From bagpipers playing during Homecoming Weekend to being tossed into Polk Pond as the first senior accepted into college, MICDS has traditions that date back to 1859. Check out just some of the many time-honored customs throughout our School!
How is Homecoming celebrated?
We celebrate Homecoming with Spirit Week, the all-school Pep Rally, Food Truck Friday, the Family Carnival, bagpipes, a bonfire, Fun Run with JBS, and athletic competitions that culminate with the MICDS vs. JBS football game. Go Rams!
Homecoming 2023 Video
What is Lower School Skate Week?
For one week in the school year, the gymnasium is transformed into a roller skating rink. During that special week, students from Junior Kindergarten through 4th grade enjoy skating during every P.E. class.
Skate Week 2023
How do seniors finish out their time at MICDS
On the last day of school, seniors wear apparel that celebrates their college selections. They participate in the Senior Walkthrough on campus, cheered on by JK-11 students, faculty, and staff while passing along the Senior Flag to the juniors, the future seniors. They also enjoy food, games, and the chance to sign one another's yearbooks.
Read Last Day of School Story
How has MICDS celebrated Thanksgiving for the past 20 years?
Turkey Train! The entire school participates by collecting canned goods, and Upper Schoolers also bring frozen turkeys. On the last day of the drive, 9th through 12th-grade students line campus and pass the turkeys from Founders' Court to the MAC, where a St. Louis Area Foodbank truck awaits.
Watch the Turkey Cam
Middle School Talents
What is a favorite Middle School tradition?
The Middle School Talent Show! Every winter, our 5th through 8th grade Rams wow audiences with a variety of solo and group performances. Talents range from piano and guitar to comedy, singing, and dancing.
Watch Talent Show
What race takes place in Polk Pond?
Senior Boat Races! Senior advisories build boats out of cardboard, duct tape, and plastic before attempting to cross Polk Pond. Several heats lead to a final race, and the winning advisory receives a trophy. Then all seniors celebrate by splashing into the water.
Class of 2024 Boat Races
What is May Day?
Mary Institute celebrated May Day in 1912 when the first May Queen was crowned in the gym. Now, May Day is on Lilly's Field, with seniors, juniors, and eighth- and fourth-grade girls participating in this beautiful tradition. The May Queen, selected by a vote of her peers, is announced and celebrated.
Watch May Day 2023 Highlights
What unit in the Middle School is "out of this world?"
The astronomy unit! In fifth grade, students have the chance to choose an astronomy topic, research it, and present about it to their classmates in unique, creative ways. Of course, students are able to stop by the Makerspace to create models, robots, and other creative pieces to help with their presentations.
Read Heat Shield Story
What do MI, CDS, and MICDS alumni look forward to every five years?
Reunion Weekend! Every spring, we invite our alumni back to campus for Reunion. With a special emphasis on milestone reunions, former graduates enjoy luncheons, dinners, campus tours, May Day, and catching up with their classmates.
Reunion Weekend Information
What annual contest is over 100 years old?
Prize Speaking! In Upper School, students select various excerpts to present. Once their selections are approved, they audition for a chance to perform without video, soundtrack, or microphones in the Prize Speaking Competition. The winner’s name is inscribed on the famous Dartmouth Cup.
Prize Speaking Recap
How is Halloween celebrated in Beasley?
Lower Schoolers dress up in costumes and parade through campus for the annual Beasley Halloween Parade. They also have an assembly where each grade performs Halloween songs.
Halloween 2023 Recap
What special event gathers all Upper Schoolers each February?
The Bond Lecture! Each year a noted African American (authors, lecturers, civil rights leaders, etc.) addresses students. Erik Lyons Bond '77 was the first African American graduate to complete all eight grades at CDS. This accomplished scholar, athlete, and student leader passed away in 1985.
Read Bond Lecture Recap
Physical Education in Beasley
What is one of the highly-anticipated weeks for Beasley students?
Swim Week! Each grade level enjoys a whole week where their daily P.E. activity is swimming. Since 2017, MICDS has been proud to boast the Orthwein Pool in the Steward Family Aquatic Center where students learn all about swimming and water safety.
Read Swim Week Story
What is the school's longest-standing tradition?
M. D. Eliot "Grandmother's" Day! In 1860, Margaret Dawes Eliot, mother of MI founder William Greenleaf Eliot, donated $1,000 to the new school bearing her granddaughter's name with the understanding that "the scholars" receive an annual holiday on or near the 11th of May. This annual school holiday continues to this day.
What happens to the first senior who is accepted to college?
They get tossed into the pond! The lucky senior who receives the first acceptance into college gets thrown into the pond by their classmates while Upper Schoolers, faculty, friends, and family cheer them on.
Pond Toss 2023
Upper School Talent
What is the Upper School's version of a talent show?
Blue Whale Cafe! The Blue Whale Cafe allows students and faculty to showcase their talents and celebrate arts in our community while supporting an important cause. The proceeds from the show benefit the Coral Reef Alliance.
2023 Blue Whale Cafe
How do we honor veterans and our service members who have lost their lives in the armed forces?
The Veterans Day Assembly! The Upper School commemorates our veterans and those who have died in the line of duty with a special assembly that dates back to CDS. Students hear remarks from an MICDS-connected veteran or current member of the armed forces. The names of alumni, faculty, and staff who have given their lives in service to our country are read by student leaders.
Watch past assembly
What camp is the perfect setting for allowing 7th graders to build community?
Camp Wyman! Each year, 7th graders enjoy a day at camp where they participate in collaborative, team-building activities. Together, they compete in obstacle courses, puzzles, and a variety of other challenges.
Read Camp Wyman Recap