Friends School’s first 8th grade class will be graduating in May. As they look towards high school, Honor has taken the opportunity to interview each of them to find out about their time at Friends School, whether they are “lifers” (here since Preschool) or brand new to Friends School. Please enjoy this interview of Anastasia Hook, at Friends School since 6th grade.

Name:  Anastasia Hook

What grade are you in and how long have you been at Friends School?

Anastasia as a 6th grader in art class at Friends

I am in 8thgrade and I have been at Friends School for three years – since the beginning of 6thgrade, so all of middle school. Before this I went to Community Montessori.

This is a much smaller school than Community Montessori was. The teachers really have time to work with me one-on-one and go through things in a lot of detail to make sure you really understand things.

How old are you? 

I am 14 years old.

Share a memory from a ceremony or trip. Tell me about the experience and what it meant to you.

Last year in Moab all the girls were in one room and we stayed up until about 1:00am talking about all kinds of stuff. We were sad that the year was ending and, even though we would be together again the next year, we were sad it was ending. And Kevin was downstairs and he heard all of our secrets. We were both embarrassed and we thought it was funny. We were laughing and covering our faces when we found out.

In Moab as a 7th grader

Tell me about a project or class that stands out and/or inspired you.

Science really inspires me. Kevin is one of the greatest teachers ever. He has us do really creative and interesting projects. Also, if we are struggling he gives us really inspirational talks. Pretty recently, for example, he gave us a talk about what it will be like when we go to high school. He said there will be the chance for a lot of parties and things, but we should always remember to put our school work first. We need to do this because getting a strong GPA from the start is easier than bringing it up if you start off with lower grades. I had no idea about this before.

What will you take from your experience here into your future?

Friendship. I worked on being friends with people. At CM making friends depended on how we acted. Here, because it is so small, we really only had each other. We might not have been friends in another setting, but this taught me to expand the kinds of friends I have. I know that I can be friends with people even if it doesn’t seem like I can.

Tell me about a person from Friends that stands out and/or inspired you.

Kevin. He has taught us so much in science and otherwise. Also, my friend Ali who gives me a lot of inspiration to try things I wouldn’t try otherwise. She helps to push me out of my comfort zone. And all of my friends here who help me to be the best version of myself.

Do you have advice for future Friends students?

There will be a point some time in life – I don’t know when – when you will feel like what you’re doing doesn’t really matter, or that your grades aren’t important. Even if it is unimportant to you, it is important to someone else, so just work on it and get it done. Also, take every opportunity to do more – if there is extra credit work you can do, do it!

Anastasia in 8th grade DJ’ing the middle school dance in May

Do you have any advice for me, things to change/things not to change?

Be a friend to the people in the school – being a friend may be more important than being a head of school.

Do you know where you will go to High School?

New Vista – I am so excited. I am ready for a bigger environment, making new friends and having new experiences.

The following questions were asked of Anastasia by first grade students Johnny and Olive, who were acting as junior heads of school for the day:

Johnny – what is your favorite sport?

I’m not really a sports fan, but if I had to choose, I would go for running or volleyball.

Olive – What is something in your life that you would want to go back and change?

Nothing, because if you change something, then you wouldn’t be where you are. I am glad for the experiences I’ve had, the mistakes I’ve made and the people I know. I wouldn’t change anything.

Challenging minds. Nurturing spirits. Honoring individuality.