In our 40th year of The Studio School, and our fifth year in the former home of Virginia O'Hanlon, we have had many special events to mark our appreciation for, and overwhelming pride in, the educational journey we share. Our community is vibrant, representing each of us; past, present, and future members will continue to inspire and guide our direction. What has remained true throughout the decades has been our mutual regard for fostering children’s curiosity about life and nurturing their belief in themselves and in pursuing their own ideas; for the desire to know and to create is what shapes us as human beings. It is also the relationships we have had with one another as students, parents, and teachers that have provided the transformative experiences inherent in our community.
In 2012, the Middle School students imagined meeting Virginia. Something Wonderful reflects the children’s understanding of what it means to be Studio School students, and what transpires when they work together as a group with their teachers and one another, through the processes of imagining, talking, thinking, writing, persisting, acting, and singing. They asked, and answered, a lot of questions about what they observe and live through as students, and about their relationships with each other as friends and peers. Along the way, they all wondered what it would have been like to tell Virginia about their experience of The Studio School and hear her response.
As an adult, Virginia O’Hanlon is quoted as saying, “All I did was ask a question, is there really a Santa Claus? I did not do anything special. Of course, Mr. Church’s editorial was so beautiful (that) everyone remembered his words. It was Mr. Church who did something wonderful.” The students all agree that Virginia did something wonderful, too. For, as one student said in a script-writing session: “It is sometimes hard to know what questions to ask, but it is easy when you are free to have your own body and mind.”