Building Self-Confidence and Pride

I watched as the Kindergarteners listened to Meharriew ’25 with rapt attention, as he shared about his great-grandfather who lived in Ethiopia and how his choices and actions would influence his parents’ lives and then ultimately his. 

The presentation was part of a timeline Meharriew created for his Origins of our Humanity: Ancient Worlds class, in which the students were charged with creating a visual display of the important events in their family lineage, as well as their own. The projects evolved into an almost anthropological exploration of family and personal history, and our Grade 6 Dragons were asked to discover a bigger theme or idea that would connect all of the events on their timeline. 

Our Kindergarteners have also been working on personal timelines, building their self-confidence and pride as they reflect on what matters to them and sharing it with the class. It was such a delight, in true WES fashion, when Meharriew ’25 and Gabriella ’25 went down to Kindergarten to present their timelines to the younger grade level. Gabriella actually used to be in KA, and she helped so many of the students (who were previously a little confused) understand the project as she shared a format and provided a model for them to emulate. 

At WES, we talk a lot about creating an environment where children can experiment, take risks, fail, and repeat, challenging themselves to increase their perseverance and fully develop their giftings and talents. But before students can do any of that, they have to know they are safe and they are loved. They also have to love themselves. These projects empower our students to reflect on what makes them special and unique as individuals and gain pride and confidence in who they are. 

My favorite part of this project, though, was the ingenuity of the teachers, as they connected learning across grade levels and found ways for our older Dragons to mentor our younger students. These cross-grade level friendships strengthen our community, nurture our younger students’ spirits, and provide leadership opportunities for our Middle Schoolers.

Danny Vogelman
Head of School