Acorn Nursery News from Ms. Jan:
As we move into the second semester of the school year I traditionally invite you, our parents, to spend some time in our classroom between now and the end of school. Children in Waldorf Schools all over the world perform a play in the Grades each year as a culmination of a year's worth of bonding and working together to form what we call "one whole class." Our class has come a long way since the beginning of the school year and although the children in Early Childhood do not perform in front of audiences, this is my way to let them show you all that they have learned and know how to do. You are welcomed to visit for a few minutes in the morning, until snack time, stay the whole day or any amount of time that you would like. Please let me know a day and details of how long/times if you would like to spend a day with us in the Nursery. You might be surprised with all that your little one can do at school.
Jasmine Kindergarten News from Ms. Diana:
Magnolia Kindergarten News from Ms. Heidi:
A new month brings a new story and a new circle. Winter is upon us, but how do you acknowledge and honor winter in subtropical Louisiana? What does winter look like for us? Well, this year I am inspired to work with the archetype of winter as well as our “real” winter experience of fickle temperatures, gray days, rain, and cold dampness like we experienced last week, as well as the brilliant sunshine and ever blooming plant life we see around us on a day like today. Our morning walks allow us to notice the subtle changes that come with our seasons. We notice when the lizards stop sunning themselves on the payment, when the citrus begins to turn colors, when the leaves and pine needles fall, and when the mud becomes more prevalent in our garden play space.
Grade 1 News from Ms. Contento:
Happy New Year! I am looking forward to seeing all of my students tomorrow morning! I hope you had a wonderful winter break. I am so thankful for all of my lovely gifts and feel very appreciated.
We will be diving into a language arts block on Monday. I will be finishing up the last of the consonants and introducing all of the lowercase letters to my students. The first story of the year is from the book, Fearless Girls, Wise Women and Beloved Sisters. It is a Czechoslovakian fairy tale called “The Wood Maiden.”
Grade 2 News from Ms. Mullen:
Because I extended our math block so that children had time to absorb the concept of carrying and borrowing, which is a large concept for many, it took up the time of two blocks. So we will be beginning with our fables block. I will be incorporating more math than I usually do in circle so that children can continue to work on their facts. We will be focusing on Jataka tales.
Here is a description of these stories from Wikipedia:
The Jātaka tales are a voluminous body of literature native to India concerning the previous births of Gautama Buddha in both human and animal form. The future Buddha may appear as a king, an outcast, a god, an elephant—but, in whatever form, he exhibits some virtue that the tale thereby inculcates. Often, Jātaka tales include an extensive cast of characters who interact and get into various kinds of trouble - whereupon the Buddha character intervenes to resolve all the problems and bring about a happy ending.
I think the children will enjoy these stories and we will continue to work through phonics rules, handwriting, and sentence building as we go.
Grade 5 / 6 News from Ms. Nelson:
MAIN LESSON: POETRY / PLAY - I introduced the play, Ramayana and Other Hindu Stories, which I adapted from the source material I used to present these works to the class in our Ancient Cultures main lesson. We read through it as a class and had the play cast by Thursday afternoon. Though the final decision was mine, the students had an opportunity to let me know their preferences, and I had a personal meeting with each student to speak with them about their potential parts. I felt like by the time the list came out, the students were at least at peace with what was chosen for them. Students with larger parts, or those who need a bit more time to learn lines, were asked to get started on their lines over the break. Since I worked on the cast list on the school computer, and for some reason it did not transfer over, I will need to send the complete list to you this week. I also will finally be able to send home North American Geography assessments.
Grade 7 / 8 News from Mr. Pauzolis:
When we last left our intrepid crew, we had just pulled off one of the most spectacular plays in our school's history! I thank many of the parents for their contributions in making this happen. I'd specifically like to thank Mitchell Turnbough for acquiring and installing the amazing lights, blackout curtains and more, Ivy Sherman for painting the absolutely incredible backdrop and gravestones, Amy Reuben for taking charge of the costumes, Stacie and Amiel Provosty for additional costume help, providing all sound effects and providing the speakers, Voice Toure for her assistance with organization and props, Ena Konjolka for her donations, Tasia Taylor for being the very first parent to step up and offer help with the clean-up without hesitation, and Ama Rogan for all of her help with too many things to list. Many more of you were involved in donating costumes, props, cleaning up, and more. Please know that I am grateful to *every single one of you* for EVERYTHING you did to help. I sincerely thank ALL of you from the bottom of my heart! Seeing so many people stick around to clean and straighten also meant more to me than you can imagine. I looked around to see us all working together so selflessly and beautifully, and it really moved my heart. I also wish to recognize the amazing work our actors did. They truly brought "A Christmas Carol" to life! The compliments the class received on their spirited and heartfelt performances were staggering, and numerous people walked away touched and inspired.
The last day of school was spent recovering from our titanic efforts. I arranged an all-day holiday party, which began with a morning walk around the school as we sang carols to the other classes. I also gave out beautiful holiday crackers, which contained fun goodies. We then exchanged presents, ate lots of food (thanks to Miss Kristi for providing a mind-boggling amount of food- for the last two play rehearsals and also for the in-class party- that she paid for herself without being asked!), listened to music, played board games, and ended the day by watching the film, "Elf" amidst a comfy sea of pillows. We also gave parent-donated gifts to the first graders (thanks to Traci-Renee for organizing this).
Tomorrow, we will move directly into our creative writing block. This block will focus on the art of storytelling, but we will review creating believable characters with motivations (a subject we had studied in the past). This does change our block plan. We were originally going to feature Astronomy at this time, but I have chosen to move that block to later in the year.