BCD Traditions

Community celebrations and gatherings form a lifetime of memories for BCD students and their families. These traditions honor our past, reinforce our community spirit, and help shape the BCD experience in lasting and meaningful ways for the generation of students to come.

Grandparents’ & Grand Friends’ Day: All grandparents and special friends are invited to attend Grandparents’ & Grand Friends’ Day— a highlight of the year. The morning is filled with activities planned by the students and teachers, and includes grandparents visiting classes and enjoying lunch together with their student’s friends and family members.

Thanksgiving Soup: The largest gathering of the year for the school community is Thanksgiving Soup, a meal shared by the entire school. Each class is responsible for contributing an element of the soup, which is prepared and served by parent volunteers. As we come together, we use the opportunity to thank members of our community for their help and support, and reflect on the meaning of Thanksgiving. A high point of the celebration is the welcoming back of BCD alumni/ae.

Holiday Outreach: During holiday seasons, BCD students participate in programs that help instill a sense of community involvement and sharing. In December, each division or pairs of divisions adopts a family. Students voluntarily select gifts that they purchase and wrap for the adopted family. In addition to adopting families, divisions or classes may elect to participate in other activities. In the past, BCD has collected canned goods for area organizations such as the Christian Center in Pittsfield, made decorations for the community or for nursing homes, and collected winter clothing for needy groups. The Chorus has sung for various community groups. These programs are a source of pride for students at BCD and help bring the School into the community.

Community Campus Day: Once a year in the fall, the School asks the community to roll up its sleeves in service to our campus. This family day is filled with projects to upgrade and beautify our buildings and grounds. Skilled and unskilled workers of all ages are welcome to help. This is a great way to give back to our campus and get to know other families.

Music Concerts: During the school year the Arts Department designs special and entertaining musical programs involving the vast majority of BCD students. Each music class is showcased in these performances. The three BCD choruses (Lower for grades 1-3, Middle for grades 4-6, and Upper School Vocal Ensemble for grades 7&8) perform at school several times throughout the school year. At the spring concert in May, the Choruses join with the music classes for a music celebration. All parents are encouraged to attend to see their children perform, and to hear firsthand the wonders of the BCD music program.

Alaska Day: Once a year, the Lower School community celebrates wintertime in the Berkshires as well as the culture and customs of Alaska. Alaska Day was started by a former student, Kevin Hirt, during his time in the Lower School, and is continued in his memory by his teachers and friends.

Parents’ Association Traditional Events: The Parents’ Association sponsors two traditional events during the school year – Bingo Night and a Family Movie Night.

Fun and Field Day: In the last weeks of school, a day of outdoor activities is scheduled for each division. The Preschool and Lower School Fun Day includes a variety of activities, with no winners or losers and no ribbons. Middle and Upper School Field Day events range from short-, middle-, and long-distance running, to jumping, hurdling, and putting the shot. Students in Grades 4, 5, and 6 learn the fundamentals of track and field events during their in-school PE classes. Grades 7&8 have several days of practice after the lacrosse season ends and prior to Field Day, so they are prepared for their events. The day is complete with the presentation of Field Day ribbons and the traditional frozen treat. The Parents’ Association sponsors a BBQ lunch and a number of fun activities for students during the day.

End-of-the-Year Assembly & Picnic: On the last day of classes, the student body gathers in Fitzpatrick Hall to bring closure to the year by saying a multitude of “thank yous” to class parents and special friends who have helped make the year so grand. It is also a time to say goodbye to faculty leaving BCD and wish departing students well, in addition to recognizing the tremendous leadership of the graduating class. Immediately following the assembly, the BCD community — teachers, parents, and students — gathers for an informal picnic celebration in the courtyard.

Graduation & Upper School Awards Ceremony: The graduation ceremony is the culmination of the BCD experience, for some students a span of 12 years from their preschool years through Grade 8. Members of the graduation class receive certificates and individual recognition from the Head of School and faculty. Academic and Citizenship Awards are presented to 7th & 8th graders. Members of the entire BCD community are invited to the ceremony, which is held in Fitzpatrick Hall.