May 2015 Newsletter
Listening is a magnetic and strange thing, a creative force. The friends who listen to us are the ones we move toward. When we are listened to, it creates us, makes us unfold and expand.
- Karl Menninger
April 2015 Reflection
Thank you for such wonderful conferences! As always, the joy of sharing how your child is moving, feeling, exploring in class is a fantastically fun experience!
We had a month full of amazing growths and connection as a group. Being inspired by the Compassionate Listening work I am thankfully afforded to practice and experience trainings in; our circle times have been sprinkled with compassionate listening exercises tailored for our young multi-age group. We have been playing a “listening game” each day (the children have begun requesting) where a child holds the talking rock to share a story or thought. We listeners then have the fun job of listening to the facts and take turns repeating them back. We also ask the person what they felt, or will some times guess if enough leading words are given during the story and ask if that was the feeling, the emotion? The last step, if enough is shared in the facts and feelings, I help frame it with “it sounds like you really enjoy or value having quiet, independent time” or “…. time spent with family,” etc. to help highlight the idea of an internal value which are always positive, imbedded truths in all humans and what connects us to one another. This story/listening exchange along with greeting each and every person around our circle silently, only with present and loving eye contact, are pillar foundations to the work of Compassionate Listening peace development work. And the Klahanie School children are soaking it up!
This month we also have experienced a class of all boys more frequently than not because the girls have been out of class for varying reasons. This is a new experience for both Patsy and I in the classroom, to have a classroom with only boys present, and the rewards of such an experience have been plenty. This has also inspired me to re-look at The Wonder of Boys: What Parents, Mentors and Educators Can Do To Shape Boys Into Exceptional Men by Michael Gurian, PH.D. a wonderful and practical book framed to help support boys becoming sensitive and strong men. I share this because I am floored by the level of empathy, connection and compassion brought forth by this dynamic group of very young nine males. I feel deeply honored to be an educator of such a loving group of Teamwork! And when the girls are here with us, it is all the more rewarding!
Earth Day week we celebrated with many earth songs, planting seeds, discussions of edible and non-edible and invasive and non-invasive plants in our garden as well as releasing our Painted Lady butterflies. We also began more introductions to our solar system.
March Curriculum Topics
Niche In Nature
I’ve got a Niche in nature, no matter what you say.
I’ve got a niche in nature and it’s going to stay that way.
We’ve each got a niche in nature, whether we’re big or small.
If niches are protected then there’s room enough for us all!
Ten little eggs all in a mound, out come the caterpillars crawling around.
Then they will sleep and we know why, out they immerge as butterflies.
Butterfly, butterfly what lovely wings.
Flutter by, flutter by how my heart sings.
Butterfly, butterfly I’d like to know, when it rains, when it rains where do you go?
Bend and Stretch, reach for the sky.
There goes Jupiter, there goes Mars.
Bend and stretch, reach for the sky
Stand on tippy toes oh so high.
· Our Solar System!
· Teamwork: All groups that create teamwork
· Bees: bee hives and teamwork, bee life cycle and why they are so important
· Cinco De Mayo: More Spanish language introduction, music/dance and foods (please feel free to share what you like from Mexican culture and knowledge!)
· Mamas! Mother’s Day love!
· The last day of school is moved to Wednesday June 17th:
o Classroom sing-along at Noon
o Family end-year party potluck 5pm-7pm Dockton Park
· Please remember to put sunscreen on your child as well as supply them with a water bottle. We will continue to do our walks to Klahanie beach and having water available is very helpful. Thank you!
· Thank you Meaghan Goliday for organizing our Scholarship fundraiser! And to all those who sold, bought and supported! This always goes a long way!
· Please check out our Parent Reference on our school blog for some amazing children and family book references we visited this month