A quiet place to study ... a chance to unwind and play board games ... the opportunity to chat and unwind with friends -- all of these are now after-school options for Middle School students through Heathwood's new Thought Studio.
Held in the Dining Commons Monday through Friday from 3:05 to 5:30 p.m., The Thought Studio offers space for a quiet, supervised study hall as well as areas for socializing and board games. The goal, says Heathwood Director of Extended Programming Jessie Garlinghouse, is to provide an after-school option specifically tailored to the needs of Middle School students and parents: "Students who have outgrown traditional after-school programming but aren't yet old enough to fend for themselves after school deserve a space of their own that's safe, comfortable, and fun."
Any Middle School (or Upper School) student can come to The Thought Studio, every day, or on a drop-in basis, as long as they're signed up for Afternoon Express. Families that have not signed up yet this year can do so by emailing Mrs. Garlinghouse at firstname.lastname@example.org. There is no cost for attendance through 4 p.m.; thereafter, normal AE rates apply.
The Thought Studio is staffed by Middle School English teacher Lynn Cooper and AE teachers Morgan Siuda, Elizabeth Nye, and Maddie Corso. So far, says Mrs. Cooper, the students and faculty alike have had a great experience: "I love that the kids are discussing academic topics together. Reading is social - kids reading and then discussing novels at tables."
Attendance for the first week of the program has been robust, averaging 35 students a day.