Over March 17–19, 74 KCD students participated in the Kentucky United Nations Assembly (KUNA), an experiential learning conference in which students participate directly in simulated international diplomacy. We are very proud that KCD was once again recognized as the Outstanding Delegation, the top overall award among all delegations.
The Baking Club held their first bake sale of the school year on Monday, March 18, and it was a huge success! The club sold out of all of their baked goods! Proceeds from the sale will benefit The Humane Society. This was a fun and delicious way to demonstrate stewardship in our community. Thank you to all the Bearcats that supported the bake sale!
In the spirit of March Madness, the major NCAA basketball tournament, the middle school leadership council, the CLC, organized a “Snack Madness.” The group put together a bracket pitting different snacks against one another to see which snack the student body most preferred. Students voted round by round, and in a close final matchup, Chips Ahoy edged out Doritos for the win! Students will enjoy Chips Ahoy cookies for snack in the coming weeks. Thanks to the CLC for organizing this fun event.
Students in Danielle Brown’s middle school Fashion Design elective recently completed a project inspired by the unconventional materials challenge in the reality TV show Project Runway. Students designed and constructed garments using unusual materials and showed them off at a photoshoot run by US photography teacher David Miller. Students really enjoyed modeling their creations for the camera!
On March 15, KCD held its third inservice day of the school year for faculty and staff. The morning session, called Celebrate and Educate, provided an opportunity for faculty and staff to learn from their colleagues about new curricula and innovative programs. The goal of this program was to promote schoolwide awareness of diverse topics such as the lower school math curriculum, project-based learning in eighth grade science, and how PE is incorporating occupational therapy into their curriculum. Teachers really enjoyed learning more about their colleagues’ work and how it makes KCD a special place for students.
Director of Athletics Dr. Tim Green is pleased to announce that KCD middle school teacher Kristen Grogan has accepted the position of KCD head varsity girls basketball coach for the 2019–20 season. Coach Grogan also serves as the head coach for KCD varsity girls soccer.
On March 19, lower schoolers enjoyed a performance from KCD Orchestra Director James Racine (aka Maestro J) and his band. Mr. Racine is also KCD’s director of diversity and inclusion, and he said that the goal of the performance, called “Inclusion Through Music,” was to find a way to talk about stereotypes that would be appropriate and enjoyable for a lower school audience.
We were proud to welcome Mr. Lowry Watkins Jr., a 1964 graduate of KCD predecessor Aquinas Preparatory School, to throw out the first pitch at our varsity baseball season opener against Moore. Mr. Watkins is a generous KCD supporter who has made a lasting impact on this school over many years. In addition to establishing a student scholarship fund, Mr. Watkins has established endowments to benefit the tennis, baseball, and soccer programs, as well as the library. He was recognized with KCD’s Exceptional Service Award in 2011. Thanks to Mr. Lowry Watkins Jr. for his generosity and support!
The KCD Upper School Speech Team capped a mighty season by earning a trophy as a School of Excellence in speaking events at the state tournament held at UK over March 15–16. In addition, Caroline Topham took 2nd place in Broadcasting, while Nicole White and Will Tway took 4th in Improvisational Duo. Graesyn Heimer advanced to quarterfinals in Broadcasting, and Will Tway advanced to semifinals in Dramatic Interpretation. All in all, it was a great showing for our Bearcat speakers!
Rube Goldberg machines are designed to perform simple tasks in very complicated ways. Fourth graders created their own Rube Goldberg machines during a recent interdisciplinary STEAM unit led by lower school teachers Terri Giesel, Rosanne Zabloudil, Jeannine Ary, and Becky Gallion. Each team of students was responsible for designing and constructing a machine that would make a marble go into a cup—in a very complicated way, of course! Students enjoyed this collaborative project combining science, art, music, and technology.
Congratulations to the KCD middle school speech team, who placed sixth in the state at the Kentucky High School Speech League’s Junior State Tournament on March 1–2 in Lexington. Eleven KCD students represented KCD at the competition. Six students advanced to semifinals in various events, and all six made it to the final rounds in at least one of their events.
KCD nutritionist Catherine Arnold spoke to the sixth grade about snacks on Thursday, March 14. During her presentation, each adviser group gave her two snacks to evaluate. Ms. Arnold examined the snacks and spoke about the ingredients in each. She then gave each snack a rating of go or a slow. This fun presentation helped the sixth graders know what to look for in making healthy snack choices.
KCD’s Mu Alpha Theta math club had a great year in the Log1 National contest this year. The club, which is composed of 27 students, finished 1st in the state, 5th in the region, and 20th nationally! Congratulations to the following students, who earned awards for the placing in the top 40 in their division: Eddy Zhong, Lauren Rawson, Ayaan Jabbar, Daniel Greenberg, Mahmoud Kutmah, Nicole Wei, and Sarisha Lohano. The club will also get a $271 check for their achievements!
On March 14, seventh grade students took part in the final presentations of their Euro projects. For the last eight weeks, seventh grade students have been hard at work on this interdisciplinary, collaborative project that ties together English, math, geography, and art class curriculums. Each group was assigned a European country and was required to create a bid for that country to host the 2020 Olympics. Along the way, students produced a website, promotional video, Olympic mascot, and several pieces of writing on the history, geography, and culture of their country.
The talent in our community got a chance to shine on March 8 at the first-ever KCD’s Got Talent schoolwide talent show. After an incredible meal and festive beverages from Taco Luchador/Guacamole, faculty, staff, parents, and alumni took to the stage to sing, play, and tell jokes before an appreciative audience in the theater. The business office’s Kara Kelton was recognized as the best act of the night for her soulful rendition of “Sittin’ on the Dock of the Bay.”
For the past few years, math teachers Sarah Shartzer and Jenni Williams have been using the popular Breakout games in their classes to emphasize collaboration and creative problem-solving. Ms. Williams has been taking her math classes to Breakout games, while Ms. Shartzer has designed her own version of the game, called Fake-out. On March 4, they presented a session for more than a hundred fellow teachers at the Kentucky Center for Mathematics (KCM) conference in Lexington, discussing how they’ve integrated these activities into their math curriculum.
On March 1, eighth graders visited the Louisville Zoo as part of their seven-week Endangered Species Project. Students met with docents, handled and petted a few animals, went on tours to see various endangered species, and discussed and developed Species Survival Plans. Students will draw on their zoo experience in the second half of the project, which culminates with presentation day on March 28.
Congratulations to the fifth grade Governor’s Cup team, who was recognized with the Hume Sportsmanship Award at their regional competition on March 2. In addition, Ashir Ouseph placed 5th in Arts and Humanities, and Gage Fackler placed 3rd. Congratulations to these Bearcats on exemplifying our motto of Citizen, Scholar, Steward.
Congratulations to the cast and crew of Les Misérables on spectacular production last weekend. This was a tremendously ambitious show, and both cast and crew delivered a polished and moving set of performances. Congratulations to director Kate Scinta, musical director Karen Welsh, and technical director Rudy Keel on a terrific show. Finally, thanks to the Fine Arts Guild, whose contributions allowed this production to be accompanied by a live orchestra.
The Junior Breakfast marks juniors’ transition to the role of senior leadership and provides an opportunity for parents to mark the occasion with a class ring or other gift. This year’s speaker was KCD grad Jason Geer ’11, who encouraged students to make the most of their KCD experience by opening themselves to new activities and experiences.
On February 16, the KCD Gearcats robotics team had an impressive showing in their season-ending robotics tournament. Through teamwork, hard work, and dedication, the team engineered a very competitive robot, falling short by just one point in the quarterfinals to the eventual tournament champion. Congratulations to team members Ayaan Jabbar, Logan Purkiss, Jerry Wu, Bryce Wunderlich, Tala Saad, Anish Bhalerao, Byrd Saylor, Nico Williams, Anya Sharma, Elly Girdler, and Paxton Kuhn on a fantastic season!
Congratulations to the KCD MathCounts team, who finished as regional runners-up at the MathCounts regional competition on February 16. Sixteen KCD students competed against 200 other students from 30 middle schools in the surrounding area.
Congratulations to Emaan Sayied, Daniel Bronfman, Evan Davis, Hugh Kuffner, and Natalie Hayden for finishing in the top 25 in the region and to the four-person KCD team of Armaan Rai, Aryan Agahtehrani, Daniel Bronfman, and Emaan Sayied for earning trophies for placing second in the competition!
On March 1, JK parents joined music teacher LuAnn Hayes for a musical program featuring trains. Students used a variety of drums to illustrate the idea of movement, and even turned the music room into a giant train track complete with a bridge, tunnels, and a station! The musical ideas Ms. Hayes’ students are exploring are connected to their classroom study of transportation.
On February 25, the seventh grade music ensemble performed Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believin’ ” for their peers during the Monday meeting. The performance featured guitar, ukulele, electric guitar, electric bass, drum kit, congas, bongos, hand percussion instruments, harp, keyboards, and solo voice. Congratulations to all on a very successful performance!
Several KCD swim team members competed at the KHSAA state swim meet on February 22-23. Cora Martin finished 9th overall with an impressive performance in the 100 fly. The 200 free relay team of Abby Caudill, Emory Garlove, Emma Coulter, and Cora Martin finished with a time of 1:44.37, placing 15th in the state and setting a new KCD record! Congratulations to coach Kinney and the Bearcats on a strong finish to the swim season!
Earlier this month, KCD’s upper school Governor’s Cup team finished second our ot 17 teams at their regional tournament.
KCD excelled in the two team events. In Future Problem Solving, Zahra Khan, Caleh Collins, Catherine Tanner, and Sandhya Lohano earned first place in the region. Congratulations to Coach Sarah Shartzer and her team, who will compete at the state tournament later this month!
In addition, the Quick Recall team avenged earlier season losses to Trinity and Eastern to come in second place overall. Congratulations to Coach Robbie Hitzelberg and his players, Eddy Zhong, Jake Latts, Georgia Coats, David Brennan, and Taylor Parker, who will also compete at state!
During the Alumni and Chair’s Reception on February 8, we were proud to honor KCD parents Carrie Birkhead Scharf ’82 and David Scharf with the Exceptional Service Award. Interim Head of School Anne Glosky and Board Chair George Wagner presented the Scharfs with the award, which recognizes individuals who have made important contributions to the KCD community.
KCD’s fifth grade Quick Recall team will advance to regionals after very competitive play at the district competition. In addition, Akash Sigdel, Gage Fackler, Ashir Ouseph, Ricky Panchal, and Paige Davis will advance to regionals as individual competitors for written assessments. We’re proud of these students and wish them good luck at regionals on March 2!
Throughout the week, fourth grade students in Jeannine Ary’s music class performed Carnival of the Animals as puppet theater for other lower school classes. Carnival of the Animals is a humorous musical suite of fourteen movements by the French Romantic composer Camille Saint-Saëns. The fourth grade performances contained a variety of animal puppets, fun music, and animal sounds. The production helped lower school students prepare for the Louisville Orchestra‘s family concert in March.
On February 8, Matt Evans’ geography students were able to use an item made in our own design and fabrication lab as a valuable tool in their learning. Using dymaxion globes that they created with Tim Rice in the design and fabrication lab, students were able to view and learn about the geography of our world in a new way. Using a games approach with the globes, students had fun while learning about the Earth!
Mr. Evans said, “Dymaxion globes made in the KCD Design and Fabrication Lab allow my geography students to learn tactilely while developing spatial awareness and recognition. Never too old for game play!”
The Lower School-Upper School Community Outreach event was a success, with students from each division working together to make 250 boxes! The Jared’s Box Project involved filling a plastic shoe box with small items and “well wishes, hope, and love” for ill children to play with. The boxes will be delivered over Winter Break to Norton’s Children’s Hospital, the Ronald McDonald House, and the Center for Women and Families (among other places). This great example of stewardship in our community will touch many lives!
Congratulations to KCD varsity swim coach John Kinney on being named the KHSAA Region 5 Coach of the Year for boys swimming! This award, voted on by his peers, is a great honor for coach Kinney, who is in his first year leading the Bearcat swim team. “All of this would not be possible without two fantastic assistant coaches, everyone’s help and support, and most importantly, the kids on the team,” Coach Kinney said.
On February 14, Michelle Amos from the Little Loomhouse visited students in Rebecca Gallion’s art class. The students worked together to make bracelets and learned about weaving, spinning, and other fiber arts. This was a great educational experience for our students!
On February 11, the sixth grade music ensemble performed Bobby McFerrin’s “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” as the culmination of their trimester-long research into the evolution of African-American music. Featured instruments included guitar, ukulele, electric guitar, electric bass, drum kit, congas, bongos, hand percussion instruments, harp, keyboards, and solo voice. Congratulations to all on a very successful performance!
In the month of February, kindness has been a theme in the Lower School and the Middle School. On February 8, students from each division teamed up to make cards with encouraging words in the library. The students then placed the cards in books throughout the library for readers to find! This activity of one of many that students are participating in throughout the month of February. Teachers are also discussing kindness and giving students the opportunity to reflect on the projects and activities they are participating in.
Congratulations to the KCD swim and dive team on a great performance at the regional championships this past weekend. The following swimmers placed in finals, scoring points for the Bearcats: Emory Garlove, Liana Renard, Cora Martin, Kyra Anderson, Adam Hetman, Drew Collis, Parker Touma, Adam Melhuish, Emma Coulter, Meena Rao, Cate Coartney, Nick Prohaska, Abby Caudill, Aspen Caudill, Katie Coulter, Clay Bockhorst, Addison Garlove, Andrew Mainka, Kyra Anderson, and Grace Halbleib.
On February 4, Aaron Bibelhauser and Dave Howard from the Kentucky Folk School visited with Jeannine Ary’s fourth grade music students, teaching them about the history of Bluegrass music and the elements of songwriting. Students were introduced to a number of unique instruments and enjoyed singing some familiar Bluegrass music with the musicians. A special thank you to the KCD Fine Arts Guild for sponsoring this event.
On February 6, sixth grade students spent their day visiting the Speed Art Museum at the University of Louisville. The students learned about the many exhibits at the museum on a guided tour by the museum staff and then split into advisee groups to view some of their favorite works of art. The group finished this fun and eventful day with a delicious lunch at the Old Spaghetti Factory!
Congratulations to the following field hockey players on being named to the 2018 Keith Waldman—Optimal Performance Associates/NFHCA High School National Academic Squad: Caroline Collis, Mary Claire Duncan, Erin Gillis, Emily Harrison, Arabella Maki, Katie Nagaraj, Lucy Poindexter, Megan Read, Sophia Sparks, and Ashley White.
For the next eight weeks, eighth graders will be investigating and learning about endangered species around the world. The interdisciplinary project kicked off this week with a lottery in which students picked the animals they will research. You can learn more about the Endangered Species Project by visiting the project website.
On Friday, February 1, middle school students were surprised with a fun-filled afternoon that included some special treats at lunch and a movie in the KCD Theater in lieu of afternoon classes. The middle school faculty came up with the idea as a way to show appreciation to the students for all of their hard work over the last several weeks. This was a fun and exciting way for the students to end their week.
We’d like to thank the entire KCD community for participating in KCD Football’s very first Super Bowl drive to benefit the West End School. Thanks to our generous community, we collected more than 550 items and received overwhelming support from all three divisions. Our varsity football players and coaches will be delivering those items to the West End School next week.
On February 1, lower school students had an amazing time celebrating the 100th day of school! Many students wore special shirts they made or dressed up like 100-year-olds. Throughout the day, students participated in activities involving the theme of 100, including STEAM activities and counting the 100-item collections they prepared for the day.
Congratulations to the Middle School Governor’s Cup team, who claimed their sixth straight district title at the tournament at Saint Mary Academy on January 19. KCD’s Future Problem Solving team won their fourth consecutive district title, while our Quick Recall team picked up their third straight district win. Eighth grader Riley Jones won her third straight district title in Arts & Humanities.
Seventh grade students and faculty travelled to Paoli Peaks on Monday, January 28, for their annual ski field trip. This trip is always a great time of fun and bonding. In the spring, seventh graders will take their annual week-long trip to Pine Mountain.
When Bluegrass musicians Aaron Biebelhauser and his brother Adam performed for the Lower School on January 24, they had students clapping along. The brothers played a variety of traditional and modern songs and introduced students to a number of instruments, including the guitar, upright bass, banjo, and dobro.
Students in David Miller and Tim Rice’s Design and Fabrication class have begun to experiment with metal jewelry casting, combining a traditional process called cuttlebone casting with 3D printing techniques. According to Mr. Miller, they’re still in the beginning stages of this process and are looking to use 3D prints more directly in the process to improve quality and detail in the finished pieces.
Faculty and staff enjoyed a wonderful Mexican lunch this week catered by Moe’s Southwest Grill thanks to the Parent Association. In addition to lunch, parents provided an amazing assortment of sweet treats to finish off the meal. Thanks to Kelly Wagner and all the parents who provided this special event for the faculty and staff.
We’re proud to introduce KCD’s newest competitive team: the KCD Esports team! Esports, which consists of teams competing in multiplayer video games, has become incredibly popular in the last few years. When the Kentucky High School Athletic Association recently sanctioned an Esports league, both Athletic Director Tim Green and Upper School Director Kent Martin agreed to give the activity a try at KCD. “The team provides students with a unique opportunity to experience commitment, teamwork, winning, and losing,” said Mr. Martin.
Sarah Shartzer’s eighth grade Algebra 1 students recently learned about slopes by completing a scavenger hunt around campus. The scavenger hunt required students to solve problems, then go out to find visual representations of their lines. They worked in teams of three or four to search for slope throughout the building.
When senior Wesley Moss saw the long line of students waiting at Ms. Austin’s desk to sign out, he knew there had to be a way to speed up the process. Inspired to find a better solution, Wesley created a way for seniors to sign in and out using their lanyards and an electronic scanner.
Congratulations to Emily Harrison on making the Max Field Hockey All West/Mid-West Region first team and Megan Read for making the second team. The Max Field Hockey organization selects the best players from over 10 states in the region. Congrats to our Bearcats on such a great honor.
On January 17, we were happy to welcome film producer, writer, and director Stu Pollard ’85 back to campus. Stu visited campus to speak with Film Club members and other students about the new movie Rust Creek, on which he served as producer. The movie, which is an action/thriller shot in Kentucky, is currently in select theaters and available through most digital rental services. The Courier-Journal ran a story about Stu and about Rust Creek’s Kentucky connections last week. We’d like to thank Stu for sharing his time, talent, and expertise with our students!
Congratulations to the boys varsity basketball team on winning the 7th Region All A Classic title on Saturday, January 12. In an exciting game, the Bearcats defeated Louisville Collegiate School 52-47 to win their fifth regional title in the last six seasons.
During halftime of the varsity boys basketball game on January 17, past KCD parent, faculty member, and Booster Club president Chris Brice was honored with the KCD Athletic Booster Club Service Award.
In his remarks, Athletic Director Dr. Tim Green described Mr. Brice as “an individual who has given generously of his time, treasure, and talent in many ways to the Bearcat athletic program. Chris has been a member of the KCD faculty, administration, and coaching staff, and has served in many roles on the KCD Booster Club’s executive committee, including four year as president and four years as treasurer … In today’s busy world, there is no better example of selfless support person for athletics than Chris Brice.”
Former KCD student Evan Blum and his wife Vanessa Richmond were our special musical guests on Friday, January 18. The duo, who record and perform children’s music as Evan and Vanessa, performed a number of charming songs for JK and kindergarten music classes. Thanks to Evan and Vanessa for playing for us—our students loved the performance!
On January 13, the KCD Athletic Booster Club sponsored a college sports symposium for student-athletes and their parents. This event featured KCD coaches, athletes, and parents, as well as former KCD lacrosse and football coach and current Georgetown College women’s lacrosse coach Brandon Davis. Over 80 athletes and parents attended this event, which covered a wide range of topics such as what it means to be a recruit, how to market yourself as an athlete, and questions to ask on a college visit. Check out a slideshow presentation of the symposium here.
The math department would like to congratulate the AMC 8 winners listed below. The test was taken by middle school advanced math students in November and consisted of 25 multiple choice questions. The first, second, and third place winners were recognized at the middle school meeting.
Lower School Director Amy Mendel got a nice surprise at this week’s parent-director meeting: a group of parents presented her with t-shirts and a special song showing their appreciation. This wonderful gesture was the brainchild of first grade parent Roy Martin, who said he wanted to do something to show his appreciation for the great job Ms. Mendel is doing in the Lower School and with her parent-director meetings.
Second graders in Keri Williams’ class had a great time learning math during their metric measurement unit. Students popped rubber toy poppers, then their classmates measured the distance with meter sticks. Everyone got a turn to do both tasks. After each round, the group compared measurements and found the difference by doing mental math subtraction. The students loved it the activity and enjoyed using a familiar toy to do math. “It was fun because we got to push the toy and see how far we could get it to go,” said Isaac Miller. Gabriella Roccisano commented, “It was really fun to use a toy during math!”
Last week, seniors visited eighth grade advisee groups during middle school break to talk with eighth graders about student life in the Upper School. Seniors told eighth graders that they hoped to see them in the Upper School next year and described what they most appreciated about the Upper School’s academics, programs, and community. Some seniors even gave out some Endangered Species Project advice! Seniors, thanks for sharing your experience with the class of 2023.
First grade classes welcomed ethnomusicologist and instrument maker Gregory Acker this week as they continued their interdisciplinary study of sound. Mr. Acker will return to assist these young STEAM learners as they create their own musical instruments from recycled materials. This hands-on, STEAM-focused learning project is directed by science teacher Heather Ribblett, music teacher LuAnn Hayes, and visual art teacher Becky Gallion.
On December 20, the Choral Theatre Players put on a performance of the holiday favorite The Nutcracker for the Lower School. The performance was a wonderfully entertaining display of dancing, singing, and costumes. Congratulations to the third and fourth grade performers and to director Jeannine Ary on a great show.
The new year got off to a great start at the faculty in-service on Monday. The meeting kicked off with a presentation by James Racine, director of diversity and inclusion, exploring how unconscious assumptions about race, ethnicity, and class can perpetuate stereotypes. In the afternoon, faculty participated in a range of wellness sessions led by their colleagues. There were sessions on bullet journaling, smart snacking, yoga, strength training, Tai Chi, meditation, and more! This was a great way to kick off 2019!
Mu Alpha Theta, KCD’s national math honor society, is competing in the National Log1 Contest against more than 200 of the top math schools in the nation. After the first of three tests, KCD ranks 1st in the state, 5th in the south region, and 24th in the nation. Congratulations to Eddy Zhong, Lauren Rawson, David Lai, Grace Halbleib, Ayaan Jabbar, and Daniel Greenberg, who all ranked in our region.
During the in-service day on Monday, January 7, the physical education department participated in a professional development session on physical competency in lower school students. The session was led by pediatric therapist and KCD parent Lindsey Jones. Ms. Jones discussed the concepts of sensory integration and reflex integration and their impact on developing cognitive and motor skills, as well as on behavior and social/emotional development. The PE department is excited to implement these ideas with our youngest students.
Congratulations to Fashion Design students Megan Read, Molly Ensor, and Katie Ensor, whose designs were accepted for the KMAC Couture Fashion Show. Only 50 designers were chosen out of 112 submissions for the show, and applicants ranged from high school students to adults.
Kentucky Country Day School is a private JK–12, coeducational school located on a spacious 85-acre campus in Louisville, KY. KCD combines a rigorous academic program with a wide variety of athletic and extracurricular programs. Our outstanding faculty creates an intimate learning environment that is both challenging and supportive.