Welcome back to the Halford Blog! This year has definitely been unlike most, but we've managed to make the most of it in each of our meetings with the Little Sisters. This year we have been able to do an incredible amount of activities and workshops. We've made at-home lava lamps, read poems and speeches, learned about climate change, presented about different biomes and environments, explored our local government, and so much more! Through these activities, the Little Sisters have been able to explore their own identities in a safe-space with people they have created strong bonds with throughout the year!
In our lesson for today, little sisters learned about different biomes, like deserts and forests. After spending some time researching their assigned biomes, they put together quick presentations!
As a result of COVID-19, Halford has had to shift our in person meetings with the littles to online meetings instead! Little and big sisters now meet over Zoom
Over the past few weeks, Halford Sisters have dived deep into a myriad of different themes like the structure of American government and topics from the use of indigo as a dye through a fun tie-dye activity to exploring the definition of "community" and how it applies to the many aspects of sisters' lives during enriching 1-on-1 discussions in Halford Sister pairs. We closed out the year of 2019 with gingerbread house making mid-week to celebrate everyone's hard work and focus throughout the first half of the school year! We hope everyone has a wonderful holiday season and New Year and we look forward to restarting our Halford sessions together in January!
We hope everyone had a great Halloween! Last weekend, Halford sisters continued our conversation about the concept of representation in media, focusing on women in media during this session. From Disney movies to beauty commercials, sisters were able to participate in discussion around sexism and stereotyping, by using media clips and reflecting on real-life experiences. During science, sisters worked collaboratively to complete a challenge set by Gatorbotics. Using a small pushcart with a bouncy ball, teams were tasked with a few challenges for their cart to complete without the falling. With duct tape, pipe cleaners, cardboard, paper, and more, sisters successfully completed the challenge, with sisters cheering on the side lines.
Last Saturday marked the beginning of the 2019-20 Halford program! Big and little sisters welcomed both new and familiar friends and jumped right into icebreakers and activities in SEL and science. We made identity maps to learn more about each other and watched amazing reactions between water and oil occur as we made our own lava lamps. We look forward to a fun-filled year with potential for lots of learning and growth!
This Friday, Halford held a very anticipated event that sisters look forward to each year. The end of year celebration brings Halford families and students together to celebrate the work little sisters have accomplished each year. This year's celebration was vibrant and cheerful as sisters met parents for the first time or reconnected with families once again. Many hugs and smiles were exchanged as everyone was excited to see the culmination of the year. Big sisters Athena and Anya shared words about what an amazing year it had been from the perspective of a big sister, sharing with families the importance the program held for them and the reciprocity in mentorship and friendship they felt from little sisters throughout the year. Each little sister shared a short blurb in front of the crowd about what Halford meant to them this year and detailed their favorite activities. This year's Halford program was a fun-filled 9 months in which extremely valuable connections were forged and skills were developed, and we wish all little sisters the best as they enjoy summer and embark on their new journey as middle schoolers!
This past Saturday marked the end of the 2018-19 Halford program. After completing a crossword puzzle that really pushed us to use our imagination and knowledge from this year's program, big and little sisters engaged in fun closing activities that celebrated their accomplishments from throughout the year. We reflected on what our favorite aspects of Halford this year, and crafted and practiced what little sisters will present to their families and friends at our closing ceremony in the coming weeks. We also celebrated Mother's Day by making circuits and using them to light up hand-made cards for the special women in our lives.
This Earth Day (4/22/19), we celebrated by taking a walk through Gamble Gardens to identify different flowers, played a Jeopardy game to learn about disposing of our trash, recycling, and compost, and drank smoothies. We have a very interactive day full of opportunities to learn about our different habits, such as how we dispose of candy wrappers, and how they affect the environment we live in.
Halford Sisters visited the San José Tech Museum and experienced many of the exhibits the museum has to offer. Sisters explored with micro-organisms in petri dishes to make a unique color made up of bacteria, a comprehensive video series that highlighted global issues, like food shortage and bus pollution, and offered real solutions and people working to implement systems that help stop these types of problems from spreading. It was a fun-filled day that gave everyone a little break from their busy lives to learn about fun and important topics while getting to spend time with their Sisters on the weekend!