Klahanie School February 2023 Newsletter

Klahanie School

February 2023 Newsletter

There are three ways to ultimate success:

The first way is to be kind.

The second way is to be kind.

The third way is to be kind.

 ~Fred Rogers

Reminders/Thank You

  • Winter Break No School: February 15-Feb 24 2023
    • Dec Makeup days: Monday Feb 13/ Tues Feb 14, same school times
  • 2023-2024 First Month Enrollment Registration and Deposit Due
    • http://www.jovial.org/klahanieschool/family 
    • Please note: If you seek to move your child to another class for re-enrollment or have siblings you seek in both classes, please contact the school this week.  We will figure it out!  If finances are stretched for your family, please contact the school to set up a payment plan.  First month tuition deposit must be paid before June 2022 completion.  Thank you for this budgetary securities support for our school.  
    • Please note: If unsure about commitment to the schedule and multi-age and multi-year returning learning support format, please pause on enrollment. Withdrawing requires three months’ notice.  Reading over school policies prior to enrollment is required.  Thank you for this help in our sustainability of honoring what we know works best for our Montessori Antibias programming.   
  • Thank you Toby and Gillian for help beginning our Self Portraits! 
  • Thank you Monthly Specialist Collin Veenstra from The Vashon DOVE Project sharing the following curriculum with our 3-6yr class, please check out the January album for reference of our deep circle conversations.
    • 1/25 – Consent!
    • -2/28 – Families!
    • -3/15 – Gender!
    • -4/19 – Race!
    • -5/17 – Special bonus topic! 
  • Valentines: Monday 13th  and Tuesday February 14th we plan to celebrate Valentine’s Day and exchange Valentines  (Teachers will help distribute Valentines in name labeled bags in the downstairs classroom).  We plan to cook a gluten free pancake meal (with a class made of fruit compote, chopped almonds and seeds) and sing, recite Valentine songs and poems.  Please leave out names on the valentines, and no pressure, this is intended to be relaxed fun.  If you do not get them made, that is 100% ok!

Believe there is a great power silently working all things for good, behave yourself and never mind the rest.

There is something delicious about writing the first words of a story. You never quite know where they’ll take you.

I cannot rest, I must draw, however poor the result, and when I have a bad time come over me it is a stronger desire than ever.

~Beatrix Potter

February 2023 Unit Topics:  This quick-Rich in Wonderment focused month, any topics not covered in-depth, we will roll into our month of March.

  • Chinese New Year Lunar New Year: Thank you Ian Ma for coming into our 3-6yr class and sharing family memories and traditions!  We will be creating as a group a large Chinese New Year Dragon to dance in the garden in celebration.  
  • Independence: encouraging the use of some key tools of establishing areas at home for early education Self Care (Montessori & Waldorf) foundational learning practice of independence and concept of “try, try, try, practice, practice, practice”. At school, we will support with some helpful tips to maximize opportunities for your child to explore independence that leads to consistency and a sense of confidence, order and longer durations of concentration.  Here are some helpful tips for home that will add magic moments to your transition times at home.
    • Establish a little area that has lower hooks, an area for boots to independently remove (or place on) rain gear and masks.
    • Cleanup stations with accessible hand broom and dust pans to help cleanup.
    • Shelf and stools and small cup & pitcher to retrieve own water when thirsty and designated areas to place dishes or help wash up.  
    • Areas to independently wash hands (stools, soap dispenser and song prompt for length to wash). 
    • Open space inside or outside that your child can Dance, freestyle move! 
    • Cozy little nook with a few good items, a weighted blanket or quilt, a little basket with calming sensory items chosen by family.
    • Space for follow through to new opportunities (when a child is needing support to re-adjust behaviors to help instead of tantrum): a stump outside or a mat/towel and warm, clean contact in upper arm with movement to destination and words “the mat/stump needs your contact while we await your helpful choice”, with a count to 15-20 slowly to the movement to new choice or cleanup/ act initially asked in transition.  Happy to checkin if you would like more support here.  Please check out our school website resource page for book references or email to schedule time to check in, maybe schedule a springtime home visit.
  • Humanitarian Leaders explored this February: We begin our dip into the incredible story of the Grandmother Peacemakers, The International Council of Thirteen Indigenous Grandmothers from around the world.  Please checkout their amazing website below for more detailed information and the wise global Grandmothers who take action in their indigenous communities, for change and connection.  They will inspire you deeply!
  • Beatrix Potter: through children’s books about her life of her scientific mind, one of Britain’s first botanists to discover mycelium (from the Webster’s Dictionary: Mycelium definition is – the mass of interwoven filamentous hyphae that forms especially the vegetative portion of the thallus of a fungus and is often submerged in another body (as of soil or organic matter or the tissues of a host); also : a similar mass of filaments formed by some bacteria (such as streptomyces).” Beatrix’s creativity and inspirations we explore how she self soothed with the observation of nature and the inspirations from those silent moments witnessing and drawing, exploring ideas and the resiliency to “try, try and try” again.  As well as introductory to journaling and practice.  We will create class journals this month.  
  • Love & Emotions: exploring this powerful emotion and how we show love to self and others.  This will incorporate arts, movement, spoken word, songs and poetry. Deep Emotions & Friendship explorations. We explore through movement/games to practice identifying and naming emotions, exploring empathy and stepping into another person’s experience using scenarios and stories of perspective and compassion using our puppet friend Little Mouse Who Lives in a House with Walls the Color of the Sky as well as some fantastic discussion-encouraging books. Our Specialist Collin Veenstra from the Dove Project will come to explore family love.
  • More About Koko & Ivan as well as Exploration of Bonobos Monkeys:
  • Color Mixing & Beginning Self Portraits: Primary and secondary as well as time exploring the meaning of hues, tints, shades, tones and neutral colors of black and white.  Hue: both a color and a shade of a color.  A rainbow shows the melting of one hue to another.    We begin our first steps of skin tones, hues, tints with book discussion and color mixing.  This becomes an extended week process of creating individual self portraits 100% led by the child and supported by teachers.  The experience also opens wonderful circle reflections and inquiries led by the children and mentored by the teachers working from anti-bias education clear based practice to honor and celebrate similarities and differences.    
  • Beginning our Wonderful World of PNW  Beavers studies!  This unit will last a while and is one of our favorites! 
  • Alaskan Peace Leader brothers Harold and Phil Gatensby of the Raven Clan of the Inland Tlingit Nation   Exploring and honoring community leaders Harold and Phil Gatensby, First Nations practitioners of Circle peace work and indigenous rights through youth and education support.
  • Poetry reading a ton of poetry and encouraging children to draw and write their own poems.  We ask permission to read at the ending circle and applaud.  

“Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought and the thought has found words.” ~Robert Frost

What I’m not confused about is the world needing much more love, no hate, no prejudice, no bigotry and more unity, peace and understanding. Period.

Fear can’t put dreams to sleep.

I’m all for anything that is going to better equip a person who is physically challenged in any way, to have an opportunity to be able to do what they are able to do.

My mother had a rule, obviously, that I couldn’t go across the street by myself, but I had to find a way of doing it.

~ Stevie Wonder

January 2023 Reflection

 Hawaiian Poem: Peacemaker (To make Peace)

Ua kuikahi ke aupuni e haawi e paa I ka lima ke kuike e mamua o ka olelo – alohaloha ua kuikahi ke aupuni  ~ To unite as one and make peace you must give your hands up in agreement that you will ‘try’ to understand one another, speak kindly, entreat gently and go with love, yes, in order to unite as one and make peace

 ~Bonnie Flach, English Translation

Klahanie kids are mighty, mighty kids and mighty, mighty kids they are.

They work for peace.

They work for love.

They work for harmony!

January brought us amazing levels of connection, reflection and presence and exploration of life cycle and healthy grief process.  We dove into the exploration of earth Peacemaker leaders starting with Fred Rogers, Dr. King, Koko the Gorilla and moving to North American Beavers creating many amazing art projects.  While learning about Dr. King, we focused on his work for inclusiveness and harmony.  We wove in honoring and gratitude of each of the Klahanie School students as Peacemakers, how they show daily kindness.  Thank you parents for your wonderful check-ins and inquiries this month. All your children have shown tremendous levels of kindness and focus on helping self, friends and the environment. With the solid base of each working as a team member making peace by creating focus, offering help everyday within themselves and in friendships, we now are working on the new layer of group connecting and a magical normalized class time together: a Montessori term for focus in harmony and joy within a class space.  We really explored the meaning of harmony this month and practiced as a group singing in harmony to mentor the sensory understanding.   

This deeper layer of our group work is more opportunity to practice our peace scripts: naming emotions, repeating back (active listening process), making amends, moving forward.  This includes teachers helping to fill the vocabulary goals by inquiring about the intention, offering the language to help for clarity and moving to extended play.  The large motor play that occurs in the garden incorporates the goal of practicing kindness/grace and courtesy, stating needs clearly all while playing.  Interactions like these might be shared with you at home in your child’s reflections of the day.  These interactions are wonderful opportunities for deeper connection creating and we continue to find how much the children benefit from the reminder of the key script when feeling social-emotional discomfort and to ways to be brave, come get a teacher for help or say it outloud to the friend independant: “When you….I feel…..” and asking the other child to repeat back what was heard.  We use a talking-listening piece at this moment and the process becomes a daily practice.  Our play works from the basis that if a child is focused alone that can remain until the child seeks connecting time.  Two children together means a group at school and when a group is asked, “Can I play with you?” Our Klahanie School script of inclusive response is, “Sure, we’ll figure it out, we are playing…who do you want to be?”  We are consistent with the script and etiquette of group play and we do witness more connection bridging formed from this practice.  We ask the children to support one another at school and outside of school by acknowledging one another and remembering we are a team in the school and in the big, noisy world.  We have one another as supporters.  

Some additional language guides we help practice for clarity assistance: 

I would like a turn with that when you are finished.

I will hand it to you when I am finished.  

I would like your attention, can I share with you?

Thank you, maybe later, I am focusing-right now.

I am very excited, may I tell you?

Sure, I am listening.

Thank you for listening.

Coming back together, celebrating togetherness and re-establishing connection and friend dynamics through dramatic play and garden adventures has been the core of our work this month while maintaining our class lessons and fun.  We feel honored to hold such a powerful and loving container of safety for your child to express fully the wonders of learning.  

In the practice of compassionate listening, you listen with only one purpose: to give the other person a chance to speak out and suffer less.  Practice breathing in and out deeply and concentrate on what you are hearing.  While the other person speaks, they may express bitterness, wrong perceptions, or make accusations.  If you allow these things to touch off the anger in you, then you lose your capacity to listen deeply.  Listening with mindfulness helps you keep your compassion alive.  It protects you, and your anger will not be triggered.  Even fifteen minutes of listening like this can be very healing and can bring a lot of relief to another.  You may be the first person who has ever listened to him or her like that.  

~How To Love, Thich Nhat Hanh

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: