I met my wife, Xiao, while working in China. We had two daughters there, Eris and Ceres, who are now 7 and 9 years old. After the younger was born, we moved back to the United States and they’ve grown up here.
Xiao had to reconsider her professional training after coming to the US (her big skill in China had been fluency in English – not a marketable job skill here!). After a health scare, she fell in love with her nurses at the hospital, and decided to go university in the US to become a nurse. She’s been nursing full time for the past year and doing an incredible job, we’re all very proud of her.
With a 7 and 9 year old, I don’t actually have a lot of free time! When I’m home I try to be with them as much as possible.
When my kids are occupied, I spend a lot of time doing calligraphy (I find it very relaxing), I’m always reading two or three books at a time, usually non-fiction. I do bookbinding when I’ve got large amounts of free time, which hasn’t happened for a while. I’m trying to improve my Italian, we’re planning a vacation there and I suppose one of my “bucket list” goals is to have a vacation house either in Italy or France, somewhere in the countryside.
Why I Love Menaul School
My favorite thing about Menaul School is that it’s a school that takes its mission seriously. We do try to build our students in mind, body, and spirit. It’s a classically liberal arts curriculum of the sort that is getting less common these days. Schools are specializing, but we’re saying to be a functional human being you can’t be hyper-focused on just STEM, drama, or sports – you need to be able to do all of these things. You need exposure to the arts, to philosophy and religion, to history, to literature, to math, to science. Menaul School really tries to make that happen for every student, and I’m sure this will pay huge dividends over the course of our students’ lives.
When I’m teaching, I tend towards international politics and geography. I love showing students the links between things that they’ve never considered are linked. Peeling back the layers of history to show students the unexpected in things they connect with every day, like clothing, language, culture – that’s a lot of fun for me!
What I love about students at Menaul School is that they have a really strong buy-in. Students are all generally engaged, interested in what they’re learning, and things go really smoothly. Parents support teachers, and teachers do a great job of preparing the students for life.
Menaul School is going to be highly challenging, but highly supportive. Your child will be pushed to do things they’ve never done before – but they’ll also be given support they’ve never had before.
Mr. Ferrara has a bachelor’s degree in History from University of North Florida.
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