2017 Duck Parade

Dale Mylin teaches by far the most popular elective at LCDS, and probably the only one that makes second-graders shriek with delight.

Ever since a studious Mallard mother decided to start laying her eggs in the school’s courtyard more than 15 years ago, Mylin has choreographed the annual spring herding of her and her ducklings from their nest to the stream by the Lower School parking lot.

The closed-in garden is safe for nesting, but after the ducklings hatch they are easy prey for hawks and they can’t fly out. Their migration takes the family through the lobby and out the front door, winding around the building inside an ever-shifting tunnel of students and teachers.

“This duck knows what she’s doing,” Mylin said. “Before we went to get her, she was already walking up to the library doors to try to get out that way.” But so long as no one spooks her, Mama Duck is accommodating enough to take the long way, ushered by Mylin and a few hundred of his feather-free cohorts. There’s no water for the ducklings in the garden, and they have to take the plunge within 48 hours of hatching.