The start of school this year marked year two of the “map project.” Last year as a means of facilitating conversation and connection, Mrs. Harrison and I found a magnetic map of the world that could be mounted on the wall in my office. Now, each year at the start of school each boarding student at Darlington places their “pin” on the map to signify where they are from.
A student from Cooper House, our first-year girls house, places her pin and shares with her House where she calls home.
Here are some highlights of what I learn in the process:
1. Our students come to Darlington and to boarding school for many different reasons.
2. Many students struggle to know exactly where they are “from” as they have lived around the world and in many different places.
3. We have much more in common than we sometimes realize.
4. Our individual experiences help us to be stronger members of a group.
5. The state of Georgia isn’t big enough on the map to give everyone proper representation.
6. Everyone loves cookie cake.
This time with our students is a great way to kick-off the year because it proves once again that Darlington is a school that helps students discover their place in the global community and helps them develop the confidence, connections and compassion to be successful contributors to the greater good.