Imagine Your Child as a Leader trinity episcopal school

"I am a firm believer that leaders do not stand alone. At Trinity, we have a community of teachers, parents, students, and stakeholders that come together to create a contagious energy that can be seen and felt in our classrooms, on our playing fields, and out in the community where we serve. It is that unique difference that is palpable when you step onto the Trinity campus and keeps us striving to be our best." - Marie Kidd, Head of School

Leadership, indeed, can be hard to define as it means something unique and different to each individual. Hear our students and alumni tell you how they define leadership. The following will take you on a journey, from a young kindergarten student to a graduating 8th grader; exemplifying the change we all want to see in this world.

Kindergarten Leadership

"A leader needs to remember that we can learn from our friends. Sometimes I have the right answer, and sometimes my friends have an even better idea." - Kate Williams

One of the most memorable programs for our youngest students at Trinity is the K8 Buddy Program. Every kindergarten student is paired with an 8th grade buddy and participates in activities together during the entire school year. One highlight is the annual Easter egg hunt. Kinder and 8th grade students hunt for eggs, and instead of finding candy inside, the eggs contain math problems that the K8 buddies solve together as a team. This example of teaching and mentoring is a prominent theme at Trinity, and both the kinder and 8th grade students come away with lifelong lessons and friendships.

First Grade Leadership

"Leadership means that if someone is doing something good, the rest of the people will follow." - Joaquin Gomez, 1st grade

In 1st grade at Trinity, leadership took the form of random acts of kindness. Our 1st grade students decided to share God’s love with others by performing acts of kindness, and inspiring others to do the same. They presented a challenge to the entire Lower School to do at least one random act of kindness each day for a week, totaling 1,500 good deeds. Students picked up trash around campus, cleaned up after a friend in the dining hall, tied a shoe for a friend who didn’t know how, returned recess balls at lunch, and placed items in the lost and found. A large graph was posted so everyone could see the ongoing total, and students shared examples of kindness each day in Chapel as motivation.

Second Grade Leadership

"Trinity has taught me that I can make a difference and you can be a leader at any age! I love working with my friends to try and make the world a better place." - Maya Patel, 2nd grade

At Trinity, when students discover a problem, they work hard as leaders to come up with a solution. In 2nd grade, students worked together to create a monarch sanctuary on campus after learning that the monarch butterfly population had plummeted over the past 10 years. First, students learned about the milkweed plant and how to grow it. Next, they created milkweed and nectar gardens around campus to attract the migrating fall and spring monarchs. The students conducted field studies to keep track of butterfly and caterpillar sightings.

To extend the learning further, these 2nd graders started a business and raised money for monarch research and preservation by selling milkweed plants and seeds. All proceeds were donated to the Monarch Fund.

Third Grade Leadership

"Being a leader means you never meet a stranger – it means you always meet a new friend." - Jacob Ulmer, 3rd grade

The 3rd grade students at Trinity came up with a powerful idea when they realized that some friends were feeling left out and lonely at recess. A sign was created next to an outside bench in the form of an agreement. The agreement stated that if anyone saw another student sitting on the bench, they would reach out to him or her and include that individual in a game or group activity. Sometimes, the Buddy Bench was an opportunity to sit down with a friend and simply say, “Are you doing ok today?”

This idea was presented to the entire Lower School at Chapel, and the Buddy Bench is now used by students in every grade level.

Fourth Grade Leadership

"A leader does what is best for everyone and encourages others." - Mia Harrington, 4th grade

As the oldest students in the Lower School, 4th graders are considered the “Leaders of the Lower School.” One of the ways we encourage leadership is through a capstone course called Inquiry Seminar. Leaders in progressive education recognize that, in our rapidly changing world, curiosity and inquiry are increasingly necessary as we tackle problems and encourage innovation. In Inquiry Seminar, our 4th grade leaders engage in multiple rounds of research in a way that empowers them to become changed by the integration of new knowledge—actually altering their perceptions of themselves and of the world around them. Students build confidence as they present their research and engage in debates. Humility, flexibility, and self-reflection are integral parts of the Inquiry Seminar research process. Students must learn to recognize dead ends, persevere through frustrations, and adapt through each iteration of research.

Fifth Grade Leadership

"A leader means being a good role model to people around you." - Tate Butter, 5th grade

In 5th grade, students provided leadership on a global scale. In the spirit of Ubuntu, “I am because we are,” students learned about the problems and preventions of malaria in their Global Citizens Class. The 5th graders led a school-wide effort called “Nets for Life.” This initiative, coordinated by Episcopal Relief and Development, provides malaria education and bed nets to families in African countries. Over the course of four weeks, 5th grade students explained the awareness campaign to all students during Chapel services, and encouraged everyone to earn and donate $12—which provided one net and had the power to save one life. Trinity students raised enough money to purchase 257 mosquito nets, and made a true impact around the globe.

Sixth Grade Leadership

"When I think of a leader, I think of the sports teams that I participate in at Trinity. A leader shows up to practice and tries to excel and inspire teammates." - Sophia Carrales, 6th grade

When students participate in athletics at Trinity, they learn to lead their teams to a win, and to lead their teams through a loss. There are no titled leadership positions such as “Captains,” but students are called upon during practices and games to lead others, model perseverance, and put the team ahead of the individual. Athletics at Trinity is an inclusive program with a “no cut” policy. We are proud that over 80% of Trinity Middle School students participate in our athletics program.

At Trinity, we want athletics to be a supportive, encouraging, challenging, and fun environment where students thrive. As a result, students develop an overall appreciation for an active and healthy lifestyle and a deepened sense of school spirit.

Seventh Grade Leadership

"Leadership is about setting a positive example for your peers. A leader works hard, is kind, perseveres, and never gives up. " - Melina Ruelas, 7th grade

A true leader understands that an individual is a part of a global society, and the Model United Nations Program at Trinity personifies this belief. Model UN simulates debate and deliberation of global affairs in the United Nations and its various committees. Trinity students take positions as delegates on committees such as the General Assembly and Security Council, the World Health Organization, and the Human Rights Commission, among others. Teams of students represent an assigned country, research a range of global issues, develop national positions on these issues, and represent their country at an annual conference in Dallas. Model UN is the highest example for developing skills in research, presentation, argumentation, and negotiation. The Trinity Model UN Chapter has garnered numerous accolades - including two Peace Prizes - which are awarded to each year’s outstanding delegate.

Eighth Grade Leadership

"Leadership is setting a positive example by being kind and inclusive, and working hard." - Major Thurman, 8th Grade

One of the culminating activities of 8th grade is Innov8. This is a multidisciplinary, team-taught, capstone course in which students are challenged with the task of identifying an every-day problem and using the design process to create a plan for a sustainable solution. Innov8 requires collaboration, cooperation, and communication as students work in small groups. Trinity 8th graders incorporate skills and knowledge from across the Middle School curricula and present their research and ideas in a number of modalities, including written and digital. Student topics related to redesigning transportation flow to and from school, designing an app to teach young people money management skills, and designing and marketing a laptop battery holder.

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