Our Wildwood, Volume 47

Our Wildwood, Volume 47, Spring 2022

Wildwood Our


p14 Building a Framework for the Future of Education

p20 Wolves on the Prowl

p24 See Yourself in Science

Wildwood School cultivates reflective scholars, bold innovators and compassionate leaders equipped with the skills, ethics and inspiration to transform their world.

Beginning in November 2021, Wildwood hosted a series of vaccination and booster clinics on campus as part of its mitigation strategy to stop the spread of COVID-19. As we look ahead and reflect upon the lessons of the 2021-2022 school year, we’re grateful to everyone in our community for all their efforts in keeping our students, faculty, staff, and families safe throughout the pandemic.

Cover and inside cover photos by Hunter Hackett.

i i

DEAR FRIENDS A Letter from Landis

use their minds well, and to embrace the elements of our diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging work. Above all, these stories reflect our still-foundational orientation toward innovating and evolving to prepare students for their future, not our past—as my predecessor, Hope Boyd, so often reminded us. Reading about both—the present and the future—I hope that those who’ve known Wildwood School over time will see an arc, as I do, that stays true to the ethos of our school, from its founding in 1971 through its expansion in 2000, and on to the future we continue to co-create together. Please mark your calendars for Saturday, October 15th, the date we’ve set for our entire community to gather in celebration of Wildwood’s 50th anniversary, including marking its 20th anniversary as a K-12. Volunteers have already begun organizing what promises to be a fitting celebration of past, present, and future!

When Marc Frankel, a senior member of our Board of Trustees and well-known consultant to independent schools around the world, stated definitively that our Board’s pandemic focus should be developing a plan for the years after the pandemic, my immediate thought was that I simply couldn’t imagine how we’d be able to execute. Marc made that declaration as many of my colleagues and I, then still a year away from vaccinations, were spending the better part of each week in webinars and Zoom meetings about how to mitigate learning loss, keep students and employees safe, and take a crash course in public health. Yet, together with his co-chair in the effort, trustee Susan Olsen, and our Board Chair Andrew Solmssen, Marc wisely noted that the hurdles, losses, pivots, and learnings of our times created the perfect opportunity for us to emerge from the pandemic stronger than before. As is often the case, the diverse group of individuals who serve as trustees for the future of our school were right. Together, that group of leaders—which includes physicians, educators, lawyers, developers, producers, finance professionals, and those working in other professions— provided my colleagues and me with targeted support as we navigated through the last three academic years, all while engaging hundreds of members of the school community in visioning exercises to ensure that Marc’s assertion would bear out. You’ll read in these pages of the wonderful work that our students and my colleagues are doing here and now— Kayli Joy C. ‘22, Huckleberry F. ‘22, elementary science teacher Anna Boucher, and others—and you’ll also get an introduction to the Framework for the Future of Education through which our Board has charged us to operate in the coming years. Threaded throughout, you’ll read of the school’s continued commitment to teaching students to


Landis Green Head of School





p14 Building a

p20 Wolves on the Prowl

p24 See Yourself in Science

Framework for the Future of Education As schools emerge from the pandemic and begin to grasp its effects, many are left asking, “What’s next?” for their students, faculty, and school community. Fortunately for Wildwood School, this type of self-reflection is second-nature.

In addition to running drills and honing technique, Wildwood student athletes have spent much of the past few seasons practicing another vital skill: resilience.

Science teacher Anna Boucher wanted to take her students beyond the stereotypes, so she launched a project inspired by the #ScientistsWhoSelfie social media campaign—and in doing so, opened up a whole new world for her students.


departments GIVING VOICE ......................................................... p4 Christina Kyong and Dr. Joanie Banks-Hunt

STUDENT VOICE ............................................. p28 Beating Cancer at Its Own Game by Huckleberry F. ‘22

BOOK SHELF ........................................................ p29 Recommendations from readers

GOOD TO KNOW ................................................... p6 Useful information about and for us

OH SNAP! ................................................................. p30 Photos from notable Wildwood events

DONOR PROFILE .................................................. p9 Generation Wildwood Joins Together in Giving

WOLVES MAKING WAVES ..................... p10 Students, alumni, and faculty making us proud

ALUMNI ALUMNI REFLECTION ................................................. p34 Meet Piers Brecher, Class of 2012 ALUMNI NOTES ............................................................... p35 Tell us what you’re up to

THE JOURNEY CONTINUES ................ p12 Class of 2021 college list



GIVING VOICE A conversation between community members

Christina Kyong and Dr. Joanie Banks-Hunt

Christina Kyong joined Wildwood prior to the 2020-2021 school year, immediately taking the reins as the K-12 lead pandemic coordinator along with her official role as associate head of school. Dr. Joanie Banks-Hunt is in her first year at Wildwood as director of upper school. Here, the two leaders reflect on what drew them to Wildwood and the school’s vision for its future.

OWW: We recently launched a new website aimed at prospective families highlighting the key factors of what makes us Wildwood. In your own words, what do you think makes us Wildwood? DR. BANKS-HUNT: I think what makes us Wildwood is the community. It’s not just something we talk about —it truly is the culture of the school. As you walk the hallways, you see students and faculty working together, engaging in project-based learning. You can feel the energy around education at every level, and that’s exciting. CHRISTINA: Typically, mission statements are something that institutions strive toward, but at Wildwood, it feels like we’re already living ours. There’s bold innovation, leadership, and compassion. Our kids are doing things that are way beyond what you would normally see middle and upper school students doing, especially when it comes to taking initiative and thinking about ways to solve problems. OWW: Officially, there are four pillars that describe what makes us Wildwood: a commitment to mastery and skill building, a participatory adventure, a vibrant home in the world, and a lab for the future of education. Of these, is there one in particular that resonates with you?


CHRISTINA: I like the idea of Wildwood as a home in the world. Both of us, Joanie and I, came to Wildwood during the pandemic, where the definitions of “home” and “school” were abruptly altered. The fact that so many of our students were ready to come back to this home struck me as how special Wildwood must be for them. A lot of kids in other schools might prefer to be home, but not our kids. They want to be at this definition of home. It’s a place where they feel supported and safe. DR. BANKS-HUNT: The two that resonate with me are “a participatory adventure” and “a lab for the future of education.” A lab isn’t a negative thing. It’s a place where you’re willing to try new things and take risks that stretch everyone involved. It’s how we learn, grow, and get to where we want to be. OWW: Speaking of the future, Wildwood introduced the Framework for the Future of Education at this year’s State of School address. What is the significance of this document, and why now? CHRISTINA: Although the process for developing the Framework began long before COVID-19, the fact that it’s come out now means that we were able to infuse it with all that we’ve learned during the pandemic. Many schools are just now at the point of trying to wrap their heads around how to move forward, and with the Framework, we’re already paving the path. We get the opportunity to ponder, “This is where we are right now, but where do we want to go?” DR. BANKS-HUNT: The big question among educators across the country right now is, “What is the future of education?” and so far, there have been very few definitive responses. We’re able to take the lead in this work because our vision has long promoted this kind of reflective thinking. The Framework puts a stake in the ground that will be appreciated not only by our community, but also by our peer schools. By sharing our direction, we hope to be that “lab for the future of education” that inspires others to move forward as we forge ahead from the pandemic. “” TYPICALLY, MISSION STATEMENTS ARE SOMETHING THAT INSTITUTIONS STRIVE TOWARD, BUT AT WILDWOOD, IT FEELS LIKE WE’RE ALREADY LIVING OURS. —CHRISTINA KYONG, ASSOCIATE HEAD OF SCHOOL

OWW: One of the tenets of the Framework is to strategically foster a climate of inclusion, belonging, and wellbeing. Could you speak to the significance of giving this such high priority? CHRISTINA: What we’ve witnessed over the past few years in America is a result of not taking care of the whole community and only addressing the needs of a few. The wellbeing of all has got to be part of our diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB) work. If you’re not taking care of every single person in the building, if you’re not addressing the needs of all, then we are not doing the work of DEIB. DR. BANKS-HUNT: It’s great to include DEIB mission statements on a website or in documents, but what is the actual work that you do for everybody? Seeing it in action is an entirely different level of commitment. OWW: The past few years have certainly been filled with both action and change. Do you have any favorite moments from your first years at Wildwood? CHRISTINA: One of my favorite memories of all time was watching the fifth grade run into their Culmination last spring, dancing and singing. I also love elementary All School Meeting, and being able to see it in person this year is such a joy. It’s fun to watch the kindergarten through 4th graders as they listen to the 5th grade shares. It’s such a great moment for them to aspire to. DR. BANKS-HUNT: I’ve really enjoyed the time I’ve been able to spend in person with faculty, getting to know each other and hearing about classroom projects. They all understand education and are experts in their own fields. They also see how they fit into the bigger picture of a student’s overall journey—it’s inspiring! W



GOOD TO KNOW Useful information about and for us

WISRD Soars to New Heights

The sky’s the limit for the Wildwood Institute for STEM Research and Development (WISRD). Recently, the institute was honored with the Judges’ Choice Award in NASA’s Student Launch competition. The NASA award recognized WISRD team members for entering the best combination of payload introduction, vehicle design and construction, research paper, and public engagement in the competition. NASA Student Launch challenges middle school, high school, college, and university teams from across the United States to build and fly a high-powered amateur rocket carrying a complex payload to over 4,000 feet above the ground. The competition draws teams from universities and high schools across the country. This year, WISRD’s work has taken several members to the Nevada desert where they are helping NASA with its Lucy Mission—the first space mission launched to study Trojan asteroids. The mission is named for the fossilized human ancestor (“Lucy”) whose skeleton provided unique insight into humanity’s evolution. Likewise, the Lucy mission aims to revolutionize

our knowledge of planetary origins and the solar system. The WISRD group is sharing its own analysis, imaging, and collected data of one of Jupiter’s Trojans with NASA scientists and researchers as the Lucy spacecraft passes by on its mission.



Joe Wise to Retire

After 40 years in education, and nearly a decade leading the Wildwood Institute for STEM Research and Technology (WISRD), Joe Wise has announced his retirement at the end of the 2021-2022 school year. “Joe’s legacy at Wildwood—and in education in general— is significant,” said Landis Green, head of school. “Drawing on decades of teaching and administrative experience in multiple schools, Joe was the absolute best possible person to launch the Institute Model at Wildwood.” In his role as director, Joe not only created the framework for WISRD, but laid the foundational principles for the other Institutes, the Wildwood Institute for Social Leadership (WISL) and the Wildwood Institute for Incubation and Entrepreneurship (WIE), that have followed. “One of the joys of

Landis on the Line Goes Platinum What started as a way to connect with our community during offsite Distributed Learning has evolved into a fun, recurring series of conversations with Wildwood community members—and we’re not the only ones taking notice. The Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) named Landis on the Line as a finalist in its annual Platinum Awards. The brainchild of Wildwood parent Chris Wilcha, the series was nominated in the Best Practices in Digital Communications category, and Wildwood is the only K-12 school in the U.S. to receive the distinction.

this work is that we’ll never know where our individual and collective impact ends,” Landis added. “That is certainly the case for Joe.” With this in mind, Wildwood is collecting memories and well-wishes from all members of our community (current families, alumni, families of alumni, and friends) to publish as a tribute to Joe and his legacy. In addition, members of our school community and friends, colleagues, and former students who have


worked with and been taught by Joe have begun making gifts in honor of his service to education. To contribute, please contact Kristin Hampton, director of institutional advancement, at khampton@wildwood.org. Do you have a favorite story or memory of Joe to share? How has his teaching and guidance impacted your life? Please send your stories to news@wildwood.org.



GOOD TO KNOW Useful information about and for us

Meet Our Newest Board Members

Christine Cho

FAMILY: Christine and her husband, Sean, have two children enrolled at Wildwood (Class of ’28 and ’31). BUSINESS AND BACKGROUND: Christine is a pediatric emergency medicine physician at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and Associate Professor of Clinical Pediatrics at Keck School of Medicine of USC. She is a director of the pediatric emergency medicine fellowship and the director of education for the Division of Pediatric Emergency Medicine. Her academic interests include mentorship, self-reflection/self-directed

learning and how professionalism is taught and learned (also her research when she completed her Masters in Education). She received a B.S. in Biology from Yale University where she later also trained in pediatrics. She completed medical school and a masters in public health at Rutgers University-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and her pediatric emergency medicine fellowship at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

Michael Kaplan

FAMILY: Michael and his wife, Dena, have two children, including one current Wildwood student (Class of ‘29) BUSINESS AND BACKGROUND: Michael (Mike) is a partner of Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP, focusing on advising private equity firms and their portfolio companies in mergers and acquisitions, securities offerings and general corporate matters. He is dedicated to serving his community, having provided pro bono legal services to Bright Star Schools, a nonprofit operator of charter schools serving underprivileged

communities in Los Angeles, the Etta Israel Center, a charity for youth and adults with special needs, and veterans and local small businesses in partnership with Levitt Quinn and Public Counsel Law Center. Mike received a B.A., cum laude , from Yale University and a J.D., cum laude , from the University of Pennsylvania Law School.

Elizabeth Parry

FAMILY: Elizabeth is the parent of two Wildwood students (Class of ‘22 and ‘25).

BUSINESS AND BACKGROUND: Elizabeth is a native of Boston, Massachusetts, and holds a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Architecture from Rice University. Simultaneous to finishing school, she co-founded an architecture consulting firm based in New York City, growing it to seventeen employees before selling her stake. Upon moving to Los Angeles, Elizabeth used her organizational and leadership skills volunteering full time for Habitat for Humanity, as well as serving on the board of

her homeowners’ association and as secretary for a grassroots community group dedicated to preserving the Santa Monica Mountains’ environmental habitats. Recently, Elizabeth served on Wildwood’s Capital Campaign Committee and has served on the school’s Advancement Committee since 2020.


DONOR PROFILE Thanks to our generous supporters Generation Wildwood Joins Together in Giving

I value the education I received and hope others can have the same opportunity. —Emmett Rosenbaum, Class of 2013 “” I’m forever grateful for the incredible foundation Wildwood gave me. —Jessica Bofshever, Class of 1997 My teachers and the time I spent in the performing arts department! —Chandler Turk, Class of 2014 “” “” Wildwood gave me so much—my love of the arts, my friendships, and my life skills. —Siena Streiber, Class of 2014 “”

WILDWOOD ALUMNI HAVE A UNIQUE UNDERSTANDING OF WHAT makes this school and community unlike any other. As we embark on the next 50 years, a new generation of Wildwood alumni are heeding the Wolf call and leading by example, helping to ensure that current and future Wildwood students enjoy the same exceptional opportunities that marked their time at our beloved school. We recently caught up with a group of these alumni and asked one simple question: What inspires you to give back to Wildwood? The answers are as unique as the many paths our alumni forge after graduation and into the world beyond. Alumni, it’s not too late to join your classmates by making a gift to this year’s Wildwood Fund campaign! Visit www.wildwood.org/makeagift to contribute, and include a note letting us know what motivates you to give back to Wildwood! “” I wouldn’t be where I am today without the opportunities and experiences I had during my Wildwood years! —Vanessa Achoy, Class of 2015 Wildwood was pivotal in my journey in learning who I am. —Sarah Robison, Class of 2014 “”

the world better. —Booker T. Washington “”

The most useful and influential people in America are those who take the deepest interest in institutions that exist for the purpose of making



WOLVES MAKING WAVES Students, alumni, and faculty making us proud

Our Latest Wave-Makers

Kayli Joy C. ‘22 Kayli Joy C. was selected by Prudential Financial for its inaugural class of Prudential Emerging Visionaries—25 young people from across the country with an inspiring commitment to improving the lives of others. This work includes addressing needs created by the COVID-19 pandemic, combating economic inequality, advocating for inclusion and closing the digital divide. This inaugural group of young leaders was selected based on four main criteria: their solution is innovative; it can create meaningful impact in the future and can scale to a wider community; it demonstrates a deep understanding of the issue; and it inspires the visionary to lead or take action and motivates others to do the same. Kayli Joy is the creator of “Girl Well,” a nonprofit that aims to make self-care accessible for teenage girls facing displacement, transition, or homelessness by curating self-care kits that emphasize physical, emotional and mental wellness. “I started Girl Well because I saw an equity gap and knew it needed to be filled,” Kayli Joy says. “I know there can be change in the world and it starts with me.” As a Prudential Emerging Visionary, Kayli Joy will receive $5,000 in funding to continue her work. Kayli Joy was also recently selected to join the landmark 15th year of Disney Dreamers Academy, an educational mentorship program created and hosted by Walt Disney World Resort. In March, Kayli Joy traveled to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla., together with 100 students selected for the annual program. She participated in a week of workshops and sessions on leadership skills, effective communication techniques and networking strategies. As part of the experience, Kayli Joy was featured on Good Morning America .

Wildwood Senior Named an Emerging Visionary


Haiden B. ‘23


Zach Robinson ‘08 In other music news, Zach Robinson earned a 2022 ASCAP Composers’ Choice Awards nomination for his musical scoring of Season 3 of Netflix’s Cobra Kai . Winners were announced as part of the 2022 ASCAP Screen Music Awards in May. A graduate of Northwestern University, he is currently scoring the new CBS drama series Good Sam.

Haiden B. was honored with both silver and gold medals in the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards, the nation’s longest-running art and literary recognition program for youth. Her graphite portrait, Odessa , earned a Gold Key, while her works Clementine and Nonnie won Silver Keys. In 2021, students across America entered nearly 230,000 original works in 28 different categories of art and writing. Two of the three award-winning pieces were exhibited in the Wildwood Gallery in Oct. 2021.

Music faculty member Itai Disraeli’s band Opium Moon was nominated for a 2022 Grammy Award for Best New Age Album, Night + Day . The awards were held this April in Las Vegas. This marks the band’s second Grammy nomination in just three years. Their previous album, Opium Moon , took home the Grammy Award for Best New Age Album in 2019.



THE JOURNEY CONTINUES Class of 2021 college list

Noah Ardell University of California, Los Angeles Justin Baez-DeWig California State University, Channel Islands Danielle Barrett University of California, Davis

Gabriel Bradley University of Richmond Nathaniel Brand University of Colorado Boulder

Summer Carlis University of Colorado Boulder

Karma Evans California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo Maisie Firek Sarah Lawrence College Bishop Freeman University of California, Los Angeles Sadie Gardiner University of California, Santa Cruz

Sadie Coleman Bates College

Waverly Brown DePaul University

Ryan Cordova-Ortiz University of Southern California

Gia Capelouto University of California, Davis Bridget Carides Lapaglia Parsons School of Design

Tess Davis Bard College

Joseph Benefiel Tulane University

Emile Dunoyer Loyola Marymount University

Ailsa Boucher University of Washington

Augusta George Barnard College


India Reinhardt Pitzer College

Reneau Tilo Reneau Cardoso Pomona College Milla Rousseau New York University Liliana Russo-Larsson Sarah Lawrence College Rosa Schorr University of Colorado Boulder Alexander Seidel Syracuse University Alexia Solomon University of California, Irvine Maxum Staples Case Western Reserve University Jake Tollman New York University Itzel Vazquez Mendoza George Washington University De’Shari Watson Pitzer College Jiani Rochelle Ying Loyola Marymount University Karim Turk Gap Year

Lexey Glouberman University of Southern California Alan Gonzalez Macalester College Lily Habas University of California, Santa Barbara

Simon Katz University of Chicago

Tanner Nelson University of Denver Eric Norfolk George Washington University

Luke Kenny Lehigh University

Hannah Kupferwasser New York University Leo Kurland Northwestern University Avery McDaniel University of California, Santa Cruz Madison Myers University of California, Los Angeles

Edie Odegard Bard College

Vivian Olyphant Berklee College of Music Jennifer Ximena Perez University of Pennsylvania

Liv Hage Grinnell College

Mira Hawley University of Washington Lauren Kahn Parsons School of Design

Natalia Quintana Wellesley College




Building a Framework for the Future of Education

Wildwood School Looks Beyond COVID-19 with a Clear Vision for Its Future

As schools emerge from the pandemic and begin to grasp its effects, many are left asking, “What’s next?” for their students, faculty, and school community. Fortunately for Wildwood School, this type of self-reflection is second-nature, and a vision of what the future holds for Wildwood began to take root long before anyone had heard of COVID-19. >








FEATURE Building a Framework for the Future of Education

In February 2022, Board members Susan Olsen and Marc Frankel officially unveiled Wildwood’s Framework for the Future of Education during the State of School address. This living document, the culmination of three years of research and input from across the school community, outlines the four major priorities that will shape Wildwood’s strategy for serving its students in the years to come. “Wildwood has never been afraid of change; by our very nature as a progressive school, we embrace it,” Susan said. “With this Framework, designed to be alive, dynamic, and even provocative, we are helping to establish Wildwood’s place as a leader among all schools—today, tomorrow, and for years into the future.” The process for developing the Framework officially kicked off in spring 2019, following several year’s worth of Board-sponsored work ranging from Benefits and Compensation to Diversity. While the pandemic initially disrupted the work in 2020, it didn’t deter it. “We were forced to change timelines and collaboration mediums, but our goal remained clear and the process was still deliberate and sound,” Marc said. “In fact, resuming the process after some delay, we found our volunteers were relieved to be engaged again, thinking beyond these difficult years and committed to a shared vision of this school stronger and more future oriented than we had been before the pandemic.” Determined to help Wildwood emerge from the pandemic as a strong, ambitious, and future-focused institution, Susan and Marc led a task force of trustees, who, along with several members of the faculty, helped to lead six Design Teams. Composed of dozens of community members, these teams worked through the spring of 2021 to identify and evaluate best practices across educational disciplines, from teaching and learning, to wellness, technology, and service. The Design Teams presented their findings in May 2021, and from there, the recommendations were whittled down to a select handful. “Curating the priorities that became the four pillars of the Framework was both difficult and necessary,” Susan said. “In the process, however, the Framework became stronger, more cohesive, and ultimately more impactful for it.” DEVELOPING THE FRAMEWORK— DEFINING OUR FUTURE PRIORITIES

“With this Framework, designed to be alive, dynamic, and even provocative, we are helping to establish Wildwood’s place as a leader among all schools—today, tomorrow, and for years into the future.” —SUSAN OLSEN, BOARD MEMBER


Expand our outstanding academic, athletic, and artistic experiences available K-12.

Create a school climate where all members of the Wildwood community can enjoy a sense of belonging and feel connected to each other and the world.



The focus of the first pillar is to expand our outstanding academic, athletic, and artistic experiences available K-12. “The past two years have been challenging, but we have learned a lot about ourselves and about how and why the foundation of Wildwood is strong,” said Christina Kyong, associate head of school. “Looking ahead, we want to ensure that this foundation provides a seamless K-12 experience for all students no matter their entry point so that they can constantly challenge themselves academically, socially, artistically, and physically.” Part of this effort will include integrating the work of diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB) across culture, curriculum, and programs, including core academic content, arts programming, community involvement and service learning, and the International Community Involvement (ICI) program. It will also involve expanding the influence and reach of Wildwood School’s innovative teaching and learning models, with an eye toward positively impacting education practices before, during, and after the K-12 experience. “K-12 schools are places of change and innovation,” Christina said. “No school can stay stagnant, especially as we have all had to pivot and adjust what classrooms and teaching look like during the pandemic. We must keep evolving.”

The goal of the second pillar is to create a school climate where all members of the Wildwood community can enjoy a sense of belonging and feel connected to each other and the world. According to Karen Dye, director of equity and inclusion, the key to this is deliberately pursuing an “all in, all thrive” philosophy. “As the world continues to shift in fascinating and often challenging ways, we have to continue to reflect, evaluate, and update our practices toward nurturing the wellbeing of all students and adults here,” Karen said. This will include creating and coordinating new wellness and inclusion programs, and bringing related programming, such as Advisory, under one umbrella using a Wellness Center model. Additionally, it will involve expanding the school’s Digital Citizenship Scope and Sequence, and using a mix of in-person, virtual, and hybrid events to promote further inclusion of all families. “The coming years will naturally lead us to consider the lessons of the pandemic, especially as they pertain to the important intersection of our DEIB and wellness work,” Karen said. “The Framework for the Future of Education at Wildwood charges us to continue to seek out new and better ways of supporting all members of our community equitably, according to their diverse needs.”



FEATURE Building a Framework for the Future of Education


Embrace the transformative potential of technology to accelerate, augment, and expand teaching and learning, institutional systems, access, and communications.

EMBRACING TECHNOLOGY AS A VEHICLE FOR LEARNING AND INNOVATION “There are so many ways in which the ‘unprecedented times’ of the pandemic have been an eye-opening gift,” said Jaimi Boehm, director of middle school. For instance, Jaimi said, asynchronous time in classes allowed students to discover their capacity for self-paced learning and deep thinking, and Zoom enabled teachers to bring guests to “campus” on short notice while parents, guardians, and other family members were able to attend school events with greater ease. In that vein, the third pillar of the Framework is to embrace the transformative potential of technology to accelerate, augment, and expand teaching and learning, institutional systems, access, and communications. “We believe that beyond augmented and virtual reality, emerging and existing technologies will help our students and teachers connect in real time to schools and cultures near and far in creative ways that we couldn’t have imagined before the pandemic,” Jaimi said. “Those exchanges and collaborations will add texture to learning at Wildwood.” This pillar will also involve reconsidering how we use time and space, and calls for developing new applications for students, faculty, and staff to connect while off campus. It also acknowledges the critical role that technology plays behind the scenes and its potential to help streamline and automate school systems such as security and attendance.

“We have work to do and we’re excited to



Be of service to students and educators both within and beyond the boundaries of Wildwood.

SHARING OUR EXPERTISE WITH THE WORLD The fourth pillar of the Framework speaks to Wildwood School’s promise to be of service to students and educators both within and beyond the boundaries of Wildwood. “When Wildwood opened its middle and upper campus in 2000, our Board of Trustees had a parallel vision of creating a lab for the future of education that’s devoted to sharing our approach with others in both independent and public schools,” said Dr. Joanie Banks-Hunt, director of upper school. “This vision is predominately fulfilled through the work of the Wildwood Outreach Center, which saw significant demand for its services during the pandemic.” Looking ahead, Wildwood plans to re-envision the Outreach Center to house professional development for Wildwood and non-Wildwood faculty, and maximize opportunities for the exchange of research—and evidence-based ideas and practices on teaching and learning. In addition to serving the educator audience, Wildwood also seeks to develop new parent/guardian education programming that provides tools for good parenting, demystifies innovative pedagogies, and fosters healthy school-family partnerships. “We have created learning experiences that students can benefit from during and after their time at Wildwood, and similarly, beneficial experiences for educators and parents/guardians,” Dr. Banks-Hunt said. “As we look

beyond COVID-19, part of our work will be in expanding these experiences to others across the globe.” This pillar tasks Wildwood with considering how more robust programming—Community Involvement, Internships, the Institutes, Systems Thinking, the ICI program—might provide enhanced opportunities for constructive connection and service in Los Angeles and beyond. BOLDLY LOOKING AHEAD If these priorities seem bold, that’s on purpose. Each pillar is designed to ensure Wildwood emerges from the pandemic stronger than ever. “Global events are accelerating change at head spinning speeds,” Susan said. “We can’t afford to be generic.” Rather than a checklist, Susan said, the beauty of the Framework is that it gives Wildwood the freedom to adapt to the world as it evolves—a world we might not be able to imagine even as we plan for it. Dr. Banks-Hunt added, “No matter what the future holds, with this Framework, we’re really putting a stake in the ground—one that will be appreciated by our community, and also by our peer schools. “We have work to do, and we’re excited to do it.” W

To read the full Framework for the Future of Education, visit http://www.wildwood.org/frameworkforthefuture.




Wolves on the Prowl

In addition to running drills and honing technique, Wildwood student athletes have spent much of the past few seasons practicing another vital skill: resilience. With school leagues on hold or in limited operations for much of last year, students took to the ocean and local pools to practice swimming, transformed backyards into training grounds, and blazed new running trails through neighborhoods as they strived to stay on top of their game. > Wildwood Athletes Show Dedication and Teamwork as They Take Their Rightful Place Among Southern California’s Best




FEATURE Wolves on the Prowl

Now that school sports are back in action across Southern California, it’s clear that their efforts have more than paid off. From winning league championships to setting new school records, the 2021-2022 fall and winter sports season was filled with impressive moments, feats made all the more incredible given the challenges students have faced throughout the pandemic.

QUEENS OF THE COURT After a dominating season against area schools, the 7th grade girls volleyball team won the Pacific Basin League Championship, defeating Windward in a nail-biter deciding match to take home the trophy. As 7th graders, this was the first opportunity for any of the team members to participate in middle school sports and compete against other schools. “This group of girls supported one another from day one of practice and came together at the end of the season, showing that hard work and internal grit pay off,” said coach Reo Sorrentino. “To reach this level, they had to learn both volleyball skills and teamwork—and they excelled at both.” In the upper school, the varsity girls volleyball team had an impressive season. With a relatively young squad, they qualified for the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) playoffs and traveled to the San Gabriel Valley to compete in the round of 32, representing Southern California’s finest.

A SLAM DUNK SEASON In addition to volleyball, middle school female athletes also showed their dominance on a different court: basketball. After winning all but one game during the regular season, they were a force to be reckoned with during playoffs, surprising no one by winning the Pacific Basin League Championship. “The dedication, strength, and unity shown through this team was the essence of a championship team,” said Sarah Schemerhorn, who coached the team. “Each one of our Wolves persevered through physical games, worked hard at practice, and showed true sportsmanship to one another on and off the court.” Billy DuMone, athletics director for Wildwood, credits their success to one word: teamwork. “There’s a real sense of camaraderie among this team,” Billy said. “The girls were so supportive of each other on every play, and when you’re on the court, that can be the tipping point that wins games.” On the boys’ side, the varsity basketball team ended the year winning five of their last seven games and qualifying for the CIF playoffs, placing Wildwood among the most competitive and established secondary athletics programs in California. “Coming off of a basketball season with no games due to the pandemic, we are incredibly proud of making the CIF playoffs as it symbolizes four years of dedication and collaboration individually and as a team,” said team member Jason R. ‘22.


His brother and fellow teammate Seth R. ‘22, added, “We want to thank the Wildwood athletic department, our coaches, and our teammates for a fulfilling season. Being a part of this family has been the highlight for us as Wildwood student-athletes.” As the first varsity boys basketball team to make the playoffs in several years, the team traveled a few hours away to Hesperia Christian, where in a hard-fought game, they came up short by only four points. “There’s approximately 131 schools in our CIF division—the largest in the state—so making the playoffs is an incredible achievement in and of itself,” Billy said. “Needless to say, we’re incredibly proud that our return to basketball is marked by having the Wildwood name placed among the best teams in Southern California.” LAPPING UP THE COMPETITION In swimming, WIldwood’s “Water Wolves” also had impressive performances during league finals. Both the boys and the girls teams came in 4th respectively (out of 12 schools), and included strong individual results. Koko B. ‘27 came in second place in the 50 and 100 free, beating the school record by 1.5 seconds. Additionally, Callum M. ‘27, Nikydon H. ‘27, Daniel L. ‘28, and Charlie V. ‘26 earned bronze medals in the 200 free relay and the 200 medley relay. “It was great to attend meets after a year of barely any competition,” said Koko. “I was definitely working really hard to beat both of those records throughout the season. Each meet I would shave a bit more off my time, and I was really proud once I was able to get both records.”

For more on Wildwood’s athletics program, visit www.wildwood. org/student-life/ athletics.

CROSSING THE FINISH LINE In middle school cross-country, our “Running Wolves” capped off an amazing season at league finals. In a great show of teamwork, the boys team came in second place in the league. On the girls team, Imogen H. ‘28 won the entire race to become the individual league champion. In varsity cross-country, Theo U.-N. ‘25 advanced to compete in the regional cross-country finals, racing at Mt. San Antonio College after an impressive performance at CIF Regional Semi-Finals. Given his status as a freshman, it’s exciting to see what his future holds here at Wildwood and beyond. “One of the great things about the athletics program at Wildwood is that we operate right in conjunction with the ethos of the school,” Billy said. “Being able to field a winning athletics program in a pandemic has been really heartening—but it’s also challenging. Despite all the fear in our world, our students showed up willing to work, exhibited flexibility with every change in league protocols and health guidelines, and lifted each other up. That’s true courage.” W



# 24


See Yourself in Science

Wildwood Elementary Students Take On #ScientistsWhoSelfie

When you think of a scientist, what image comes to mind? Maybe it’s a guy with crazy white hair wearing a lab coat and holding a beaker. That’s a pretty common stereotype, and one that shows up repeatedly when kids are asked to draw a scientist. Science teacher Anna Boucher wanted to take her students beyond the stereotypes, so she launched a project inspired by the #ScientistsWhoSelfie social media campaign—and in doing so, opened up a whole new world for her students. >



FEATURE See Yourself in Science

The question Boucher posed was: How can fifth graders learn about a diverse group of scientists, and as leaders of the school, use tech and design to begin breaking down those stereotypes for our community? “It would be sad if, as an elementary school student, the only kind of science you thought you could do was to be a chemist, right?” Boucher said. “Not that we left out chemists, but there’s a huge variety of sciences. My job as an elementary school science teacher is to help kids fall in love with science, to see themselves and identify themselves in many ways in science, but also see the possibilities for what’s out there.” The #ScientistsWhoSelfie campaign offers a glimpse of these possibilities, with scientists of all ages, races and genders around the world posting images of themselves at work: A marine biologist is photobombed by another scuba diving colleague in his lab, the ocean. A young female scientist holds up the subject of her studies, a turtle, and matches his big, open-mouthed “smile.” The resulting Wildwood version is a collection of “tweets” prepared in Google Slides, where students imagined what scientists from the famous, like Stephen Hawking and Albert Einstein, to the lesser-known, like Ada Lovelace and George Washington Carver, might post about their work. The tweets are on display outside the science classroom, where K-5 students can view them, and are posted online. A tweet from June Almeida @virusdetective shows a woman with a microscope and says: “Hard day

finding out the mystery behind the first coronavirus #ScientistsWhoSelfie #virusworld #Scottishforlife.” A tweet from Mae Jamison says: “Wow! 110 orbits down, 16 more to go! Another great day on Endeavor!” The number of “likes” (1992) clues the reader into the year she made history by becoming the first African American woman in space. A QR code on each tweet provides access to a brief summary about the scientist’s life and work. “It’s really cool to walk by and see all the scientists and different tweets from my classmates,” said Magnus W. ‘29. “You get to think about science from a different perspective other than your own.” Based Learning guidelines to develop the science and tech project and enlisted the help of Wildwood’s technology education coaches. Wildwood’s version of #ScientistsWhoSelfie also reflects the school’s diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB) priorities, which have been at the core of its progressive education model since its founding and were strengthened most recently with a DEIB action plan created in 2019. The students’ work began on Google Jamboard, where they could add post-it notes to the virtual bulletin board with their responses to questions about generalizations people might have about scientists, from what they wear and what tools they use to what they look like and how old they are. Next, Boucher introduced them to the study that has been repeated since the 1950s asking kids to draw a scientist. Then she shared tweets from #ScientistsWhoSelfie and photos from a Nature celebration of scientists at work, which include many surprising images, such as an ecologist and meteorologist descending a rock face with ropes—and a boat!—to study the geological record in a sinkhole in Australia. With a list of scientists in hand, students set to work collaboratively, researching biographical and background info, as well as awards and accomplishments, and assembling brief facts about the scientist’s work. For some of the less-familiar scientists, source material is hard to come by. Boucher explained how many scientists have not been part of the narrative by using the example of Katherine Johnson, an African American mathematician who worked for NASA on the first manned spaceflights. The 2016 movie Hidden Figures told her DISCOVERING NEW STORIES Boucher used the University of Pennsylvania’s Project



Marie Tharp I finally finished my map of the ocean floor! It only took me a year or so. What do you think? #ScientistsWhoSelfie #OceanArtist #Queenofmaps

Learn more here!

Chien-Shiung Wu Just proved that parity isn’t valid in data decay with @tsungdaolee and @chenningyang #ScientistsWhoSelfie #WomenWithAPurpose

amazing story; it was adapted from a book released that same year. “Before that, there was nothing written about Katherine Johnson, and now there’s so much out there,” she said. “For a lot of these scientists, no one’s written the story.” But that became a fun part of this project, Boucher said, as even she discovered scientists she’d never heard about before. After their research, students had to find an image, create a post relevant to the image, and write the short summary accessible via the QR Code. The latter was the students’ idea, Boucher said, because they wanted the other students reading the tweets to be able to learn more than 280 characters would allow. Students also proposed the display site and the website. “We had ideas going into it, but the project also grew based on ideas the kids had,” Boucher said. Boucher was surprised that the kids have been transfixed by the tweets for months. “We usually rotate the work on display, but I haven’t taken these down. The kids will look at them every single day because they are so engaging.” Excited by the work of those six lessons, the fifth graders have been generating more ideas related to educating others about scientists. One student suggested, “This person would make a great Google doodle!” For Boucher, the wheels are already turning for next year. “How cool if we actually got kids’ doodles published on Google? What a fun way to break those stereotypes.” W

Learn more here!

George Washington Carver Uuugh these farmers will not budge they only want to plant cotton!!! #ScientistsWhoSelfie #farmersunited #croprotation

Learn more here!

Check out more tweets and learn more about the #ScientistsWhoSelfie project here!

Learn more here!



STUDENT VOICE by Huckleberry F. ‘22

Beating Cancer at Its Own Game

Using the Habit of Perspective and a Love of Gaming to Fuel New Insights in Cancer Research I WANT TO BETTER MY WORLD BY BRINGING my ideas to life. My true passion is game design, but I have always wanted to merge my love of games with a desire to help the world. This came to fruition last summer when I interned in the Junior Fellows program at the Lawrence J. Ellison Institute for Transformative Medicine. The program focused on lab work and cancer research. These weren’t my natural forte, but I was excited to see how I could use the knowledge I would gain for my other passions. The program consisted of myself and seven other amazing students. When I first arrived, I was completely out of my depth. The rest of the Fellows had taken AP

Biology, which I had not. In addition, I have shaky hands and was inexperienced with lab work in general. It was very intimidating at the beginning but I worked with the people at the Institute to improve. Through help from others and practice, I made my way through the program, learning and becoming more accustomed to the environment. One of their key values is bringing together various different fields in order to further their cancer research. I was able to bring my game design abilities to unveil a new perspective on oncology. I brought the idea of a game based on cancer research to my internship supervisor. He loved it, and Stasis was born. Stasis functions as a cancer simulation where the players play as cancer cells. It is using the intensity with which people play games to fuel the research. The more players play, the more simulation data is acquired. I now lead a team of five, including brilliant scientists from the Ellison Institute. We seek to use Stasis to bring new insights into the world of cancer research. It also means a lot to me personally because it showed me that I could still help the world while making games. In the past, I’ve been concerned that games and game design wouldn’t be the best use of my or other people’s time. I worried that I wasn’t really helping the community enough because game design isn’t going to send people to space, build houses, or cure cancer. But, Stasis will be able to not only bring entertainment and joy, but also data and research to an important field. My team and I hope Stasis can improve people’s lives. Stasis has really been a great example of the Habit of Perspective. I am using a completely new


approach to cancer research, and I hope it will lead to helpful results. Being able to look at an obstacle from a new angle is key in overcoming it.



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