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SHOW AND TELL

Bring a drum (made from an oatmeal box?), a shaker (rocks in a soda can?), or bells (any in your Christmas decorations?).

Topic: Native Americans

Learn about the culture of the first Americans

The value is honor, which means that we would never lie, cheat, or steal. It is easier to say these things than to do them.

For ecology we’ll take a nature walk.

Outside we’ll have our ceremonial parade.

The songs we’ll be singing are God Bless America, This Land is My Land, Catch a Falling Star, and Bluebird. We’ll also practice patterned singing, clapping, and breathing.

For creative dramatics we’ll learn the origin of the peace pipe.

Our art activities are tipi, rock painting, clay pots, totems, spirit dolls, and weaving.

For motor development, we’ll work on stamina with running and ceremonial dancing. For postural response we’ll do jack-in-the-box, tracking through woods, balancing, and walk across a log.

 

THE SENSE OF WONDER

Driving home one evening, consumed by thoughts of work/family/life, I saw something I’ve been unable to forget: five or six deer, less than a block away, crossing the street. Unfazed by one of our busiest thoroughfares, as unperturbed as the most blasé jaywalkers, they sauntered across the pavement, disappearing into the trees on the other side. Their appearance was so charming, so unexpected, they might as well have been unicorns.

Now I know about ”the deer problem”. In metropolitan areas the whitetails’ burgeoning numbers are a threat to gardens, and they endanger motorists and themselves as unprecedented numbers dash into streets and are smashed by cars. But seeing them merge from nowhere, with their long, velvet necks and primeval grace, my impulse was to protect them. Clearly the deer didn’t belong there. Their out-of-placeness made them precious. Now when I drive through this neighborhood I’ve passed a thousand times, I look for deer – and see everything else. The brick homes’ curves, the light darting through the trees’ diving branches, all seem different. Something magical passed before me here, so I now see the magic that already existed.

I remembered the deer the other day. Writing my umpteenth check for groceries, I was begrudging every cent when the redheaded cashier told me she’d been working there for 23 years. “Life,” she added, “is good.” When I looked up at her curiously, she seemed ready to pass off the remark as a joke.

“Yeah, life is good,” I said, suddenly meaning it.

“You know the good thing?” she asked conspiratorially. “We know it. So many people don’t.”

No, they don’t. Others know it but focus more on the myriad ways it could be better. More money, more love, more sex, more appreciation by family and co-workers. If they just had more, life could really be good. Some of us can’t see the good life for worrying about disasters-to-come, or about people whose lives truly are awful – concerns which, by themselves, help no one.

A crowded kind of loneliness has become our norm, one in which we contemplate everything but the happiness we can discover when something helps us look for it. Everyday life is a steamroller that can flatten the wonder right out of you.

But we can search for the beauty that doesn’t seem to belong. In a world intent on our always working toward something – staying young, building financial security, always acquiring more – we can know that the real challenge is recognizing the wonder at hand. With our eyes wide open, we can see it. Even without the unicorns.

Donna Brit – Washington Post Writers Group

 

On the Calendar

Harvest Festival – Friday November 17, we will have our annual Harvest Festival, this is the time when each family is asked to bring a dish that is special in your home. You can drop off your food in the morning and we’ll do the rest. You can find the sign-up sheet as you enter the school to list what you will be brining. We will start the harvest at 11:30 and it will last about an hour. Mark your calendar and plan on having lunch with us at school. Don’t worry about making too much, with the help of volunteer parents; any leftover food will be packaged in to-go containers to be distributed to the homeless.

Get a Free Tree – Centerpoint is offering free trees to their customers as a partner with the Arbor Tree Foundation. The trees will be available Saturday, Nov. 11, in MacGregor Park (5225 Calhoun Rd, 77021) from 8:00 to noon. Register and get a list of trees available at arborday.org.

Children’s Festival – This festival gets bigger and better every year (woodlandscenter.org). It’s both Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 11-12. Check out the events and see if it’s right for your family.

 

CLASSROOM NEWS

Classmates Zane and Eleanor enjoy the water transfer work, with the use of a sponge and a dropper they transfer water from one object to another being careful not to drip water onto the tray. This work helps improve concentration, hand-to-eye coordination, and fine motor skills. In the primary class Jonathan and Colin have been working together on with number and counters work. This work works with numbers 1-10 where a quantity is associated with a number symbol.

 

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