A Day in the Life of a Salisbury Boy
The campus is beautiful at this hour—you can sit and eat breakfast while watching the fog roll over the mountains off the front hill. What an amazing view we have here on the Hilltop. In fact, the setting of the School is one of the reasons boys decide to attend Salisbury. Most students show up between 7:30 – 7:45 a.m. to fill up on bagels, eggs, cereal, fresh fruit and pastries before the first class of the day.
The Academic Day
Chapel services are held every Tuesday and Friday morning before classes and include a speaker, community prayers, a hymn and a responsive reading. Music in the Chapel often includes performances by the Salisbury Gospel Choir, the Jazz Ensemble and other talented student and faculty singers and musicians. Salisbury is also sensitive to the worship needs of non-Christians and regularly provides chapel speakers and services to honor those interests including the Jewish, Islamic and Buddhist traditions. In addition to faculty, administration and student speakers, guest lecturers are invited to speak on a wide range of contemporary issues.
Most classes run 45 minutes in length and meet five times per week. Since class periods rotate, boys do not have the same class at the exact same time every day. This helps because boys tend to learn differently and have different abilities to focus and energy levels at different times of the day. Plus, it prepares students for college as the scheduling is similar and teaches them to manage their time accordingly.
Twice a week, on Wednesday and Saturday mornings, we gather as a community for School Meeting. It is traditionally run by our school president and it offers a place to hear timely important messages (“Sign up for the SATs today”), recognize student birthdays, share good news (“John Smith was just accepted at Middlebury College!”) and make extracurricular activity announcements. Both faculty and students are encouraged to participate!
Students and faculty members gather in the Dining Hall for a quick cup of hot chocolate, coffee or juice and a light snack. It is also a good time to check for mail--one can always hope for a care package from home!--or connect with a teacher to answer a question still remaining from class.
This period is set aside to meet with extracurricular groups, take music lessons or meet with your advisor. There are numerous clubs and organizations at the School offering boys leadership opportunities. Students can take music lessons focusing on a wide range of instruments including guitar, piano, drums and saxophone. And advisee meetings, usually held in the instructor’s classroom or office, are a chance to meet face-to-face with the faculty member on campus who knows the most about your life at Salisbury.
More classes. Five times a week we also have an extended class period to allow for greater class discussion, testing or presentations. Being an all-boys’ school also allows us to have greater focus on our academics because we have less distractions, namely girls!
During free periods, boys visit the library to work on assignments and check e-mail or head to the art center to finish up work needing to be completed. In addition, many students also arrange to meet with teachers for extra help during this time.
Whether you are a varsity level athlete or simply enjoy participating in a recreational sport, this is a great break from the academic day. Salisbury offers more than 33 interscholastic teams on which boys may participate. In addition, there are seasonal recreational activities each trimester ranging from soccer and frisbee to snowboarding and paddle tennis. It is great way for all of us to get in some physical activity. Plus, the teamwork provides us with important lessons and genuine school spirit is generated.
Each day, dinner is held from 5:30 – 7:00 p.m. After dinner, there may be time for a quick toss of Frisbee or play a quick basketball game down at the Tollhouse Courts before heading back to the dorm to study.
From 7:30 - 9:30 p.m. Sunday – Friday students have mandatory study hall. This provides scheduled time to work independently on homework assignments either in our dorm rooms or in supervised study hall. (All third formers work in supervised study hall for their first trimester. It is held in classrooms where faculty members keep an eye out for those who need help developing good study habits.)
Ah, a study break! Friends frequently head to Belin Lodge for a bite to eat from the snack bar and a game of pool or table tennis. Other times boys simply hang out in the common room in each dorm to watch a bit of television, play a video game or chat with faculty members on duty for the night.
Check-In and Lights Out
At 10:15 p.m. each night, boys are expected to be “on dorm.” Third and fourth formers have lights out at 10:30 p.m. Fifth and sixth formers are permitted an extra 60 minutes of study, college application work or relaxation and need to be in bed by 11:30 p.m. Time for lights out—goodnight!