An Exciting Year Ahead for Our Middle School Hives Program

Angel Menefee
Our Middle School hives are buzzing! Last week, Hives were revealed for our Fifth Graders and new Sixth Grade students as they were welcomed into their new family. The hives program has an exciting agenda for this upcoming year for our Middle School students.
During the 2018-2019 school year, Calvert launched its Middle School Hives program, in-school cross-grade “families” of students and teachers who join together every Day 6 for fun and fellowship. The fourteen hives, consisting of approximately four students from each grade and two or three “beekeepers” (faculty members) are named for fourteen Apis Mellifera (Honeybee) subspecies - Carnica, Capensis, Cecropia, Cypria, Iberiensis, Intermissa, Lamarkii, Macedonica, Mellifera, Monticola, Sahariensis, Siciliana, Simensis, and Syriaca. Students remain in the same hive throughout their Middle School career, affording students and teachers alike the opportunity to develop long-term connections outside of their grade level. In fact, each student’s hive leader will one day guide him or her in the crafting of his or her Eighth Grade Reflection Speech.

While all Middle School students were new to their hives last year, this year our Hives Reveal focused on celebrating our new Fifth Graders, five new Sixth Graders, and two new faculty members.  Preparations for the reveal began before the first day of school as Eighth Graders joined their hive leaders to create banners for their hive that will be carried to friendly competitions throughout the year. On the day of the reveal, all hive members gathered in the gym under their banners. Fifth Graders and new students sat in the center and were called up four or five at a time to pop a balloon that contained the name of their new hive. The enthusiasm was palpable as hives cheered on their new members as the hive names were read. All hive members signed their banners which hang prominently in the Middle School stairwell.

This year, hives will gather at least once per cycle for in-hive team building and bonding activities and will select and complete at least one community service project together. Each hive will also host a challenge as designed by the students and faculty members of that hive. These challenges — which might include relay races, lip sync battles, cooking challenges, door decorating, scavenger hunts, trivia contests, and our annual Pi Day Competition — will offer contests in which hive members from all grades will be able to showcase their academic, athletic, and artistic talents. In October, our first competition, hosted by the Sahariensis hive will feature a scarecrow-making contest in which students must build the most creative scarecrow using only recyclable materials. The winning hives will earn badges that they will add to their banners throughout the year.
Calvert School is a coed independent lower and middle school.