Since 2003 Browning's Form II French students have participated in the annual Middle School theater festival at the Lycée Français de New York.. The Browning boys came away with three awards, the most notable being the 2017 Premiere Scène Special Jury Prize. Well supported by his talented peers, one of our boys was awarded the best non-French speaking male actor trophy. The boys also received a special award for "best pronunciation and articulation." Click here to watch a video, read details and view photos from the festival.
Alexander Heffner, host of “The Open Mind,” a 30-minute public affairs show on PBS, spoke to a number of groups at Browning on February 13, including parents, Middle and Upper School boys, and the student newspaper (Grytte) staff. His topic, “Civility, Truth and the Future of American Democracy,” focused on the need to engage in face-to-face discussions and the ability to “agree to disagree.” The importance of debating a given topic in depth and with civility is central to democracy, according to Mr. Heffner, who was a keynote speaker at a recent conference held at the University of Copenhagen. A graduate of Andover and Harvard, Mr. Heffner is also a native New Yorker. Click here to view photos and more details.
On February 8, boys in Grade Five through Form II utilized the School’s facilities – from science labs, to the dining hall, to the art rooms and Kurani Gym – as they welcomed their parents, faculty and staff to Math-Science Night. This annual event always proves exciting, with the boys geared up to explain the original projects they have designed and executed. Months in the making, their assignment demands that they incorporate mathematical analysis of their data as a central component in reaching a final conclusion. Click here to view photos and more details.
Thirty-three Browning gentlemen were among over 1,500 players competing in 14 grade/rating divisions in the New York City K-12 Chess Championship held in Brooklyn on February 4 and 5.
On the first day, one of our ninth graders tied with one other player for first place in the High School JV division; this was his first chess tournament experience and included a speed chess tiebreak playoff for the first place trophy and title of NYC Champ. He won and is now NYC High School JV champion! Our high school team took the fifth place award.
On the second day, our K-1 team (consisting of five Pre-primary boys and seven first graders) tied for first place with Collegiate, ahead of Speyer, Columbia Prep, Avenues, Trinity, and 20-plus other teams. Our Browning team held superior tiebreak points to bring home the first-place trophy. Click here to view photos and more details.
Our Upper School Model UN delegates spent four full days of spirited debate in Philadelphia at the Ivy League Model United Nations Conference (ILMUNC XXXIII). The competition was severe with 3,000 students from all over the USA as well as Colombia, Venezuela and China in attendance. The boys performed strongly in an exceedingly competitive conference. Our delegation representing the Republic of Yemen gave it their best effort. One of our Form V boys gained a Verbal Commendation as Bai Chongsi on the Joint Crisis Committee on the Guomindang, the Chinese Nationalist party. Click here to read more details and view photos of the conference.
As a complement to their social studies curriculum on the origins of Manhattan and the study of its Woodland Natives, the third grade boys visited the Museum of the City of New York to learn about the Lenape tribe, the island’s original inhabitants who lived here 400 years ago. Please click here to watch a video, read details and view photos from the trip.
Topics covered during a Lower School Assembly on January 12 were tied to the observance of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. During this assembly led by Glenn Walker, advisor to the Multicultural Club, Lower School boys learned about the first-hand experiences of Upper School boys regarding inequality and the universally uncomfortable feeling of being “left out.” The boys left with much to ponder and consider in terms of being sensitive to the feelings of others, regardless of their appearance or beliefs. Please click here to read more details and view photos from the assembly.
Over the recent course of a 15-month period, Browning conducted an in-depth self-study as part of its 10-year accreditation review by the New York State Association of Independent Schools (NYSAIS). NYSAIS is a voluntary organization whose members agree to adhere to a set of best practices and principles for schools. Head of School John Botti notes that the self-study “provided important introspection” and was a conduit for “shared community conversation.” Please click here to read more details.
This year’s Community Day offered boys at all levels the opportunity for celebration and camaraderie, as well as the chance to serve the greater community beyond Browning. The entire Upper School student body traveled off site to participate in community service at various organizations, while the younger boys learned more about the global implications of access to water. Click here to watch a video, read details and view photos from the day.
The Browning community joined together on December 16 in Temple Emanu-El for the School’s annual Holiday Program, “One World, Many Voices,” led by Music Directors Lucy Warner and Richard Symons. The much anticipated event, attended by parents and extended family members, began with remarks from Head of School John Botti. Mr. Botti spoke of his fondness for this festive time of year, how pleased he is to be leading the School as our new Head, and how aptly the stage had been set for this particular program by Community Day. Please click here to view photos and more details.
The boys in Grades Five and Six welcomed a special visitor on December 9. Keer Deng, who is from Sudan, talked with the students about his experience during the civil war in that country. Prior to his appearance, history teacher Mary Bosworth provided the boys with background materials. The boys had read a book on the topic, “A Long Walk to Water,” and watched the 2014 movie, “The Good Lie.” Hearing about Mr. Deng’s first-hand experience of escaping the war and coming to America certainly made the story all the more real. Click here to view photos and read more details of Mr. Deng's visit.
Every year the art department chooses a theme for all of the Browning boys to study. This year the boys are studying prehistoric art, looking at cave paintings and petroglyphs (drawings carved into rock) from all over the world. Click here to watch a video of the boys creating artwork that relate to this theme, which range from large stretched canvases to works on paper executed with cray-pas and watercolor.
Head of School John Botti observed his first Thanksgiving Assembly (the School’s 29th) with the Browning community on November 22. Mr. Botti described the day as “a wonderful one,” to be shared with family and friends. A number of boys addressed the audience, reading from works that echoed Mr. Botti’s words that this holiday is meant to be spent with those we love, enjoying one another’s company and, of course, all the food and trimmings!
Performances by the Drumming Circle, Ovation Orchestra, Browning Balladeers and Form II Handchimes added to the festive nature of the event. Presidents of both the Middle and Upper School Councils remarked on the success of the school year so far, from the winning fall sports teams to the record-breaking amount of food (860 pounds) collected during the annual food drive.
The Class of 2017 and Director of College Guidance Sandy Pelz ’71 welcomed returning alumni, while the Panther mascot, along with music teacher Richard Symons, led the community in singing The Browning School Song.
After the assembly, alumni were treated to a reception back at the School where they mingled with former teachers and Form VI boys.
Click here to view photos and more details from the assembly.
The annual Middle School Shakespeare production brought “Macbeth” to the stage on November 16 and 17 under the direction of Head Librarian Sarah Murphy. As always, the cast – including girls from The Brearley School – impressed the audience with their acting skills and interpretation of the Bard’s language. Click here to view photos and more details.
For the second consecutive year, boys from The Browning Grytte newspaper staff, along with the editors of The Grytte yearbook, attended the 77th Annual Columbia Scholastic Press Association’s (CSPA) Annual Fall Conference at Columbia University. The students partook in a variety of sessions, with 80 from which to choose, with themes ranging from sports reporting, to editorial writing, to creativity. They experienced both learning from professional journalists and writers and from being on a renowned college campus.
The boys from Grade Four to Form VI gathered insight into what makes their writing, visuals and paper itself more appealing. They appreciated this opportunity to learn more about what they do outside of class. Click here to view video, photos and more details about the conference.
On the evening of November 9, The Browning School celebrated new Chairholders Mary Bosworth and Sam Keany. Ms. Bosworth, recipient of the 2016 Stephen M. Clement, III Chair for the Humanities, joined Browning in 2004 and is a Middle and Upper School history teacher. Mr. Keany, 2016 recipient of the STEM Chair, has taught at the School since 2001 and is Chair of the Science Department and Dean of Students.
The Stephen M. Clement, III Chair for the Humanities was established in 2009 to honor Mr. Clement's 20th anniversary as Headmaster, while the STEM Chair was first awarded in 2014 to honor a faculty member who advance the School's missions in supporting science, technology, engineering and math. Both chairs are awarded for three-year terms. Click here to view photos, video and remarks from the evening.
Browning boys, their families and the entire school community are never at a loss for finding the perfect book at the annual Book Fair each fall. Guest authors (including Browning faculty, friends and alumni), classroom visits and a cocktail party are all part of the two-day event orchestrated by the Parents Association and Head Librarian Sarah Murphy. Please click here to view photos and more details.
Congratulations to all the Browning sports teams on a great season!
Browning boys George Allen ’17 and Joshua Jordan ’17 were selected as NYCAL All League Soccer Players this season. Coaches from all the varsity soccer teams rank the players in the league, and the top 11 make the All League team. Coaches are not permitted to vote for their own players. Well done, boys!
The phrase “man’s best friend” as applied to our canine comrades took on a new meaning when a group of therapy dogs and their owners/handlers from New York Therapy Animals visited Browning for a Lower School assembly on November 10. These furry friends touch the lives of boys and girls, men and women, when they pay a comforting call to schools, libraries and hospitals on a regular basis. Click here to view photos and more details.
Head of School John Botti is pleased to appoint Dr. Betty Noel to the position of Director of Diversity at The Browning School. She is excited about current plans in the works, including the formation of a new Diversity Committee comprised of faculty and staff, as well as the School’s third annual Community Day on December 15. The latter offers an opportunity to celebrate the Browning community and to take a closer look at the world outside its walls as well. Please click here to read more details from Mr. Botti and Dr. Noel.