Semester 35: Winter in Leadville

As the winter dawns over Leadville, Colorado, we here at HMI decided to do something other than stay inside all day or freeze outside. On Saturday  night we had Prom. The outfits ranged anywhere from super formal to sweatpants. The night was a hit with dancing, limbo, and musical chairs. On Sunday, we hosted a community appreciation breakfast for the Leadville community. Everyone enjoyed an egg and pancake meal which was cooked by several shifts of cook crews. Later that afternoon we went skiing at Ski Cooper, a hill located about 20 minutes away from the HMIcampus. We all got dressed up into interesting outfits that were by no means appropriate for skiing. These costumes ranged from large green ponchos, to some 1980s ski suits, all the way to fluorescent-colored tutus. We were quite a sight that day, 48 high school students all over the hill in outrageous outfits. We skied down the mountain as many times as possible and had the most amount of fun as possible. Especially for those of us who had only skied once or twice before, or maybe even not at all, it was even more fun. And for those of us who hadn’t skied in years, or even for those of us who are on ski teams back home, it was absolutely unforgettable. Skiing with 47 best friends is a truly once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. And we truly made the best of every moment that day.

As there is never a dull moment here at HMI, this week we all had the opportunity to exercise our flexibility. And no, we don’t mean extreme stretching! Since many students became sick this week, we rearranged our schedule to allow for those students to get better, and to allow for the healthy students to stay healthy. What this meant is that we had some classes rescheduled for study hall, allowing the ill students to rest for the entire day–and allowing the healthy students to partake in some fun activities. For those students that were sick, they found ways to make the most of the situation, like playing games to pass the time. A highlight was when Scott made grilled cheese as a special treat for everyone. Everyone was able to get caught up on homework, and it was a joyful occasion when the sick students were well enough to rejoin the group!

As classes are wrapping up, we are finishing this week with many final projects. This requires a lot of work but is still plenty of fun. For example, in English class we completed a portfolio with many different essays. Even though it was a lot of work, we got to see how we evolved as writers throughout the semester. Another example is our historical newspaper article we have to write for history. The article is on one of the topics we studied during the year, from as early as the discovery of America until the Civil War. We write as if the event is happening in the present, and we can get to know a little bit about how the population felt during that time by putting ourselves in their shoes. Most of us are trying to balance doing well in class with taking advantage of our last days with this special community.We want to make every second count!

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