Menlo School Faculty & Staff


In this course, we will seek to capture and convey the wisdom found in the human condition. Our units will take on some of the major facets of life: joy, growth, loss, grief, despair, belonging, curiosity, connection, solitude, nature, and more. A wide selection of essays, poems, podcasts, short films, and art from authors, creators, activists, and leaders of different eras and backgrounds will inspire students as they work to hone in on, and articulate, their own life philosophies. Our study and our time together is designed to inspire deep reflection and the thoughtful development of a personal connection with our values and experiences. Flannery O’Connor is quoted as saying, “I write to discover what I know.” Likewise, students in On Being will write reflective weekly journals as a way to build towards crafted personal essays that express their particular wisdom with style and purpose. Our writing, like our reading and discussion, will be exploratory in the name of discovering our wisdom about living what Mary Oliver reminds us is our “one wild and precious life.”

Instructor: Ms. Ramsey