Severn News

Community Life Day Brings Positivity to Middle School

Last Wednesday our entire Middle School participated in discussions and activities to bring our community together through positivity and determination. Faculty advisor Ms. Diana Talbott and the student-led Community Life Committee hope this day inspires, encourages and motivates our entire middle school to develop more positive mindsets. This annual event is an opportunity for students to practice advocacy, leadership and empathy while building strong relationships outside of their normal social circles.

What is Community Life Day?

Community Life is part of our student leadership program for middle schoolers. It offers a platform to both celebrate and improve student life at our school. Community Life Day is a morning of kid-centric workshops to think about and discuss what it means to be part of a world community. The focus of the day varies from year to year but past topics include civility, equality, understanding others and inclusion.

Student Ownership, Student Investment

Although Ms. Talbott and our Middle School faculty are present for support and guidance, the Community Life Committee truly runs the show. They choose workshop topics, plan activities and facilitate each group throughout the day.

This year's committee members include:
  • Caroline Brenia '25
  • Anna Clark '25
  • Stella Garcia '25
  • Ainsley Grow '25
  • Charlie Friedrich '24
  • Zak Given '24
  • Raeha Richman '24
  • Lilly Baker '23
  • Maggie Cahouet '23
  • Margaret Cravens '23
  • Patrick Clifford '23 
  • Matilda Damon '23
  • Nick Garcia '23
  • Jack Giardina '23
  • Mia Groff '23
  • Emma Ripley '23
  • Maddie Howell '23
  • Madie Wright '23
  • Will Toomey '23
  • Jourdon Willet '23
  • Mark Youssef '23
“Planning all of this was great. It’s good a bonding experience, hanging out with kids from different grades and figuring it out. I would definitely recommend being on the committee especially if you've already been to one of these days and know what it's about.” — Jack Giardina '23

The Power of Positivity

Starting in September, the committee met weekly during lunch to share leadership strategies and ideas. Working together, they created a series of eight workshops to explore positivity and perseverance. Some workshops were discussion-based while others included games or challenges to encourage participation.
Severn School middle school students work together in a group.
The committee will hang posters from the "Positivity Poster” workshop around school as a reminder to look for the positive!
Severn School students present to the class.
Nick Garcia ‘23 and Will Toomey ‘23 led “Appreciation Box,” a workshop on how to foster a culture of gratitude.
From positivity bingo and making positive self-portraits to group discussion about how to turn a negative situation around, every workshop focused on the power that we all have to create positivity in the world. They demonstrated practical ways for students to change their perspectives, acknowledge and express gratitude, lift each other up and persevere when times are tough.
Severn School middle school students work together in a group.
During the “Inside Out Self-Portrait” workshop our Community Life leaders encouraged everyone to draw their strengths or things they like about themselves.
Severn School students present to the class.
Group leaders Mia Groff '23 and Madie Wright '23 led a discussion about empathy and how to look deeper into a situation before making a judgment.
“When we asked everyone to share, we started by sharing something that we came up first so they had an example. And if anyone wasn’t sure or didn’t want to talk to the whole group, we would go talk to them on their own. That way everyone felt included. At the end, we asked everyone to write on the board how they can show more empathy in the world and the whole board was covered. That felt pretty awesome.” — Mia Groff '23

Leadership and Character Education

In our Middle School, we believe student leadership is best taught when students are provided areas of good action, responsibility and productive practice to increase the quality of our community. As educators, we teach leadership by example every day. Through Community Life, students model leadership and strong character for one another. This program gives our students tools and vocabulary to understand their values, empower themselves and advocate for others.



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Lower School

Preschool-Grade 5
Chesapeake Campus
1185 Baltimore Annapolis Blvd
Arnold, MD 21012

Middle/Upper School

Grade 6-12
Teel Campus
Severna Park, MD 21146