Hello from the Saltwater School:
Welcome to the first newsletter for the school season! As we move into the cooler months there are many upcoming events and festivals to warm us and infuse us with light including the Martinmas festival, the Winter Faire and the Advent Circle. We will also be running a Food Drive for the Food Bank November 12-15. Your teachers will provide you with more details.
Our newsletters will feature captions from teachers, parents, board and community. Do you have any pictures and/or video you would like to donate to our archives? We look forward to capturing the highlights of Saltwater School in our newsletter - if you have any suggestions please let us know. Happy November everyone.
By Rebecca Watkin
Class Two Three has been busy this term. We began the school year with a focus on outside time, form drawing, remembering our inside voices and quiet bodies. We had to get to know each other again and how we want to be together as a class. After three weeks of September we had arrived at that old place of comfort and peace. We were working hard and could maintain a peaceful working space in the classroom. This is when we began working on a Fibers block.
The role of Fiber study in a Waldorf school is to connect the children to the role of humans on the earth. When the children are between 7.5 and 9.5 they experience a time of loneliness and a feeling of being disconnected from things. Through a look at Clothing and Fiber the children experience a connection to the earth. The earth provides plants and animals from whom we get fiber for clothing.
Over four weeks we looked at animals that provide humans with leather and wool, plants like flax, hemp, cotton and silk (because the silkworm eats plants and never reaches its potential as a moth we consider it more like a plant). The children visited Morrison Creek Alpaca farm where they fed the animals and did some work on the farm in exchange for some fiber. They learned to sew leather and to wash, dry and card wool. They learned about spinning all of the different fibers with drop spindles and with a spinning wheel. They experienced the differences between the fibers: the coarseness of hemp verses the lightness and softness of silk. The stringiness of linen verses the puffiness of cotton. They heard stories of the plants and animals and the journey of turning these into fibers and then clothing. They knitted and weaved and knotted all of the spun treasures into fabric.
On the final day of the four week block the children hosted the community in their classroom for a Fiber Fair. The event was one hour where the children greeted visitors at the front door with baked goods and a warm hello. The student tour guide walked the guests down the hall and showed them into the classroom. Here the room was set up in a spiral where each table was hosted by a student and set up with a fiber. Fiber tables showed written work, fabric, spun fiber, knitted fiber or woven fiber. The children spoke of how the fiber went from source to fabric as community members travelled around the room. The Fair was a wonderful hour showcasing their hard work and new found connection to fiber.
I have to thank the mothers who were available to the class to help organize the working days, I could not have done this on my own. Thank you to Morrison Creek Alpaca Farm as well for always being such gracious hosts whenever we visit. And thank you to the children of Class two three for your dedication to spinning, knitting and bracelet making and to trying new things. And now its onward we go to place value and carrying and perhaps a little building...
Our Path to Saltwater School
By Adam Morden
As a family, we had a tremendous opportunity over the last year to truly move to wherever we wanted. Marla had finished her Phd, both our kids are healthy, and I was fortunate to have developed a business that left me location independent. First, we thought about moving to Costa Rica or Panama and spent 6 weeks there specifically exploring the schooling and living options. It was fantastic, Amatiel especially thrived, but in the end we decided it would not be the best fit for our family. So, knowing we really wanted to be back near the ocean and mountains we came back to BC and began our search here. Our primary concern was finding a school where our kids could thrive and ensuring their ability to get outside and enjoy the fantastic environment that surrounds us in BC. We checked out schools up and down the island, Victoria, Cobblehill, Duncan, Nanaimo, Campbell River, the Gulf Islands, and a few on the mainland mostly between Pemberton and Vancouver. Of all the schools we toured none really felt right and seemed to provide everything we were looking for in a school. Specifically, a well-rounded education that focused on the whole sphere of development including art, music, and physical education, not just classic academics. We also wanted somewhere where differences where not just tolerated, but actually celebrated. When we walked in the door at Saltwater school the first time we felt at home. The kids played outside in an awesome environment, they were all happy, excited, and energetic and the teachers all seemed to genuinely like kids (sadly uncommon in our search thus far). We weren’t specifically looking for a Waldorf school, Amatiel had been attending a Montessori in Ontario for the last 2 years, and we actually thought an IB school was what we wanted. But once we found Saltwater School we knew that we had found the best school for our family.
The Saltwater School Board began 4 years ago as a group of inspired parents. Since then we have grown to 9 members and each person brings in their own diverse talents and backgrounds. The Saltwater School Board is responsible for a number of things including:
Introducing our School Board:
overseeing our school budget
preparing for school expansion
supporting school faculty
- Chairperson/Human Resources Chair (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Vice-Chairperson (email@example.com)
- Treasurer (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Secretary/Administration Chair (email@example.com)
- Director/Building and Facilities Chair (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Director (email@example.com)
- Director/Marketing Chair (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Jennifer Ross Irwin
- Director/Faculty Chair (email@example.com)
- Director/Administrator (firstname.lastname@example.org)
*If you would like to know more about the Board please ask!