Miquon is where I fell in love with learning. I remember being in Music and learning how to use computer software to compose; one of the other groups incorporated silence into their piece and completely opened up my mind to the possibilities of art. I remember checking the same books out of the library over and over again; whenever I would go back to one I loved, I’d inevitably discover a new story, right next to it on the shelf.

As our class drove to Canada for a school trip, I participated in an elaborate game of Dungeons and Dragons; I have no idea what happened in that game but am still in awe that we, at age 12, had the creativity and focus to build an imaginary world for six continuous hours. I remember loving all of my teachers and being comfortable in the knowledge that they believed in me and left me the freedom to innovate as I saw fit.

As a teacher now, one of the pieces of the Miquon education that continues to inspire me is the way that the faculty and staff at Miquon built a world where students learned rigorously without feeling restricted. It wasn’t until I entered the classroom that I realized that the pizza sale that I had so joyously contributed to since the second grade and eagerly taken on as a 5th and 6th grader was, in fact, an opportunity to develop our skills in, among other things, math and executive functioning. We felt like co-creators of a world whose underlying scaffold afforded us opportunities to learn, to grow, and to play.

I have felt empowered as a learner for as long as I can remember; I aspire to inspire my students in half the ways that my Miquon experience inspired me.