Proctor’s 2,500 acres of woodlands are a sacred place for anyone who has called Proctor home. This land is deeply rooted in the school’s mission to provide a holistic education that fosters a love for the outdoors and a sense of responsibility towards the environment. The Woodlands are our largest classroom – they allow students the opportunity to study ecology, forestry, and environmental science in a living, breathing laboratory. They, along with Proctor's outdoor science teachers, have taught generations of students lessons about life, our planet, and our interconnectedness that reach far beyond a traditional classroom.
Pictures tell you things that written history never will or perhaps can. On my wall in my office just behind my left shoulder is a photograph taken in 1895. It is of the Proctor and Carr families of Andover, NH. During the opening weeks of school, I spoke at great length to our community about members of this family, but John Proctor is the person from whom we as a school get our name. When the picture was taken, John Proctor was gone from the scene for 12 years, he died in 1883, but his extended family and relatives were alive and well represented in Andover. What Proctor planted, the regenerated seeds and start of a new school, still stands today. Vibrant and prosperous.
You can learn a lot from a pickle. Ask Mihaela, who, after performing an autopsy on Big Dill with her lab partner, Caleb, was able to identify the sternal, thoracic, and pelvic regions on the ventral side. Watch Rowan and Tyson use surgical tools (scalpel, teasing needles, blunt probe, and dissecting scissors) to successfully perform a sagittal cut, attempt to identify the cause of pickle death, and eventually, suture the abdominopelvic region and repair the cranial head wound. It’s all in a day’s work for a Proctor Anatomy and Physiology student.
Each fall and spring, students have the opportunity to showcase projects from classes across disciplines at Proctor’s Innovation Night. Now in its fifth iteration, the event has become an embedded part of our academic calendar and serves as a celebration and culmination of the hard work our students have been doing all term. Academic Dean Derek Nussbaum-Wagler reflected, “It provides a unique opportunity to demonstrate the rich, valuable work that they have produced through our experiential learning opportunities”.
“Science is never spontaneous”. A brief sentence shared by science faculty member and Environmental Coordinator Alan McIntyre with his AP Environmental Science students last week that speaks to the intricacies of science our world of immediate gratification tends to ignore. Over the past weeks, Alan’s AP classes finished the final set of tests to conclude a ten-year analysis of the Proctor Pond. Now at the end of the study, they hope to have a clearer picture of the health and vitality of the beloved pond that sits at the heart of campus.