April 27 2014 Newsletter
Mulberry is Twitter-less
Meadow Garden Easter Eggs

Upcoming Dates

Tues., April 29, 6:30pm
Early Childhood Parent Evening

Sat., May 10, 10am -2pm

Tues., May 14, 3:30pm
Board Meeting

Thurs., May 15, 9:00am
School Tour

Tues., May 27, 6:30 pm
Early Childhood Parent Evening
Morning Garden's Easter Bread

A Clover Garden garden
Our Kindergarten Assistant, Jen Pearson, has some hidden talents!

Fine Dining in the Clover Garden:  Fostering Hygge

By Jenny Taylor, Lead Clover Garden Teacher 
If it seems like Early Childhood mornings revolve around our shared snacks and meals, it’s probably because they do, at least for the children!  Our re-creations of the “family dinner” nourish us in so many ways: coming together, shared time and experience, conversation, food, and attention. And just like at home, the magic of the family dinner is in the striving, or the process, rather than the particulars. Our snacks may not always be perfect - for example, the porridge may stick, or there may be complaining or the occasional simulated bodily function noise – but, as Kim John Payne explains, shared meals tell children, “this is what we do together, this is what we mean to one another.”
Our rhythm for shared meals ensures that they nourish us, body and soul. Children and their families help with preparation in various ways: laundering napkins, providing fruit, chopping vegetables and kneading bread dough. Our table is set with care and beauty. A symbolic start, including a blessing and a time of silence, sets the tone for the meal and gives the children the opportunity to rest from the hard work of play and socializing with peers. While we eat, we practice social skills and manners—waiting until everyone is served, graciously receiving a bit of everything to try (even if we think we won’t like it), chewing quietly, using please and thank you, and staying at the table until all are done. After our golden silence is over, we have a chance to share our stories—a family trip, a new pet at home, the latest antics of Jen’s cat Toby, snowdrops in garden, a lost tooth. Finally, since we have all eaten the food, we all help with clean-up. After thanking those responsible for bringing in and preparing our food, we all tidy our own spot at the table, and we take turns cleaning the table and helping with dishes in the kitchen.
I am a firm believer that how we eat our food may be even more important to our children’s overall well-being than what we eat. However, we really do eat well in Clover Garden. Our snacks are simple and predictable, yet anticipated and relished by all. Our occasional feasts (e.g., latkes, pancakes) and birthday snacks are truly delicious celebrations of our kindergarten family. Love is an apparent and predominant ingredient in the food that arrives in our class potluck meals and the individual lunches the children bring. “Look Jenny, I have a muffin that my Dad made in my lunch!” “I’m so lucky: my mom packed my favourite pasta!” 
The Danes have a cultural concept called, “hygge.” It is difficult to translate, because it is flexible and nebulous, like the feeling of Thanksgiving dinner, but all year long. It is the art of creating comradeship, contentment, and conviviality-- the mood of candles, feasting, and family. The Danes attribute their top ranking in the U.N.’s World Happiness Report (despite being a small, subarctic country where the winter suns set by 4 PM) to this pervasive national attitude. Our shared meals in Early Childhood are just one way that we try to foster this feeling in our classrooms. For more information about “hygge,” follow this link:
Here is a brief update on what the Kingston Mosaic Group has been up to these past few months. 
We formally founded the Kingston Mosaic Group in January 2014 and continue to work towards incorporation and charitable status. With the help of Camphill Ontario,  professionals and a masters student from Queen's University we have been developing our vision and mission. 

We had the privilege of presenting our vision at the North American Camphill Conference and found that it was received with wonderful warmth and encouragement.  We continue to be mentored by Camphill Ontario. 

Our meeting on Wednesday, May 7, 7:30 pm at Mulberry Waldorf School (25 Markland Street),  and then our consecutive meetings on the first Wednesday of each month, will be open for those who would like to join in or observe this process.

Crafting water colour paper boxes for the Easter Bake Sale

Marketing Committee
The marketing committee serves as the window of our school to the community. This year we brought the community and others into the school for the Winter Fair, where Snap'd Kingston captured the fun and happy faces. We held several Open Houses, where we showcased Waldorf education in Kingston and we promoted the school to local newspapers, with selective stories in accordance with our school's message. In addition, we advertised in various local education guides.

As a committee we always welcome new members and ideas on how to promote our school. We are also currently in need of technical assistance on how to increase traffic to our website. If you have any knowledge or expertise in this area, in particular, we would love to hear from you!

That said, you don't have to be a member of the committee to help advertise the school. In a sense, the real marketing is done by all of us: the families of Mulberry Waldorf School. Through participation in the school's annual fundraisers, coming to open houses to get a keener sense of the curriculum and how the school is evolving, putting up posters for events, and by talking to friends and family about the reasons we choose to send our children to Mulberry, WE are the school's best and most effective marketing tool!

May Fair is coming up on Saturday, May 10th - a wonderful community event and opportunity to introduce friends to the school. We look forward to seeing you there and to continuing to promote our wonderful school.

Physiology and Nutrition in Grade 7/8
Many hands make light work!
With May Fair around the corner there are many ways to help out ahead of the event and on the day.  Here is a list of ways that you can help: 
  • Sign up for a shift at the crafts table, café, Mulberry table, plant table, etc.
  • Donate some baking for the desserts table.
  • Gather up those gently used puzzles, games and children’s books that are hanging around and donate them to our Mulberry table. Please drop off donations in the office.
  • Look around your garden for wild flowers,  greenery and willow vines for our crown craft and drop off starting May 8th in the school yard.
  • Consider splitting up some of your outdoor or indoor plants and donate them to our Plant Sale. Donations can also be dropped in the yard starting the week of May 6th . 
Our next May Fair meeting is this Wednesday April 30 at 9:15 am here at the school!  All welcome. 

Geology in Grade 6
Grade One, Two/Three Classes went to Leahurst School to welcome some newly hatched chicks

Grocery Cards

Please help us raise money while doing your groceries! 
What are they? They are gift cards to grocery stores. Cards are the equivalent of cash and come in $250, $100 and $50 denominations.  They can be used at Loblaws, No Frills, Independent Grocer and Valu Mart stores. You can use up the total value of the card or retain a balance for your next grocery trip.  
The very best part about the cards is that the school receives 5% of the value of the cards. 
Remember even a $50 card helps. 
Drop by the office before shopping and stock up on cards!


by Charlotte Schurer
Grade 6/7/8 teacher

            What do these have in common?  This has become an occasional question of mine in the Grade 6/7/8 classroom as we have embarked on these two main lesson blocks in the same classroom.
             Mineralogy is part of the curriculum for Grade Six.  Starting with the rich travel experiences of the students, both within and outside of Canada, we put together a picture of the vastly different terrains on earth:  the Scottish Highlands, the Alps and the Rocky Mountains, The Grand Canyon,  the volcanoes of Hawaii, and of course the Limestone city of Kingston.  Held within these spots are examples of the three main types of rocks:  igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic.  We are learning the stories that the rocks tell us about their birth.  Was it by fire, water, or pressure?  Our rock collection in the back of the classroom is growing steadily and has many examples from each group.  In addition, we have looked at the forces of weathering, the rock cycle, and at geological activity as a result of plate tectonics.  Physiology is a very important subject for Grade Seven and Eight students.  The topics that are brought to them contribute to their ability to making healthy choices for the rest of their lives.  We have started with the Digestive System, complemented by a look at nutrition requirements for their ages.  In addition, students compared labels to see which product was the healthier choice in terms of sugar, salt and fats.    Further topics will include the Circulatory System, Respiratory System, Nerve-Sense System, the role of the skin, the eyes and the ears.  All students will present a health related topic to the group.
            So what is one thing these two topics have in common?  When we look at the hard parts within us, we will find out that it is calcium that maintains these: the same mineral we find in the limestone on which our city is built. 

Grade 6/7/8 Experiments
A group of Queen's University students visited the class to teach a lesson on the Nervous System.  A round of experiments led to the importance of protecting the brain by wearing a helmet when biking.  The experiments included packaging eggs to prevent cracking when dropped from a height

Bake Sales
Next Bake Sale will be Wednesday April 30 at 12:15 pm and 3:30 pm – see you there!  
Upcoming Bake Sale Dates:  May 14; May 28; and June 11 (last sale of the year)

Morning Garden Yard Play

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25 Markland st., Kingston, ON