The fifth-grade classes of Mr. Tim Head and Mrs. Liz Stillman participated in a special Leadership Day on October 23 with a series of challenges designed to promote teamwork and collaboration.

Challenge No. 1 was to create a campsite for the day using nonverbal communication. After three attempts and much collaboration, the students completed the challenge.

The second and last non-verbal activity required students to line up by birthday. One student took charge in getting everyone organized by month in a fantastic leadership moment.

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Task No. 3, in which the students attempted to spell the “W+H” with their bodies, proved to be a chore. The students and their teachers spoke and reflected a lot on how verbal communication, if used correctly, can be a powerful tool. 

Other activities included an Escape Room and a Dragon’s Castle, a blindfolded search and find test of non-verbal communication, verbal communication and listening. Every activity concluded with a reflection talk, during which the students and teachers discussed their own strengths and weaknesses with communication, trust, collaboration, leadership, bystanders vs. upstanders, and active listening, among other things.

The Wardlaw+Hartridge School (1295 Inman Ave., N. Edison) is Central Jersey’s premier PreK-12 independent school. The campus is located near the Scotch Plains border and just five miles from downtown Westfield. It is a private, nonsectarian, coeducational day school that prepares students to lead and succeed in a world of global interconnection. Wardlaw+Hartridge provides an educational atmosphere characterized by academic challenge, support for individual excellence, diversity, and a familial sense of community. To take a virtual tour of the school, visit www.whschool.org/admission/take-a-virtual-tour