity to do outdoor activities, read a book, write a letter or card, or gather friends for a fun activity (arranged in advance),” he said.
Middle school parents, and parents throughout the community, are asked to encourage their children to take part; and if they support the idea, perhaps the entire family can spend a day without technology.

Teacher Feature: Amy Jackson

How is working at North Cross different from public schools?
I went to very large high school, but my husband, David, went to a school much like North Cross in South Carolina (coincidentally, Liz Holt worked there at the time!). Once I started working here, I really saw the benefits of being part of a smaller school. I fell in the love with the program and the community; and after that, there was no question where our children would go to school.

Click here to read the full feature.

Photo: Amy Jackson with her husband, David, and their three children (from left) Elizabeth ’28, Will Nolan ’25, and Charlie ’28.

Art Update

All-District Middle School Band...finally

Due to a snowstorm several weeks ago, the Middle School All-District Band rehearsal and performance at Patrick Henry High School was rescheduled for last Friday and Saturday. Nalin Jha ’19, Davin Hansen ’19, Caroline Lystash ’20, Michael Habib ’20, and Patrick Daly ’20 each participated in the event. Lauren Daniel ’20 earned a spot but was unable to attend due to another commitment on the rescheduled dates. Congrats to the performers, and special thanks to Robert Chernault for contributing the fantastic photos.

Click here or the photo image to view photos on our Facebook page.

Visit from Mike Allen

Students is Robin Garrett’s Creative Writing class welcomed Roanoke Times writer, blogger, and novelist Mike Allen to their class on Monday morning.

Mike (in photo) discussed several different genres of writing, including journalism and science fiction. He shared his many newspaper experiences as a former crimes reporter and, more recently, as an arts and entertainment reporter. He also talked about the publishing industry and the challenges he faces as an freelance writer and editor. 
The students were in awe of his most recent manuscript (yet to be published), which is more than 350 typed pages in length on letter-sized paper. He inspired them with examples of his published works, Unseaming and The Black Fire Concerto, and by telling them to write a little every day in order to achieve longer works. 

Athletic Update

Boys’ Varsity Tennis Starts Strong

The Boys’ Varsity Tennis team beat Eastern Mennonite 8-1 on Tuesday afternoon to improve to 2-0 on the season. Jack Fishwick ’16 (in photo), won 10-5 at No. 3 singles and 8-5 at No. 3 doubles with Daniel Habib ’18. The team takes on LCA at home next Tuesday afternoon.

Girls’ Varsity Wins

The girls’ team picked up their first win against Northside High School on Monday afternoon by a score of 6-3.

Emma Cartledge ’18 (No. 1 singles, in photo), Helen Schmedtje ’17 (No. 2 singles), and Olivia Bloch ’19 (No. 6 singles) each won their matches. Emma is currently undefeated in singles this season. 

Emma Cartledge ’18 and Grace Wenk ’19 (No. 1 doubles), Helen Schmedtje ’17 and Lainey Auwarter (No. 2 doubles), and Olivia Bloch ’19 and Ruxi Dancea ’19 (No. 3 doubles) swept the doubles matches.  Helen and Lainey won 11-9 in an exhilarating tie break.

Helen and Emma will represent North Cross School at the BRC Singles Tournament at the Fishwick Tennis Center on April 11.

Raiders Scoreboard

Wed., April 1  

Girls’ Varsity Soccer
Roanoke Catholic 0
North Cross School 7
Sarah Maurer scored 3 goals

Girls’ Middle School Soccer
Roanoke Catholic 1
North Cross School 7
Goal by Emily Allara. Excellent goalkeeping by Olivia Murchison.

Middle School Baseball
North Cross School 6
Carlisle School 5
Andy Benson and Davin Hansen pitched well for the Raiders. Team is now 4-3

Tues., March 31

Boys’ Varsity Tennis
Eastern Mennonite 1
North Cross School 8
The team improved to 2-0 on the season.

Boys’ Varsity Lacrosse
North Cross School 13
Liberty Christian Academy 4
This was the first conference win of the season for the Raiders

Middle School Baseball
North Cross School 10
Liberty Christian Academy 3
Elliott Kennard picked up the win on the mound, Davin Hansen had the save.

Mon., March 30

Girls’ Varsity Tennis
Northside High School 3
North Cross School 6
#2 doubles team of Helen Schmedtje and Lainey Auwarter  won 11-9 in an exhilarating tie break

Girls’ Varsity Soccer
North Cross School 6
Roanoke Catholic 0
Sarah Maurer had 3 goals, Katie Sayers had two saves in goal

Sat., March 28

Girls’ Varsity Soccer
North Cross School 2
Trinity Episcopal 1
Goal by Lissa Smith

Girls’ Varsity Soccer
North Cross School 3
Nansemond Suffolk 0
Sarah Maurer had 2 goals, Shaida Campbell scored once

Fri., March 27

Girls’ Varsity Soccer
North Cross School 1
Trinity Christian 0
Sarah Maurer had the goal with an assist by Lissa Smith. Katie Sayers had 9 saves.

Celebrating 70 Years

Margaret Grayson

At the beginning of the 1983-84 academic year, Margaret Grayson began teaching Latin in the upper school. She brought with her a B.A. from Salem College, a spunky persona, and a belief that to teach is to learn.

In the classroom she challenged her students to understand the essential structure of language and instilled a love of the classics, much like current Latin teacher Wanda Finney. Colleague Richard Cook made the comparison and recalled that “the kids loved Margaret and her absolute frank, honest comments about any subject. It is so nice to have Wanda Finney to carry on the tradition that Margaret created with Latin at North Cross.”

Margaret’s results in the classroom were impressive as her students routinely scored in the the top percentiles on state and national tests. â€œShe was the best Latin teacher in the state, according to her peers, and I still am in awe of her. It ain't easy to teach a "dead" language. Of course she would be all over me for saying that!” said Mr. Cook
Her personality made Margaret a real favorite among students. It was not uncommon to find her dressed in black on March 15, the Ides of March, to mourn the day of Julius Caesar’s death in 44 BC. While she pushed her students to reach their potential, Margaret also showed a compassionate side. Margaret was known for fussing at the lazy, cheering the industrious, comforting the unhappy, and laughing with everyone. 

For Margaret, teaching extended beyond the classroom to the tennis courts, to the golf course, and to the bridge table. “She was a great athlete on the tennis court and on the golf course, and a fierce competitor in the state bridge scene,” recalled Mr. Cook. It was not uncommon for her to run out onto the tennis courts during break to play with the varsity team, then run back to class just in time to start teaching.

Margaret retired at the end of the 2008-09 academic year. The yearbook was dedicated to her for the second time—a rare honor indeed—and a sign of the respect her students had for her.

Photos: (top left) Margaret from the 1984 yearbook, (top right) from her yearbook dedication in 2009, and (bottom photo) at a pep rally in 1993.
Copyright © 2015 NORTH CROSS SCHOOL, All rights reserved.

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