At Bowman, a number of unique special events held throughout the year have become much loved traditions eagerly anticipated by students, staff and parents. The annual camping trip, the extraordinarily Halloween celebration and the School Science Fair each involve the whole school and have been carefully designed to bring the core academic subjects to bear in exciting real world projects. These events offer each Bowman child a chance to meet exciting challenges and have a lot of fun in the process!
“When our child returned the first year, we realized that this event is really the Bowman philosophy disguised as a camping trip.”
The high point of every year at Bowman is, without a doubt, the all school camping trip when all Bowman students, accompanied by their teachers set off for a stay of several days in a nearby State Park. From Lower Elementary students on their first two-night trip to Middle Schoolers on their final five-day outing, all the students have the opportunity to join together to share, to lead, to learn.
The trip is organized and carried out by the students themselves – with lots of age appropriate help and guidance from the staff, Planning for the trip involves students bringing together skills and information developed in nearly every subject the students have studied. Students plan and prepare meals, as well as packing and equipment lists. Older students practice the arts of creating a resume and interviewing as they try-out to be chosen as a leader of one of the committees. Students work with budgets, and are encouraged to consider the weight and space of all food and equipment as well. Once at the site, older students set up camp, having practiced pitching tents back at school. They help with orienteering, trust and nature hunts.
Every student keeps a journal to note down important scientific observations as well as to reflect on the beauty of the natural setting and to capture the fun at being out in the woods with all your friends.
Activities at camp include exploring, games, songs and skits. A feature enjoyed by all is the opportunity for all the students to spend time together, getting to know themselves and each other in a new way.
“Unbelievable!” (New parent)
Halloween is one of the high points of the year for each and every Bowman student. The students have an opportunity to dress up in home-made costumes and parade through the school and the proud parents have an opportunity to enjoy the spectacle. But while the Halloween celebration is a great deal of fun, it is planned for and carried out in a unique way which integrates Social Studies and Language Arts. Each child picks a historical or literary figure associated with one of the continents being focused on during the school year. The students create their costumes and deliver an oral report to their classmates on “themselves” based on research they have done. At the end of the celebration, all the students combine with students from other classes to form a school-wide time line. Creativity, fun and social and academic development make our Halloween celebration exciting and memorable for everyone.
Science Fair is a school-wide spring event. Students in Middle School spend several weeks designing an experiment, carrying it out, and preparing a summary report, poster board and oral presentation to share what they have learned with the audiences they will meet. The students create a brochure describing the experiments and distribute “passports” to guide each guest through the presentations.
Upper Elementary Students work in teams, selecting experiments from a list, researching the topics, creating poster boards and answering the question “How are we affected today by your topic?” During Science Fair, Upper Elementary students discuss their projects with the audience.
Lower Elementary Students and Bowman Juniors also participate in Science Fair by sharing an experiment they worked on with the teachers while in larger groups. Students at this young level are able to answer questions from a prepared question list as the visitors to the fair pass through their exhibits. Displays, charts, graphs, and artwork decorate the Lower Elementary and Junior level project areas.
Science Fair incorporates all aspects of the Bowman curriculum; Science, Art and Design, and Language Arts come together to make this a memorable event.