Silent Meeting is a central component of the Quaker experience at MMFS and other Quaker schools and communities. Regardless of one’s religious practices or beliefs, the simplicity of sitting silently in the presence of others allows all of our students and faculty/staff a time for contemplation and self-reflec- tion in a stimulating school day. In addition to building community among students, staff, faculty, and families, Silent Meeting teaches our students with learning disabilities the important skills of how to sit quietly and to calm their bodies as well as listen and respond to a particular query.
Silent Meeting is an integral part of the Mary McDowell Friends School community. It is a time when we come together to share, listen, and celebrate. Silent Meeting has evolved over time and continues to grow and develop. Currently, Silent Meeting occurs within the divisions at least twice a week. As MMFS has expanded and grown, each division determined that Silent Meeting would be a central aspect of its program. With this common core, each division shares Silent Meeting in a way that best meets the developmental needs of the student body.
“I like to be quiet.”
~ MMFS elementary school student
“I have a long relationship with Silent Meeting. In third grade at Bergen Street I didn’t know you had to be silent – in spite of its name. Silent Meeting makes MMFS special – not everyone has the experience to sit back and contemplate. It makes us diverse!”
~ MMFS middle school student
“We have so much stimulation – ipods, phones, computers – even if that stimulation is beneficial. Silent Meeting is a time to cut down and be doing one thing – just thinking. We rarely get to do that nowadays.”
~ MMFS upper school student