It has been yet another week of craziness here at The Island School! In preparation for the second rotation of Kayak and Down Island Trips, the academics have picked up and our schedules are busier than ever. This week has included everything from our first night dive and all-day research classes to 8-mile runs and triathlons. As always, this week we were introduced to a new and unfamiliar activity: legacy work. In the days prior to the 4 hour block on which the schedule read ‘legacy work’, the only clues our teachers would give as to what this mysterious task could be were the words ‘you’ll see!’ Even when we gathered at the flagpole in our familiar community circle to begin, none of us had any idea what was going on. After a brief explanation, we all came to the realization that, as the name clearly states, that 4 hours was a time for us as a semester to contribute to the physical campus and leave our own legacy for future generations of Island School students. The project I was working on was clearing the area just outside of the dining hall of plants and vines which have woven their way all across campus. The ultimate goal is to create a long dining table between two palm trees, which will hopefully be finished by parents weekend so we can all enjoy dinners with our families that are a little less crowded. While blasting country music and taking quick breaks to entertain ourselves with the dozens of tiny hermit crabs crawling amongst the leaves, we chopped, pulled and cleared out the plants to make room for our legacy project. It really is true that ‘many hands make light work’, and after only an hour we had moved on to chipping pieces of limestone into rectangles to be laid as a patio. I can say that I have never held a machete or cut pieces of rock by my own hand before, so this was certainly one of many other first time experience here at the Island School. Though our project is not nearly done, the students from K1 and K2 who are due back on campus tomorrow will continue with it and hopefully complete a beautiful new dining patio.

After working on my own semester’s legacy project, walking around campus I notice more than ever each and every detail that makes this place so special. Even things as small as the conch shells lining the paths throughout campus were part of someone else’s own legacy work. They demonstrate the contagious dedication of the people in the Island School community to continue to improve and make this place even more incredible.  Legacy work has given us all the opportunity to feel as though we are contributing to the place we have come to love and a chance to leave behind something that will make fall semester 2012 unforgettable.