“If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up the men to gather wood, divide the work, and give orders.
Instead, teach them to yearn for the vast and endless sea.”
Welcome everybody and congratulations on the first week of 2016-2017!
As we, the staff, reflected on the first day of school we all shared feelings of joy, pride and accomplishment. Seeing all of you and your children, filling the courtyard with your incredible presence…felt monumental. Remembering where we came from, 4 kids under a tree, to a courtyard filled with smiling energetic young people and connecting adults was almost more than most of us could imagine. We always knew that we all, children, parents and teachers deserved a place where the first day of school was something to be looked forward to, not dreaded, but to be actually standing there, with sunflowers and “nests” and a drum to announce to the world that these humans were about to embark upon a journey together continues to resonate with each of us. As each student and family dropped their rock in the “nest”, rang the drum, placed a sunflower in the bouquet, danced a joyful dance and then swung their pillows, a deep bond was solidified that defies how school has been defined. All of our unique spirits were honored that day and that makes us very proud.
***IN THIS NEWSLETTER***
Tending the Garden – Drop-Off/Pick up Info for Field Day, Emergency Back Pack Deadline and After-School Care
Parent Teacher Tools – Get help with your tech, save the date (Sept 24) & Find Your Groove
TKG Office – Support recycling, office hours, official calendar link.
In Education News – People are re-imagining things all time – inventors, solution-ers, problem solvers…our wish is to empower students and families
Traveling through the week, children abandoned parents at the wayside (or at least that is what it felt like!) to join friends and teachers to explore newly created classrooms. I don’t know how many times children skipped away from parents to join their class as they filtered into school, without even saying goodbye because what lie ahead was so promising and exciting. We tried a couple of new things this week. One is our Personal Project time (a.k.a. Deep Learning time) first thing in the morning, with a different studio represented in each room. Beginning at 9:00 every day, the school is an open invitation for students to wander throughout, experiencing the best that each classroom and teacher has to offer. In the Acorn Classroom, Michelle facilitated students playing in the dramatic play areas as well as peeling and chopping apples in the Food Lab. In the Nature Growers, Yvette led students to explore the Maker Space by thinking about Simple Machines and making homes for small creatures. In the Redwoods, Alice opened up the art cabinet and students drew and made origami.
At this time,the students easily flow between all classrooms, and the level of responsibility that each student carries to wander freely up and down the stairs translates to how they treat the materials and the different rooms they inhabit during that time. This has been such a wonderful “breathing out” opportunity for everyone, when we all got to acclimate to each other, breath out any stress or worry from the moments before school and get ready to “breath in” the rest of the day.
The other aspect that we have put a lot of attention on this week was a regular “exercise” time of the day. Every morning, for 10 minutes, each classroom is dancing, running, marching, squatting, and stretching their way enhanced brain functioning. It has been fun for the Acorns class to try out freeze dancing to different types of music and for our olders to try out different W.O,.D.s (Work out of the Day). Everyone gets to feel energized and we know that exercise encourages neuroplasticity, so it feels great all around!
*From Trish: Thank you all for all the time you have put in to reviewing PT schedules, returning your forms and getting your calendars synched up. Getting all of the logistics set up on this side of things will enable us to move forward with the work that matters. We continue to improve our communication streams so that we can meet you where you are: mobile, desktop, analog. If you feel confused, left-out, unsure about TKG events and opportunities…please check in with me right away so we can resolve toward empowerment through information!
Looking forward to what lies ahead!
Lena & Team TKG