Upping relaxation quotient the key

Maxing and relaxing is good for the soul, according to this crew.Photo: Alex Perry

After science teacher Dr. James Fownes leaves ARHS for the day and goes home, he finishes his work, has dinner, and relaxes. For him, relaxation means practicing for his band, The Light Reactions, which consists of him and his daughter Kathleen.

Dr. Fownes makes sure to get work done very early in the morning before school so he has “time after dinner for relaxing.”

Kathleen Fownes plays the fiddle in their band and he plays the piano and “calls,” which means he shouts out the dances for the dancers to do. They play mostly Celtic, North American, and traditional fiddle tunes.  As well as playing music, Dr. Fownes enjoys working in his garden, hiking, and going to dances.

Like Dr. Fownes, students and teachers at ARHS all have different ways that they like to spend their free time. Steven McCudden finds time to relax after school from about 3 pm to 5 p.m.

During this time, McCudden spends time with his friends, watches T.V., or simply sits around collecting his thoughts. He likes relaxing because he loves the absence of “doing something.” He said it “calms the soul.”

Shannon Lambert finds time to relax when she “should be doing something else.” She likes to put on music and “read something not for school.”

Inderjeet Badwal has lots of time to relax. He uses his time after school until he goes to bed, to “do nothing.” This really means he likes to listen to music, usually his favorite song, “Dradle, Dradle, Dradle,” and to watch funny YouTube videos, especially “epic fail” compilations.

Jonah Weinbaum cherishes his free time. He especially likes the time before bed, noting, “I want to dose off with a clear mind and an elevated psyche.”

During Weinbaum’s evening leisure time, he turns on music, puts on a blindfold, lies in bed, and shuts off all of his senses. He finds it helps him release bad energy and prepare for a good night’s sleep.

Simran Multani finds that it is important to relax before, during, and after she does her work. “Taking a break is important to me getting my work done well,” said Multani. During this free time, she likes to talk with her friends or sister, eat, and hang out with her dog.

ARHS students also find lots of time to relax on the weekends. Steven McCudden relaxes by sleeping in until 12:30 or 1:00. When he finally wakes up, he plays basketball on his rec team or with friends.

Jonah Weinbaum also likes playing basketball and hanging out with his friends, but he still finds time to go into a complete relaxation mode by lounging on his couch in silence and sipping hot tea. He said that it’s a great way to charge his mind for the upcoming week.

Students are not the only ones who enjoy relaxation time. The teachers at ARHS are also avid relaxers when they aren’t teaching, preparing for class, or grading.

Social Studies teacher Tom Fricke finds time to relax after he gets home from school and before dinner. “It’s important to have a break,” said Fricke. Mr. Fricke likes to exercise and get outdoors, as well as read and play the guitar. On the weekends he explores the many trails of the area and spends time with friends and family.

Dean of Students Mary Custard relaxes after she leaves ARHS, having already finished all of her work. She loves hanging out with her many friends, going out to eat or to the movie theater, and attending events sponsored by the five colleges, such as guest speakers.

On the weekends, Ms. Custard also likes to exercise or attend Broadway shows.

In the end, all agree that relaxation is key to a happy life, increases productivity, and helps relationships between people and the earth.