Habitat for Humanity – Baytown, Texas
For more than 15 years, MICDS has sent a group of students to Baytown, Texas for a weeklong spring break service trip with Habitat for Humanity. The tradition continues. Over Spring Break, students traveled to Baytown to live the MICDS mission – “lives of purpose and service” – by building homes for those in need. In partnership with the pros from Habitat for Humanity, they hammered and nailed, lifted wood framing and sacrificed sore muscles for the greater good.
The Empire Strikes Back – London and Madrid
Upper School students took a trip to the two great capitals of European empires, London and Madrid. In addition to a full schedule of major museums (including the Tate Modern in London and the Prado in Madrid), there were theater events in the evening (including Kinky Boots in London and a Flamenco performance in Madrid) and day trips to Stonehenge and Bath in England and Toledo in Spain.
The layers of history in these cities run deep. The best example was in Bath, where Georgian row houses abutted a Gothic church, which was built on the remains of a Roman temple and bath complex. You could almost hear the students’ perspectives expand as the tour guide told them at one point that “those buildings are new – they’re from the 1850’s.”
French Exchange Trip – Caen, Normandy and Paris
Upper School French students participated in MICDS’ fourth French student exchange program with Institution Sainte-Marie de Caen (ISMC). The purpose of the Sister School Exchange Program is to cultivate a long-term collaborative and reciprocal academic partnership between the ISMC and MICDS.
The MICDS students hosted the French students in their homes in October, and they traveled to Caen, France over Spring Break. Students experienced France with a homestay experience, attended classes, spoke French and learned the beauty and history of Normandy on field trips. The group also spent three days in Paris.
As an unexpected bonus, MICDS students met the First Lady of France while they were touring the Mont Saint Michel in Northern France! She graciously agreed to take a photo with the students and that picture wound up in a French news article!
Jessica Brooks `20 thought the trip was amazing and unforgettable. “It has been one of the most fun experiences I have been a part of at MICDS. It was so cool to put what I have learned in the classroom to the test and continue to develop my authentic language skills. This trip changed my life and I am so grateful that I got to be a part of it.”
Jack Morris ‘21 also felt fortunate to go on this trip. “I met so many new people and forged strong friendships with both French and American students. I don’t think there’s another thing on earth that helps with language learning more than an exchange. I immediately noticed tremendous improvement with my French while in Normandy. These past two weeks were literally the best of my life, and I would do the exchange again in a heartbeat.”
Argentina Exchange Trip – Buenos Aires and Mar del Plata
A group of Upper School Spanish students traveled to Argentina over Spring Break, immersing themselves in the language and culture of the country with a three-day visit to Buenos Aires and a 10-day homestay with a family from our sister school, Instituto Albert Einstein, in the coastal town of Mar del Plata. Students spent a day at a gaucho ranch, attended a professional soccer game, participated in a tango lesson, toured Buenos Aires, and experienced classes and field trips planned by our sister school and host families while in Mar del Plata.
MICDS students will host their exchange partners in St. Louis for approximately two weeks in September 2018. The linguistic, intellectual, and personal benefits for participating in an exchange are invaluable.