You might be wondering: what does a day in the life of a Senior School student at The Country Day School look like? While every student’s day is different, I thought I would give you a glimpse of how mine typically unfolds.
This is when my alarm blares annoyingly and I (rather reluctantly, as you might imagine) muster up all the will I have in those early hours to shut it off and rise. My commute to school consists of a short car ride to the bus stop and a subsequent 40-minute bumpy journey to the CDS driveway. The morning rush to be out the door by 7:30 am happens in a blur and before I know it, I’m sitting on the bus and catching up with a friend before the reality of classes settles in.
We walk from the Junior School bus driveway to the Senior School, stopping at the General Store on the off chance one of us needs to stack up on school supplies, and, after checking in at our lockers, my friends and I are greeted at homeroom. The day flies on from there, the rhythm of classwork and lessons broken intermittently by announcements, breaks, and, of course, lunch.
Mathematics class with Mr. Simmonds is always a great way to start the morning. After a bit of a review lesson about exponent laws and factoring, the class plays a game of MATHO (BINGO, but requiring math), which is just one example of how our teachers find creative ways to engage students in the material and foster excitement in the classroom.
After a 15-minute break, Period 2 English class with Mr. Fanni begins. The class is led into a discussion analyzing the Gothic elements seen in film-maker Jordan Peele’s horror-comedy Get Out, with parallels drawn between the film and H.P. Lovecraft’s Horror at Red Hook, a short story we had been assigned earlier. Students are encouraged to think profoundly about the true purpose of Gothic fiction and films and the way in which these pieces reflect the anxieties and tensions of our world.
The sustenance of the pear I grab during the break between Periods 1 and 2 wears off quickly, and I soon find myself standing outside of the Dining Hall, excitedly deciding which lunch line to enter – a rather difficult choice to make! The variety of meals offered at lunch is truly staggering: The Country Kitchen (the “hot lunch” station), The Bowl (the soup station), The Oven (offering pizzas and more), The Deli Market (the deli sandwich bar), and the Salad Bar present such a wide array of delicious, nutritious options that, I must say, lunch is one of my favourite times of the day!
After having lunch, chatting with some of my friends, and grabbing a smoothie from the Energy Bar, I’m off to meet a teacher for some extra help before an important assessment. The way that our teachers set aside time extra-help sessions like these is extremely admirable and something that we, as students, greatly appreciate.
Period 3 World History class with Mr. Young begins promptly after lunch. The day is a special one in the course, as it is the presentation date of the class’ funerals for the main leaders of the Renaissance era – Elizabeth I of England, Philip II of Spain, and Henry IV of France. Processions take up the majority of the period, the class moving around the school and paying tribute to the great monarchs with prepared eulogies, music, and other rituals.
Ms. Castellan’s Period 4 Visual Arts class follows, during which we review for the upcoming Medieval, Gothic, and Romanesque Art History test and are given a work period to complete our plexiglass “intangible” etchings that will be made into ink prints. Students are tasked with representing an idea such as “corruption,” “valour,” or “isolation” in their prints. I etch away while chatting with some friends in the class and listening to music.
With the end of Period 4 comes the time for extracurricular activities! Whether I’m expanding my knowledge of Sign Language in ASL Club, practicing prosecuting criminal law cases in Mock Trial, learning to bake cheesecake in Cooking Club, or preparing for an upcoming crisis committee in Model United Nations, the period after school and before the departure of my bus is undoubtedly an exciting time. With so many interests to pursue and explore, I find it difficult not to engage myself fully in the extracurriculars offered here at CDS.
At around 4:40 pm, I board the bus and take the time during my commute to unwind after a busy, experience-packed day chatting with friends, listening to some music, or checking out a new podcast I’ve discovered.
A short, 15-minute walk from the bus stop later, I’m home!
By Christina Chkarboul ’21