Saturday, June 28, 2014

Unplugged on Purpose

The hands on learning approach of Waldorf Schools is nicely characterised in this Fox News broadcast:

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

The Michael Day and Harvest Festival

The Michael Day Festival is one of the biggest events in the Lower School calendar that celebrates both the Autumn harvest and the courage of St Michael and his conquest of the Dragon.   This festival is a day of games of courage for the Lower School and an afternoon of courage related workshops for the Upper School.

Here is a  Class 7 perspective:

Class 7 have had 5 years of participating in the Michael games and they decided it was time to revamp them. The student council of Class 7 took on the challenge of coming up with new ideas for the Michael games. They came up with some great ideas like improving the games and also replacing some old games with great new ones.

On Thursday 14th of March each class 7 student was knighted by their teacher Ashley in front of the whole lower school at assembly.

All of the lower school was mixed up and put into team with Class 7 Knights and Ladies leading them.

On Friday 21th of March Class 7 lead their teams to victory, some teams got their flag stolen by leprechauns, some teams collected leprechauns gold, but in the end it turned out to be a fun day.

I would like to say a big thank you to all of Class 7 for such a great day and all the teachers and parents for making the day possible. 

Kieren McPeake, on behalf of the Class 7 Student Council.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Class Seven’s Trip to Carter Observatory

In class seven the students are given the opportunity to explore the wonders of astronomy. The movements of the heavens are studied from the human being's perspective - what we can see as we stand on the earth and look upward. Astronomy is taught in class 7 to respond to the students‘ soul-wish to know the wider world. Their gaze is directed upwards, to the sun and all that it gives, to our closest neighbour, the moon as well as the planets and the constellations. The students explore the many influences that these have had upon the lives of our ancestors, and the ways which they continue to influence our lives today.

On Monday the 24th of February 2014 class seven and some of the wonderful parents of class seven drove to the Carter Observatory. It was a beautifully sunny day. Inside class seven were escorted to a room where they were educated about the solar system in which we reside. Later they were allowed to walk around the gallery; there were many interesting things to see and do, including touching apiece of moon and meteorite and many other interactive activities. After that they saw an audio visual display about the wildest weather in our solar system and saw the stars, constellations and planets in the planetarium. They went home with a dazzled look on their faces and a twinkling in their eyes.

Ashley Gibbs

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Making 'Preparation for Life' the main goal.

"Preparing for Life" takes viewers inside the Waldorf School of the Peninsula, Silicon Valley where the focus is on developing the capacities for creativity, resilience, innovative thinking, and social and emotional intelligence over rote learning. Entrepreneurs, Stanford researchers, investment bankers, and parents who run some of the largest hi-tech companies in the world, weigh-in on what children need to navigate the challenges of the 21st Century in order to find success, purpose, and joy in their lives:

Friday, December 13, 2013

Botany Day Out

Recently class 5 were lucky to set out for a day of adventure with Emily Fawcett, an experienced outdoor educator. We went to a beautiful piece of bush and farmland near Paraparaumu and explored bush and meadow.
The children practiced identifying and recalling different plants and their leaves, wrote poetry about a stunning rimu tree and blindfolded each other, working in pairs to recognise a tree just by feeling it. At highlight for me was the koru of the mamaku fern we foraged for, prepped and cooked on a fire. Delicious. The children also loved playing in the muddy creek.  

Thank you to Emily, the wonderful parents who came and Chris Vannisselroy who saved the day at the last moment. What a great way to end the year and finish our Botany Main Lesson.

Here is rhe poem we wrote as a group with everyone’s words and ideas added:
You feel solid and smell of Grandpa’s basement
I feel calm, as old as time, in Grandma’s garden
Whispering words yet always silent
Standing proud
Smells like damp carpet
A guide, mighty and twisted
I thought I saw you take a step
Woody smelling and scary
Whispering airy silence
Feeling dark and damp, but dry, musty
Sounds like whispering

Purdy Biddle

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Class 6 camp 2013

 We have had a wonderful week away. The weather was excellent, the food was superb and the children were a pleasure to adventure with.

 We battled our fears on the high ropes (though some made it look like a Sunday stroll) we negotiated with the river in the chasm, we were awed by the galaxies of glow worms in the cave, and were rewarded with a swim in the river after our hot walk to the perilous pinnacles.

 And all along the way there was lots of inspiring and intriguing geology to be explored and discovered.

Ashley Gibbs

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Taiwan Waldorf Teachers at Raphael House

Last week we were priveleged to have a visit from six teachers from the Cu Xin Waldorf School in Taiwan. They came to Raphael House to find out practical information that will help them as they develop their high school.
From left to right on each side of David Stephenson  in the photo are:
Diipali (Eurythmy teacher) Shih Min (Principal)
Su (founder of the school) Richard (science teacher) Hsini  (science teacher) and Yu Di (history and philosophy teacher).

This image shows the location of  Taiwan. Cu Xin school is in the north east part of the island
Here are some photos of Cu Xin School, taken by Julian Thomson on a visit there last year.

Although it is still a young school, it already has triple streamed classes up to class 4, double streaming u to Class 9 and single classes from 10 to 12.

Here are classes 10 to 12 with some of their teachers

This photo is of a high school assembly at Cu Xin:

 The teachers meeting,
and lastly some photos to give a flavour of Taiwan. It is a land of rugged coasts...

Forested mountains and temples...

and busy markets with incredible food...

Many people at Raphael House have expressed their interest and enjoyment at having met our Taiwanese colleagues. Let's hope that this new connection will develop into the future!