Form VI boys, their families and the entire Browning community gathered to celebrate the achievements of the Class of 2017 during graduation exercises on June 14 at Christ Church. Head of School John M. Botti, President of the Board of Trustees Valda M. Witt, and Head of Upper School James E. Reynolds presented diplomas to each member of the graduating class. Conor P.D. Harkins ‘17, president of the Upper School Student Council, offered parting remarks and best wishes to his fellow graduates. He was pleased to note that members of the senior class reached 100% participation in their class gift effort, raising a total of $7,691.13 and setting a record for Form VI fundraising. These funds have been allocated toward the renovation of the Cook Room. Click here to read more details and view photos.
Form VI boys annually participate in Senior Projects during the last three weeks of the school year, volunteering with nonprofit organizations across the city. After a welcome from their advisor, Janet Lien, who is director of Middle and Upper School admission, the boys reported on their work to members of the Browning community, including the faculty and Form V boys, on June 12. Click here to read more details and view photos.
Tradition calls for Lower School Closing to take place at Christ Church, where the end of the school year is celebrated in song, dance and parting remarks. This year’s event took place on June 9, a beautiful sunny day for the boys’ stroll to and from Browning. Head of Lower School/Assistant Head Laurie Gruhn welcomed the community and congratulated the boys on their accomplishments throughout their Lower School years. Click here to read more details and view photos.
Director of Athletics Andrew West '92 spoke on behalf of the entire Browning community in praise of the Panthers! All of our Browning athletes are to be commended for their dedication, hard work and sportsmanship during this past spring season. Highlights as reported by Coach West are as follows:
2017 NYCAL Postseason Champions for second consecutive year
2017 NYCAL Team Sportsmanship Award (as voted on by opposing coaches)
2017 NYCAL Regular Season Champions
2017 NYCAL Postseason Tournament Champions
First Place Overall for Boys at the NYCAL Track Championship Meet
Click here to view photos and individual reports for Varsity Baseball, Varsity Tennis, Varsity Track, Varsity Golf, 7th & 8th Grade Baseball.
Third graders celebrated their writing and research achievements with the third annual Dutch Day and a publishing party of stories they wrote.
June 6 was a celebration of that grade's third annual Dutch Day, with parents and members of the Browning community on hand to admire the boys' research describing life in Colonial New Amsterdam.
The prior morning, the third graders rejoiced in the completion of the stories they had written using the famed author, Chris Van Allsburg, as a mentor. Click here to read more details and view photos.
As the school year is drawing to a close, Lower School boys have been showcasing their acting and spelling skills.
The Lower School Drama Club staged “Cast Aways” under the direction of Sarah Murphy, who described the play as follows: “It’s ‘Gilligan’s Island’ meets ‘Endgame’ in a post-climate-catastrophe future.”
Pre-primary boys proudly presented a play inspired by the book, ‘One,’ by Katherine Otoshi. The play conveyed a wonderful message about kindness and working together, which aligns with the Pre-primary curriculum.
Lastly, the Laura P. Muhlfeld Lower School Spelling Bee included finalists from Grades Two, Three and Four. A majority of the finalists held out longer than in any previous competition. Click here to view photos and more details.
Browning’s technology department proudly showcased its education program to parents and community members in the Kurani Gym on May 31. Tech Expo 2017 featured interactive projects and demos from each grade, as well as solo projects by the Upper School boys. Guests had the opportunity to learn first-hand how computer science, engineering and design are used creatively for expression and function. Click here to view photos.
According to Coaches Lauck Blake and Matt Brown, the Lower School boys worked together and competed with their classmates in a variety of sporting activities at this year’s Lower School Field Day in May. They offer the following report:
Heavy rains caused Randall’s Island fields to be closed, therefore providing the opportunity for the boys to enjoy an indoor field day in the Kurani Gym. Each grade level wore the same color shirt, and each boy was provided with a wristband of blue, orange, yellow or green. The final score of the games had little value, as the spirit of the day was to spend time competing and having fun playing games. Click here to read more details and view photos.
The final Parents Association meeting of the school year began with the joyous sounds of the Baroque composer Antonio Vivaldi's music performed by the Browning Ovation Orchestra. Music Department Chair Lucy Warner reports: "With Jonathan Ragonese, director of the orchestra, conducting, it was obvious to all in the audience that this orchestra has made great strides since its debut six years ago as a small string ensemble of five musicians. Now featuring 18 instrumentalists, the Ovation Orchestra includes woodwinds and percussion in addition to a vibrant strings section of violinists, cellists and a guitarist. With the enthusiastic applause and cheers that followed the performance, one word in particular brought a smile to the musician's faces: 'Bravo!' " Click here to view photos.
Parents and Lower School boys spent the first hour of their day on May 23 in the cafeteria, where they hosted their parents, siblings and other family members for the annual Lower School Science Exhibition. The boys and their science teachers, Julia Kingsdale and Sam Keany, had set up an impressive array of science projects, which the students were eager to explain in exacting detail. This morning of scientific discovery and sharing of knowledge represents a culmination of experimentation and modification. Click here to read more and view photos.
In the history of Browning, the mock trial team has never achieved the level of success that it did this year. Math teacher and faculty sponsor Marcia Wallace explains that the tournament begins each year with over 100 schools from all five boroughs of New York City participating. In past years, Browning twice reached the Round of 16 but advanced no further. Making it to the Final Four this year was an amazing accomplishment. Click here to read more and view photos.
The annual Lyman B. Tobin Public Speaking Program occurs each spring at every division level, allowing Browning boys to refine their speaking skills and gain confidence in front of a large audience. Lyman B. Tobin, a Browning teacher for 34 years, became Headmaster in 1948 and under his leadership, public speaking was established as an important part of student life at the School. Objectives of this program are to develop effective public speaking skills, to memorize a significant piece of poetry or prose, to learn how to deliver the piece effectively, and to develop poise and self-confidence speaking in front of an audience. Click here to read more details and view photos.
Congratulations to all the Lower School students who performed in this year's Spring Recital Series on May 3, 4, 10 and 11. Music Department Chair Lucy Warner notes that nearly 80 boys participated in these four memorable, musical evenings! Such performances are the culmination of many hours of study and practice, as well as a testament to the talent of Browning's music students. "Bravo" to all! Click here to view photos.
Perhaps it has rained in recent years on Grandparents & Special Friends Day just to show that nothing can dampen the spirits of Browning families when they are together in the classroom! More than 100 guests from near and far enjoyed time with their Browning boys – creating art, learning about the latest advances in science and technology, appreciating music and simply reading a good book together. Take a look at the photos here to see what we mean! Click here to view photos.
First grade teachers Hallie Cohn and Julianne Rowland are pleased to report that their first-ever “publishers party” was a smashing success: “We held our party on the morning of May 4, with the boys’ families as our guests, to commemorate the conclusion of our poetry writing unit. The boys wrote different kinds of poems, including acrostic, autobiographical and cinquain, as well as a color poem and a spring haiku. To cap off our celebration, the boys presented their our own first grade acrostic poem to their proud parents! A great time was had by all!” Click here to view photos.
Each year in the spring, Form II Browning boys and faculty head to Washington, D.C., to take in the sights, absorb the history and enjoy one another's company. This year the class spent two nights in D.C., where they visited the National Mall and such iconic monuments as the Lincoln Memorial, Washington Monument and World War II Memorial, among others. These impressive sights were part of an itinerary that also included a number of docent-led tours through renowned museums administered by the Smithsonian Institution. Click here to view photos from the trip.
Science Department Chair and Dean of Students Sam Keany, who is also vice president of The Black Rock Forest Consortium Board, offers the following report on the recent trip taken by Form III boys to Black Rock Forest:
"On April 26 and 27, Form III students spent two days at Black Rock Forest gathering data for their biology projects. This year, the forest was overcast and fog-shrouded. The boys studied a wide range of organisms, sampling various birch barks, learning how to drill tree-core samples, and analyzing the resistance of invasive plant species to chemicals in precipitation, to name a few activities. Boys laid turtle traps in several of the ponds of the forest but were hampered by few turtles venturing into them. Two groups of boys continued Browning's three-year effort extracting Japanese barberry -- a tough, deep-rooted invasive species -- from the environs of the science center. Field studies can be hard work, and their outcomes can be unpredictable. More predictable was the enjoyment of a night hike under a luminous layer of fog, with the calls of "spring peeper" frogs echoing around. The boys and I were accompanied by two of our science teachers, Dr. Kevin Perry and Emilie Wolf." Click here to view photos.
Middle School history and philosophy teacher Mary Bosworth arranged for sixth grade students to visit a special exhibit, A World of Emotions: Ancient Greece, 700 BC-200 AD, at the Onassis Cultural Center on Fifth Avenue. The excursion enhanced the boys’ study of the ancient Greek gods, as they studied the ancient paintings, sculpture and other art that portrayed death, destruction, betrayal and a gamut of events and emotions still experienced by the human race. Accompanying Ms. Bosworth were English teacher Zack Williams and Greek and Latin teacher Brett Wisniewski. Click here to read more and view photos from the day.
Physical education teacher David Watson organized the third annual Panther games at Randall's Island on April 17. Three teams participated in various events and activities throughout the day, with the Red team winning for the second consecutive year! His report follows:
"The day closely followed last year's event, starting with a human pyramid race involving all members of all three teams, followed by running events. Tug of war, beanbag toss, a potato sack race and a wheelbarrow race gave the teams more chances to accumulate points. After lunch the captains of the teams rallied their members in three team sports, including soccer, modified softball and touch football, with points added to each team's morning scores. Wonderful weather added to the pleasure of this much-anticipated event!"
On April 24, the Middle School boys ventured out to Randall's Island for their Field Day. Coach Michael Cohn reports: "We were blessed with superb weather, enormous amounts of enthusiasm and a great deal of fun. The morning events included various track and field activities, tug-of-war, relay races and a football throwing competition. After two exciting hours of play, the boys enjoyed a picnic pizza lunch and then proceeded to participate in any activity of their choice, including soccer, kickball, touch football and capture the flag. In an extremely close competition, the Orange team was victorious with a valiant effort put forth by their competitors. A great day of competition and fun was had by all, and Middle School Field Day 2017 was a huge success! Go, Panthers!" Click here to view photos.
The third annual Biodiversity Day sponsored by Browning’s Green Team was another huge success! After the opening address at Christ Church, boys, teachers, staff members and guest naturalists broke into groups and headed to Central Park, where they dodged the raindrops to complete a Bioblitz/Biodiversity survey. Approximately 100 species were identified!
In another “point of pride,” dollars raised by the day’s Dress Down Day amounted to $1,500 and were donated to the Wild Bird Fund and the Central Park Conservancy. Click here to read more and view photos from the day.