Top-10 Most Popular Videos of the 2021-22 School Year ( #1 )

Published On: August 12th, 2022 | Categories: Food for Thought, In The Classroom |


Top-10 Most Popular Videos of the 2021-22 School Year

Each summer we look back at the most popular videos from the past school year. Today we unviel the #1 most viewed video from last year!

Top-10 Countdown 2021-22:


#1 STEM: Design Challenge (1,311 views)

In this particular Design Challenge, students in Mr. Funk’s geometry class were tasked with designing and constructing bridges made out of only popsicle sticks and glue. They started out in the Makerspace with Mrs. Miller, the innovation and technology teacher, with a short problem-solving activity to get their designs started during Maker Week. Each team had to incorporate different geometric shapes within their structure, including three other triangles and three different quadrilaterals. The objective was to build the lightest bridge that could hold the most weight. A ratio of weight to strength would establish the winner.


#2 Survival Trip (812 views)

The Survival Trip is a highlight of the Upper School experience. Over the past two years we have continued to find ways to keep as many of these unique learning experiences in the curriculum as possible. The way the faculty adapted this activity to meet the COVID guidelines was a testament to both innovative thinking and a strong desire to keep these types of experiential learning experiences on the schedule. This field trip itself is based on the book Hatchet by author Gary Paulsen. It is the first book students read in Mrs. Jaffe’s sixth grade English class. It chronicles the path back to civilization by Brian, the main character of the book, after he survives a plane crash in the wilderness. Brian’s ability to make fire is a pivotal part of the book and the students learn how to make fire using items found in nature. While Brian remained alone in nature for 54 days, our students spend two beautiful days kayaking, canoeing, making arrowheads and blow darts, and practicing archery.


#3 VR Mars Colonies 2022 (723 views)

The opportunity to use Virtual Reality (VR) overlaps with almost every content area in the Upper School. Our Innovation & Technology teacher pushes into classrooms to create engaging VR content within existing topics in various content areas. This seventh grade science activity is the perfect example of the collaboration involved in integrating technology into the existing curriculum. Students used co-spaces web technology and Oculus Quest Virtual Reality (VR) goggles to design and explore a realistic Mars colony in this outstanding cross-curricular learning experience.


#4 Shakespeare 2021 (679 views)

The long-awaited return of live Shakespeare on campus premiered in the fall to an in-person audience for the first time since November 2019. The eighth grade class brought to life Shakespeare’s romantic comedy Twelfth Night to great applause. The re-emergence of Shakespeare on campus is a wonderful reminder of the creativity and innovation we’ve seen on campus throughout the pandemic. Transforming the breezeway between Lee Hall and the McIntosh Center for the Arts and Sciences into an outdoor stage was a stroke of genius. The eighth graders constructed their stage to create an outdoor performance theater that could accommodate smaller groups of students with social distancing measures. The ability to adapt and create an outdoor performance experience is a testament to the students and faculty.


#5 Acid, Base or Neutral? (629 views)

In this pH lab, students used a natural indicator – cabbage juice – to test whether 4 liquids were acidic, basic, or neutral. Students used graduated cylinders to measure 25 mL of each liquid, poured them into test tubes, and then added cabbage juice with pipettes. The cabbage juice, which starts a dark purple color, turns a brilliant pink – indicating an acid – when added to the vinegar. Students were pleased to see their hypotheses validated by this result. Some were surprised to see that Sprite was a weak acid as well, and many didn’t expect saltwater to stay purple – indicating that it is neutral. The most unexpected change was when soapy water turned the purple cabbage juice green, showing that it is a base. In one final test, students were given a cup of mystery liquid. The liquid turned the cabbage juice green, so students knew it was a base. We then mixed the vinegar from the test tube with the mystery base. When the fizzing cup nearly overflowed, students guessed correctly that the mystery liquid was baking soda in water. They quickly noticed that the combined liquids turned purple, indicating that the combination of acid and base brought the liquid back to neutral.


#6 Buddies & Birdhouses (603 views)

The Buddy program pairs students at different grade levels together for learning activities and plenty of fun. It provides big buddies with leadership opportunities and teaches patience. Little buddies gain confidence and feel a strong sense of community, a sense of place and a deep sense of belonging. The Buddy program is one more example of how we live our mission: We learn not for school, but for life.


#7 The Value of Retreat (579 views)

One of the oldest and most enduring traditions, Powhatan held its 39th Upper School Retreat at Camp Rim Rock in West Virginia. A wonderful event that encourages teamwork and collaboration through two days worth of fun and sometimes challenging events, it is an experience that bonds classmates and teachers alike and is one of the important milestones in the Upper School. We set aside two days at the beginning of each year because we think it’s important to start the year off right and come together as a school community. It is full of team building and tradition – and that’s how we build and reinforce our school culture.


#8 SEL: Building Classroom Community (556 views)

The pandemic has put a spotlight on Social & Emotional Learning (SEL) in schools across the world. This year, Powhatan School implemented the Responsive Classroom program to enhance SEL on campus. “In order for students to love learning, it’s our job to make students feel safe and respected in the classroom,” says Mrs. Warren, a second grade teacher. We sat down with Mrs. Warren to talk about the importance of building a positive classroom community, what aspects of SEL she incorporates in her daily teaching, and shares a recent Morning Meeting activity in her classroom.


#9 Will o’ the Wisp (531 views)

At its core, cross-curricular approaches are fundamental ways to teach concepts by combining multiple subjects at once. It is a great way to engage children in learning a topic. Cross-curricular activities promote learning by interconnecting topics, like in this third grade example from earlier in the fall with Mr. Stitcher in the Lower School music room.


#10 Earth Week (501 views)

Earth Week is always a busy time on our campus. This year our theme was “We are all in this together!”, and our school community jumped right into Earth Week activities – working together to make the world a better place for all of us. The highlight of the week was the Fourth grade Trout Release around the corner at Carter Hall. The NEAL program provides opportunities of hands-on experiential learning experiences for students and this one exceeded all expectations! Students spent the morning learning about trout habitats, and reviewing the health indicators stemming from their previous work on campus. Earth Week saw the return of the Buddy Program on campus! The Buddy program pairs students at different grade levels together for learning activities and plenty of fun. A perfect example was Sixth graders helping their second grade little Buddies with a planting activity on the Crocker Conservancy.


Learn More About Powhatan School!


The school YouTube page has more than 630,000 total views. In the time period from July 1, 2021 through June 30, 2022, we created a total of 33 videos ranging from experiences in pre-kindergarten to eighth grade. Of note, the Top-10 is focused on projects/trips/classroom experiences and is ranked solely on the number of views each video received. The more views a video received, the higher the ranking in the countdown.

Check out the Top-10 countdown from 2020 and 2021 below!

Top-10 Video Countdown 2020-21 School Year: CLICK HERE

Top-10 Video Countdown 2019-20 School Year: CLICK HERE