Merry Season to You All!
I hope all this rain sprouted seeds of creativity for all of you or at least some puddle stomping. Just as the rain drives us indoors to cozy up for the afternoon so too does this time of year bring an inner soul mood and gesture of turning inward. We see it in nature and ourselves. With the days growing shorter and colder we are afforded more inside family time and maybe a moment for some introspection too. How can we bring this mood of reverence and inner quiet to our children and ourselves when the hustle and bustle of the media world is encouraging us to buy, spend, want?
This week marks the first week of advent. Advent means that which is coming. At school we celebrate advent by focusing on the four kingdoms, one each week. This week is the week of the mineral kingdom, next week is the plant kingdom, the third week is the animal kingdom and the last week is humankind. We do this by lighting a candle and saying a verse that reminds us of a moment of thankfulness for all that is in our natural world and for all that is within us. These are the verses we say at school.
The first Light of Advent
It is the Light of stones:
The Light that shines in seashells, crystals and in bones.
The second Light of advent
It is the Light of plants:
Plants that reach up to the sunlight and in the breezes dance.
The third Light of advent
It is the Light of beasts:
Beasts that crawl upon the earth from the greatest to the least.
The fourth Light of advent
It is the light of humankind:
The Light of hope, of thoughts and deeds,
The Light of hand, heart and mind.
Our last day of school marks the coming of light with the solstice. You are invited to our 5th annual Solstice Lantern Walk on 12/20 Thursday evening at 5pm. This festival carries a quiet tone. With beautiful live music and the children all holding their lanterns as they walk silently into the darkness, we are reminded of our own inner light, the light of our children and the return of light to our world. Please join us for an evening of quiet on Dec. 20th from 5:00 – 6:30ish. We will also have a puppet show at 5:30. The doors will close at 5:30 so please don’t be late. There will be no food at this event so please make sure your little ones have had either an early dinner or hearty snack beforehand.
Thank you for those of you who were able to make it to last week’s parent evening. We showed a video from the school where I used to work in the Bay Area, The Marin Waldorf School. It’s titled “Why Waldorf.” If you have never visited a Waldorf school it is a great window into the why behind the curriculum and gives you a good feel for what we are trying to head towards. It is on YouTube and I have two copies of it on dvd. The short film was such a success that the parent who made it made another video that is also on YouTube titled, “Media and Waldorf.” This is also a great film especially to watch before we enter into the holiday commercialism craze. I highly recommend you take a moment to view it. It just might help you to explain your choice of limited/no media to your aunt, uncle, grandparent, parents etc. at the next family holiday party:)
At our parent evening we also spoke about how to bring meaning to this time of year in your home and here are a few of the suggestions: Light a candle at dinner, go for a walk to gather pinecones/evergreens, make a wreath, create an advent calendar based on giving back, i.e. one day it says help a neighbor bring in their trash can, another day it says spoil the dog, another day it says donate food to a shelter, etc., tell stories, spend the rest of the Solstice Lantern Walk evening in candlelight at home, say the advent verses at home. I’m sure you have many others. Please keep up the discussion!
Barter Mart: Dec. 7th at 7p.m. Wishing Well School
Velveteen Rabbit Ballet: Dec. 14th from 11am-12pm, Spanos Theater
*Please email me and let me know if you are interested and how many tickets you’d like. I am going to try to get a group discount if there are enough people interested in going.
Make a handmade gift for your child! Starbaby workshop: Dec.15th, 10a.m.-12p.m. at Wishing Well School, cost $10 (see home page for details). This event is open to anyone so please spread the word. Pre-registration is required.
Solstice Lantern Walk: Dec. 20th at 5p.m., Wishing Well School
Thank you to all of you for supporting our garden. Our first harvest day brought in $30! Not bad for some veggies which by the way were the most amazing greens I’ve ever had!
A big THANK YOU to Brad for finishing the compost bins! And thanks to those of you who helped make seed flats. Our garden is growing!
Thank you to Hunter’s grandma for donating a beautiful scale so we can measure all our produce from the garden.
Rob, Tricia and Fiona Durham are relocating to Boulder, Colorado. They have been a spark of enthusiasm and a true joy to have at our little school. We wish them all the best as they embark on a new adventure. We will miss them all dearly. We love you Fiona!
I hope the peace of the holidays find a way to settle into your homes, hearts and minds. With joy,