The Latest from THS
Elizabeth River Project
Congratulations to our students, teachers, and staff for winning the “Above and Beyond” Award of the Elizabeth River Project Youth Resilience Expo! They were recognized for their commitment to sustainability, community service, and resilience, in addition to their efforts in reducing the school’s carbon footprint this year and their continual support in cleaning the Elizabeth River watershed. Stewards of the community…
Ancient Viking Runes, Jelling, Denmark
Our students in Denmark visited Jelling and learned about the massive 10th century Viking stones. Their tour guide explained the meaning behind the marks (he compared the stones to a 10th century Twitter), and they were captivated. Afterward they explored an ancient church and the Viking museum with its interactive exhibits.
Another great day in Denmark! Students had a memorable day exploring historic Aarhus, followed by a visit to ARoS Aarhus Art Museum where students walked the famous “Your Rainbow” by Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson, an interactive work of art on top of the museum—a glass tunnel that changes color as you walk—and saw the incredible string art installation by U.S. artist Chiharu Shiota, as well as some new media art installations. Lifetime memories in the making…
Getting to Know Our Sister School
What a great day at Ikast-Brande Gymnasium starting with a tour of the school and joining host students in an exercise that placed students in random arrangements at tables with questions on each. They moved from table to table talking, getting to know each other, and learning. Then they were taken to the auditorium for an assembly in which our students and the students from Mexico were brought to the stage to be welcomed. The music teacher played his playful spin on John Denver’s Leaving on a Jet Plane. The sincerity and warmth of the Danish teachers, students, and their families have created smiles all day.
Welcome to Ikast
There has been nothing more deeply touching—or more Danish—than the moment when, after four hours of travel, (including a missed connection and an hour at a station in Skanderborg) our students stepped wearily off a train into the unknown and were greeted by smiling, excited faces, ready friends, who scooped them up like family at the station in Ikast. They took them to their homes, made dinner, shared their stories and beautiful culture. This is going to be a week that forms lifelong friendships!
Weekend in Copenhagen
This weekend, students enjoyed a private tour of the Queen’s Tapestries in Christiansborg Palace and heard stories of Danish culture and history, which are woven into the incredible tapestries. Alongside the students from our sister school in Mexico, they heard about history from the Vikings through WWII into the 1960s. All of the students were captivated and asked excellent questions.
Before heading on to Ikast to meet their host families, students had time to visit Toverhalletne, an open-air market where they tasted Danish treats and walked among the isles of fresh fish and produce. A few of them climbed the winding staircase to the top of Komabergate, the Round Tower, a 17th-century observatory with sprawling city views.
Cultivating a global mindset…
Welcome to Copenhagen!
The beauty of Copenhagen! Students toured Rosenberg Castle and viewed the Crown Jewels and royal treasures. After some shopping on Stroget, they joined students from Mexico to see Hans Christian Anderson’s famous mermaid and walked the star-shaped trail around Fort Kastlet, taking in beautiful views.
The following day, students enjoyed a private tour of the Queen’s Tapestries in Christiansborg Palace and heard stories of Danish culture and history, which are woven into the incredible tapestries. Alongside the students from our sister school in Mexico, they heard about history from the Vikings through WWII into the 1960s. All of the students were captivated and asked excellent questions.
Cultivating a global mindset…
Introducing our Newest Sister School: Ikast-Brande Gynmasium in Denmark
And they’re off to Denmark! Our juniors are heading to Ikast-Brande, our IB sister school in Denmark for an exciting exchange trip. Joining students from our sister school in Mexico, Harkness Institute campus San Luis Potosí , it will be an amazing cross-cultural exchange among the three schools as they explore Copenhagen, attend IB classes in Ikast, stay with host families, and immerse themselves in another culture. IB in action…
ODU Model UN
Congratulations to our Model UN team and the awarded delegates for their stellar performance at this year’s ODUMUN. The team came home with three Honorable Mentions and a Verbal Commendation. Well done, Tritons!
The Great Gatsby Comes to Life
Our 1920s themed pre-Valentines Day event was a hit! Hosted by Ms. Boncal and her 10th grade students, the party was an assignment related to their close study of The Great Gatsby, as they portrayed various characters from the era and were interviewed by the 9th grade students. We all enjoyed music, dance instruction, hors d’oeuvres, and fun drinks, all inspired by the 1920s.
Our senior girls had a Q&A session with Indra Nooyi, former CEO of PepsiCo and New York Times Best Selling Author. Her stories of empowerment, strategic thinking, developing confidence, and the importance of being a lifetime learner were inspiring. Impressed with our students’ questions, she noted, “What you’re doing at your school is working.” Ms. Nooyi is a trail blazing leader whose mission is to “do well by doing good,” and she transformed the culture at PepsiCo with her “Performance with a Purpose” approach. Thank you to ODU WIN – Women’s Initiative Network for hosting us. Some female empowerment as we use the city as our campus…
Mock Trial at William & Mary
Congratulations to our Mock Trial team for their success in yesterday’s VLRE competition at the College of William & Mary. As attorneys, witnesses, and a courtroom artist, they were recognized throughout the competition for their stellar performances!
Harvard Model UN
We give a big congratulations to our Model UN team for their standout individual performances at this year’s HMUN competition at Harvard University. With committee sessions tackling global issues, drafting resolutions, late night emergency sessions, closing ceremonies, the Delegation Dance, and making friends with students from all over the world, it has been a weekend they’ll never forget. school environment and spark interest in ways we can interact with and improve it.
Riding the Tide
Our IB History students are doing research at Slover Library today for their individual assessments. Riding the Tide and using the city as our campus..
Bake Off Winners!
Congratulations to our IB Art students, Charlotte and Katie, who won The Chrysler Museum of Art Holiday Bake Off! Inspired by the stained glass called Woman in a Pergola with Wisteria, they used melted lollypops, icing, and gingerbread to make a beautiful replica. Way to go, Tritons! Read more about how they created this delicious confection in The Virginia Pilot.
The days leading up to winter break were busy ones, with students working on essays, projects, and college applications, but we made sure to connect with each other and share some holiday joy at the McArthur skating rink where students spent the afternoon twirling, zipping, or learning their way across the ice. We ended the year with a pajama party, secret Santa gift exchange, and an announcement that the girls bathroom sported the winning holiday decor in our annual holiday bathroom decorating competition.
Our 4th annual Friendsgiving celebration was a great success including a feast of favorite dishes students and families brought from home to share. Our paper tree was filled with colorful leaves featuring words of gratitude written and read by students about their classmates during the meal. We hope everyone has a restful break!
IB Business Management
This fall, we were excited to host two students from our sister school in San Luis Potosí, Mexico. They joined our 11th and 12th graders for this cross-cultural exchange. The Mexican students were hosted by Hague School families who offered them the opportunity to travel to Washington D.C. Our students introduced their peers to a traditional American Halloween. Likewise, the students from Mexico shared aspects of their culture, such as the Dia de los Muertos. They created an altar in our auditorium with decorations from Mexico and pictures of loved ones lost and presented it to our students, explaining the symbolism and practices used to celebrate this day.
Congratulations to our Model UN team who competed last weekend in the Virginia Model UN held at University of Virginia. Our team walked away with a Commendation and an award for Best Delegation. A mixture of students in all grades, we are represented well with this group of bright minds! They were able to tour the University of Virginia, University of Richmond, and William & Mary, traveling by way of The Hague School’s newly acquired passenger van.
Exploring Their Options
Last week, our seniors enjoyed a road trip designed to give them a taste of college life. On Friday they visited the University of Mary Washington and spoke with the university’s President, Dr. Piano, while touring the campus, which included seeing classrooms and dorms. They also toured George Mason, getting the feel of a larger campus. The next morning, they visited George Washington University, and then received a private tour of Georgetown University led by Ms. Adelfio’s daughter who is a student there. At the IBMA College Fair, they spoke to representatives from colleges and universities around the country (and a few international schools) who are interested in recruiting IB students. On the way home, they stopped at Virginia Commonwealth University. While the students have been reading the Princeton Review and discussing college options with teachers and counselors, being on the campuses gives them a true sense of the campus as they imagine themselves being there.
Welcome Back, Tritons!
It is so exciting to see the school grow as we usher in the incoming class of 2026. We had a fun-filled week of student orientation, complete with a speech from our class president, presentation to the student body, Harkness demonstrations, classes to practice annotation and discussion skills, team building exercises, a locker lottery, and sign up sessions for clubs. We introduced the theme of the future of education and had related readings about the skills needed for the next generation. In the newly remodeled auditorium and with the construction of the mezzanines complete, we are expanding to other parts of the building. One mezzanine (as shown to the left) is a new classroom, and the other one will be used as a library and study area for smaller group work. At the end of the week, we had some fun team building exercises, including the human knot, all designed to foster trust while highlighting the importance of communication and collaboration. These skills are essential as students build trust around the table for class discussions.
New Classrooms, New Faculty, New School Year
After an exciting summer full of travel, internships, summer jobs, and camps, we are ready to the start of the school year. We have nearly finished the renovations of the auditorium, complete with two furnished mezzanines, which include a library area and refinished floors. The Commons has been rearranged to include an additional seating area for socializing during breaks and extra lockers for our new students. We have added some new IB courses, which include IB Environmental Systems and Societies, as well as IB Physics and IB Psychology, making some great additions to our faculty as well. Three of our existing instructors went to Harkness training through Phillips Exeter Academy this summer. They shared what they learned at our annual faculty orientation where we looked for cross-curricular themes, reinforcing fundamental Harkness concepts to ensure consistency in the classrooms and maintain the Harkness culture as the heart of the school. This is also a special school year as our inaugural class will graduate, and we can’t wait to encourage and celebrate them throughout the year as we establish some special senior traditions. It is going to be a great year, full of rich discussions, authentic friendships, community involvement, and regular experiential learning activities.
Study Abroad: Mexico City
For our final week of the study abroad trip, students had a full week of classes, excursions, fun outings, and a visit to Mexico City, which was the highlight of the week. Impressive in its breadth and incredible depth of history, the Museo Nacional de Anthropologia in Mexico City traces the roots of Mesoamerican cultures. For our students studying Mexican History and Culture, tracing these eras of history served as their capstone experience.
Students also had the opportunity to explore one of the largest cities in the world as they toured cathedrals juxtaposed next to skyscrapers. With some shopping time and a delicious meal, it was a day to remember.
Global Realities students continued to think creatively about global societies and group dynamics this week. They engaged in an activity where they developed a new settlement on a planet, picking three professions, nationalities, and personal characteristics for the people selected to form the first community on the new planet. While they had a vigorous discussion about which professions should be chosen, they all agreed that nationalities didn’t matter since they would all be working for the good of mankind.
The Art of Writing students learned about persuasive writing, the persuasive power of visual imagery, and how to make an effective written argument. In addition, they learned about focusing topics to audiences through a review and discussion of Martin Luther King’s letter from Birmingham jail and related historical texts and articles.
Mexican history students had lively discussions about society, wars, government, and power, as they had amazing experiential learning opportunities, which included the site of the Cinco de Mayo battle and the Museum of the Mexican Revolution.
In celebration of our time in Puebla, we had a farewell barbeque with fresh tacos and a piñata on Thursday evening. It was a great time to get together one last time before leaving Friday. They leave this trip with new outlooks, friendships, and greater appreciation for other cultures. This trip has exceeded our expectations in many ways, and we are thankful for the opportunity to share it with your children.
Study Abroad: Tunnels of Pueblo
We explored the tunnels of Puebla and climbed up to the fort above, the site of the 5 de Mayo battle, in which the strategic use of the tunnels was instrumental in defeating the French. We topped off the day with a cable car ride to enjoy beautiful views of the city!
Study Abroad: Museo Nacional de Anthropologia
Impressive in its breadth and incredible depth of history, the Museo Nacional de Anthropologia in Mexico City traces the roots of Mesoamerican cultures. For our students studying Mexican History and Culture – offered in conjunction with Virginia Wesleyan University – tracing these eras of history served as their capstone experience.
Study Abroad: Puebla, Mexico
On Monday, students had a festive breakfast at El Comal before morning classes. Then on Tuesday, we explored the Great Pyramids of Teotihuacan, a Mesoamerican city built almost 2,000 years ago and the largest city in the world in its heyday whose city center was over a mile square with over 300,000 inhabitants. As one student said, “You don’t learn history from a book, you see it and feel it like this, and I feel it here today.” Experiential learning at its best, students will write essays for their classes about this amazing ancient civilization. Seeing history, Feeling history, Making history…
Later in the week, students enjoyed the Ex-Hacienda de Chautla Puebla. With a historic mansion set on a beautiful swan-filled lake, they hiked through the forest, went paddle boating, and had a lakeside picnic. Great memories in the making…
Study Abroad: Cerro , Mexico
This week, we enjoyed a beautiful vista in Cerro de San Pedro and had a great day at the eco-park, Cráter Encantado! We learned about the ecosystems and made some great memories today with hiking, ziplining over a crater, archery, relay races, and enjoying the beautiful views.
Study Abroad: San Luis Potosi, Mexico
We explored the Centro de las Artes in downtown San Luis Potosí. This historic building, built in 1904, was used as a jail for many years before becoming a cultural center committed to the education, production, and dissemination of the arts. Showcasing surrealist work from many artists, we toured the building, grounds, and Museum of Leonora Carrington (the feature of the complex), who was one of the most influential female surrealist artists. Through experiential learning, students will incorporate what they saw into their class assignments
Study Abroad: Puebla, Mexico
W.B. Yeats once wrote that “Education is not the filling of a pot but the lighting of a fire.” May our trip for the next three weeks do just that as students immerse themselves in Mexico’s beauty, culture, and history while they deepen their love of learning, forge new friendships, and expand their global perspectives.
Study Abroad: Harkness Institute, Mexico
Classes begin today where students will learn about The Art of Writing, Mexican History and Culture, or Global Realities for college credit. What an amazing cross-cultural exchange between students from Norfolk, San Luis Potosí, and Puerto Vallarta, all seasoned Harkness learners! Let the discussions begin!
End of Year Ceremony, 2022
We had a great night at our End of Year Celebration and Awards Ceremony. We recognized students’ academic achievements and gave awards for performance in the IB Diploma Programme, Harkness learning, and extended invitations to candidates for the National Honor Society. We are so proud of our students’ accomplishments this year!
Day of Service
Students spent the day giving back during our Day of Service in helping the Food Bank distribute items to families in need. Connected to the community…
Brenda Reid, Howard Hanna’s President of the Southeast Region, spoke to our students and judged the final rounds of our negotiation competition, which involved a problem about a real estate transaction. Congrats to our winning teams who analyzed interests and came up with creative negotiation tactics. Applying critical thinking to real world situations, we’re excited to see where these bright minds go next!
Virginia Modeling, Analysis, & Simulation Center,
Students had a great time at ODU’s Virginia Modeling, Analysis, & Simulation Center, as they were able to learn more about how virtual reality is used in various fields, including architecture, medicine, working with autistic children, replicating ancient civilizations, and research. They were able to experience various forms of virtual reality and see the intersections of research, technology, and design thinking. They also participated in a research experiment using VR goggles to allow teens to explore philosophical questions through a moral dilemma exercise, led by Dr. Kissel, a philosophy professor at Old Dominion University.
After months of preparation, we were pleased to host the inaugural HagueMUN, a student-run Model United Nations conference for middle school students. Following introductions by THS Student Body President Keelin Hogan, Secretary General James Rutherford, and Director General Sammy Wetherbee, Dr. Judy Benjamin addressed the delegates and shared her 20+ years of international service in over 30 countries. Dr. Benjamin’s experiences in Rwanda as part of the UN’s support and intervention, her service in Haiti following the devastating earthquake in 2010, and projects focusing on gender and education set the stage for an exciting event.
Middle schoolers took home a total of 20+ awards. St. Patrick Catholic School’s team won Outstanding Team, with the Best Team award going to Norfolk Collegiate. The closing speaker was Commander Tracy Reynolds, who shared her extensive international experience to explain why competitions like this are so important. Our world today is at a tipping point, and what the current generation of world citizens does matters. What these students practiced the past two days helps them learn how to bring forth the change in the world they want to see.
Check out the webpage our students built for the event.
THS Mock Trial Teams Place in Regional
Congratulations to our Mock Trial teams who placed 16th and 20th (out of the 180+ participants) in the Virginia Law-Related Education Institute’s regional mock trial competition. We could not be more proud of the hard work and commitment they demonstrated over the past few months.
To have teams composed of 9th, 10th, and 11th graders competing against seasoned teams featuring seniors is a challenge, but they all rose to the occasion and held their own to demonstrate poise, knowledge, and skills, several students earning individual recognition for their performance as attorneys and “best witness.”
Friday Guest Panel: Many Paths to Med School
This week’s Friday Guest Speakers from EVMS, Krishan, Leah, Abigail, & Colleen, shared their academic experiences and personal journeys with our students, emphasizing that there are multiple pathways to reach a goal and that authenticity and sincerity are essential to working within a community. We are so grateful for their time, comments, and commitment to paying it forward.
Our IB students toured the Operation Smile Interactive Learning Center today, meeting the co-founders, Dr. Bill Magee and Kathy Magee. They learned about the life-changing work of this organization, stepping into the shoes of children in need around the world as they explored cultural, emotional, and socioecomomic issues, as Dr. Zimmerman explained the medical process in the facility’s operating room. Blending service with a global perspective, this moving tour contributes to expanding our IB students’ worldview!
We are so proud of the students who participated in the VAMUN competition at The University of Virginia in November. During the trip, they enjoyed opportunities to tour the University of Richmond and William and Mary.
Our summer Oceanography course was a success!
Our students joined forces with students from our sister school in Mexico to complete a rigorous 3-week course in Oceanography at Virginia Wesleyan University. Students had the full college experience: living in the dorms, attending classes, working in the lab, giving a formal poster presentation, and earning 4 credits. We are so proud of their accomplishment!
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The Hague School in Ghent Living
See how The Hague School is transforming education in Hampton Roads.
Youth Resilience Expo recognizes students’ green projects
Environmentally aware students and teachers from schools across Norfolk, Portsmouth and Chesapeake did not let this difficult academic year get in the way of their green goals.
More than 1,000 students, from 22 schools across the three cities, who worked on 14 different projects to address flooding, polluted runoff and reducing their school’s carbon footprint, recently were honored at the Elizabeth River Project’s third annual Youth Resilience Expo.
The Hague School in Norfolk approved to offer the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme
NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) – Students interested in attending a high school with an International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (DP) now have two options in Norfolk — one public and one private.
On Friday, The Hague School announced it has been approved to offer the program.
Uncharted Territory from Broken Ground Podcast
The episode “Uncharted Territory” features a discussion with various Hague School students from October 2020, conducted by Emily Richardson-Lorente, producer of the Broken Ground podcast. The podcast details the problem of sea level rise and local flooding, featuring our students’ opinions on the matter.
Podcast with Hamilton Perkins
A discussion among visionaries…local entrepreneur and designer Hamilton Perkins invited the Warrens to discuss The Hague School on his podcast.
Ghent Living August 2019 Feature: Meet the Warren Family
Learn more about Paul and Jennifer Warren and their path to starting The Hague School.
Ghent Living May 2019 Article: The Hague School
For anyone who knows a rising ninth grader, The Hague School would love to meet them and share their unique approach to education.
Private high school looks to move into church
A short news video describes our first steps of wanting to move into a historic Unitarian church in Norfolk.
Private high school looking to move into historic church near the Hague
Read about how it all started!