US/MS Student Life
Student Life at Princeton Day School supports over 30 clubs, activities, and student-run organizations. These extracurricular activities are an integral part of each student’s life at Princeton Day School and represent a wide variety of interests and pursuits. The Outdoors Club, Model UN, Dance Club, Food and Garden Club, and the Debate Club are just a few of our current offerings. Some organizations, like the EnAct (Environmental Action Club) have been around for decades, while others, such as the Ultimate Frisbee group, are new to the school. A broad range of student groups, including Mock Trial, Science Olympiad, A Capella groups, and the Community Service Committee, select their student membership. In keeping with our school’s overarching mission to support a diversity of interests and inspire innovation and leadership, students are encouraged to imagine, invent, and lead their own clubs and organizations, always with the guidance and support of a faculty advisor.
The goals of Student Life at Princeton Day School include:
- Fostering leadership and responsibility in settings outside of the classroom
- Encouraging the pursuit of one’s passions
- Inspiring students to be positive, responsible and active members of a community
- Building relationships beyond the classroom
- US Extracurriculars: Selection/Election
- Upper School Clubs and Activities
- Student Leadership Opportunities
Black-Latino Student Union
Chamber Music Club
Citizen of the Week Committee
Food & Garden Club
Hip Hop Club
Junior State of America
Lord of the Rings Club
My Name My Story
National Organization for Women
New Global Citizens Club
South African HOPE
Judiciary Committee Co-Heads
Community Service Co-Heads
Athletic Association Co-Heads
Student Activities Committee Co-Heads
Performing Arts Program Co-Heads
PDS Student Publications:
- Spokesman (Editor(s))
- LINK (Editor(s))
Class Leadership Positions
Peer Group Leaders
Writing Center Mentors
Every student in the Upper School has a faculty advisor with whom they check in daily. The student can discuss academic or personal problems with his or her advisor. In grade 9, students are assigned advisors and 10th-12th graders choose their advisors. The advisor is interested in, and invested in, multiple aspects of the student's life at school. The advisor writes a report about the advisee at the end of the first and third trimesters and meets with the advisee regularly to discuss academic reports, progress, and planning. The success of the advisor system rests on the student, advisor, and parents and students come to realize that the more initiative they show in seeking out his or her advisor for consultation, the more beneficial the relationship becomes. The advisor is the first point of contact for questions and concerns, and parents should confer with the advisor as the need arises.
Extra-curricular activities play a large role in the life of middle school students. At PDS, we offer many opportunities for students to continue the learning process outside the school day. We encourage students to take part in our clubs, plays, competitions and music ensembles. Whether a child is interested in performing on stage, honing math skills or working creatively with other students, we have the program to provide that opportunity. Students learn how to work in a group, improve leadership skills, and hone creative problem solving skills. All of these activities are led by our dedicated middle school teachers.
Homework Club is offered each day from 3:15-6:00 pm. After a time of play and snack, students are supervised by two teachers as they work on homework. Advanced sign-up is not required. There is a charge of $8.50 per hour for Homework Club. The first fifteen minutes, from 3:15-3:30, is free to accommodate the waiting period for after-school activities that begin at 3:30.
Destination ImagiNation is an innovative organization that teaches creativity, teamwork and problem solving to students across the U.S. and in more than 30 countries. Its main program is an extraordinary team tournament where student teams from all over the world solve mind-bending challenges. Students work on teams of five to seven for months preparing to showcase their talents and creativity for the two-part competition held in March. A lottery may be needed to help determine the teams. www.idodi.org
Fall Play Production
Grades: 5-8 Dates: Auditions will take place the first week of October. Rehearsals take place in October and November after school Monday-Thursday from 3:15-5:00, with occasional Friday rehearsals for main characters. The few weeks prior to the December production will see extended rehearsals until 5:30. Students wishing to be involved behind the scenes should contact Mr. Van Velsor at email@example.com
Each year thousands of schools in the United States participate in the National Geographic Bee using materials prepared by the National Geographic Society. The contest is designed to encourage teachers to include geography in their classrooms, spark student interest in the subject, and increase public awareness about geography. www.nationalgeographic.com/geographybee
Middle School Jazz Band
Explore jazz and rock music with our instrumentalists. No audition is required. However, students must be enrolled in one of the PDS music ensembles to participate. Please see Mrs. Hancock for more information.
Middle School Food and Garden Club
PDS has an amazing garden. Students have been involved in planting, weeding, harvesting and eating. This club will be looking at the garden in many different ways. Our garden teacher, Ms. Flory, is excited to interact with our amazing Middle School students as they explore all that the garden has to offer.
Future engineers unite! Consider joining this team of interested and dedicated programers, engineers and problem solvers. Teams work together to design, build, and program a Lego robot to complete a given task. http://mindstorms.lego.com
Eighth Grade Yearbook
Approximately 12-15 dedicated Eighth grade students work together to create a yearbook of pictures, memories, and personal pages which represent the eighth gradeʼs academic, sports, and social activities. Contact Mrs. Daly-Rouse or Ms. Grigger for more information.
National Spelling Bee
The National Spelling Bee’s mission is to help students improve their spelling, increase their vocabularies, learn concepts, and develop correct English usage that will help them all their lives. Join us in this annual event that has the halls buzzing with excitement. www.spellingbee.com
Spokes - Student Newspaper
Calling all reporters, photographers, artists, cartoonists and the like. Our school newspaper is a wonderful way to share your talents with the rest of the Middle School. Student editors work to produce our newspaper which is also posted on the web. Students can choose to participate in one issue or all depending on availability.
Private Lesson Program
PDS offers individual and group instruction. Voice, guitar, piano, wind, percussion, and string instrument lessons are offered for an additional fee.
Mathcounts is a national program bringing together students who have a love for math. Students work alone and in groups on a variety of interesting and challenging math problems disseminated by the national Mathcounts foundation. While not the sole focus of the time together, there is a competition held in February where 10 students will represent PDS in a regional competition. www.mathcounts.org
Middle School Advisory Program
An essential component of the middle school is the advising program, which ensures that at least one faculty member understands the overall patterns, needs, and strengths of each student. Advisors discern and work with student differences in desire to learn methods of learning and ability. The advising program provides the support for a third principle-as educators, we are concerned with the totality of a student's experience-intellectual, ethical, social, physical and emotional development. Advisors and teachers promote student development of competence in the arts, sports, interpersonal relationships, and academic course work so students may develop self-confidence and can fulfill their potential.