Walking to Listen: Andrew Forsthoefel

April 3, 2019 : 6:00 pm

As parents and educators, are we willing to DO the things we ask ofour children?

How can we use listening as a mode of discovery and support?


Andrew Forsthoefel listened to thousands of people as he walked across the United States. Starting in Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania in 2011, with his backpack, audio recorder, and a sign slung over his back that read “WALKING TO LISTEN,” Forsthoefel began his epic journey to ask for guidance on how to live his life. 

Over almost a year’s time, Andrew conversed with thousands of people who shared their stories and often their prejudices; he began to discover the answers to his questions might be in listening itself. Forsthoefel’s journey is recounted in the book “Walking to Listen.” Created from his journal and the eighty-five hours of recorded stories and conversations, he shares what he learned.

What does it mean to be human together? We all want to be our best selves for our children, and by lookings at our parenting and teaching strategies through the practice of listening, we develop the skills in opening up to what our children and students truly need.

On April 3, Forsthoefel will spend the day at Friends Academy, holding workshops with students, leading the faculty meeting, and giving a community presentation at 6:00 that evening.

Join us Wednesday, February 27 at 6:00 pm

Friends Academy is hosting a free screening of the film Angst. Angst is an IndieFlix Original, documentary designed to raise awareness around anxiety. The film includes interviews with kids, teens, educators, experts, parents and a very special interview with Michael Phelps.
Our goal specifically is to help people identify and understand the symptoms of anxiety and encourage them to reach out for help. Angst screens in schools, communities and theaters around the world. The film and corresponding materials provide tools, resources and above all, hope.

This event is FREE and open to the public.

Where:  Friends Academy Commons
When: Wed. Feb. 27, 6:00 pm

A short discussion will take place afterwards. Feel free to learn more information at:  https://angstmovie.com/

NOFA Workshop, Film Screening, Local Food Tasting, & Panel

Saturday, Oct. 20th from 1:00-8:00 pm


Join us for a great afternoon and evening at Friends Academy and learn more about the future of agriculture in the US. Participants have the option to register for the afternoon (1-5 pm), the evening (5-8 pm), or both!

The afternoon portion is a NOFA workshop with Friends Academy teacher Steve Walach on “Season Extension in the Bio-Intensive Garden.” Mr. Walach will discuss high yields in small spaces and give focus to garden-scale season extension methods through frosty days. Participants will tour the garden and participate in setting up simple low-tunnel greenhouses. *FA families interested in this portion of the day should contact Steve Walach directly to reserve a spot. Non FA families can register with NOFA through the link at the bottom of the page.

The evening portion will feature a local food tasting catered by Chef Aaron DeRego of The Back Eddy, followed by a screening of FA parent Graham Meriwether’s documentary ‘Farmers for America’, and ending with a panel consisting of local agricultural entrepreneurs. Children are welcome to attend. Registration for this portion is separate from the afternoon session. Advance registration is required, and can be completed below.

  • 1:00-5:00pm – NOFA Workshop: Season Extension in the Bio-Intensive Garden
  • 5:00 pm – Local Food Tasting on the Farmhouse Field
  • 6:00 pm – Screening of Farmers for America, About the film: WHO WILL FEED US? The average age of the U.S. farmer is 60. Half of America’s farmland is going to change hands in the next 12 years. 20% of our food is imported. This is the story of young people who are stepping up. Directed by Graham Meriwether (American Meat). www.leaveitbetter.com
  • 7:15 pm – Panel moderated by filmmaker Graham Meriwether

Panel including: Elizabeth Frary of Copicut Farms in Dartmouth, MA, Jordan Goldsmith ’04 of Moonrose Farm in Cranston, RI, Sarah Cogswell and Kate Levin of Cluck and Trowel in Westport, MA

$10 entry fee per person OR $20 entry fee for a family 

Children under 5 are free.

Event sponsored by NOFA, the Northeast Organic Farming Association, Friends Academy, and Farmers for America

Register Here for the Evening Portion >>

Non FA Families Register Here for the Afternoon NOFA Workshop >>

April 4, 2018 – 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Kip Bordelon

Are There Really Two Americas? is a scholarly but very “real-talk” presentation that directly addresses how and why we often see national matters differently based on race. It is a very thought-provoking and eye-opening presentation that is certain to leave the audience with a new perspective and better understanding of the African-American experience. For many, being Black and being American are at times conflicting realities. Perspectives about the United States and prevailing national issues can be vastly different depending on one’s race. Are There Really Two Americas? takes a critical look at events that have separated us. Until we better understand the source of our differences, this social variance will persist, making acceptance and ultimately advancement much more dicult. The presentation explores these social realities and challenges our society’s behavior on these matters.

About Kip Bordelon

For more than a decade, Kip has worked at the United States GeneralServices Administration where he has awarded and managed contracts worth millions of dollars and written, implemented and enforced federal acquisition policy. Kip’s interest in policy affairs began at an early age. Although he is a life-long Chicagoan, he attended Lawrence Academy, a New England independent/boarding school, where he discovered his passion for American History, the law, and the importance of diversity. Kip graduated from the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) with a bachelor of arts degree in Political Science. He then earned a master’s degree in Public Policy from the same university- where he also won the prestigious Martin Luther King Jr. Award for leadership. While matriculating at UIC, he founded the student group Diversity in Demand. In 2012, Kip established The ASSI Group, now The Picardy Group, where he has provided recruiting and consulting services to federal agencies, New England independent schools, Chicago Public Schools, and local private schools and has been a guest participant on panels at conferences and similar events.

September 25, 2017 – 5:00pm – 7:00pm

Atul Gawande

Beacon Hill Village, the very first “virtual village” of the national aging in place movement, is 15! It is celebrating those 15 years by acknowledging the tremendous growth in the area of “purposeful aging,” the idea that as we get older we can stay involved in our community, stay safe in our own homes, and stay connected with each other through our area village. All of the more than 350 villages across the country, including our Coastal Neighbors Network, have been invited to access a livestreamed talk by Atul Gawande, a Boston surgeon, writer and public health researcher.

Atul Gawande’s talk will be followed by refreshments and discussion.

Atul Gawande is a physician and prizewinning author. His most recent book Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in The End offers us a different way of looking at how to grow older gracefully and to have more control and choice about how and where we want to spend our time. It is also a call to physicians to recognize that sometimes quality of life trumps harsh end of life “fixes”.

Atul Gawande, MDMPH, is a surgeon, writer, who practices general and endocrine surgery at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He is Professor in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the Harvard T.H.Chan School of Public Health and the Samuel O. Thier Professor of Surgery at Harvard Medical School. He is also Executive Director of Ariadne Labs, a joint center for health systems innovation, and Chairman of Lifebox, a nonprofit organization making surgery safer globally. Dr. Gawande has been a staff writer for The New Yorker magazine since 1998 and has written four New York Times bestsellers: Complications, Better, The Checklist Manifesto, and most recently, Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End. He is the winner of two National Magazine Awards, Academy Health’s Impact Award for highest research impact on healthcare, a MacArthur Fellowship, and the Lewis Thomas Award for writing about science.

Friends Academy hosts speakers on timely topics.  In the past few years, we have hosted Dr. John Ratey who co-wrote Driven to Distraction and Spark.  Dr. Paul Foxman, author of Dancing with Fear, addressed the anxiety epidemic in America.

Dr. Catherine Steiner-Adair spoke about the ways in which technology and media change how children learn and grow. Dr. Thomas Phelan, author of 1-2-3 Magic, gave ways in which parents can manage their children’s behaviors. Friends has also hosted timely movies: Screenagers gave tips to parents and adolescents about how to manage screens and screen time.

Please check back regularly for upcoming speakers.

Upcoming Events

  • February


    Friends Fest: Family-Friendly Fundraiser

    5:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.

    Friends Academy



    Institute for New Administrators of Color

    4:00 p.m. - June 25, 3:00 p.m.

    New Bedford Harbor Hotel, 222 Union St., New Bedford, MA 02740