8th Grade Meet Us Mondays: Marina D.

Our 8th Grade "Meet Us Monday" series continues as we approach graduation and the end of the school year. Our 8th graders are continuing their reminiscing and reflecting on their time they have spent at ILS, the friendships they have made, and the many experiences they have shared both in and out of the classroom along the way. We hope you enjoy these glimpses into the ILS experience!

Meet Us Monday: Marina D., ILS Class of 2018

1. How long have you attended ILS? 9 years. Wow, that’s a long time when I actually think about it. 

2. To what house do you belong, and how have you developed as a person by being involved in it? Bemnet and I are co-captains of Athanasius. This is my third year of being captain. Overall, it’s really cool to be a part of a team like that. So far, Athanasius has been the house in the lead all year, and Seeing the younger kids develop is especially cool. They’ll come to Bemnet and me and tell us about how they’ve defended our house against other kids and how they’re earning house points in their classes, and it’s really cool to see. Learning how to organize has been a big part of working in my house. The biggest struggle is probably to make sure everyone is involved. Sorting out our rosters for track and field is an example of this – you have to know all your house members, their strengths, and abilities. I’ve learned a lot about organizing but also about exciting everyone to want to be involved and compete.  There’s a lot of food involved in that normally (there are special handmade Athanasius brownies with green frosting). It’s helping them see the difference between what they want to do and what the house needs them to do – and doing as much for them as you can, but also reminding them of what the house needs. And then more food. It’s really all about the food. They’re really food-driven. 

3. What was your favorite House competition? Oh, there have been a lot of house competitions. One of my favorites might have been from 6th grade when we had a kickball competition. It was one of my favorites because we went in expecting that we wouldn’t be able to win (we didn’t have 7th or 8th graders in our house competing, but every other house did). Everyone did their job and Abigail, who didn’t feel confident or excited, had one of the best plays in the whole game. It was so great – she did it and didn’t even realize how awesome it was but everyone was cheering. Once we realized we won that competition, our whole house started like yelling and jumping around. Food was involved after this win too. 

4. What is your favorite ILS memory? (Or, which ILS tradition will you remember the most?) This is a hard question. When we went to Science Camp in 5th grade, it was a ton of fun. They had a gaga ball pit and by the second morning, we were all getting up at 5:00am so that our class could go out and play together before anyone else was up. We went on this awesome hike to the river and got to go swimming and play, just our class. There were certain parts we couldn’t go to because the current was too fast, but we got to jump off rocks. It was great. 
Planning the Talent Show is great too. Seeing all the acts prepare is fun, but seeing them running around the night of, excited but kind of stressed out in their costumes, and watching all the groups run through their acts beforehand is really rewarding. This year we got to do it on a real stage with lights and sound. It was so bright in your eyes when you were on stage, and felt more intimidating. I think it was really  worth it. 

5. Which event did you most look forward to during your 8th grade year? You know the “Master has given Dobby a sock! Dobby is FREE!” line from Harry Potter? I want to convince Ms. Habrecht to say that to us when we graduate. I’m looking forward to graduation. We’ve seen all the classes before us graduate since we were little, but now it’s our turn, which is really crazy to think about. We have a graduation party when graduates give speeches. People have so many memories and so much happens, and some of us really remember things the rest of us don’t. It’s cool. Some People cry and there’s usually hugging involved. Ashley and I cried last year Josie left – it’s so strange to think of the classes all leaving. It’s overwhelming because all we’ve known as a school is ILS and it’s hard to imagine having classes somewhere else. 
6. What was your favorite class at ILS, and why? Usually my favorite subject is literature. A few years ago when Ms. Kramer taught us, we had to make skits of Anne of Green Gables, (which was tons of fun) and do other projects, but what I really love about literature is all the discussions we have in 7th and 8th grade.  Our discussions often turn into debates (SOME of us get aggressive, especially when politics comes up), but it’s always fun to see what people think. It’s the most fun when someone changes their mind and is convinced to switch positions or change a belief they had before. 

7. What was your favorite ILS field trip? We went to the zoo when we were in 4th grade, I think. It wasn’t a particularly amazing trip in and of itself (but it was good)! The best part was that in the middle of the day we took a break for lunch on this huge hill, and we all rolled down it and just had so much fun all together outside. We just didn’t expect it to be such a fun day. Another fun day (And I’m not entirely sure if this counts as a field trip), was the huge house competition at the end of last year. The house captains all snuck out of school early and we were running through the neighborhood, trying to get to our hiding spot, and after one of the houses saw us, we had to all hide behind this jeep and hope they didn’t see us, then when they found us, the entire upper school was running through the neighborhood trying to be the first house to get to the undercroft. It was just such a fun day.

8. Where are you attending High School? We’ve been looking at a lot of schools. This is a new process for me, even though my parents obviously chose ILS before. It’s interesting to see how other places do things on shadow days, like scheduling and classes. It feels strange to even think about going to school somewhere other than ILS, though. Trying to make the right decision is hard. Most of my friends have decided already but my family hasn’t quite finalized the decision. We’re almost there. I’ve been accepted to Bishop O’Connell, Oakcrest, Trinity Christian … it’s hard to decide!

9. What will you miss the most about ILS? All the wonderment. Having the same group of people in class is going to be tough to leave, because we really get to know each other. There’s also so many memories that we often bring up in class, or with each other, or tell our new teachers about, that happened years ago that we all love to think about, and it’s that type of thing that we can’t do next year.

10. What is something a teacher told you that you will never forget? So, I’m going to guess Bemnet said this too. And I know this is not very philosophically important. But, we were working on our Peeps Dioramas this year for a house competition. It was really quiet and we were working furiously so close to the deadline, when Mr. Barnett flung open the door, dropped a bag of things we’d asked him to get for us, and yelled (to the tune of Hakuna Matata) “When I was a derp derp derp” and then he dramatically slammed the door behind him and ran off in the hallway. We were so surprised by it that Bemnet and I were rolling around on the floor laughing about it.