Each year, the week before Spring Break at Mount Vernon is called Interim Week. While the Upper School students travel near and far on small group trips and participate in local Internships, our Middle School students also participate in their own way, strengthening their relationships through grade level trips and activities.
Each year, grade 7 travels to Boston, with grade 8 traveling to Washington D.C. Additionally, grade 6 has their own immersive learning experience that varies year to year. For some, it might be their first time on an airplane or away from their families overnight. For others, it may be their first time in a new city or participating in a new activity. This week always proves to be a pivotal and transformative part of their learning journey in Middle School.
Grade 6: MV Explores
Grade 6 students had the opportunity for a new adventure each day of Interim Week. They visited the Etowah Indian Mounds and Red Top Mountain State Park where they found out if they have what it takes to survive in the wilderness. They traveled to Fortson 4-H for hands-on activities on the farm and lessons on pond ecology. They were up for a challenge at Rock Eagle 4-H where they put on their creative thinker caps to solve problems, advancing through a challenge course, and they closed out their week by making an impact at the Chattahoochee River. Grade 6 partnered with Fulton County Public Works and the National Park Service for a clean-up along the river. Each day flexed another one of their MV muscles. See more here.
Grade 7: Boston
Grade 7 students braved the cold and headed north to visit Boston. On their trip, they explored and learned about The Freedom Trail, held their own mock senate session at the Edward M. Kennedy Institution, participated in a robotics helicopter workshop, crossed the finish line of the Boston Marathon, toured Fenway Park, shopped and ate at Quincy Market, checked out MIT and took a class at Harvard, and so much more. See more here.
Grade 8: Washington D.C.
Heading to the nation’s capital, grade 8 students had a lot to learn and explore. From the White House and the monuments – Lincoln, the Washington Monument, Thomas Jefferson, Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., World War II, and more – to an evening dinner cruise along the Potomac River, to a tour of The Ford Theatre and George Washington’s home, Mount Vernon. They also wandered and wondered at the National Museum of the Marine Corps, Arlington National Cemetery, and the Holocost Museum. See more here.
Grade 7 & 8: MV PhoenixFest
For students who didn’t travel, Middle School held PhoenixFest, an exploration of fun and learning around Atlanta. These students found Civil War ruins along the Sweetwater Creek Mill, had a morning at the movies, took an immersive tour of Truist Park (home of the World Series Champions the Atlanta Braves!), visited the Atlanta History Center, and more. See more here.
Overall, each experience was an opportunity for students to be solution seekers, communicators, collaborators, creative thinkers, ethical decision-makers, and innovators. Whether they were paying tribute to family members and veterans at memorials and monuments, watching the changing of the guard, sitting in a ballpark learning about American history, using Computer-aided design to fly helicopters, learning the science of hydro-dipping art, or exploring pond ecology, each student had the opportunity to explore their passions and learn something new.