All News

Community Reinvigorated with Return of Coffeehouse in Person
LiAnn Yim, digital communications manager

As the sun began to set, upper school students and teachers settled into the couches and armchairs of the Writing and Research Center last Thursday evening. Twinkly string lights adorned the space, and the scent of hot cocoa was in the air. Next to the stage that had been constructed in front of the floor-to-ceiling windows, Winston L. ’23 prepared to emcee the fall Coffeehouse while a student performer went through a soundcheck.

Founded in November 2018, Coffeehouse is an intimate twice yearly upper school event that serves as a fine and performing arts showcase for students and faculty. Previous acts have included stand-up comedy sketches, instrumental and vocal performances of both original and cover songs, creative writing readings, short plays, and even a reading of the first five minutes of Bee Movie. The evening concludes with an open mic, where audience members are invited to take to the stage.

Lucie L. ’23, the student council arts representative who helped plan the event in collaboration with students on The Nueva Current newspaper staff, described the evening as “magical.”

“Each performance was phenomenal,” Lucie said. “People came up to me all day with excitement for how superb the performances were.”

Coffeehouse was originally intended to be one night only, taking place in the fall. But after the community’s enthusiastic response to the inaugural event, the Coffeehouse Team decided to host a spring event as well.

“Since we intend for the fall and spring Coffeehouses to maintain distinct vibes, the fall event is in the WRC, with cozy decor, hot chocolate, and an upper school focus, while we hope to host the spring Coffeehouse on the Rosenberg Lawn,” Lucie explained. “The spring Coffeehouse may more closely resemble a blend between an outdoor picnic and musical festival. We look forward to the spring event, when students and families from all divisions are invited to attend!”

Attendees and performers have shared that what makes each Coffeehouse event so special is how supportive the audience is of each of the performers. Many first-time performers have noted that it is the spirit of enthusiasm and encouragement that has pushed them to take the stage. 

“This Coffeehouse felt like a true community revival,” said Jen Paull, Humanities Director and WRC Director. 

While capacity in the WRC was limited due to COVID safety precautions, the Nov. 4 event was livestreamed on our Instagram page to parents and Nueva alumni who tuned in from as far as the east coast to watch.

Watch the video below to see all of the performances!

Read More

From ‘Slimelapse’ to Mystery Bacteria, Students Create Curricula in Biology Internship Pilot

Last spring, Director of Internships Katie Saylor met with biology teachers Paul Hauser and Jehnna Ronan to explore ways to offer students hands-on internships for those interested in lab-based sciences here at Nueva. Out of their conversations came a new biology internship offered this summer, where students helped to design new lab experiments and to refine existing experiments in the 10th grade biology curriculum.

Ninth Graders Create Products Using Universal and Software Design Principles

What does it mean to build the courage to imagine and craft solutions to challenges? How can design thinking, systems thinking, data science, computer science, and design engineering be used to address societal issues around social justice and equity? In Design with Impact (DWI), a core course in ninth grade, students engage in projects that help them bridge the skills in these five key areas and design for others. 

History, Culture, and Colors Pop on Upper School Field Trip

It’s a rare occurrence for it to be sunnier in San Francisco than in San Mateo, but upper school students in Chelsea Denlow’s Postcolonial Latin America history class experienced sunshine and blue skies, which made the vibrant colors of the Mission District pop as they visited the neighborhood last week.

Waltzing into the Victorian Era

On the final day of the fall semester you could hear the sounds of a waltz, smell freshly-baked crumpets, and see a top hat—or three!—in room 1109 of the San Mateo campus. 

Catching Up with . . . Betsy Madden

Betsy Madden, upper school physics teacher, is in her second year at Nueva. In this conversation we learn about Betsy’s time working for the Red Cross and how teaching has provided a place for her interests and experiences to be put into practice. 

Catching Up with . . . Jonathan Quick

Jonathan Quick, in his second year at Nueva, teaches upper school English and is the ninth-grade co-dean. In this conversation, we hear about Jonathan’s unique path to Nueva, the importance of reading with his family, and his love of National Parks.

Girls’ Volleyball Team Retakes the Court and Enjoys Successful Season

The last time the Nueva girls’ volleyball stepped on the court, they were competing in the 2019 California Interscholastic Federation Division V NorCal finals. The season culminated in a CCS quarterfinals playoff match against Castilleja on Nov. 2, after they earned an eighth-seed berth and defeated ninth-seeded Santa Catalina in their opening playoff match.